A bleak midwinter break ahead for City of Peterborough after a crucial defeat

It’s looking grim for City of Peterborough Hockey Club after defeat at the hands of Birmingham University in a big game at the bottom of National League Division One at Bretton Gate yesterday (November 21).

Monday, 22nd November 2021, 8:51 am
Matt Goodley (red) on the ball for City of Peterborough against Birmingham University. Photo: David Lowndes.

The city side will start the midwinter break four points from safety following a 4-2 reverse against fellow strugglers who have suddenly found some form with two wins on the spin.

City haven’t managed a single win from nine matches at the halfway stage. They have just two points and sit bottom of the table alongside Sheffield Hallam with two teams to be relegated.

Once again City started a game well and they competed strongly throughout, but they lack the attacking quality compared to most other teams at this exalted level. They also lack the squad depth to properly take on a team of fit and fast students for the entire 70 minutes.

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Joe Finding (not in picture) fires City of Peterborough ahead against Birmingham University. Photo: David Lowndes

City dominated the opening 10 minutes with 16 year-old star Ben Goold very prominent. Skipper Joe Finding fired his side ahead from their opening short corner, but the visitors equalised with a fierce reverse stick strike before the break after a period of domination.

City defended well enough to restrict the university side to no short corners in the first half, but when one was conceded, rather controversially, in the third quarter, it was ruthlessly despatched.

Another quality reverse stick shot made it 3-1 and, although hope was restored eight minutes from time when Alex Boxall expertly converted Finding’s precise centre, the university scored on the breakaway to seal a deserved win.

Finding led by example for City while Ben Newman battled gamely throughout. The spirit and endeavour levels remain high, but it’s not likely to be enough in the long run.

Ben Newman on the ball for City of Peterborough against Birmingham University. Photo: David Lowndes.

City don’t play again until February 6 when they host local rivals Cambridge City.