Source: Andrew Smith

Investec Women’s Hockey League – Fixtures 14 March 2020

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Relegation-threatened Loughborough Students and Holcombe are preparing to face each other on the last day of the regular season in the Investec Women’s Hockey League Premier Division on Saturday.

Defeat could cast either side into the relegation play-offs, while for Holcombe a big win could be enough to scrape into the top four and the title play-offs.
The two sides drew 1-1 when they met earlier in the season. But a run of three losses for Loughborough Students may give the edge to Holcombe, who have not lost their last two matches.

“There is everything still to play for and to a greater extent it’s in our hands,” said Loughborough Students’ Head Coach Brett Holland. “We know the strengths of Holcombe but are happy to be playing at home knowing that this is our cup final.

“We’ve learnt so much this season as a group and with the extra pressure on results currently it will allow us to learn even more. There are certainly no easy games in the Premier League, it’s relentless. The league table could be moving and shaking regularly from 2pm on Saturday.”

“Our overarching aim of the season was to be competitive in all matches,” added Holland. “We feel we’re achieving this, getting results against most teams over the season, and sitting in the top half of the table for most of the season.

“But we look back and know we’ve missed opportunities to pick up more points; often having more possession, more chances and playing some really nice hockey to not come away with the win often enough.”

Elsewhere, the University of Birmingham host Buckingham knowing they need a win to be assured of safety, while Beeston could also face relegation play-offs if they lose at Hampstead & Westminster.

Currently third, Hampstead could go second and secure home advantage for the play-offs if they win and East Grinstead lose to top of the table Surbiton.

And in the day’s other top-flight match Clifton Robinsons host relegated Bowdon Hightown and could also make it into the top four if other results go their way.

Second-placed Swansea host third-placed University of Durham in the Investec Division One North, with both sides desperate for points to keep their title hopes alive.

Leicester City are currently top of the table and go to Brooklands-Poynton. If they win and Swansea City lose, the title goes to the Midlands side. If both win, the division will be decided on the last day of the regular season.

At the other end of the table Belper and Leeds are desperate for victory this weekend to avoid the drop. Currently bottom, Leeds host Ben Rhydding, while Belper are at home against Gloucester City.

And in the Investec Division One South champions Wimbledon host Cambridge City looking to maintain their 100% league record this season. At the other end of the table Isca go to Slough desperate for points in their battle to avoid the drop.

* The Oxford University versus Team Bath Buccaneers game that was postponed on 15 February has been awarded to Bath as a 3-0 win due to Oxford being unable to fulfill the replayed fixture in line with league regulations.

Investec Women’s Hockey League (Sat, 14 March 2020):

Investec Premier Division
Clifton Robinsons v Bowdon Hightown 14:00 (at Golden Hill)
East Grinstead v Surbiton 14:00
Hampstead & Westminster v Beeston 14:00
Loughborough Students v Holcombe 14:00
Univ of Birmingham v Buckingham 14:00

Investec Division One North
Swansea v Univ of Durham 10:30
Brooklands-Poynton v Leicester City 11:45
Olton & West Warwicks v Stourport 12:00
Belper v Gloucester City 13:30
Leeds v Ben Rhydding 14:00

Investec Division One South
Slough v Isca 12:15
Harleston Magpies v Reading 13:30
Canterbury v Trojans 14:00
Wimbledon v Cambridge City 15:45
Sevenoaks v St Albans 17:00

Investec Conference East
Barnes v Horsham 12:00
Ipswich v Wimbledon 2s 12:00
Bromley & Beckenham v Broxbourne 12:30
Bedford v Canterbury 2s 13:30
Chelmsford v Southgate 15:00

Investec Conference North
Pendle Forest v Sutton Coldfield 12:00
Univ of Nottingham v Timperley 13:00
Beeston 2s v Fylde 14:00
Cannock v Alderley Edge 14:00
Wakefield v Doncaster 14:00

Investec Conference West
Oxford Hawks v Exe 12:00
Univ of Birmingham 2s v Cheltenham 12:15
Oxford University v Clifton Robinsons 2s 12:30
Team Bath Buccaneers v Basingstoke 12:30
Univ of Bristol v Surbiton 2s 13:15