Development side’s set pieces enough to sink county rivals
THE Henley Development Ladies side, playing their first match for five weeks, defeated county rivals Oxford 6ths 2-0 at Jubilee
THE Henley Development Ladies side, playing their first match for five weeks, defeated county rivals Oxford 6ths 2-0 at Jubilee Park.
The hosts, with a squad of 15, started on the back foot as fourth-placed Oxford pushed forward. Henley competed energetically and built up pressure on the Oxford defence with Taminah Brown, Steph Croft and Tess Hearn combining well up front.
Playing in the centre of defence for the first time Holly Verran broke down the Oxford attacks while Kiri Cheesman and Rosie Kemp were solid down the flanks and distributed the ball well.
Henley’s wide midfielders, Jodie Gutteridge and Sophie Snowden, worked tirelessly throughout the match to support both forwards and defence and their positioning helped to create space, making Oxford work hard for their possession.
Henley dominated the first half and confident and committed play won them two penalty corners. At the first, Beth Staines injected the ball well and Esme Emmett’s fierce shot could not be stopped. For the second, Catherine Brown slotted home the returned pass from Emmett at the second time of asking.
In the second half, Oxford pushed higher up the pitch threatening Henley’s goal but goalkeeper Olivia Parry made a number of fine saves to keep a clean sheet.
Jill Innes produced effective tackles and offered welcome energy in the centre of midfield in the second half while debutants Kayleigh Scott and Livvy George impressed up front and in defence.
Beth Staines won the player of the match award for her skilful performance in the centre of midfield. The result lifts Henley up to fifth place in the table.