Saxons lose out to five-star Canterbury

Jon Meredith was South Saxons' man of the match in the 5-2 loss away to Canterbury Pilgrims.

Jon Meredith was South Saxons' man of the match in the 5-2 loss away to Canterbury Pilgrims.

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South Saxons Hockey Club's men's first team was left disappointed on Saturday after a 5-2 defeat away to Canterbury Pilgrims.

Saxons recovered from 2-0 down to draw level at half time only to concede three times in the second half of the South Hockey League Kent/Sussex - Regional 2 fixture.

Saxons were unchanged from the previous weekend's game against Old Williamsonians, but were caught cold in this one, with Canterbury taking an early lead after a long ball from the back.

In the early stages the visitors struggled to cope with the direct style of play their Kent opponents were adopting and soon found themselves two behind. Another long ball found a home striker in the D and he made no mistake.

A shellshocked Saxons then began to find their way back into the game, with Jon Meredith and Paddy Cornish gaining control of the midfield and bringing others into play.

Full-backs Dan Burnett and Chris Meredith began pushing on as Saxons pushed for a goal of their own, which came when Oli Beal found Andrew Acott from a short corner and the latter deflected the ball home expertly.

The midfield trio of Andrew Acott, man of the match Jon Meredith and Cornish were finding gaps, and the pressure told as Saxons grabbed the equaliser through a Beal short corner.

The momentum with Saxons heading into the second half, but they were stung as Canterbury took the lead once again from a short corner.

Saxons' frustrations grew as tough chances were missed by Acott, Beal and Alex Coombs, and they were dealt a hammer blow when the home side broke to make it 4-2.

In their efforts to claw themselves back into the game, Saxons again left themselves vulnerable at the back and Canterbury made it 5-2 with a strike from a tight angle which beat Brock Smith in the away goal.

The defeat makes this coming Saturday's home fixture against Mid Sussex a hugely important one for Saxons' season. Push-back at Horntye Park is 1.30pm.

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