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HC Knole Park are through to the National Finals

Updated: Jul 6, 2021

HC Knole Park are through to the National Finals!! After weeks of knockout matches Knole Park’s juniors are through to the England Hockey National Finals weekend with a chance to be crowned the best teams in England!

The U16 Girls beat Wimbledon 6-1, the U14 Girls won 2-1 against Cambridge City and the U14 Boys were successful on penalty flicks after a 1-1 draw with Marlow! All three teams now play in their National Finals on Saturday at the Nottingham Hockey Centre.

HC Knole Park’s Chair, Ruth, said: “To have three teams at the National Finals this weekend is an incredible achievement for a club that has only just celebrated its 2nd birthday! The success of the club is a testament to the fantastic coaching program that Duncan, our Director of Coaching, delivers and the talent, commitment and desire of all the players to aspire to be the best they can be. I am so proud of everybody involved and hopefully it will be a fantastic day with some wonderful hockey played.”

Knole Park’s U16 Girls produce a remarkable second half in superb win against Wimbledon!

Knole Park’s U16s started superbly against Wimbledon in the National Semi-Final. Keeping possession for the first 2 minutes of the match, Josefina cruised into the D before setting up Olivia to take a brilliant 1-0 lead. The remainder of the first half was very even, as both sides looked to create chances. Wimbledon went very close on a number of occasions but were thwarted by the excellent defensive line of Cordy, Betrys, Elen, Jessica, Cara & Pascale in goal. The girls continued to create further chances on the counter through Josefina, Annabel, Imogen and Amelie, however it was Wimbledon who scored just before half-time as a well worked set piece was struck into the goal. 1-1 at half time.

The second half was a remarkable performance from the Knole Park girls. In a magical 20 minutes first Alex smashed home a penalty corner strike to make it 2-1, before Polly deflected in to make it 3-1 to the girls. Annabel scored the fourth from close range to make it 4-1, before Amelie finished off a wonderful team move involving most of the team to make it 5-1! Attacking with speed and precision, Phoebe, Alex and Polly all linked up before Amelie flicked it passed the stranded goalkeeper.

The final goal was a KP masterpiece! The ball started in defence with Betrys and Elen, before the ball was superbly picked up by Josefina in midfield. Josefina rolled the ball to Phoebe whose well placed pass put Olivia through and she finished off the scoring with a top corner strike to make it 6-1 and book the girls place at the National Finals!

Next weekend the Girls will play Thirsk HC from Yorkshire in a bid to be crowned National Champions!

Knole Park’s U14 Girls beat Cambridge to make the National Final!

Knole Park’s U14 Girls had a very tight match with Cambridge City in their Semi-Final. Despite dominating most of the ball it was Cambridge who took the lead. On a breakaway the Cambridge forward rounded the goalkeeper to slot the ball into the empty goal.

The second half was a much improved performance from Knole Park and it was the perfect response from the girls. First Summer’s diving deflection from Charlotte’s silky skills put the girls 1-0 up, before a Carlotta special made it 2-1. The second half continued to be dominated by Knole Park, with chances from open play and penalty corner, but the Cambridge City goalkeeper was in inspired form and she kept the score at 2-1. Cue jubilant scenes at the final whistle as the Girls had qualified for the National Finals!

Next weekend the Girls will play Repton HC from Derbyshire and Trojans HC from Hampshire in a three-way tournament bid to be crowned National Champions!

Knole Park’s U14 Boys show that they are as cool as ice in penalty strokes victory!

Knole Park’s U14 Boys also won as they played out a nerve shredding 1-1 draw with Marlow HC from Buckinghamshire. The boys started very well but found the Marlow goalkeeper on inspired form! He saved well from 2 great chances and was helped by the post for another. Indeed it was Marlow that scored first on the counter to make it 1-0 at half-time.

The second half was more even and a couple of fine saves by Ollie and fantastic tackling from Teddy and Will G were required to keep us in it. The boys kept pushing forward with considerable self-belief, but the chances were now harder to come by and Marlow remained dangerous on the break. With just under 10 minutes to go, we had 3 penalty corners, after some determined running by Louis, Mack, Isaac and Moritz. The first was blocked. Isaac got his shot away on the second - just wide! However, that proved to be a sighter for the third, which he fired home, to the not inconsiderable relief of the HCKP supporters' end!

We then had to endure a tense final five minutes, with 2 penalty corners to defend. With those safely negotiated it was the final whistle, and into penalty flicks.

Marlow scored with their first into the roof of the goal, and it looked ominous. Moritz calmly slotted his home, 1-1. Marlow's second was missed wide and perhaps this would be our day! Teddy went next and saw his flick saved by their keeper, still 1-1. Marlow scored, then Mack levelled it up at 2-2 with an inch perfect drag into the corner - in fact so perfect that it came off the inside of the post and then the other post, so another moment's anxiety for the spectators. Then the greatest drama of all. Ollie got down low and saved Marlow's flick. Will G slotted his home into the corner and we were 4-3 up. Then, incredibly, another save from Ollie, meaning that we had won without the need to take our final flick. The boys rushed to mob Ollie as the hero of the hour and it felt like we had won the world cup. Great times!!

Next weekend the Boys will play City of York HC in the second battle of Kent vs Yorkshire in a bid to be crowned National Plate Champions!

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