Melton hockey: Fourth XI end campaign with Leamington draw

Andy Sibun goes on the attack against Shrewsbury, but Melton First XI ended the season in disappointing fashion with a 7-0 loss. It left them seventh in Midlands Division Two EMN-150104-132914002
Andy Sibun goes on the attack against Shrewsbury, but Melton First XI ended the season in disappointing fashion with a 7-0 loss. It left them seventh in Midlands Division Two EMN-150104-132914002
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Melton Fourth XI finished the season with a decent point at Leamington Spa in a game of two halves.

Melton made their customary slow start as Leamington dominated the early play. The visitors conceded too much cheap possession and were unable to get their passing game going.

Exton, Weatherdon and Curtis made a series of tackles and Cliffe, returning to the fourth team goal, made several saves, but the hosts finally broke through when confusion over pitch markings saw Leamington drive home from distance.

Melton’s attacks were limited and only long balls and the odd aerial from veteran Snow saw Melton threaten, but Whittaker was unlucky with two attempts on goal.

After half-time, a different Melton team took to the field with much greater movement from the young, excellent midfield of Welch, Cramphorn and Smith. As they linked play with the forwards, Melton threatened several times and only a smart save from Snow’s drag-flicked penalty corner kept Leamington in front.

Melton deservedly equalised when Buttery slotted under the home keeper. Melton maintained their attacks, while Leamington also strived for the win, but Shelton thwarted them with a string of tackles.

The match finished with honours even as the young and developing Melton side finished the season in seventh.

Melton: L. Cliffe, H. Snow, G. Exton, G. Weatherdon, T. Cramphorn, M. Curtis, J. Welch, S. Welch, C. Smith, N. Buttery, Z. Whittaker, N. Shelton.