On Friday 8th May Dean Close U13 Boys went to Beeston in Nottingham to try and win England Hockey’s National School Competition for U13 boys. All the schools in the country can enter this and over 300 schools do each year. This has never been won in the school’s history although last year the boys came 2nd losing on strokes to Whitgift school in the final.

In their first game the boys did not play well and lost 1-0 to Stamford School winners of the East region. This put pressure on the boys in that they had to win all their next 3 games. Against St George’s Weybridge 2nd in the South they won 4-2 and followed this up by beating the winners of the North region Harrogate Grammar 8-0. As they played their last game they knew that a win for Dean Close and a draw or loss for Stamford would place our boys in the final.They beat Oakham 2nd in the Midlands 4-0 and awaited Stamford’s result who lost 1-0 to St Georges placing Dean Close in the final again.

The final was once again against Whitgift. The rain began to fall and continued throughout the match. This was a tight affair with our team having to defend a succession of short corners. The defence of Freddie Thomas, Liam McKinnes stood firm and Oli Smart in goal made 3 superb saves. Our midfield of Leo England, captain Sam Porter and Ellis Robson started to dominate. A ball from Ellis Robson released Jacob Payton and he cooly rounded the keeper to score and lead 1-0 at half time. The second half was a tense affair but substitutes Nils Philip-Sorensen, PaddyBenson and Ned Greasley came on to help tired legs and played well. The whistle went and Dean Close were national Champions!

Watch our Video Clips below of the final game andsomeBest Bits:

To watch the Dean Close boys in action in the final game against Whitgift please click here | YOUTUBE CLIP

Video of the boys best bits on the road to becoming Champions | YOUTUBE CLIP