Wimbledon efficiency makes it hard work for Oaks

England Hockey Mens Premier League: Wimbledon 5 Sevenoaks 2

Credit: Michele Jacobs

Sevenoaks endured another tough day at the office on Saturday with a 5-2 away defeat to Wimbledon. As has often been the case this season Oaks were slow to start and found themselves a goal down when a quickly taken free hit enabled the Wimbledon player to enter the top of the D unchallenged to crash a shot past Richard Potton in the Oaks goal to put the hosts 1-0 up.

Less than five minutes later things went from bad to worse when a penalty corner was awarded to Wimbledon, and the drag-flick went low into the bottom left corner to make it 2-0. Oaks played their way into the game and had some nice attacking plays but on three occasions the ball drifted past the far post with no player there to bag themselves an easy goal.

Oaks won a penalty corner midway through the half but again the effort went narrowly wide of the target with no deflection to take it between the posts.

Wimbledon responded with two penalty corners of their own but the Oaks defensive unit held firm and the half-time score remained 2-0 to Wimbledon.

The second half started quietly with the opening ten minutes passing with little incident, but a flurry of activity in the following ten minutes effectively settled the game. Initially Oaks pulled themselves back into things when Sevenoaks man of the match Nick Barker won a penalty corner; Duncan Parnis’s shot on goal was saved but Chris Barker was on hand to convert the rebound to make it 2-1.

The Oaks joy was short-lived though as moments later Wimbledon won a penalty corner of their own and converted into the bottom left corner to make it 3-1.

A few minutes later another Wimbledon penalty corner saw them extend their lead to 4-1. Any hope of a comeback was extinguished when Wimbledon scored a fifth with a shot on the turn from the right hand side of the D making it 5-1.

Oaks carried of battling and pulled a goal back with five minutes remaining, when Ali Taylor fed Andrew Oxburgh, who smashed an upright reverse past the keeper into the back of the net for 5-2.
A late penalty corner for Oaks would have reduced the deficit further but it was well saved by the keeper and the final score remained 5-2.

Oaks are away from home again next weekend, with a trip to Sussex to face East Grinstead. They will be looking to improve on their start to the game with far too many early goals conceded so far.