Sunday 26 February 2017

Hockey: Corinthians look to give Pembroke repeat dose

David Medcalf

Corinthians need to repeat the eye-catching stunt they pulled off early in the season if they are to remain true contenders in the Leinster League.

The Reds have been a revelation and their 2-0 victory over champs Pembroke Wanderers before Christmas underlined the progress made by the Rathfarnham side.

Now they require more of the same on Saturday in the return fixture against Pembroke, this time away at Serpentine Avenue.

There is no doubt that Corinthians have made great strides under their South African player-coach Andrew Cronje. Apart from his own contribution at centre-half, he has done wonders for the confidence of a squad that repeatedly fell shy of high achievement prior to his arrival.

Nurtured

Cronje has nurtured young talent such as Ben Murphy and Davy Carson, as well as putting a pep in the step of the more seasoned members of the panel.

In the form of compatriot Darren Kimfley, he has also brought one of the most exciting strikers in the country to Whitechurch Park.

Recent form has been a tad erratic, dropping potentially crucial points to YMCA in a league draw last Saturday, then overwhelming Three Rock Rovers in the Leinster Senior Cup on Sunday.

Now Corinthians must measure up to Pembroke Wanderers, who have the ever effervescent Gordon Elliott and Justin Sherriff back in their front line since the sides last met.

The home side have been often imperiously good this season and the defeat by the Reds is the only blemish on their league record to date this term.

A win for them on Saturday, would leave Glenanne as the only side left with a realistic chance of thwarting them in their pursuit of the title.

Coincidentally, the same two sides meet again at the same venue on Sunday, this time in the semi-finals of the Mills Cup.

Irish Independent

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