Neston 2XI 3-5 Fylde 1XI
North Hockey League Division 3
Fylde were made to work for their first victory of 2020 with a hard fought win away at Neston.
Jordan Payne opened the scoring with a delicate deflection past the Neston keeper and when Simon Thomas volleyed home from a penalty corner to make it 2 inside 10 minutes, it seemed it would be another straightforward win for the league leaders. But Neston, much improved from the reverse fixture earlier in the season bounced back quickly, two quick goals put the scores back level and they had Fylde on the ropes. Fyldes keeper, Nick Rainbow made several saves to keep it that way as Fylde struggled to deal with the oppositions high pressing game. A tweak in tactics changed the game with 5 to go in the half. First Josh Boyne fired home after some smart play by Jay Currey and Payne got his second on the stroke of half time. 4-2 HT
Neston again dominated early stages of the second half and again reduced the deficit to one when an unmarked attacked found space in the D. And the home side had plenty of opportunities to level, captain Simon Major somehow managing to breakdown a 3 on 1 counter attack, and Neston having a goal disallowed, adjudged to have been struck outside the D. Fylde did score a fifth, when James Oakes made up for earlier misses to claim his 11th of the campaign and add some gloss on the victory. 5-3 FT
Fylde 1XI 7-0 Bebington 1XI
North Hockey League Division 3
In stark contrast from Saturdays victory, Fylde dominated their home tie on Sunday, putting 7 past Bebington. New coach Jack Cropper took control of his first game on the sidelines, making several changes including Laurence Sidwell and Charlie Parker being given their first team debuts.
Josh Boyne opened the scoring, firing the ball into the net from a bouncing pass from Jay Currey. Captain Simon Major deflected the ball home for number two before James Oakes finished off some good work by Simon Thomas at the far post. The fourth was the goal of the game, a driving run down the right by Boyne, flashed hard across the D for Sam Bury to slide in and score. HT 4-0
The second half continued much the same, with very little possession had by the away side, nor any chances created to test the Fylde defence. Jordan Payne scored the 5th for his third of the weekend, before Sidwell scored from a tight angle to complete an impressive debut for himself. Parker also looked confident on the ball, and Fylde will no doubt benefit from these two additional players for the remainder of the season. Simon Thomas scored the 7th for Fylde but Bebington did create one chance at the death, only for a determined Rainbow.
Fylde 2XI 5-1 Northern 1XI
North West Hockey League Division 2 North
The men’s second team continued their promotion push, hosting Northern XI in their opening game after the Christmas break.
A strong start and early pressure soon had Fylde up by 2-0 courtesy of prolific goal scorer Phil Hope with two neatly executed finishes.
Northern found their feet, but with the defence on Mortimer lock-down their chances were limited. Before the half was done, Chris Walker bobbled one over sticks and the keeper for his first of 2020 and Ben Mortimer added another for Fylde with a well-worked PC.
The second half, Northern scrambled a goal over the line to make it 4-1 before Phil Hope popped up to complete his hat-trick and finish the game 5-1 for Fylde.
A superb start to the second half of the season for Fylde who travel away next week to take on Southport.
Fylde 3XI 0-1 Didsbury 5XI
North West Hockey League Division 3 North
Fylde 3's produced arguably their finest performance of the season, being unlucky to lose by a sloitary goal to Didsbury Northern 5's, who are 9 places above them in the league.
Fylde defended well, strengthened by the rare availability of both Chris Holman and Rob Thomas, and with occasional goalkeeper Stephen Pope pulling off several important saves, however a goal was conceded in the first half.
Fylde had several attacks, with Kristian Brandwood controlling the central midfield, but the revolving strikers of Ollie Holmes, Jay Mayne and Martin Hayes couldn't quite hit the spot.
Chris Holman made some impressive runs from defence right up to the opposition D, which earned him the Man of the Match award, and Duke Jones also caused the oppoisition difficulties on the right wing.
Fylde tried to find the equaliser in the second half, but it wasn't to be, and unfortunately the result was another loss, but the performance was something to be proud of.
Kirkby Lonsdale 2XI 2-0 Fylde 4XI
North West Hockey League Division 4 North North
With a grand total of 8 available players for Fylde 4th team, expectations of a drubbing was high. After navigating to Kirkby Lonsdale around the M6 closure, the team was greeted by a welcoming opposition who offered a couple of their 17 players to make the game a little more even.
As the match started, despite still being one man short, things were surprisingly even and Dan Howe up front, had their defence worried on several occasions. The Fylde strong back four of Sean Lester, Harry Gordon, Andy Lund and the loaned player Mac kept each attempt on the Fylde goal at bay for the first 20 minutes until a brief lapse allowed the ball over the line. Play continued in the same vain for the rest of the first half.
With concerns over energy levels, the second half started similar to the first with Jack Williams and Connor McClelland in midfield feeding Dan with the ball to threaten the Kirkby goal. However without a full strength team, the ball couldn't find the backboard. After multiple short corners against Fylde, Kirkby eventually scored again. The match finished 2-0 which was a fair score given the loan of players.