A National League Hockey Club, part of Holcombeians Sports Club

Match preview – Trojans vs. W1s (England Hockey Tier 1 Cup, 29th October, 2023)

By Lucas Ball

Holcombe are looking for their fourth consecutive win in all competitions as they travel to Trojans on Sunday afternoon (12pm) in the first round of the England Hockey Cup.

Nick Bandurak’s side are currently second in the Vitality Division One South as they aim for an immediate return to the Vitality Premier Division having won four of their first five league games, only losing to table-toppers Surbiton 2s, who cannot be promoted.

Wins over Sevenoaks, Slough and Harleston Magpies in their last three have seen Holcombe put 12 goals past their opponents, including six against Harleston last weekend.

New Zealand international Deanna Ritchie has been lively in the last two particularly, as well. Having come close to scoring in her first three Holcombe matches, Ritchie got off the mark with a hat-trick against Slough, which was followed up by a brace against the Magpies.

Trojans, meanwhile, have made a good start to their own season and sit top of the Vitality Conference West, looking for promotion to the Vitality Division One.

They opened up with a 5-0 win at Basingstoke before drawing 2-2 with Witney, beating Oxford Hawks 2-0, losing 2-1 to Cheltenham and beating Exeter 5-4.

Trojans were beaten 6-2 by Guildford in the cup last season, the Surrey side currently sitting top of the Vitality Conference East with a 100% record through five matches.

Image: Becci Woodhead