All posts by Craig Hockenhull

Match report – 27-01-24

Golborne ladies’ development 6 Whitchurch Ladies 3’s 0

With a few ladies missing this week we travelled to Golborne with some different players on the pitch. With only two senior players on the pitch the youngsters made some great passes and had quite a few chances on goal, with five short corners in the first half.

Golborne proved to have some very strong players with some very powerful shots on goal. At half time we were 5-0 down but still in good spirits but tired with only 11 players.

After switching around at half time Golborne only scored one more goal. All the girls are superstars in the making and showed great teamwork with some great breaks towards the goal.

Player of the match Erin Harnden who was excellent up front and in defence.

Whitchurch ladies 2s 1 Oswestry ladies 1s 4

Whitchurch had a slow start and Oswestry took full advantage of this. Oswestry scored two goals very early on. Oswestry kept the Whitchurch defence and midfield constantly fighting trying to push them back.  Goalkeeper Phoebe Gregory made many great saves to keep Whitchurch in the match.

The second half was pretty much the same with Oswestry dominating play but Whitchurch managed to find a few breaks and eventually managed to score with Freya Gresty running to the post and slotting past the keeper.  Oswestry came straight back scoring two more goals.

Whitchurch will put today’s game behind them and focus on next week’s match when they take on top of the league.

Whitchurch ladies 1s 0 Lymm ladies 2s 3

Whitchurch Ladies 1s started the game by applying a lot of pressure on the Lymm defence. After numerous shots and short corners which they were unable to convert, Lymm broke free and scored against the run of play.

This pattern continued after the goal, the team kept their heads up and continued to dominate play but without reward. Unfortunately, Lymm then doubled their goal tally in the same way.

At 2-0 down at half time Whitchurch lost key defender Chloe Lloyd to injury. This meant a reshuffle of all players on the pitch. The confusion meant the second half was a bit disjointed and did not flow the way the first half did. However, Whitchurch’s Hayleigh Busby and Hayley Kellett defended strongly and goalkeeper Caz Wynn stopped Lymm from scoring for most of the second half. 10 minutes before the final whistle was blown, Lymm were awarded a short corner which they converted to finish on a 3-0 win for the away team. Whitchurch were rusty after a few postponed games and will need to reassess their strategy going into their second game of the weekend on Sunday against Neston.
Player of the match was Jasmin Williams after her tireless work in the middle of the pitch.

Whitchurch Men’s 2s 2 Deeside Men’s 6s 2

Deeside started the game the stronger of the two teams earning several penalty corners in succession which brought goalkeeper and man of the match Merle Thelwell into the game from early on with a number of excellent clearances.

Whitchurch against the run of play, broke down the left side of the pitch through Alfie Edwards and his cross into the dee was met by Cian Hirst who’s deflection went just wide of the post. Whitchurch heads were up and as they pushed forward Will Edwards’ initial shot and rebound were scrambled away by the Deeside keeper.

Whitchurch eventually took the lead via a penalty corner strike from Chris Ruscoe and Whitchurch went into the break with a goal advantage.

Within minutes of the restart Deeside managed to scramble home an equaliser much to the frustration of the home team and then took the lead following the award of a penalty stroke following a goalmouth scramble and a mis-hit that looped into the air and hit the defender on the line.

Both teams showed their frustrations and received cards before the game settled back down to playing hockey. Whitchurch pushed for an equaliser and an excellent deflection by Joe Sheridan on his debut brought the scores level.

Both sides pushed for the winning goal but without success and at the end of the game Whitchurch were happy with a well earned point.

Match reports 20-01-24

Ladies 1s game away to Runcorn was cancelled due to a frozen pitch.

Whitchurch ladies 3’s 4 Alderley Edge ladies Development 3

An excellent game to watch with two very evenly matched teams, the first half saw goals from Freya Kellett and Izzy Gilbert. With some excellent runs and accurate passes the 3’s were on good form for such a cold day.

The game saw many twists and turns with even possession of the ball on both teams. But Whitchurch played the ball wide beautifully and made some amazing passes.

In the second half there were goals from Sue Read and Rachel Chesters. Tracey Tolhurst found a new role backing up the keeper, sweeping not one but 2 balls from passing over the goal line, whilst keeper Phoebe Gregory was doing a fab job attacking incoming balls and players.

A very exciting match to watch, keep up the good work girls.

Alderley Edge Men’s 6s 6 Whitchurch Men’s 2s 0

Whitchurch travelled to Macclesfield on a cold Saturday after and played in a wind that felt sub-zero in temperature.

Never has a game of two half been so clearly demonstrated as this one. Whitchurch played poorly in the first half and Alderley took a five-goal lead into the break.

The half time break seemed to wake up the Whitchurch team and saw them attacking and creating chances. Will Edwards shot was scrambled around the post, Liam Pallet finding space and shots in the dee and Alfie Edwards storming forward from midfield to get on the end of crosses. At the back Martin Beecher, Archie Phews, Nik Moga and Adam Rance defended stoically thwarting the Alderley attacks leaving keeper Neil Jones with little to do.

Cian Hirst on his debut had an outstanding game interchanging with Oliver Edwards down the left-hand side of the pitch, while Craig Hockenhull and Charlie Edwards worked down the right.

As for so much of the season Whitchurch lacked composure in front of goal and were punished on the break as Alderley scored their sixth.

Whitchurch took heart from the second half performance and go into the next match looking for the same level of effort and more consistency.


Re-arranged game Sunday 22 January 24

Lymm ladies 3s 0 Whitchurch ladies 2s 0


Whitchurch ladies 2s travelled to Lymm on a very wet windy cold day, Whitchurch were keen to get the game started and dominated play from the start. The game was end to end for the whole match.

Lymm are second in the league and Whitchurch had them worried.  Whitchurch gave 100% with fantastic tackles, interceptions, running, pressing, shooting and great saves from the goalie.  Whitchurch deserved a win but on the final whistle the score was 0-0.  Onwards and upwards to next week Whitchurch take on Oswestry at home.


Match reports 15-01-24

Triton Men’s 3s 4 Whitchurch Men’s 2s 2

Whitchurch returned to action having not played since the 25th November and the rust showed in the early stages of the match as errors by the Whitchurch team gave opportunities to Triton who capitalised and took a two goal lead.

Whitchurch started the second half stronger and linked together periods of play resulting in Will Edwards scoring. Whitchurch had long periods of play but couldn’t string together the final pass in the Triton dee. Triton scored against the run of play but Whitchurch soon pulled back another goal thanks to Will Edwards.

The final Triton goal came from a penalty corner which bobbled through the Whitchurch defence and into the bottom corner.

Whitchurch ladies 1s 0 Chester ladies 2s 4

Whitchurch ladies 1s faced a top of the league side in their first game back into the second half of the season. The game started evenly with both teams attacking the opposing goal. After 10 minutes Chester showed their class and broke through Whitchurch’s strong defence to score their first goal.

Whitchurch did not give up, they continued to fight for the ball and put pressure on the opposition. Katie Laffey, Chloe Lloyd and goalkeeper Caz Wynn stopped Chester from increasing their lead through some amazing tackles and saves.

Unfortunately as Whitchurch were pushing for an equaliser Chester were able to break away to score their second goal. At this point, Whitchurch really upped their game and from a string of brilliant passes around the back from Hayley Kellett and Tilly James, Whitchurch were able to get the ball to Catherine Gresty who made an excellent run up the right wing and crossed the ball to Holly Edwards who was extremely close to scoring, only for it to go inches wide of the post.

At only 2-0 down at half time, Whitchurch started the second half strongly with Hayley Kellett making a run at Chester’s midfield. Jas Williams, Lisa Sullivan and Holly Edwards linked up beautifully in the middle of the pitch, making one twos to get around Chester’s players.

After some passes out wide, Poppy Huxley, Poppy Gilbert and Bella Spencer-Blow were able to make some great runs towards the Chester dee. However, Chester’s defence were experienced and strong, so Whitchurch were unable to get into the dee to score. Chester then dominated the end of the second half and applied a lot of pressure on Whitchurch resulting in 2 more quality goals. Whitchurch worked incredibly hard against a well drilled side and held their heads high after a great effort. Player of the match was awarded to Lisa Sullivan.

Whitchurch ladies 2s 0 Alderley Edge ladies 0

Whitchurch were eager to get on the pitch and found themselves playing a very young well put together Alderley edge team, but that didn’t faze them. Alderley Edge won the first pushback, but Whitchurch were straight on the ball.  Whitchurch had most of the possession in the first half and had numerous attempts on goal but unfortunately couldn’t get the ball to hit the back board. Alderley Edge seemed unsettled with Whitchurch’s great teamwork, excellent passing and communication.

The second half was very much the same as the first with Whitchurch not letting up on the pressure giving 110%.  Despite multiple penalty corners and a penalty flick the Alderley keeper kept them in the game. Whitchurch thought they had broken the deadlock in the final minutes as they beat the keeper and as the ball rolled towards the line it was scrambled away. Great match to start to the second half of the season. POM Freya Gresty

Lymm Men’s 2s 2 Whitchurch Men’s 1s 7

Whitchurch 1’s emerged victorious over Lymm 2’s with a commanding 7-2 win. Despite a slow start post-Christmas, Luke Beddow’s ignited the scoring for Whitchurch after 15 minutes. The momentum escalated with Beddow’s securing another goal, courtesy of a selfless pass from Tom Edwards, and Phil Handley netting two before halftime.

Lymm launched a strong comeback in the second half, but Phil Handley completed his hat trick, and a double by Joe Chester sealed the triumph for Whitchurch. A mixed performance from the team that showcased their resilience and attacking prowess, securing a well-deserved victory despite a month without any hockey

GB Hockey Live on BBC

Great Britain head to Oman (men) and Spain (women) for the Olympic Qualifiers for the Paris 2024 Olympics where both the men and women will play at Stade Yves-du-Manoir.

You can watch all the Great Britain matches LIVE on BBC Sport via their digital platforms. Add the fixtures to your calendar so you don’t forget.



Valencia, Spain

13 Jan 2024 – Great Britain V Canada – 08:30 GMT

14 Jan 2024 – Spain V Great Britain – 10:45 GMT

16 Jan 2024 – Great Britain V Malaysia – 13:15 GMT


Muscat, Oman

15 Jan 2024 – Great Britain V Pakistan – 16:45 GMT

16 Jan 2024 – Malaysia V Great Britain – 16:45 GMT

18 Jan 2024 – Great Britain V China – 14:30 GMT