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Kings of Anglia Issue 10 Magazine Offer

Ipswich spirits lifted by victory

PUBLISHED: 13:20 19 October 2001 | UPDATED: 10:41 03 March 2010

IPSWICH skipper Asif Rais believes his side have discovered last season's golden touch.

Their impressive 6-1 hammering of Bromley has lifted the spirits in the Henley Road clubhouse after two narrow successive defeats.

By Martin White

IPSWICH skipper Asif Rais believes his side have discovered last season's golden touch.

Their impressive 6-1 hammering of Bromley has lifted the spirits in the Henley Road clubhouse after two narrow successive defeats.

Now, with the first win of the season in Division Two of the English Hockey League under their belts, Ipswich entertain Indian Gymkhana on Sunday – a match to which Rais is really looking forward.

"I can hardly wait for it as I think it's going to be a great game," he said today. "We played them twice in pre-season friendlies and they beat us on both occasions, but we weren't at full strength like we will be this time.

"They are an incredibly skilful side and I think for a lot of the game we are going to be on the back foot, but I believe we can hit them on the counter-attack.

"With Richard Fox, Oliver Didham, Simon Miller and Ivan Smith all capable of breaking quickly we can certainly cause them problems at the back and if our passing and movement is anything like what we produced at Bromley, then they will be in for a hard time."

However, while Rais and his team-mates are now brimming with a new-found confidence, they equally know they could be brought down to earth with a severe jolt.

Rais said: "We were delighted to have beaten Bromley so comprehensively but that was last week and, as they say, you are only as good as your last game.

"I would like to think we can get something out of them but we will have to be on our best form to achieve it."

Indian Gymkhana, relegated at the end of last season from Division One, have stated they want to regain that status immediately and are unbeaten in their first three games.

However, while Ravi Verdi, the former Old Loughtonians player, has scored in every match, his side have a habit of conceding goals late on and they have twice conceded leads to end with a draw.

After conceding a goal in the opening minute, Ipswich seconds thrashed Redbridge & Ilford 10-2 with goals from Andy Cook (5), Ivan Smith (2), John Reed, Toby Lever and Robin Swindin, while captain Richard Swain will be looking for more of the same against Cambridge Nomads.

The thirds, who came back from two down to draw 2-2 with Maldon, are at home to Dunmow.

Ipswich fourths, who have a local derby against Ipswich East Suffolk thirds, got back to winning ways by beating Crostyx thirds

3-0.

The fifth team, despite being reduced to nine men due to injury, beat Havering 4-1 and tomorrow they take on Southend seconds, while the sixths, who lost 2-1 to Maldon seconds, play Old De Ferrians.

The veterans have the short trip to Colchester for their game.

Orwell Ladies do not have a game this week in Division Two North of the Printwize East League and with no Suffolk League fixtures tomorrow either, the only team in action are the thirds who have a friendly against Castaways seconds.

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