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Holcombe ladies' coach Leigh Maasdorp frustrated by side's draws in Investec Women's Hockey League Premier Division

By Matthew Panting

Holcombe coach Leigh Maasdorp has admitted she’s been left frustrated by their start to the season.

The ladies' 1sts sit fourth in the Investec Women’s Hockey League Premier Division after drawing four of their opening seven matches.

They trail leaders Surbiton by six points and host Slough on Sunday at Holcombe Park
(2pm).

Holcombe (red) were held 1-1 by Canterbury last weekend Picture Chris Davey

Holcombe (red) were held 1-1 by Canterbury last weekend Picture: Chris Davey

“It’s frustrating to have drawn four games, all away from home as well,” said Maasdorp.

“I’m hoping that it’s not a sign of things to come. We’re fourth, tied on points with four other teams, so it’s close.

“Every weekend it changes, last Saturday we were in seventh and climbed to fourth after drawing (1-1 at Canterbury).

“It’s probably a good thing for hockey that it’s so competitive. It leaves the league pretty open.

“In past years, the top one or two teams have pulled away at this stage.”

Maasdorp still hopes to claw in leaders Surbiton, who will lose five players to England duty at the World League Final in New Zealand this month.

East Grinstead and University of Birmingham will also play the next three matches with a weakened squad – but not Holcombe.

“Surbiton are not out of reach by any means and other teams lose England players to the Hockey League Final this week – now it will really open November up,” said Maasdorp.

“For the first time in four years, we’re not losing a single person.

Leigh Maasdorp has made the step up from playing to a coaching role Picture Steve Crispe

Leigh Maasdorp has made the step up from playing to a coaching role Picture: Steve Crispe

“It’s a shame that Nicola White is injured and Ellie Watton has not been selected but it means we’ve got a settled squad now going forward.

“Funnily enough, the teams we’re playing against are not losing players but it will make things more interesting.”

Maasdorp has made the step up from playing to first-team coach this term.

Although still registered as a player, she is keen to focus more on the coaching if possible.

“I’m still getting used to it,” she added. “This year I’ve stepped up to be head coach.

“I’ve played against East Grinstead and Surbiton but ideally I want to be coaching. I’m enjoying it, it’s a lovely group of girls.

“We’re in the Premier League indoors and I love playing indoors, so I’m planning to play in that.

“Come February we will have to see, we’ve got a long second half to the season, going through until May, so who knows.”

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