Solihull’s bid for a first British League men’s Super 5s title is well on course after the Midlands team finished the latest weekend of matches at Ponds Forge, Sheffield, with a 100 per cent record from four games and, significantly, an impressive four-point advantage over the rest of the field.
They still had to battle hard for a 5-4 victory over City of Manchester, whose former Great Britain goalkeeper Ed Scott made a number of fine saves in the early stages. Manchester missed a golden chance to take the lead three minutes into the second quarter when a penalty struck the crossbar.
Solihull gradually took control, Polish international Pawal Wielogorski scoring a fine back-hand shot from the pit as a 5-2 lead was established early in the final period. A Manchester rally – goals by Dan Paddon and Spilios Kaloudis – came too late to deprive Solihull of the points.
In their other match, Solihull built a 7-2 lead midway through the third period against Polytechnic and eventually won 8-6.
In the women’s Super 5s, Liverpool Lizards are chasing a fourth consecutive title and currently lead the table by one point thanks to a 4-3 victory over City of Manchester. The first two quarters produced only a single goal apiece, but scores by Sophie Gilbert, Grace Rowland and Kathryn Fowler edged Liverpool into a 4-2 lead in the final period. Manchester replied through Stephanie Whittaker but were unable to take advantage of two Liverpool exclusions in the final stages.
London team Otter remain unbeaten after beating City of Coventry 10-4 and drawing 5-5 with Manchester. Against Manchester, Otter recovered from 4-2 down after two periods to 4-4 at the start of the last and then took the lead for the first time with just over two minutes to go through Cecily Turner. Ella Chadderton slotted the Manchester equaliser with 1.27 remaining. For all the latest news and results from the UK, go to www.bwpl.org.