Winchester warmed up for Saturday’s Stoneham Lane derby against Trojans with a 6-1 win over Holcombe – a result which swept them back to the top of South Hockey League Premier Division 2.
The city side take a one-point advantage into the Trojans game – overnight leaders Oxford University having only managed a 1-1 draw with basement side Staines.
Winchester bossed things from the start, with the influential Adam Tollefsen playing the ball into Martin Harris, who turned two defenders before opening the scoring.
The new leaders took full control of the game immediately before half-time when they won the ball in midfield and former international Rob Moore scored after Shaun Baker had lobbed the Holcombe goalkeeper.
Winchester continued their dominance and put the game to bed with two goals in quick succession – Baker scoring a third and player/coach Ben Hibberd effectively sealing the win with a fourth goal.
The fifth goal came from Moore as he got a slight touch off a ball into the D from newcomer Will Phillips.
A deflated Holcombe looked to show some fight as they had a some chances in the closing 15 minutes and finally clawed a consolation goal back through James Davey, his 11th of the season.
But Winchester soon re-established supremacy with intricate play down the left-hand side between Kieran Malloy and Andy Thomas culminating in a second for South African Baker.
Winchester could have scored a seventh goal in the last minute as Kieran Malloy missed a chance of a goal-scoring farewell – he is off on his world wide travels today – with only the Holcombe goalkeeper to beat.
Trojans go into the derby on the back of a 3-2 defeat at West Hampstead, where Sam Broadhurst and Ben Frost scored.
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