Hockey: Cannock go six points clear

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The Independent Online
Cannock came from behind against Old Loughtonians to win 3-2 in a tight game to increase their margin at the top of the Premier Division of the National League to six points as the teams take their winter break.

After David Ralph had given the Old Boys the lead in the 14th minute, Simon Organ responded with a penalty corner conversion for Cannock before, 10 minutes into the second half, Jason Lee put Loughts ahead again. Two late goals from Ben Sharpe gave Cannock the points.

Canterbury move ahead of East Grinstead into second place - they beat the Sussex side 6-3 in a feast of goals. The Welsh captain, David Hacker, scored twice from penalty strokes for Canterbury and completed his hat- trick with a goal at a penalty corner. The England Under-21 international, David Matthews, also scored twice at penalty corners before Sean Kerly iced the cake as the Kent club moved into their highest-ever league position.

Reading, the defending champions, returned to winning form with a 7-3 victory over lowly Doncaster in a scrappy game. Rob Todd provided the inspiration and one goal, but his younger brother, Andrew, was taken to hospital with facial injuries.

The day's second hat-trick came from Guildford's Danny Hall, but it was not enough to stop his side slipping to another defeat, 3-4 at Hounslow, to leave them four points adrift at the bottom.

- Bill Colwill