Brooker looks for Banbury to hit the ground running

Banbury manager Steve Brooker
Banbury manager Steve Brooker

The cold snap came at exactly the wrong time for Banbury.

Steve Brooker’s boys entertain Blackheath & Eltham this weekend, looking to pick up from where they left off and maintain their promotion push following the postponement of their trip to Purley Walcountians last Saturday.

We will want to secure our position before another enforced break

Banbury manager Steve Brooker

Banbury produced one their most dominant performances of the first half of the South Premier Hockey League campaign with a 7-0 victory which included a Kieran Symons’ hat-trick when they visited Blackheath in November.

This time Banbury will just be looking for three more division two points to preserve their six-point cushion over third-placed Guildford.

Brooker said: “The weather has done us no favours this week, we were forced to miss training due to frost and our momentum has been interrupted by the snow.

“We will be back hard at work with training this week preparing for the return against Blackheath. They have seen a recent resurgence in form and we will underestimate them at our peril.

“Every single league fixture was postponed this week so the season will now stretch beyond Easter with the rearranged games. We will want to secure our position before another enforced break.”

Banbury also had their South Clubs Women’s Hockey League fixture at Surbiton postponed so will face a double-header this weekend.

They entertain Trojans in Saturday’s division two fixture and 24 hours later take on East Grinstead II. Both teams are well placed in the top half of the table with Trojans boasting the division’s top scorer in Scarlett Goldsack, who has nine goals to her name.

Banbury remain one place outside the relegation zone but only on goal difference from Havant who they have a game in hand over. That game will be played on Sunday so Banbury will want to make sure they are still above the relegation zone by the end of the weekend.