14 Oct 2022
Christmas Term 2022 - Sports Report Week 6

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Christmas Term 2022 - Week 6 Sports Report

Girls’ Hockey v Millfield, Clayesmore and U14 Tier 1 Dorset County Championship

On Thursday, the 1st XI hosted a super talented, quick, physical and skilful Millfield side in the Tier 1 National League. Despite starting both halves well and being competitive in those moments and creating chances, on the day Millfield had far too much quality for us to cope with and unfortunately we ended up losing heavily in a pretty chastening experience. It’s just one game and one game or result does not define a team or a season, but we have to bounce back and go again. It served to remind us that we can be competitive for periods of matches against excellent opposition teams, but we need to be able to maintain a higher quality for longer. The fundamental details – first touch, corner attack and corner defence, body position in possession and out of possession and fitness levels – need improving, for us to progress and turn those sorts of matches in our favour. We cannot control the quality of the opposition, but we can control what we do moving forwards. We need to be more robust. We must get in the gym outside of training sessions and get fitter and stronger, and we must adapt the way we play to improve our core skills. Purposeful practice is key and the forthcoming tour represents a great opportunity to explore some of those factors in a more informal environment. (MDC)

Also on Thursday, in the second round of the National Cup, Canford U16s played against Clayesmore. A great start was made by the hosts as an early opportunity fell to Megan Mowbray who finished the chance well, Canford 1-0 up. A dominant start continued as Canford pressed high and didn't let the opposition have any time on the ball. Canford had the ball in the goal twice more, but the umpire ruled out both goals. Before the break Grace Cecil-Wright fired home another goal. Bea Woodward also added to the tally before half time meaning the score was 3-0 to Canford. After half time the team wanted to be more clinical with short corners and use the routines they know. With this in mind the team won a number of short corners and converted one through Penny Dirou. With the score at 4-0 Canford kept going forward through their forwards as Georgia Kenny scored at the back post to finish the game at 5-0 to Canford. (BDD)

On Saturday, the Millfield block was completed. The 2nd XI were hoping to keep their winning record travelled to the Millfield cauldron on Saturday. The long bus journey plus a quick start meant the girls started understandably slowly compared to a Millfield team who had been on the turf an hour before. However, this did not hold the girls back from playing their hearts out. We defended brilliantly, denying them countless efforts on goal, frustrating them as the game went on. A well worked baseline run led to their opening goal. We went into half time 1-0 down. The half time chat involved a change of personnel, a slight tactics change, a quick reminder but mostly "let's go win this girls, come on". We started like a house on fire and Millfield had no answer to our speedsters up top. Smartly won by Megan Mowbray, breezed past their defensive line only to lose it in the D but fortunately rebounded back to her who one time slapped it, past the keeper’s left ear, opening our account and drawing the game. We continued to press, the second half belonging to Canford. Once again, the Mowbray duo up top was unstoppable. Megan claiming the assist in this case, stealing it and passing to her sister Elle in the D who deflected it back post to give us the lead. 3 minutes to go, Millfield needing a goal, Canford coach stressing, Canford girls defending. What a 3 minutes it was. With 30 seconds to go, their star player took it upon herself to score a goal, countless efforts denied however they managed to get a Penalty Corner. The final whistle had gone, the game was over, but the corner must be played. Just keep it out and we win the game. But Millfield's star player absolutely smoked a ball into the back of the goal, denying us a win. But what a game it was! Star performances from our defensive line, Eliza Miller in particular as well as the Mowbray sisters for their goals. (AGF/RHJH)

It’s fair to say Millfield is known to be a tough match. The 3rd XI went into it expecting physicality and we were not disappointed. However, despite their aggression, we stood our ground and kept our composure. Spectators would agree that Canford got off to a great start. Some precise passing led to an early Canford lead with a corner goal from Evelyn Young. Winning the majority of the 50-50s, Canford began to dominate play. Coming out of half time with a 1-0 lead, we were right on it. A beautiful lift at goal by Lucy Rodgerson, soared through the goalie to raise the score once more. Millfield took the raise in standards and fought back. Some skilled passing allowed them to get through our strong defence and get a goal. Now at 2-1 with just a few minutes to go, the team gave it their all. Everyone was on tenterhooks as Millfield gave some strong attacks but they were no match for the strong backs. Special mentions go to our midfield for controlling the play and quickly shutting down attempts at counter attacks. Overall it was an impressive display of teamwork and resilience against a competitive opponent. (Sarah Norris and Jemima Carrell)

4th XI

3-1 win

Goals: Jess Coughlan-Davis and 2 for Kitty Wright

The unrivalled reputation of our opponents meant the girls were apprehensive before the match, two days earlier the first team had also taken a thumping despite some very respectable hockey and the early Millfield goal did not bode well for the rest of the match! However, Canford held their nerve and shape, especially in the midfield and the tide began to change. Canford were dominating the 50-50s and winning lots of turnover balls when Millfield were clearing their back line. The first Canford goal was a well worked pass around the goalie with Kitty Wright positioned perfectly on the left goal post for the tap in – easily missed if not timed perfectly. Ten minutes later this pattern had been repeated with 2 more similar goals – a brace for Kitty and one for Jess, all at close proximity to the goalie. This 15 minute power play proved crucial for the outcome of the match – 3-1 at half time. Millfield came out strong at the start of the first half and some brilliant saves by Lucy Stephenson ensured the score remained unchanged. Canford were tiring entering the final quarter, but Millfield were unable to get the possession or the field position needed to look like threatening the score despite a late short corner. Susie Cribb had an excellent game in the midfield tracking back and spoiling several potential Millfield attacks. A special mention should also go to Elizabeth Koppert in addition to the two goal scorers who were playing their first match for the 4ths having previously played for the 5ths – well done girls. 3 wins out of 3 for the 4th eleven.

The U15A game was a great game of hockey, played in glorious sunlight and although we ended up losing 3-2, we showed real grit, skill and determination and grew into the game as it progressed. We were probably a little timid in the first half and turned the ball over too easily – perhaps giving too much respect to Millfield who went 2-0 up through to two magnificent short corner strikes. The second half was a different story. Canford largely dominated possession and territory and scored two quality goals (one from Georgia Kenny and the other one a trademark poacher’s finish from Tess Byng at the back post). It was a strong squad performance with some tremendous defensive performances from Delilah Rees and Annabel Reid and intelligent and composed play in the middle from Connie Mowat. Also, some clinical finishing and good decision-making in the D from all our forwards. Unfortunately, Millfield scored another short corner goal and although we put a lot of pressure on their goal (especially in the last 5 minutes) we couldn't quite get the equaliser which we probably deserved. A very positive squad performance from the Canford team who supporting each other tremendously well. Growing in confidence too. (IW)

After a delayed start the U15B team started brightly with possession high up the field. This led to winning their only short corner of the match where Rose Sanderson buried the ball in the bottom corner of the Millfield goal to give Canford a 1-0 lead. After this, Canford absorbed a period of dominance from Millfield; by defending the middle of the pitch well and forcing the ball out wide. On the stroke of half time Jenna Wilson struck the ball into the net from close range, meaning Canford were up 2-0 at half time. The second half meant a lot of pressure from the opposition and a cagey period of hockey. Emily Kiff led from the back well spreading the play and getting the team down field as much as possible. Final score Canford 2-0 Millfield. (BDD)

U14 Tier Dorset County Championship

On Monday, the U14A girls claimed the Tier 1 Dorset County title, with back-to-back wins over Bryanston and Sherborne.

Canford 6, Bryanston 0. After a heavy defeat on the previous Saturday the team showed great composure and fortitude to dominate this match and score three goals in each half. The team had learnt a lot about tight marking, quick acting defence when possession was given away and no gaps in the middle of the field. After a slightly nervous start, a goal did loads for our confidence and then the team never looked back.

Canford 2, Sherborne Girls 0. In this second game we applied pressure from the whistle. We scored within 60 seconds without the opposition touching the ball! Play then went from end to end with all individuals playing their part in attack and defence. A second goal in the second half secured the win and we spent the final 10 minutes controlling the pace of play.

To improve we need to build more phases of play through passing the ball. At the moment pressure often come from individual brilliance rather than team play. That will hopefully change for Saturday.

U14A - Canford 1, Millfield 2

In a hard-fought game, that could have gone either way, Canford eventually conceded a late second goal to lose 2-1. After the excitement of winning the county championships earlier in the week, we knew that we were playing well and that mistakes from previous games had been worked on. Our marking in defence was far more disciplined and we managed to pressure the opposition into either giving us the ball or having to look backward in order to build an attack. We also cut out the opportunity of being beaten by a fast attack from a free hit. To move forward we now need to become more disciplined with our positioning. This is particularly true in attack where we lacked some width. Our wide players need to make use of the whole pitch and help stretch the opposition. Ill-discipline means they are currently drifting into the middle and clogging up the attacking space. Alongside that we need to back all of our teammates and ensure we adopt a more passing orientated game, instead of trying to dribble the ball up the pitch. Keeping possession and building attacks will win us games. We tried this at times and, when it worked, the team put Millfield under real pressure. However, when individuals tried to do too much themselves, they were able to shut us down and steal the ball.

We now have a break until after half-term and hopefully the team will have come back having completed their fitness programmes in preparation for the West of England regional championships. (NRB)

The U14B team were excited about playing Millfield at home on the new Rossiter pitch. Captain Darcey Webb led the team through a warm up, positions were set and the scene ready. Millicent Bowley tried out a new position in the centre of the pitch and showed her athleticism, causing problems for Millfield. Phoebe Lewis worked exceptionally hard throughout the match and made some excellent feeds through to Zoe Watson. It was encouraging seeing the pressure put on the Millfield defence. We had three short corners, hit the post twice and were very unlucky not to score. Well done to Alice Myres, Lizzie Hornung and Bea Benton-Jones who were voted players of the match by Millfield. Wonderful to see the confidence and determination growing in this team. Next match on Thursday against our local school QE. (NXW)

Having had a good couple of weeks in training working on passing, dribbling and short corners the U14C team was excited about the fixture against Millfield. However, a number of setbacks including a pre-match explosive nosebleed meant that we were 3 players down and only able to put 9 players on the pitch. Millfield were experiencing similar problems and were only able to field 10 players without a goalie. Numbers may have been depleted but enthusiasm was not and after our captain for the match, Annie Cai, had completed the toss up the match was underway. The first half saw some very competitive hockey with plenty of work for our defence. With low numbers on the pitch the girls had to work really hard, but the level of commitment never waned. However, Millfield’s attack was pretty strong and the half ended 3-0. After a quick pep talk, they headed out for the second half determined to improve. The support from the defence was much better and there were some excellent runs from Willa Benady and Elisa Meng. Unfortunately, despite some excellent saves from Amelia Blomfield (GK), the Millfield attack proved too strong and the match ended 7-0 to Millfield. Annie and Amelia were awarded players of the match by the opposition and despite the loss the whole team showed some real improvement which I am sure will continue throughout the season. (VOG/REH)

This week sees matches for the U14Cs and 5th XI, whilst the boys’ 1st XI begin their Tier 1 league campaign at home to Warwick. Enjoy the half term break, which will feature a tour for the Girls’ 1st XI to the sunny climes of Barcelona from 18-22 October.

Rugby v Bishop Wordsworth’s, Poole GS and Bournemouth Collegiate School

1st XV Rugby vs Bishop Wordsworth’s W 19-18

A repeat of our National Cup round 1 match, this time on the block fixture with Daily Mail merit table points up for grabs. With a few niggles in the camp the selections were shuffled with Oli Fox-Pitt coming into the 2nd row and Tom Hopwood on the blindside and we welcomed Jack Robinson back into our back 3.

The game started well with Canford quickly getting a foothold, carrying from the pack was excellent gaining the go forward to give our midfield some attacking opportunities. They also established early dominance at the scrum and the lineout with Tom and Oli able to apply pressure to the Bishops pack in the air. It meant that we could enjoy long periods of possession and spend time in the Bishops half. The boys also started to get the rolling maul going which caused Bishops to infringe allowing us to push them deeper into their 22. The first score came from this excellent period and penalty series set up by Sam Janaway, tapping the first one then we went for touch to maul the second and on the third Sam shaped to tap once more but worked a lovely play with Jack Janaway, seeing his brother shape to tap Jack drifted out to the touchline and with all the attention on Sam the defence bunched closer around the threat allowing Sam to deftly put Jack in for a walkover. This was an example of really smart play, good decision making based on the pressure and context of the game as well as great execution.

Canford were soon back in the Bishops 22 again with good carrying from Ryan Woodford who has been continuing to make excellent improvements in this area of his game. Alongside Finn Janaway when they carry one after the other it is a lot for any team to deal with! Sam was this time the recipient from Ryan, who after his second carry was able to offload to Sam on a lovely short line that gave defenders no chance of stopping him.

A feature of our recent improvement has been with Johnny Walster at 9 picking up where he left off from Blundells keeping our attacking tempo high and Oscar Feingold’s ability to distribute at the line we look like a much more potent force going forward.

At half time the score was 12-8 in our favour, slightly disconcerting given the forward dominance we had enjoyed in the first period at the set-piece. Our close support to ball carry was allowing Bishops to stifle our attack by contesting our possession and our lackadaisical kick chase was giving up cheap yards. After the break the pattern of the first half resumed, Sam Janaway bagging a brace following more good lineout maul play. After this we did start to wobble, kicks through to our backfield weren’t always dealt with as decisively as we might have liked and this kept Bishops hungry for the fight back, which came following a couple of speculative kicks to our wings. Bishops chased hard and were rewarded both times making things far more squeaky at the end than they really should have been. Happily the opposition goal kicker didn’t quite have his boots on and we got away with the victory by the skin of our teeth after what was, overall a dominant display.

2nd XV

Score: W 25-15

Tries: Tele Okubanjo (2), Zach Ashby-Rudd, Will Fountain, Tom Ling

POTM: Zach Ashby-Rudd

Special Mentions: Tele Okubanjo, Charlie Smith, Angus Brown, Hayden Weedall

The 2nd XV chalked up their first victory of the season with an eventually comfortable, but well deserved victory against Bishop’s Wordsworth. The game started disastrously with Bishop’s scoring within the first minute, with Canford conceding a penalty from the kick off – the oppo scrum half tapped and went, and from the resulting ruck one of their big units bashed over. Canford were hanging on for the first quarter, with Angus Brown saving them on a couple of occasions with some fine last gasp tackles at full back. However, they began to play their way into contention, and discovered that Tele Okubanjo had the wood on his opposite number, following up a searing break down the right, with Canford’s first try. Canford stretched the play to the right hand corner, with some good ball retention, and then brought it all the way back down the line for Tele to skip round the defence and score in the corner. The same thing happened again towards the end of the first half, only for Tele to lose the ball over the line, but this didn’t stop Canford from scoring again before the break. Eschewing the chance to kick a penalty in front of the posts, they scored a try with the last phase of the half, with POTM Zach Ashby-Rudd, receiving the tapped penalty to power over the line for a well deserved score. Zach was immense all game, carrying the ball well and picking up some great support lines in attack, whilst being aggressive and physical in defence.

Canford extended their lead early in the second half, with Tele scoring what should have been his hat-trick, when a scrum move was switched left. It went a little bit wrong to be honest, but Tele retrieved the ball going backwards, turned and beat three men to score an impressive try in the corner. The 2nds could have kicked on for a big win from here, but Bishop’s fought back and the rest of the game was back and forth, with plenty of errors from both sides. Both sides exchanged two more tries each, Canford’s came from a sniping run from the scrum by half back Will Fountain, and then Tom Ling was on hand to pick up a loose ball in the corner after a good cross kick from Kit Blomfield. It was a great win for the boys, not least in scoring 5 tries, having scored, 1, 2, and 3 in the first 3 games. Isaac Gill noted that 1, 2, 3 and 5 are part of the Fibonacci sequence, which means that we should score 8 in the next game!


After a tough match away to Blundell’s the U16s were looking to bounce back as quick as possible and their first opportunity came against Bishop’s Wordsworth. These two sides have history after Bishops knocked Canford out of the cup last year following a 7-7 draw that saw Bishops win due to being the away team. The Canford U16s certainly had this at the forefront of their minds going into the game and showed that they were out for revenge with a ferocious opening 15 minutes. Canford were clinical in attack and dominant in defence, it was only a matter of time before they broke the deadlock via a superb try from Ciaran Amy. Serjeant added the extras (7-0). Canford did not take their foot off the gas and continued to threaten Bishops from all parts of the field, eventually being rewarded through a thundering run from Sam Webb that saw Canford go into the half time whistle 14-0 up thanks to another sublime conversion from Serjeant. Unsurprisingly, Bishops started the second half with fire in their bellies and managed to haul back a try of their own to bring it back to 14-5. It was superb to see that Canford had learnt from previous games and managed the game via some excellent kicking out of hand and some equally strong kick chases. This allowed them to play rugby in the right areas of the field that ultimately lead to another Ciaran Amy try from the back of a scrum – more elusive running from the number 8 (19-5). By this point, the heads of the opposition were beginning to go down and Canford were growing in confidence. Xan Brookes finished off the proceedings with a try of his own to see out the game victorious (24-10). This was a tremendous team performance and one that the squad will take with them into the second half of the term with pride – well done!


On Thursday the U15A side put in their best performance of the season to dispatch a physical Poole Grammar team. We played intelligent rugby from the start, pinning our opposition back in their half and dominating the rucks. It was only inevitable that we would get the scoreboard ticking over. A powerful driving maul being a feature of the game. 35-5 being the final score.

Moving onto Saturday the U15A side met a physical Bishops side. We were clinical in the first half and took our chances to go 10-0 into the break. The highlight was a pin point box kick collected and scored by Massimo Brown. Our opposition were extra determined after the break and made life difficult for us. Nevertheless our goal line defence was excellent. We scored our only opportunity in the second half and won 15-7.


Thursday saw another step forward with regard courage and putting bodies on the line leading the U15Bs to an exciting, narrow and deserved win over Bournemouth Collegiate School. Two second half tries from Oscar Ingerfield and George Fullman, both from short range were enough to take the win, 12 – 0. Perhaps Canford could have scored more with a bit of ‘white line fever’ seeing players looking to score themselves rather than off-load to a team-mate in a much better position but our focus on playing the game and not worrying about decisions or the oppositions rugby was much improved. Saving 5 is as good as scoring and Freddie Blackburn did just this when his strong tackle at fullback prevented a rampant right winger from going the full length of the pitch. Well done all.

The BCS game was followed quickly on Saturday by Bishop Wordsworth which saw our most cohesive performance so far saw the team rally around one another after conceding the first score. This new found confidence and resilience made us bounce back stay committed and begin to realise our jobs within the team collective and take pride in performing these to our best. A good example of this would be Rufus Smith’s immense counter ruck to then allow Hector Boyle to pick and go all the way to the try-line. Hector scored twice and with a noticeable decrease in ‘white-line fever’ Joe Stephenson and James Law scored tries where they were untouched. Once again, the team were grateful for Freddie Blackburn and Ben Cross for three significant try-saving tackles…saving 15 is as good as scoring 15! Wilf Lupton can also be hugely proud of the number of hits that he put in, especially in the first half. A 24 – 5 victory away from home is just what this gritty performance deserved.


The U14As picked up another win, continuing on from their performance vs Blundell’s on Thursday. Phoenix Wilson leading the boys with his aggressive and hard running which proved impossible for the Poole defence to contain. Hector Hedges, as always, led from the front in defence getting himself off the line quickly and making powerful positive tackles. The best try of the match came late on as the boys ran a couple of hard pods between the Poole players to suck in their defence before spreading the ball wide to Luca Eastwood who dotted down in the corner. It was a decent performance by the boys as they ran out 36-10 winners.

On Saturday the U14As came up against a well organised Bishop Wordsworth team and unfortunately weren’t able to pull out a result. The first half the boys started to show some real promise in their attack, as they had hard runners followed by moving the ball wide to their wingers to exploit space and make ground, but were unable to get on the scoresheet. In defence they made plenty tackles, with Archie Brown leading the way, however their line speed was lacking and that played into Bishops game as they won 26-0. This is a good learning curve for the boys hopefully they will come back strong after half term.


Saturday saw the U14Bs involved in a very competitive game against Bishops. The 1st half was played in a great spirit by both teams. Bishops took the lead before Canford’s response which saw Ethan Yeow use his pace to run one in from 40m out. A couple more scores from the visitors saw them lead 19-7 at half time. The words of Mr Jess and Mr Jones helped the Canford boys and the 2nd half, despite opportunities for both teams, saw no change to the score. Good lessons learned, particularly from a Canford perspective don’t switch off and turn your backs at tap penalties as that was the source of all three opposition tries!!!

Netball v Redmaids and U19 PEDSSA Championships

1st VII match vs Redmaids

What a display of netball. A first run out with new faces in the squad, the team were ready and raring to go. From the warm-up you could see the intensity that they wanted to play at.

The first 5 minutes of the match were very level, both team battling hard for ball. Unfortunately, a dip in concentration allowed Redmaids to go 5 goals ahead. They kept this lead for the majority of the game. Our Defence were fantastic, they went for ball and came out with countless turnovers. Unfortunately, we were not able to take it through to goal and convert the defences hard work. Esther Browning, Dom Hudson and Lauren Corn put in to practice our three over defence and high press from a back line and were continuously successful with that.

The last quarter saw Canford bring it back and then draw level. However we left it too late and Redmaids were able to capitalise a loose ball and take the win by 2. Player of the match voted by Canford were Anouska Loveridge, Dom Hudson and Isla Knatchbull.


Leo V and Suzy C represented the school at the HMC Strokeplay Championship held on the Red course at The Berkshire. Both started their rounds with the most inclement weather of the day and struggled to really get going. Leo was hitting some good shots but having to settle for pars as he was not quite on his A game. And Suzy did well to birdie a couple of holes after a few bogeys. Whether it was the speed of the round (well over 4 hours) or a little bit of tiredness, both players struggled over the last 6 holes. In the end Leo signed for a three over 75, which placed him 20th out of over 60 boys, and Suzy shot 11-over par (with 6 of them coming in the last few holes). I think both players would have admitted their game was a little rusty after playing lots over the summer, but not enough since they have returned to school.

The winner of the boys was a 15 year old from Epsom College who shot 8 under par on a very challenging course – look out for the name Kris Kim in the future.

This week, a team of 6 will travel to Stowe School in Buckinghamshire as part of a series of sports fixtures to celebrate the Centenary of each school. There will also be another Centenary golf event in the summer involving Canfordians, Old Canfordians, Stoics and Old Stoics.

Football v Taunton

1st XI – Oaks

Canford 2-0 Taunton

Goals: Kwan, Sparkhall

Canford hosted Taunton on Saturday, aiming for a first win of the season. The boys started well with some good play down the left hand side by Lockyer, Samra, Merrell and Kwan. Despite the boys continued effort they couldn’t break the deadlock. Taunton were confident in transition but the boys stood strong, with Oaten and Craigen dealing well with the Taunton tactical tweaks. The boys came in at half time 0-0

In the second half the boys went all out for it, upping the intensity and playing some lovely football out from the back. This half, the focus was switched and we started to play more down the right hand side. The Taunton keeper kept the scores level with a wonderful stop down to his right to tip the ball onto the post and away for a corner. Canford took the lead when a lovely cross across the face of goal was turned in at the back post by a sliding Kwan. The second came late on. Another cross from the right was volleyed home by Sparkhall. The team then battled incredibly hard to keep the clean sheet intact. The first of the season and a solid 2-0 win.

Player of the match is another tough decision but I think this week it has to go to Merrell for his N’Golo Kante-esque performance in the midfield.

2nd XI – Acorns

What. A. Performance. Following two defeats on the spin, questions were being asked about the Mighty Acorns; Could they turn this poor start to the season around and try to replicate the form they found last season? Against Taunton they responded emphatically.

The game kicked off, and from the get go the Acorns were on top, as George Serjeant – being played as a striker for the first time this season – raced into the box but failed to capitalise on his opportunity. This was very much the story of his match, as he consistently showed great feet, played good passes, and pressed beautifully from the front, but failed to find a goal to cap off his strong performance. Nevertheless, the Acorns did not lose hope, instead opening the scoring when Alex Geng fizzed a beautiful ball across the box for Tom Norman to tap home – which had the crowd buzzing as the Acorns found the net for the first time this season. Geng played a crucial part in the goal, bursting down the left and crossing, something he did all game long as his pace and skill was far too much for their Right Back to handle all game long.

Midway through the first half and the Acorns were dominating, chances were being created but the scoreline remained only 1-0. That soon changed when Jack Martin – playing for the Acorns for the first time this season after recovering from injury – marked his return with a beautiful goal – intercepting the Keeper’s pass before sidestepping a defender and finishing with precision from outside of the box. The Acorns did not stop coming, Keri was denied by a frankly ridiculous save from close range by the Taunton Keeper, before the ref blew the whistle for Half time.

And so the Acorns walked back to the touch line to be greeted by an elated Miss Saurel, the tactical mastermind behind this operation. She seemed delighted by the performance so far, but called upon her wisdom to remind the team that at 2-0 the job was nowhere near done – a cheap goal and Taunton would be right back into this game. That was almost the case, as the Taunton winger briefly escaped from James Balasubramaniam’s pocket to have a shot on goal, but Freddie Homer was alert enough to make the save. He had a relatively quiet game in goal – testament to an impressive defensive effort – but when called upon reliably kept the ball from reaching the back of the net.

However, that chance aside the second half played out very similarly to the first – the Acorns dominated. Chance after chance was created, but a combination of poor finishing and some sloppy crosses meant that the Acorns couldn’t make the scoreline as one sided as they could have done. This didn’t stop Guy Marton, who had been making impressive cameos off the bench, from producing a wonderful finish from the edge of the box to make it 3-0, before Tom Norman sealed the victory with a clinical finish – Erling Haaland-esque – to ensure that the game ended 4-0.

A wonderful team performance from the Acorns, but they were left with the question of who would be awarded Man of the Match? It could have gone to Ozzie Berridge, who tackled and screened the back line like N’golo Kante whilst dribbling and passing like a prime Andreas Iniesta. It could have gone to James Bala, who produced the best job of shutting down a winger from his left-back position since Ashley Cole vs Cristiano Ronaldo at Euro 2004. It could have gone to Tom Norman who gambled well for his two goals, or Jack Martin or Alex Geng for their impressive abilities to beat their man. However, in the end the absolute masterclass that Keri displayed was worthy of Man of the Match – as Taunton simply couldn’t take the ball off him. So many times there were two of even three defenders surrounding him, and he always emerged with the ball. Combined with his energy whilst out of possession it was simply a marvellous performance from the young man, only really missing the goal – but that will come in due course.

Squash v Dorset Juniors

Ethan Bikhazi-Green beat Ben Stewart: 3/2
Tom Clark lost to Ollie Dunn: 1/3
Louis Potts lost to Kian Breen: 0/3
Elliot Hilton lost to Simon Button: 1/3
Merlin Cork lost to Sam Shawyer: 1/3
Sam Sterling lost to John Dauncey: 0/3
Justin White lost to Lara Sheldon: 0/3
Toby Lemans beat Jordan Hambleton: 3/0
Harry Todd lost to Jordan Hambleton: 0/3
Gabriel Davey lost to Stanley Ross: 1/3
Charlie Bolland lost to Emmett Breen 0/3

Final Result: Canford 2 - Dorset Juniors 9

The score does not quite do justice to some amazing matches that could have gone either way. This was the first fixture we have done against a mix of squash players from across the county and there was some superb squash from both sides. Our 5th form, Harry, Justin and Charlie continue to grow in confidence and have really cementing their place in the team. It was also the first outings for 4th form pair Gabriel Davey and Toby Lemans, who have focused more on Real tennis this term but both put in a strong performance, with Toby getting an impressive 3-0 victory.

The top order all put in solid performances and were unlucky to not get at least one win under their belts. But player of the day goes to Ethan Bikhazi-Green, who had a marathon match against their number one seed. Ethan's fitness has come on considerably and he just had that little more in the tank in the decider, taking it 3-2!

Well done to all, definitely now a regular fixture in the calendar.

Squash Captain – Ethan Bikhazi-Green:
“It was great to play some better matched opponents this week which showed in the score being so close. The team has really improved since last match and there was definitely a mature attitude when it came to playing. I could tell that everyone cared about their match as shown by the excitement/disappointment that came with wins and losses. This made for a great battle which took it all the way down to a single game to decide the win. I hope to see continued improvements as the season progresses.”

Running (X-Country)

Runners are starting to feel the fatigue after 6 weeks of consistent training 3 times a week. Tuesday saw the older years run a quick 5km north of the Stour river and our Fifth and Sixth Form are really showing their strengths as a team. Combined with the excellent weather we are experiencing, runners found the trip to Wareham forest a highlight of the term thus far. Various groups ran through the heath land/forest totally removed from any roads, houses or signs of human habitation. Cammy C, Elliot A and Ella J were stand out performers on the day. Saturday saw runners stay local to site and headed over to Canford Heath for runs between 4-8km. Will B demonstrated that he can run strongly if he manages his pace control and was leading the ‘fast’ group for the majority of the session. Next week will include a showstopping session where pupils will run back to school from various distances along the Castleman Trailway.

Photos ready to view and download from Canford Media (access via Parent Portal)

Girls’ 1st XI Hockey v Millfield

Rugby U15A v Poole Grammar

Rugby U14A v Poole Grammar

Canford Sports Department – Team of the Week

See the photos / attachments for the new team of the week. Across all the sports and year groups those who made the team were nominated by their Heads of Sport for standing out in terms of their attitude, commitment and performance.

This sports report is published weekly and is available via the Twitter feed and also on the dedicated sports portal www.canfordsports.com.

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