Ex-captain ruled out by knee op

South Saxons Hockey Club’s hopes of promotion have been dealt a blow with the news that former captain Pete Watters has required surgery on his knee.

The experienced defender underwent an operation on Tuesday, and it’s unlikely he’ll be available again during the remainder of the South Hockey League Sussex Area - Division One season.

Saxons have been out of action since a 6-2 win at Middleton & Bognor on December 8, so despite skipper Paddy Cornish’s best efforts to get a friendly arranged over the festive period, it’s been a while since the players picked up a stick.

“It’ll be nice to get going again, I’ve missed it.” Cornish said. “The game at Penguin on Saturday will no doubt be a tough one, but I’m confident we can take three points. We have good depth in this squad and I believe everyone who plays can do a solid job.”

Saxons are still well in the hunt for top spot, sitting in third, just four points behind leaders Brighton & Hove III. As well as Watters, George Eldridge and Jamie Busbridge are also unavailable for the trip to Penguin.

“This year, four points is a small gap,” Cornish continued. “Last year Horsham II only lost one game - to us - but this year everyone has lost at least two already. It’s very open, and you know everyone could pick up points on any given week.”