Horsham vets crowned national masters

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NOT TO BE outdone by their younger clubmates, Horsham HC ladies over 35s triumphed in the National Women’s Masters Plate Final at the weekend.

The previous week Horsham’s under-18s had won their age group plate final and now it was the over 35s’ turn as they produced a best ever performance in the competition.

Drawn against Aldershot & Farnham and Solihull and Blossomfield in the earlier rounds, they won the first game 3-1 and the second game 4-2. Goalkeeper and Vets player of the season, Alison Playle can take an enormous amount of credit for superb saves and Horsham subsequently reaching the final.

And against Carlisle, Horsham made a fast start, a Kay Harris cross was met by Lynn Jones who dived forward to deflect the ball home for the opening goal.

The loss of sweeper Natalie Howarth, who was injured making a goal saving tackle, was taken in their stride as Horsham reshuffled Rachel Humphreys and Sue Crake around. And it was vice captain Crake who set up the second goal, weaving her way down the right, she found skipper Fran Crossley who finished with aplomb.

Carlisle responded at the start of the second half, when a short corner was deflected home. But from there Suzy Clapp started to work her magic in the centre of the pitch, and the Horsham pressure finally told Crossley pounced on a poor Carlisle clearance to wrap up a 3-1 win.

Former GB goalkeeper Simon Mason presented the trophy and medals, commending both teams on an excellent match.

Horsham: Fran Crossley, Sue Crake, Alison Playle, Jo Humphreys, Stephanie White, Natalie Howarth, Kay Harris, Lynne Jones, Leigh Hawkins, Liz Scaife, Angela Marshall, Carolyn Kimberley, Rachel Humphreys, Suzy Clapp, Kathryn Truran, Gaynor Grout. Coach Tom White.