2018 Home Internationals - Senior Grand Masters (Over 70)

Three Rock Rovers H.C., 14 Grange Road, Rathfarnham, Dublin 16, Ireland on 11, 12 and 13 May 2018

The 2018 Home International tournament took place at Three Rock Hockey Club, Dublin from Friday 11 to 13 May. The Senior Grand Masters (Over 70) tournament was played as around robin between England (holders), Scotland and Wales. Scotland Senior Grand Masters had claimed second place behind England in Swansea in 2017.

England once again won the trophy with two wins out of two, while Wales pipped Scotland for second on goal difference.

Results

Friday 11 May

Welsh Flag Wales 1 (Kavanagh)Scotland Flag Scotland  1 (Crichton)

Saturday 12 May

Welsh Flag Wales 0 England Flag England 4

Sunday 13 May

Scotland Flag Scotland 0 England Flag England 7

Standings

 

P

W

D

L

F

A

Pt

GD

England

2

2

0

0

7

0

6

7

Wales

2

0

1

1

1

4

1

-4

Scotland

2

0

1

1

1

8

1

-7

Scotland Squad

Alan Bain, Alex Cathro, Roy Crichton, Ian Downie, David McIntosh, Kieran McLernan, David Margerison, Duncan Mitchell, Dick Pearce, Ian Pett, Derrick Reid, Murdoch Shirreffs, Colin Tucker, Sandy Weir

Doug Morrice and Nigel Dixon withdrew and were replaced by Ian Pett and Dick Pearce; Andy Ferrol and Alan Strachan also withdrew.

Scotland Over 70 2018 Home Internationals Dublin

Wales 1 (Kavanagh) Scotland 1 (Crichton)

Scotland and Wales faced each other once more after the Scots had narrowly retained the Celtic Cup. The same groups of players have been playing against each other for ten years and both sides know the strengths and weaknesses of each other. There has never been much between the sides, though Scotland have the better record over the piece.

Wales started the match on the front foot, taking the game to Scotland, who started the slower of the two sides. Possession is one thing but penetration is another and that side was lacking, the Scotland defence absorbing the Welsh attacks which petered out before they could threaten the Scottish goal. Scotland gradually began to play the measured, passing game which had stood them in such stead in the Celtic Cup in Lille, but again their possession did not lead to any clear cut chances. Wales, aware of the threat of Colin Tucker on the right, double marked the speedy Scottish midfielder. Scotland were not wise enough to exploit the space on their left and were guilty of forcing play into a crowded area, with the inevitable result. However, one attack led to the only short corner of the half for Scotland, and Roy Crichton's firm strike beat Welsh keeper Glyn Thomas to put the Scots one up. With half time looming, Scotland were caught out by a quick Welsh attack down the right, a sharp cross being steered in by Martin Kavanagh who got to the ball before marker Kieran McLernan to level the scores.

Wales once again pressed at the beginning of the second half, this time with more purpose, forcing a couple of saves from Scottish keeper Dick Pearce and winning a few short corners, none of which came to anything. Scotland started to come back into the game when they began using the left hand side of the pitch, which had up to then been a no-go area, and for a period played the kind of possession hockey which coach Murray Paton had been looking for. Play ebbed and flowed but neither set of forwards looked up to changing the score. Scotland had expected the depleted Welsh side to tire, which indeed they did, but instead of taking advantage, they too tired and the game petered out into yet another draw.

Both sides now take on England - Wales on Saturday and Scotland on Sunday - and both still have a chance of wresting the trophy from England for the first time.

Scotland 0 England 7

Scotland set out to frustrate England and, for the first few minutes succeeded in their efforts, absorbing considerable pressure without looking troubled at the back. That all changed when England won their first short corner, switching the ball about until they found an unmarked forward on the right hand post to tap the ball in. A second English penalty corner saw them increase their lead, going into the second quarter two goals up. the third short corner was deflected wide for a long corner, and with the Scots slow to come back from the half way line, England captain Brian Perryman took advantage by running the ball straight into the Scottish circle from the 23 and firing it past Dick Pearce in the Scottish goal. Another short corner goal made it 4-0 at half time and Scotland were now tied on goal difference with Wales.

In this period they shot themselves in the foot by presenting an England forward with the ball inside the circle and then being caught pressing upfield with three English attackers taking on sweeper Ian Downie and keeper Dick Pearce, comfotably passing the ball amongst themselves and into the Scottish net. A German Singh short corner shot looked maginally high as it looped across the line but the umpire gave a goal - 'it hit the backboard'. That turned out to be the end of the scoring, the final quarter being shortened ahead of the prizegiving, but in fact Scotland could and really should have got something back. Changing from a back four to a back three gave them more presence in midfield and they pressed England for much of the quarter. Colin Tucker's stick was taken as he lined up to shoot but no award was given against the England defender, and then, with David McIntosh clear on his left, Colin, through on the keeper, elected to shoot - the shot went wide.

Scotland are clearly in a different league from England but they need to realise that they are better than this score suggests - if they can keep their discipline, do the simple things correctly and work for each other, they can hold their own in the forthcoming World Cup in Spain.