Hockey: Southgate get off to a flyer on south coast

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The Independent Online
SOUTHGATE, the ambitious London club out to regain the top notch they held for so long, started the new Pizza Express National League programme with a splendid all-round team performance at Havant yesterday when they beat last year's champions 3-1 with goals from Robert Freeman, John Shaw and Rupert Welch, writes Bill Colwill. Callum Giles scored Havant's consolation late in the game.

Rowan Davis gave St Albans a good start with a goal in seven minutes before the former England international, Nick Thompson, took over for Old Loughtonians with four goals for a powerful win. Britain's corner specialist, Rob Hill, scored for his new club, Firebrands, from the penalty spot in the eighth minute against Bromley, who fought back to settle for a 1-1 draw with a Tom Hamilton goal in the 53rd minute.

Hounslow cracked in four first- half goals against promoted Surbiton through Nick Gordon, with two, Rob Thompson and Simon Hazlitt but then went off the boil to allow Dhirendra Patel and Jon Molloy to pull back the score to


Kulbir Bhaura marked his return to Indian Gymkhana with two good goals in their 3-1 win at home to Cheltenham with Sunny Soor getting the third. Cheltenham, far from outclassed, and with Simon Canning looking very impressive, levelled the scores at 1-1 with a goal from Andy Burroughs.

Richmond's investment in player-coach Steve Batchelor, from East Grinstead, paid early dividends as Britain's Olympic forward scored in the day's biggest victory, 5-0 over Chelmsford.