HOCKEY: Wisbech Town suffer last-minute heartbreak as East Men’s League relegation is confirmed
PUBLISHED: 12:37 09 March 2020 | UPDATED: 12:37 09 March 2020
It was groundhog day for Wisbech Town 1sts as relegation from Division One of the East Men’s League was confirmed on Saturday.
Wisbech welcomed leaders Wapping 3rds, and despite looking the most likely to win, a last-minute goal from a questionable free hit from virtually the last touch of the game sealed their fate.
The 2nds produced an impressive comeback to edge a 13-goal thriller with Spalding 3rds in Division Four North West.
Oliver Osbourne grabbed a second half hat-trick and Joe Melton scored twice before the break as Wisbech went into the interval 4-2 down.
An inspirational team talk from Gary Freear led to Calvin Bishop netting a well-worked brace to draw the visitors level.
Spalding regained the lead from a penalty flick, but back came Wisbech with Osbourne's treble as Freear finished the scoring with a lifted strike to win 8-5.
Wisbech 3rds' Division Five North West title hopes were dealt a blow after a 2-0 defeat to Cambridge South 4ths on Saturday.
A hard-fought contest saw the Fenland outfit unable to capitalise on some excellent play despite Cambridge defending strongly.
Wisbech enjoyed several chances in the second half but could not earn the breakthrough, as the hosts converted two strikes against the run of play to claim victory.
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In Division Six North West (South), Wisbech fell to a narrow 1-0 loss to Cambridge Nomads 3rds courtesy of a first half strike.
What was Wisbech's finest performance to date, they were unlucky not to earn a point with a positive attacking display, Brandon Ruff going close to tapping home Nidge Lowe's lofted effort at the end.
Wisbech 1sts are still searching for a first East Women's League win since February 1 after a 2-0 reverse to St Neots 1sts in Division One North.
Two goals before half-time proved too much for the visitors, having produced a determined performance after the break.
A depleted Wisbech 3rds lost 6-1 to Cambridge South 5ths in Division Six North West (South), with sickness and injury reducing the team to just 10 players.
Oliwia Bolka secured a consolation goal in the final moments after Cambridge stormed into a six-goal lead, with Wisbech's Olivia Jackson picking up the player of the match award.
Wisbech ladies 2nds have been promoted from Division Four North West (North) after nearest rivals Leadenham 1sts dropped points at the weekend.