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Leaders Ben Rhydding held to draw
8:20am Thursday 21st February 2013 in Sport
Sheffield Hallam 2nds 1 Ben Rhydding 1
This was the tightest game of hockey that league-leaders Ben Rhydding have played in so far in this league.
It proved to be a tactical war and probably was not the best of spectacles for the followers of the two teams.
Rhydding patiently held Sheffield in their half and managed one break through early on but the home side got through once too and a clumsy tackle from Harry Bush drew a corner.
David Carter pulled out one of his stunning saves only to have another corner to face. He cast it aside effortlessly and Rhydding continued to look impenetrable as Sheffield built up strong possession but could not find a way into the D.
Rhydding made far more circle entries than Sheffield but did not take their chances. Callum Franks and Alex White both missed good opportunities.
George Sweeting was outstanding throughout the match and constantly stretched the game with his powerful running. He created so much going forwards but again, Rhydding did not capitalise on it.
Superb defending from David Exley, Connor Dowley and Tynan Cassidy repeatedly denied Sheffield entry to the D, but at the other end, Rhydding just could not finish.
Rhydding glimpsed a timely chance to edge ahead when they won a corner at the end of the first half but it went wide.
The second half began in the same way, with neither side gaining any ground. Rhydding were the first to find a gap and a horrible tackle on the relentless Sweeting drew a corner and then another.
Neil Sugden stepped up and smacked the ball into the goal to put Rhydding ahead.
Sheffield upped their pace a little after this and gained more ground. Rhydding collapsed their defence too much and a free man at the top of the D was able to get in and shoot.
Carter was unsighted by a deep defender and was unable to react in time.
Rhydding made a late push for a winning goal but were unable to find the finish they needed.