West Hampstead stretch lead at the top

COACH Jack Beard has set West Hampstead the target of staying unbeaten all season after victory over their nearest rivals put them nine points clear.

WH were always ahead in their top-of-the-table clash with second-placed Slough at Brent Cross on Saturday – and completed their 12th successive win the following day with a 10-1 demolition of Rover Oxford.

That maintained the team’s 100 per cent record in Middx, Berks, Bucks and Oxon Division One and Beard feels they are capable of continuing that throughout the remainder of the campaign.

“It is certainly one of our aims to go through the season unbeaten,” Beard said. “The intention now is to win every game.

“I go into every game thinking that we can win it. These sort of victories and score lines don’t surprise me – everyone has raised their game and level.

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“In every position we have very strong players. When each player plays to his ability, everything clicks.”

Slough proved difficult to break down in the first 15 minutes, but Rogier de Roy opened the scoring when he rifled in the first of his three goals over the weekend.

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The Slough keeper blocked de Roy’s initial strike after a breakdown from a short corner, but de Roy pounced on the rebound – and the floodgates then opened.

De Roy turned provider five minutes later, setting up Ben Battcock to blast in West Hampstead’s second before Ron Armstrong made it 3-0 in the 25th minute.

Slough gave themselves a lifeline when they pulled a goal back after a defensive mistake and, although Battcock restored the three-goal cushion in the 45th minute, the visitors hit straight back to make it 4-2.

That was as good as it got for Slough as Tom Kimberley increased his side’s lead to 5-2 – and then completed the scoring from five yards after Beard had fed him the ball inside the D.

The goal-fest continued against Rover Oxford, where Mark Little led the way with a hat-trick and Armstrong and de Roy grabbed two apiece, with Chris Allfrey, Battcock and Beard also on target.

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