Over Easter four of our hockey athletes represented their country. Sammy D. played for the England u18s in Utrecht, Holland, starting with their first game against the Dutch. The first half was an even game with England having a lot of pressure but unable to break down their defence. Just before half time the Dutch opened the scoring and added another couple in the second half to run out 3-0 winners. In their second game the French scored in the opening minute but Sammy equalized before England scored again to go ahead. The French fought hard and scored just before the end to earn a 2-2 draw. The last game was a rematch against the Dutch who had had the previous day off and this proved crucial as they romped to a 7-0 victory against a tired English team.
The England u16s were in Nottingham and the boys included Matt H. and Louis P. Their first game was a very comfortable 10-0 victory over Scotland with Louis getting on the scoresheet. Next up was a different kettle of fish against Spain – a tight and even first half finished with England going one up just before half time. They doubled their lead in the third quarter but Spain got one back almost immediately and then put England under pressure for the last quarter. A breakaway goal however sealed a good 3-1 win. The final match against the Dutch saw three goals in the first seven minutes! With England leading 2-1 both goalkeepers made a number of good saves. Holland finally got an equalizer from a penalty corner to earn a 2-2 draw – a very good result for England.
The Scotland u17s were also in Nottingham and had Charlotte B. in their midfield. They started against England and had the better of the first half. It was still 0-0 after the third quarter but the fourth quarter began with 2 England goals; Charlotte scored for Scotland after dummying the keeper but England scored another to claim a 3-1 victory. The second game against the Dutch was always going to be tough and they were particularly strong in the first half. The Scots pressured them more in the second half but Holland still won 4-0. The final game against Spain was a closer affair but the opposition were a bit more clinical and ran out 4-2 winners.