Perfect start for British sides in Europe

Hat-trick hero Sam Ward celebrates scoring in the EHL. Credit Euro Hockey League

The three British sides got off to a perfect start in the Euro Hockey League (EHL) today as Bromac Kelburne (Scotland), Cardiff and Met (Wales) and Holcombe (England) all posted comfortable wins in their opening matches of the competition.  

First up were Kelburne facing off against Dinamo Kazan. The Scottish side were lucky not to fall behind as a Kazan penalty corner struck the woodwork but undeterred the Yellows hit the front on 24 minutes thanks to a goal from McKenzie. Jonas Nommensen spun and fired home a second before Cairns slotted in the third in the 53rd minute.

Timur Nikolaev got one back from the injector’s spot from a corner but it was too late to threaten getting anything other than a losing bonus point.

Cardiff & Met played next and they swept aside the challenge of Italian champions SG Amsicora to record a first win for a Welsh club in the EHL with a 5-0 success in Pool B.

They made much of the early running but found Amsicora robust in defence for the most part in the first half until Rhys Gowman broke down the right flank and popped the ball back to Ioan Wall who coolly rolled in the opening goal.

The second half, though, was a much more open affair with Jack Pritchard needed to take a Luca Angius chance off the line. Thereafter, Cardiff cut loose. Luke Hawker’s low drag-flick extended the lead to 2-0. Benjamin Carless then guided home Liam Brignull’s ball through the circle in the wake of a mis-trapped corner. Brignull fired home the pick of the bunch on his backhand for 4-0 before Chris Hardy’s high drag extended the margin further for a comfortable victory.

Hat tricks from Harry Trusler and Sam Ward saw Holcombe cruise to an 8-1 win over KS AZS AWF Poznan in a breathtaking first appearance in the EHL.

It left the Polish side chasing shadows while the English club will now hope to get a big win over reigning champions SV Kampong on Saturday to advance to the KO16.

Trusler got the English side on the board when he pounced on a mid-circle rebound to pop home. Nick Bandurak made it 2-0 at half-time with a low reverse when found on the left of the circle.

Ward got in on the act after the big break for 3-0 before he and Trusler added their second in quick succession. Trusler completed his triple in the 50th minute only for Patryk Pawlak to get one back from a penalty stroke.

But further goals for Ward and Robert Field notched up the 8-1 victory and a great start for the Kent club.

Holcombe are the only British side back in action tomorrow, taking on Kampong at 5pm. Cardiff and Kelburne return to action on Sunday. All updates and live streams can be found on http://ehlhockey.tv/