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Press Release - 26/01/2004

East Antrim Hockey Club
26th January 2004

For further information, contact:
Stephen Swann
Press Release Officer - East Antrim Hockey Club
34 Carnmoney Road, Newtownabbey, BT36 6HP
078 0316 7731


A home tie in the Minor Cup is all you can ask for in the 1st round of the competition. Instonians 5ths should have been an opportunity to progress in the competition as they occupy a mid-table position in Junior League 6!

The opening exchanges were reasonably even - East Antrim had a more incisive attacking force! But any good work outside the opposition's circle was outshone by the inept finishing quality of the "Green Machine".

Eddie Baird finally broke the deadlock after good work down the right hand side - Hamilton and Nicholl always looked dangerous.

Mid-way through the 1st half though, Instonians were reduced to 10 men after a facial injury to one of the players. They would have to continue throughout the remainder of the match "under-par".

The second half saw a number of chances fall East's way - but most were squandered. Darryl Hutton had precious little to do in nets - Instoninans provided virtually no cutting edge in their attacking third!

Aaron Young managed to get the second goal for East... fantastic inter-play in midfield resulted in Swann pushing a shot from the left-hand side towards the right hand corner of the net. The Instonians keeper defied Newtonian physics by keeping the ball out of the net - his left leg is obviously much longer than his right! The save, however, fell kindly to East with Aaron having a simple tap in.

Aaron scored his second of the game shortly afterwards, though he was judged to have committed an offence by Club President, Skelton! The team basked in the safety of a 3 goal lead when Phil Irwin "mis-hit" a shot between the Instonians goalkeeper's legs.

Unfortunately, the 3-0 final score does not reflect the dominance that East Antrim had in this game. Many gilt-edged chances were wasted - chances which must be taken in future rounds if the team's ambition of winning the Minor Cup is to be realised.

The team will now face Cookstown 6ths (away) on Saturday, 7th February, who produced the surprise result of the 1st round by defeating cup favourites, Portadown.

TEAM: D Hutton, P Leitch, A Bell, A Murphy, G Tumilson, S Hamilton, S Swann (captain), A Blair, S Nicholl, A Young, E Baird, P Irwin, B Watters, D Menaul

Man of the Match: Andrew Blair