Kingston hockey head to quarter finals after thrilling showdown

Kingston triumphed over Reading 4-3 in a cup nail-biter.Alex Sunier

Kingston men’s hockey team battled Reading seconds to a 4–3 victory, in a controversial cup match with Kingston clinging to their one goal lead in the last minutes at Surbiton Hockey Club.

First blood went to Reading after the umpire took spectators by surprise by awarding a short corner to Reading after a Reading striker hit the ball in the D against his own foot.

That’s outrageous

The two Reading umpires then caused controversy on the Kingston bench by allowing a ‘hit shot’ that went straight into the net. All shots must hit the backboard to count unless they are flick or drag shots.

Clem Rix, 20, on the bench, said: “I absolutely cannot believe that he’s given that as a goal. Is he serious? That’s outrageous.”

However, once a Kingston umpire restored order, the normal rules of hockey applied and Kingston came fighting back in a closely-contested cup tie.

Dominant Kingston

The first goal from Kingston came from a short corner after Rob Field slipped and fell to the ground while attempting his drag shot.

Luke ‘The Opportunist’ Lovejoy stepped up to earn his name and pounced upon the loose ball like a true Cougar, slapping it past the Reading keeper.

As Kingston began to take control of the match, Chris Podds found himself once again unmarked in Reading’s half. A darting run and a tap past the keeper with a clean finish made it 2-1, leaving the Cougars back on top.

The partnership of Rob Field and Chris Podds was reminiscent of the classic Andy Cole and Dwight Yorke partnership for Manchester United.

Field’s surging runs up the pitch created opportunity after opportunity.

Two short corners later, Field had brought his stats up to eight goals in six games and put Kingston in a dominant 4–1 position. 

The finale

Reading were battered and bruised; morale was at an all-time low. Then, something remarkable happened: They scored. This second goal sparked a burst of life as some of their players started to yell “believe”.

Reading then scored a third goal, leaving them needing only one more goal to take the game to extra time.

Kingston had to hold on for three minutes to secure their place in the next round, with responsibility falling on goalkeeper Hugo Eaton.

Shot after shot, save after save, Eaton held his ground as Reading raided the Kingston half, earning himself man of the match.

Kingston held on to win the match 4-3 and now head to the quarter-finals. 

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