Hockey: Reading fail finishing examination

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The Independent Online

Reading, the defending champions, dropped their first points of the season when they were held to a 1-1 draw by Loughborough Students. But the game, whose features were woeful finishing from Reading and courageous defending by the Students, was far from a classic.

Reading, the defending champions, dropped their first points of the season when they were held to a 1-1 draw by Loughborough Students. But the game, whose features were woeful finishing from Reading and courageous defending by the Students, was far from a classic.

An unfortunate deflection off a Reading defender in the sixth minute sent Jon Bleby's penalty corner flashing past the helpless Simon Mason to put the Students ahead, but Simon Towns equalised for the hosts from a 21st-minute corner.

Although Reading camped in the Students' half for just about the entire second period, they were unable to snatch the winner. The 12-2 penalty corner count in Reading's favour highlighted their poor finishing.

Second-placed Surbiton lost for the first time this season when they went down 2-1 at Cannock. Doncaster collected their first point of the season in a 5-5 draw at home to Guildford, trailing 4-0 at the interval before Colin Edwards levelled the scores in the final minute.

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