Category Archives: Latest News

Back to Hockey

Never played hockey or not played since school?

Come down to Ben Rhydding Sports Club for our ladies’ summer ‘Back to Hockey’ sessions.

All welcome. No need to book.

Wednesdays, 7-8.15pm, 9 May to 27 June inc.

£5 per week or £30 (7 week block).

Mens Over 50s – Masters Champions Again

Ben Rhydding’s over 50s team travelled to the Olympic Park Lee Valley Stadium to face Isca (Exeter) Hockey Club. Having won in 2014 and 2016 and losing in the final last year, it was a great achievement to make the final again. However, every member of the team felt that winning would be the only satisfying outcome.

On a baking hot day, the self induced pressure on captain Neill Moore and his team was immense. Isca had put the mighty Reading HC out of the competition to reach the final and were always going to be tough opponents.

The first half saw both teams struggle with the heat and the newly laid pitch. Ben Rhydding were uncharacteristically making mistakes that overturned possession. Fortunately the defence held firm with a series of vital last moment tackles from Andy Locke and sprightly goalkeeping from Paddy Hagan (cheered on by 15 specially clad Hagan fans). Neill Moore kept England’s Andy Bachelor contained and Neil Horsman and Hugh Lambert provided vital control and release points from defence.

Manager Richard “Butch” Terry kept the team as fresh as possible by use of the strong bench and in the second half Ben Rhydding got a better grip on the game. The quality that Ben Rhydding were able to deploy up front (Rob Ward, Billy Marwaha, Ian Cussons, Howard Pickard and Jonathan Till) meant that they were always in with a chance of scoring and the goal duly came from Ward after some slick passing and a finish that the keeper was never able to predict.

The last 15 minutes were naturally very tense but Isca were restricted to one shot on goal which hit the post. The fitness of Fraser Priestley and the sensible use of the bench meant that the midfield combinations of Brian Kempson, Jon Bray, Richard Pughe and Mark French maintained enough control and the clock was run down to secure a 1-0 victory.

Winning a third national title in 5 years by a club from modest sized town in the north of England is a massive achievement. Probably 3 massive achievements! The title isn’t just about the final, all the rounds matter as there are no second chances, so everyone who played in the competition this season made a key contribution. These players are: Paddy Hagan, Neill Moore, Andy Locke, Neil Horsman, Hugh Lambert, Fraser Priestley, Brian Kempson, Jon Bray, Richard Pughe, Billy Marwaha, Ian Cussons, Howard Pickard, Jonathan Till, Mark Westwood, Rob Ward, Mark French, David Cutter and David Habin.

Under 18 Girls – Runners Up in National Indoor Finals

Congratulations to the Under 18 Girls who returned from the  2018 National Indoor Finals with Silver Medals.

Many of us followed the action via Internet and were hanging on hoping for that final victory that would have been well deserved. The club are proud of the players and coaches as echoed in the many tweets and messages sent by club members.  It is always good to see Ben Rhydding feature on the England Hockey pages.

Mens Over 50s reach 4th Final in 5 years

Ben Rhydding Masters made it through to the England Hockey Over 50s Final for the fourth time in the last 5 years following a 5-1 win over Jersey.

The Final will take place at the Lea Valley Stadium on May 6th at 1.00pm against Isca.

If you are interested in purchasing tickets for the event, please visit our website here; https://englandhockey.seetickets.com/event/men-s-and-investec-women-s-adult-masters-champs/lee-valley-hockey-tennis-centre/1202193

Girls Under 18s through to Semi-Final

Our Girls Under 18 team, who were runners up in the Indoor National Finals earlier this year, now have a chance to compete for a place in the Outdoors National Final after they beat Fylde 3-0 in the Quarter Final.

Scorers in the quarter final were Rafa in 1st half, then Izzy & Lauren in 2nd half.

Congratulations to all the squad.

The Semi-Final will take place at Ben Rhydding on Sunday April 8th at 1.30pm against Clifton Robinson.  All welcome

Under 16 Girls in the Medals at Lee Valley

BEN Rhydding enjoyed a great finale to a fantastic season, finishing in the medals at the England Hockey National under-16 finals at Lee Valley Olympic Park.

Group matches against Reading, Marlow and pre-tournament favourites Surbiton were always going to be tough, but the Ilkley girls rose to the challenge.

After a tentative start against Reading which saw keeper Sophie Dale make a fine save and their goal frame rattled by a penalty stroke, Rhydding got into their stride.

They took the lead when Lucy Williams’ shot was parried into the path of Niamh Brennan who made no mistake.

Reading’s equalised early in the first minute of the second half with a well-taken short corner.

Despite the setback, Rhydding remained calm and built pressure through the good work of Imogen Sunman and Freya Bellamy.

A Rhydding short corner was despatched by Kirsty McMillan, timing her run to left post to perfection.

A 3-1 win was sealed when another short corner was finished in fine style by an Izzy Weir deflection.

Next up were a confident Marlow side and despite enjoying the majority of possession, Rhydding failed to convert their chances and saw numerous short corners unrewarded.

Marlow defended from deep, and frustrated the Rhydding attack, denying them time and space on the ball.

A scrappy game looked to be heading for stalemate until Williams saved the day with a well-worked short corner late in the game.

Six points in the bag on day one meant Ben Rhydding were guaranteed one of the top-four placings in the championships.

Defending champions Surbiton were the team to beat on Sunday morning, and Rhydding needed a win to qualify for the final.

In one of their best performances of the season, the Ilkley side gave it their all, challenging every ball and giving no quarter in the tackle.

Rachel Scott and Milly Fewlass-Jones defended valiantly, preventing numerous Surbition attacks down the flanks, as Ben Rhydding packed the middle of the pitch and limited their rivals’ attacking options.

Nisha Cant and Evie Malir marshalled the defensive unit confidently, distributing well to midfield. Surbiton’s frustration grew as time ticked away, and Ben Rhydding tried to take advantage of turnover ball to grab the all-important goal.

Brennan and Jemima Jaggar both going close. Just as a goalless draw seemed inevitable, Surbiton earned a late short corner with just 34 seconds left on the clock, and it was heartbreak for Rhydding.

With both sides guaranteed medals, Stourport and Ben Rhydding battled valiantly for third place.

Stourport’s early lead was soon erased with a Cant short corner. Rhydding fell behind again, only for Cant to equalise once more from another short corner.

The second half saw both sides visibly tiring after two days of competition, Alicia Cumberland stepped up with some crucial tackles to keep the opposition at bay and Hadfield was on hand to clear the lines when needed. Dale stepped in with a couple of top class saves to deny Stourport, and Ben Rhydding rallied again, surely thinking the win was theirs as McMillan found space in the D to turn and fire home with just minutes remaining. The last word was with Stourport. They capitalised on a momentary lapse in Rhydding concentration to drive down the right and equalise in the last minute.

It meant third place would be decided on penalty flicks, but it was not to be Rhydding’s day as Stourport’s strikers kept their cool to take victory.

Vets looking to retain England Hockey Masters Title

Having won the England Hockey Masters (Over 50s) title in 2014 and 2016, the Ben Rhydding Men are preparing for their third final in four years at the end of April.

As last year they will be playing on the main pitch at the Lea Valley Stadium – on April 29th at 9am.

Although slightly disappointed by the timing of the game the team are looking forward to a great day and hope that plenty of supporters will make the trip.

Read the match report from teh Semi-Final against Isca below:

After many away ties, Ben Rhydding had a home match in the semi-finals, with Isca – a club with veterans’ pedigree – making the long trip from Exeter.

They weren’t the only ones travelling some distance for the match, however, as key Ben Rhydding players Mark French and Brian Kempson broke holidays to take part.

The first 15 minutes were tense, with Isca having the majority of possession and territory but the defensive unit of French, Neil Horsman, Neill Moore and Hugh Lambert holding firm to snuff out any visiting attacks.

David Cutter had a great chance to put Ben Rhydding ahead but lunged too far and suffered a hamstring injury, which ruled him out of the rest of the game.

Ben Rhydding thought they had gone ahead when a penalty corner was scored, only to see that, as the ball crossed the line, the umpire had blown and awarded Rhydding a penalty flick.

The penalty was missed and, in such a tight contest, either of these incidents could have tipped the balance against the hosts, but this is a team with genuine mental resilience.

The midfield trio of Kempson, Rob Ward and Richard Pughe were starting to gain an advantage over their quality opponents and, as the game continued, they used their strong bench to keep up with the pace of the contest.

Jonny Till had replaced Cutter to join Ian Cussons and Tony Wing up front, with Howard Pickard and Mark Westwood bolstering midfield.

It was halfway through the second half when Ward got on the end of a ball in the middle of the D and slotted home the only goal of the game.

Although Isca pushed hard for an equaliser, Rhydding kept possession in their opponents’ half, seeing out the game.

Best in Club – Ladies 3rd Team go unbeaten in League

BEN Rhydding crowned their Yorkshire Women’s Division One title-winning campaign by finishing their 22 game programme with an unbeaten record.

The title and promotion were already secured so the challenge in their final game on March 25th was to avoid defeat.

Rhydding’s defence had only conceded nine goals in 21 games and their early work was confident and secure.

At the other end of the field the Rhydding attack tested and stretched the opposition with their fluid passing game.

A 1-0 half-time lead was a scant reward from some excellent attacking play. The only goal was scored by Niamh Brennan.

The second half was less than straight forward as Hull equalised with a contested goal.

The setback was just what Rhydding needed as they quickly responded with a hat-trick from Freya Bellamy.

It meant they finished the season with 20 wins and two draws having scored 74 goals and conceded just ten.

Their dominance of the league is reflected by the 22-point gap between themselves and second-placed Bridlington.

The end of season awards reflect the outstanding quality of the young players within the squad with Abi Prentice being nominated by her team-mates as player of the season and Rachel Scott receiving the captain’s award for her outstanding contribution.