League champions Sheffield Bankers aim to end their season on a high after reaching England Hockey trophy final

Matlock Baileans v Beeston. Pictured for Matlock (in white) is Gemma Phipps.
Matlock Baileans v Beeston. Pictured for Matlock (in white) is Gemma Phipps.

Sheffield University Bankers are celebrating one of their most successful seasons to date - after sealing their place in the final of the England Hockey trophy by clinging onto a 3-2 home victory against Gore Court on the weekend.

The hotly-contested game came just seven days after the Goodwin-based side were crowned North 1 Division champions, remaining unbeaten in their league campaign.

And captain Matt Godden, who was man of the match on Saturday after scoring early on, said: “Gore were a tough side and we couldn’t fully prepare for the game as we didn’t know who they would be fielding.

“However, we were full of confidence going into the game. Every player knew we could score goals because of how we have performed in the league this season and it was great to be able to get on the score sheet so early in the game.

“We’ve tried to get on top early in each game this season and when we were 3-1 up, we should have taken that opportunity to score more.

“They did scare us, particularly from any short corners and we had to hang on at the end as they scored with a few minutes to go. But confidence is running through every area of our game, and that showed in the excellent defence that we kept up until the end.”

Bankers will face reigning champions Guernsey in the final, on May 4 in London - and will be aiming to end their 24-year wait to lift the trophy again. “Bring on the final,” Godden said.

“We can definitely win it if we keep this momentum going, and it would really cap a perfect season.

“As a player I don’t think I’ll ever get the opportunity to experience something like this again so I want to be lifting the cup come May time.”

Head coach Matt Nothcott added: “Guernsey will not be giving their title up without a good fight, but we have the attacking flair and solid defence needed to lift the cup.”

“Hopefully we can get a big crowd down to see us crown the season off in style,” he added.