Four goals for Willets - against his own club
West Hampstead Firsts 7
West Hampstead Seconds 0
HARRY WILLETS netted four times in West Hampstead’s seven-goal demolition of their second team which lifted Jamie Dru’s men to the top of the Middx, Berks, Bucks and Oxon league table.
WH found themselves in the unusual situation of being pitted against their seconds due to last season’s relegation from South League Division Two.
The drop was a shock to followers of club hockey as the firsts had been in outstanding form for the bulk of the past two seasons and were constantly at or near the top of the table.
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But last season’s woes seem be behind them with a number of new faces playing alongside a few returning first team regulars that includes the reappearance of Jack Beard as player coach.
Beard left WH last season to join Premier Division outfit Hampstead and Westminster, but returned to the Brent Cross side at the start of the season.
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And Beard, who is supported in his new coaching role by Dan Fox, the H&W skipper and England international, has made the perfect start to the season, winning all three games that culminated in Saturday’s rout.
“I think we played the best we have for a long time,” said Beard.
“We were playing very good hockey throughout and the seven-goal margin was a combination of us playing the best we have over a season, and them not so much so.
“Our keeper didn’t have anything to do all game.
“As with previous games this season we were attaching more, chasing lost causes and then running back to defend when necessary.
“The concentration and composure was there, whereas at times last season we suffered for trying too hard and then getting frustrated.
“This time we were keeping pressure on them every time they got the ball.
Willets opened the scoring for the firsts on Saturday when he pounced on a ball that had rebounded off the post and thumped it into the net.
Roger de Roy got the first of his two goals a minute later when he scored from a short corner and netted his second from open play shortly before the break for a commanding 3-0 lead.
The firsts ran rampant in the second half, with Willets scoring from close range, and then adding a further two goals from open play.
Alex Liddle wrapped up the scoring when he deflected the ball into the net in the final minutes for their seventh goal.
West Hampstead have a league and cup double-header at the weekend. On Saturday they play Ramgarhia at Brent Cross in the league. The next day they are away to Old Williamsonians in the EHA Cup.