Reivers contrive to make Waverley look good

TWEEDBANK, UNITED KINGDOM:   22 Jan 2011'Mens Hockey''(photo: Rob Gray)
TWEEDBANK, UNITED KINGDOM: 22 Jan 2011'Mens Hockey''(photo: Rob Gray)
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Reivers 3

Waverley Inveresk III 2

EAST MEN’S DIVISION TWO

REIVERS made heavy weather of dispatching the league’s bottom team at Tweedbank on Saturday.

Profligate in front of goal they let their lowly opposition sneak back into a match that could have been put to bed within the opening quarter.

It should have been different: bold passing hockey had Waverley on the back foot from the start. Reivers were dominant in possession and it was little surprise when Andy Bell slotted home from a passing move down the left to open the scoring.

However, instead of pursuing this winning formula, Reivers reverted to old habits. They stopped passing to the wings and attacked the Waverley defence head-on, where a more canny approach was called for. Only Tim Watkin bulleting home a short corner just before half-time put any further gloss on the first-half home performance.

The midfield war of attrition continued into the second period. Reivers continued to press the Waverley circle, but a lack of striking composure, and some good goalkeeping, kept genuine opportunities to a minimum.

Waverley contrived the odd blatter up the pitch, and although lacking the strength in depth of the Borderers, had enough players of quality to increasingly trouble the Reivers defence. In the end it took a soft penalty flick award for Waverley to pull one back, but it was no less than their travails deserved. Graham Lofthouse scored a scrappy third for Reivers following a melee in the Waverley circle. This should have settled home nerves, but Waverley sneaked a second via a short corner to make the final 10 minutes uncomfortable for the Tweedbank men.

Waverley huffed and puffed, but Reivers closed out the game to make the three points safe.

Speaking after the game Reivers captain Peter Cairns told TheSouthern: “We continue our climb towards the top of the table, but we will need to play a lot more intelligently when we clash with title contenders Carnegie next week.”

Reivers: S. Young, C. Tucker Jr, C. Tucker Sr, P. Conkie, D. Johnstone, S. Ramsay, P. Cairns, A. Bell, G. Lofthouse, S. Pitman, T. Watkin, J. Fletcher, A. Rajput, C.Stockdale, H. Fletcher, G. Bantges Umpire: Mel Ross.

z Match sponsor: Wester Hailes Medical Practice Staffroom, Edinburgh. Sponsor’s Man of the Match: Paul Conkie.