Any chance of hockey at Abbeydale Park last weekend was scuppered by Friday night’s snow.
The volume of snow and the difficulty ground staff had getting in meant that the whole programme was wiped out.
This wasn’t just a local problem as once again the whole north of England hockey programme was snowed off.
Abbeydale Park ground staff had cleared the pitch during the week and had Friday’s snow not appeared play could have gone ahead.
Sheffield Hallam University were able to play two home matches on the pitch on Wednesday, the only BUCS games that survived the weather in the Northern Division.
The overnight thaw on Saturday did clear pitches and Sheffield’s mens fifth team travelled to Yorkshire Division Three leaders Airedale but they were unable to stop Airedale winning 4-1, the consolation goal came from Luke Warwick,
This week all leagues are back in full action, with Hallam men’s firsts travelling to Belper in top place in the national Men’s North Conference and they will need a win to stay top.
The only other team in contention, Bowdon, are only one point behind, and it’s important for Hallam to keep their advantage until the penultimate game of the season when they face Bowdon.
Hallam’s women are also on the road with a trip across the hills to Timperley.
Hallam need a win from this game to stay in touch with the top end of the North Premier Division, while a draw or defeat would pull them back into the midtable pack and could end any realistic chance of promotion.
Hallam Mens seconds entertain City of Manchester at Abbeydale Park this Saturday (3pm start) and victory would ensure that their move up from fifth would gather momentum.
Promotion would be a big ask as they are eleven points behind second-placed Gateshead.
Yorkshire Premier title hopefuls Hallam mens thirds travel to York University, but with leaders Brigg five points clear of second place Driffield and eight ahead of Hallam, only a win will fill the bill.
Hallam women’s thirds will be looking to bank three points in their fight to move out of the second bottom relegation position in Division Two when Leeds University, the team immediately above them, come to town on Saturday.
Hallam men’s fourths have the joy of a local derby against Sheffield University Bankers and they will fancy their chances against their city rivals having the lost the away game by a narrow 2-1. This game fills the 11.45am spot at Abbeydale Park this Saturday.
The women’s fourths, meanwhile, play Leopold at Newfield School (11am start), and hope for a change in their fortunes.
The men’s fifths 5s are also facing Bankers, at Newfield School (1.30pm start).
Hallam men’s sixths, Yorkshire division five promotion candidates, will be looking for goals galore as they travel to face bottom club Wakefield, who have conceded 51 goals in their 14 matches to date.
There should a right royal tussle at 4.30pm at Abbeydale Park when Hallam men’s sevenths play Sheffield University Bankers.
The weather has also wreaked havoc with the league’s fixture list, as games have to be re-arranged. The leagues have ‘slip dates’ on February 16 and March 23, and some clubs may play ‘double-headers’ against two different opponents late in the season. Others will use evening matches.
The league is keen to ensure that all fixtures are fulfilled, and has the power to issue fines and dock points when games aren’t played without good reason.