HARLESTON MAGPIES LADIES 1ST TEAM – WEEKEND PREVIEW
Harleston Magpies Ladies sponsored by Kilbourns .co.uk play Sevenoaks at home on Saturday starting at 2.00pm in their final League game of the season. All matches have to start at 2.00pm.
England Hockey could not have planned it any better with the top two teams in the League meeting on the final League match.
Sevenoaks would have been the favourites to win the League at the beginning of the season and Harleston Magpies would not have been tipped by many to be at the top of the League with one game to go. However Magpies record of losing just two games all season shows that they have been the most consistent team in the League and they deserve to be at the top on merit.
Magpies have won their last three League games at a crucial stage of the season and this has put their nearest rivals under pressure, who were facing more difficult matches in the final run in to the season.
Magpies would not have chosen to play Sevenoaks in the final match, but Magpies have put themselves in a great position, as they are three points clear with a superior goal difference of seven goals.
Mathematically Magpies could lose 3-0 (and no more) and still clinch the League title.
The key for Magpies on Saturday will be to be professional and put all these issues to one side and go out with the correct attitude of trying to win the match like any other week. Anything less than that and you create problems for yourself.
This week should see the return of Emma Lee-Smith who has been away in the USA for the last two League games. Emma has been a big player for the team this season, but the forwards have responded well in her absence and continued our good form. We have also had to contend with a few injuries in recent weeks. Katrina Warnes should return this week after missing last week whilst resting an injury. Emily Wilford who has been away, returned to the squad last week for the first time since November. Lucy Miller and Lauren Barber are unavailable due to a wedding.
Whoever wins the League on Saturday will move on to the Play Offs, which will take place on Sunday April 7th, Saturday April 20th and Sunday April 21st.
Three matches against the winners of the North Conference (probably Beeston), West League (Buckingham) and the team that finishes one from bottom of the Premier League ( Olton or Birmingham Univ).
After this round robin format the top two will play in the Premier League next season.
Squad : Charlotte Harrison (Capt), Katrina Warnes, Louisa Greenacre, Megan Adams, Debbie Francis, Elizabeth Jones, Sarah Brook, Amy Campbell, Angie Wheelhouse, Hannah Palmer, Lizzie Clymer, Katherine Ridley, Emily Wilford, Hayley Toleman and Emma Lee-Smith.