Cambridge South and Cambridge Nomads celebrate East Men's League promotions
Stuart Rimmer hailed an historic performance by Cambridge South as they earned promotion to the East Men’s League, Division One for the first time by earning a 4-1 win over Bury St Edmunds.
And it was double delight for hockey in the city as Cambridge Nomads were also promoted, after a 2-0 win at City of Peterborough II.
The match pitted the top two in 2N against each other, and they knew victory would seal promotion.
Bury struck first, and held their lead until the second half.
Chris Pearson equalised for South from a penalty stroke after he had been fouled, and they pressed on to score two more through Mark Williams’ reverse-stick effort and James Bailey bundling home.
With two players in the sin bin for Bury, South completed the win as Owen Harrison deflected home man-of-the-match Tom Kemsley’s super pass.
It confirmed promotion for South, and moved them top of the table by goal difference from Nomads, both teams have 42 points, with two games remaining.
Rimmer, who was making his 100th appearance for South’s first team, said: “We are thrilled with the result which confirms our promotion to Division One for the first time in Cambridge South’s history.
“The squad have consistently played high pace and energetic hockey throughout the season and fully deserve to move back to the top of the league.
“It’s fantastic for the club, which continues to go from strength to strength with five men’s and ladies teams and a thriving juniors set-up also.”
For Nomads, it is a return to Division One at the first attempt.
The first 20 minutes proved decisive against City of Peterborough.
Richard Lloyd opening the scoring with a first-time shot from Freddie Jones’ cross.
Sugi Furuta doubled the lead from a narrow angle after a good run from Joe Phillips.
After the break, Nomads’ defence had to stand up to Peterborough’s penalty corners, while they were unable to convert a string of their own.
Attention now turns to the title chase between Nomads and South.
Jack Chalk’s goal sealed South II’s 2-0 intra-club derby victory over South III in 4NW.
The deadlock was broken when Chalk’s effort deflected off the helmet of keeper George Toynton and appeared to be going in, but Owen Russell made sure from close range.
Winger Peter Creed was denied for the thirds by a last-ditch foul, but the deciding goal came in the second half as from a penalty corner, Simon Cooper squared across goal for Chalk to knock in at the far post.
Goalkeeper Matt Saint-Gower was selected as South II man of the match, while the South II plaudits were shared between defender Neil Sneade and winger Ed Boggis.
Matt Huchu and Gianlucca Benedetto got consolation efforts for Nomads II as they lost 6-2 to champions Long Sutton II in 4NW.
Right-back Pete Dreuitt scored his first goal for South IV and Simon Jelley netted twice in an 8-3 defeat to promotion-chasers Wellingborough in 5NW.
The damage was done in the first half as they trailed 5-0, but they drew the second half 3-3 with keeper Josh Blanchard-Lewis making a string of saves and defenders Andi Caddy and Dreuitt sharing the man-of-the-match award.
Two goals in the last five minutes condemned South V to a 2-0 defeat to City of Peterborough VII in 6NW (S), with Jo Dant named man of the match for his performance on the right wing.
Two goals each from Sydney Gwindi and Zinny Longson and one from George Godfrey sealed Nomads III a 5-1 win over Kettering IV in 6NW (S).
More by this authorMark Taylor