A GAME of two halves may be one of the most overused cliches in sport, but for champions Derwent this certainly rang true on Saturday.
It all started so brightly for Derwent, who looked on course for a seemingly comfortable victory against promotion chasing Berkswell.
The returning Nick Harrod-Evans immediately showed everyone what they had been missing when he created numerous chances in the opening few minutes.
From a penalty corner, Tom Ellison’s drag flick opened the scoring and then Harrod-Evans went on the rampage, slotting home two goals in quick succession.
The opportunities continued to come for Derwent but they contrived to miss chance after chance. However, the style and the manner in which they were creating these chances were a joy to watch.
Entering half-time at 3-0, the Wirksworth-based side were confident that the second half would see a repeat performance. Little did they know of the horror show that was to follow.
Berkswell got themselves into the game, and opened their account in the first minute of the half.
They got themselves right back into things with seven minutes remaining, and equalised with two minutes left. Amazingly they then had a chance to win it, but Jamie Carlin in the Derwent goal pulled off a fine save to keep the scores level.
Coach Heath Roberts was less than impressed with his side’s showing. “We played like champions in the first half and relegation candidates in the second. We have to learn from this for next season, otherwise we are going to be in for a shock. We should have been six goals up at half time, and the second half was shocking. We lost possession too easily, stopped working for each other and defensively we were very poor. The only bright spot was the return of Nick Harrod-Evans. He created more chances than the rest of the team put together.”