With an extreme weather warning it was touch and go whether the game would be played – a massive contrast from last weeks 23 degree plus sun. Discussions with the umpires and captains proceeded and a decision was made to play the game despite the weather resembling the Amazon rainforest in winter.
Captain Roisin Pickering decided a change in formation was needed after some key players were unavailable. However this did not deter the Rochdale team and from the whistle they were on the attack. With some quality passing between Gemma Hodcroft (upfront), Pickering (middle) and Molly Barker (middle), it sent a message to Didsbury early on to advise the ladies are walking away without a win. With the pressure on, a goal was imminent, Rochdale were rewarded for their efforts as Hodcroft sent the ball soaring past the keeper.
With Didsbury desperate to make it 1-1, they attacked towards Rochdale’s defence although, Gill Owen, Nicky Monaghan, Kate Brammer and Becky Moon, held their own. With flat sticks and short sharp passes between the defence, it was going to take something special to penetrate the impressive defensive lineup.
Attack, attack, attack was today’s motto and Rochdale were hungry for their next goal.
Rochdale’s second goal came from Hodcroft who calmly took on Didbsury’s keeper and tapped it into left hand side of the goal. This was Hodcrofts second goal who massively deserved them after working tirelessly throughout.
At half time the score was 2-0 to Rochdale.
The second half saw Rochdale once again amend the formation back to 4-4-2 to suit the needs of the players on this wet Saturday afternoon. With Sarah Ransome working tirelessly down the left wing and Dionne Collinson down the right wing, it wasn’t long until Rochdale scored again. Brammer supported the attack and slotted the ball straight to Katie Burrell who sent it straight into back of the net. A brilliant display of text book hockey.
With the 3-0 lead and the weather conditions worsening Rochdale’s momentum dipped and pace lowered which allowed Didsbury to launch an attack. Within seconds the Didsbury team had scored. Unlucky for the ladies however this spurred them and super fit Jennie Ransome went from the subs bench to the right wing – fresh legs were much needed! The game ended 3-1, a brilliant win for Rochdale ladies.
Captain Pickering: “Well what can I say, I am proud of all the ladies playing amazing despite the weather being less than desirable. It’s our second win and we throughout deserve it. Can we make it three out of three? I believe so – bring it on”.
Player of the Match: Sarah Ransome
Umpire of the Match: Dionne Collinson