HOCKEY: CHESTER men suffered a double blow last weekend with a heavy league loss followed by a penalty shoot-out defeat in the National Trophy.
They crashed 5-1 at Didsbury Northern on Saturday, going 3-0 down after only 15 minutes. The consolation goal came from in-form Tim Davies who coolly lifted the ball over a stranded keeper into the top corner.
On Sunday Chester were beaten 5-4 on penalties by Hampton-in-Arden in the National Trophy following a 130-minutes battle.
They trailed by two goals at one stage and had Richard Bond sin-binned but after fighting back to lead, victory was snatched from their grasp by an equaliser and then a shoot-out.
Chester's goals came from Matt Hyden, Andy Tookey, Chris Bowles and Tom Selby.
Chester's youthful fourth side was outgunned in a tough encounter with a hard-tackling, energetic Bramhall team who won 7-1. Debutants Hirst and Warburton competed fiercely, while Roper scored an excellent flicked goal from a corner.
The sixth team's match against Northop Hall could have gone either way with both sides covering plenty of ground and playing creatively. Scoring opportunities were sparse and Northop just managed to take the glory thanks to a goal from an ex-Chester player.
Chester ladies started the second part of their National League season with a 1-1 draw at Nottingham Highfield.
Playing on a superb water-based pitch Chester were slow to start and after two great saves by Gemma Ible the hosts took the lead.
Chester then stepped up a gear and outpaced Nottingham and deservedly equalised in the second half when some superb skill through midfield enabled Michelle Daltry to finish a great cross on the volley.
Chester seconds had a goalless draw with Timperley after having two goals disallowed and the fourths had a 1-1 draw with Wilmslow.
Anyone interested in joining Chester Hockey Club can contact Ian Boothroyd on 01244 318805 or Janet Bickle on 01606 781931.
Deeside Ramblers' promotion hopes suffered a set-back when losing 3-0 at Hull in a match in which they failed to take their chances.
At half-time Ramblers trailed 1-0 and Hull put the result beyond doubt with two good field goals in the second half.
Ramblers are at home to Dids-bury tomorrow at 3pm.
The seconds had a close encounter with West Derby before losing 4-2, Joe Rooney and Tom Leonard on target and the thirds won 3-0 at Morecambe, thanks to goals from Alistair McAuliffe (2) and Will Wilson.
Ramblers' fourths gave a great performance to beat Neston 3-0, Keith Hindley scoring from short-corners in the first half and Phil Winward completing the tally after the break.
The fifth team completed a double over Neston with a 2-1 win with goals by Mark Jones and Neil Lamont and the sevenths cruised to a 4-1 victory against South Cheshire, Nick Worrall (2), James Ferguson and Colin Bona on target.
Deeside Ramblers Badgers went down 3-1 to a strong South Cheshire thirds, Rory Little the scorer. Ben Rogers had an excellent game in goal.
The Beavers shared four goals with Southport after leading with strikes from Josh Guy and Martyn Lear.
Deeside Ramblers Ladies needed a win following a poor run of form and got it by beating Blackburn 3-2. They got off to an excellent start, Nicky Gray converting a short-corner and Maggs Scraggs added a second.
In the second half Blackburn rallied well to get back on terms and it required a late goal from Rachael Custard to secure victory for Deeside.
The seconds drew 3-3 with Broome, Lucy Swe and Sarah Bell (2) the scorers and the thirds beat Daten 2-0, thanks to second-half goals from Amy Mullock and Emma Sanderson.