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Old Williamsonians Hockey Club's men's 1sts edge out Gore Court to win promotion into South Premier East Division while the seconds and the ladies 2s are also successful

The hockey season ended earlier than expected but it turned out to be the most successful ever for one club.

Rochester-based Old Williamsonians, who play at the Math School, were left celebrating a triple promotion in what was their 75th anniversary season.

Old Williamsonians 1sts up against Ashford Picture: Paul Amos
Old Williamsonians 1sts up against Ashford Picture: Paul Amos

For the first time in the club’s history, both the men’s 1sts and 2nds have won their leagues and qualified for promotion into South Premier East Division and Kent Division 1 respectively. The Ladies 2s were also promoted.

Club chairman Neil Thompson said: “This has been a fantastic season for the club and we have seen a magnificent effort from the players involved whose determination and commitment has contributed to this success.

“We are making great strides throughout the leagues, and the junior section has continued to thrive with a fantastic platform into a great standard of adult hockey.

"We very much look forward to the season ahead (whenever that might be).”

Last week England Hockey approved the reopening of pitches for players to practice.

The Men’s 1sts last won the Kent/Sussex league in 1992 when it was a first team only league. OWHC have faced some challenging seasons since but in recent history it has gone from strength to strength.

Last season was ended with a game to play, because of coronavirus and the suspension of all team sport, but the men’s first team sat top of their league with local rivals, Gore Court.

The final decision went down to goal difference, and with an 18-goal lead, OWHC came out on top. Their improvements have been put down in part to the appointment of new first team coach Harry Roberts last summer.

The Men’s 2s won by a much clearer margin. After an unbeaten season the team were able to celebrate promotion with four games to go before becoming unassailable league leaders.

After the disappointments of suffering relegation last season the ladies 2s bounced straight back with a well-deserved promotion once the league had decided to impose an “average points” system to identify promotion spots following the early end to the season.

It’s important progress for the ladies section who are looking to add an additional senior team to their ranks.

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