Surbiton captain Sarah Evans praised her side’s discipline as they held off a strong challenge from Holcombe to win 1-0 and take the title for the sixth time in a row.
“I’m really proud of the girls. Holcombe were a great opponent and they made it really tough for us as the scoreline suggests, it was a close game and really nervy so really happy to get the win.”
With Holcombe winning the league during the regular season and winning their semi-final with Buckingham 6-0 on Saturday it promised to be a keenly contested final and despite a lack of goalmouth action the balance of the game could have gone to either side at any stage.
“It was nervy and cagey but that’s what you expect from a game with Holcombe.” said Evans.
“They won the league outright and so we knew they’d be tough but that was one of the most disciplined performances we’ve put in for a long time.”
“I felt we were in control even though it was tight. We stuck to our jobs and our game plan and we came out with the win in the end.”
In such a tight game it was a penalty stroke from Giselle Ansley which settled matters. The Great Britain star kept her cool to fire home from the spot after Hannah Martin had been fouled.
Martin did her best to spark some creativity for Surbiton whilst Holcombe sat deep and tried to spring counter attacks to create their chances.
In the fourth quarter Roseanne Thomas in the Holcombe goal produced a top-class save, plunging low to her right to get a stick on the ball to keep out Ansley’s penalty corner.
Holcombe forced a penalty corner at the other end with just under five minutes left on the clock but Sabbie Heesh was equal to the task and saw off the attempted tip-in to preserve the lead and hand Surbiton the title once again.
Evans paid tribute to Surbiton’s opponents afterwards, saying:
“We know what a good side they are and we knew we had to stay tight defensively. If we did that the opportunities would come. Credit to them they defended well which meant we only got one goal but that was enough.”
With Surbiton’s impressive record at these championships I asked if she ever got bored of winning medals:
“No. You never bet bored of winning! It’s such a great feeling. It just shows the work everyone puts in all the weeks throughout the year and hopefully we can push on and do well in Europe.”