Brentwood HC 45 - 39 Peterborough HC

On Saturday 12th April, BHC hosted Peterborough for what was to become an exciting and fast-paced match with plenty of goals. The last time the two teams met in December the match ended with a draw but this time BHC was victorious.

Peterborough opened the score and soon after Philippe equalised. The first ten minutes were very even, thanks mainly to Peterborough's number 99, but Khalid broke the tie situation by converting his first penalty of the match and putting the score at 6-5. From then on, Brentwood never lost the lead of the match despite playing with a reduced squad yet again. Faced with only one substitute, coach Hans-Jörg joined his players on court for some periods of time and even scored one goal, adding to the goals by Branislav, Philippe, Khalid, Ian and Rob G.. The half-time score was 21-19.

Khalid scored the first goal of the second half, a half that saw plenty of goals for both teams. The opponents closed the gap to just two on several occasions, but Brentwood didn't allow Peterborough to come back at any stage; BHC were determined to get a convincing victory in their last fixture of the season and Etienne also added his name to the score sheet with a nice goal. The final score was 45-39.

Both teams enjoyed themselves and all BHC players who played on the day gave their best to finish their regular fixtures as they started: with a win.

In total, Brentwood had 5 wins, 2 draws and 3 defeats, finishing the season with 22 points and a goal difference of +75 goals.

BHC have now to wait and see if they will play in the play-offs which will take place in May.

After the match coach Hans-Jörg said: "I'm very happy with all the players who played today. They put in a great effort and were fully determined to win this important match. Although we didn't always play as I would have liked to, I am really happy because we achieved our objective for today which was to win this match."

The team on the day was:
Connor Bennett in goal, Branislav Slivka (13), Etienne Szomonyak (1), Hans-Jörg Küller Rabaça (1), Ian Weir (7), Khalid Amrane (15), Philippe Kouessan-Ettori (6), Rob Broad and Rob Grant (2).
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Cranfield HC 35 - 25 Brentwood HC

On Saturday 5th April, BHC travelled to Cranfield. The last time the two teams met in October, Cranfield won by a slim margin after a fantastic come-back by BHC.

BHC started well, leading by 2-0 with goals by Fernando and Branislav. The opponents, however, soon equalised, and went on to score a third goal taking advantage of several rushed attacks of BHC which resulted in wasted chances. Fernando equalised again at 4-4 towards the middle of the first half, but soon Cranfield took the lead again and were allowed to widen the gap before the break despite some great saves by Connor. The half-time score was 14-8.

The second half started with yet another goal from Cranfield, but Branislav soon scored one of his eight goals of the match and went on to convert a penalty putting the score 16-10. Ten minutes into the second half however, BHC were trailing by 22-14. Despite their determination, Brentwood were letting too many goals in, which made a come-back increasingly unlikely despite some nice goals from Khalid, Rob G., Remy, Ian, Fernando and Branislav. Disappointed with his players' performance in the defence, coach Hans-Jörg called a time-out to talk things over but could not make many tactical changes as he had very few options. The lack of concentration in the defence allowed Cranfield to keep extending their lead until the end. Khalid scored the last goal of the match, setting the final score at 35-25.

After the match coach Hans-Jörg said: "We are all very disappointed for having lost today. We started well, but somehow things went wrong, particularly in the defence. I'm also disappointed that we didn't have more substitutes today; this prevented other tactical options and the opportunity for players to have a rest in what was a fast-paced match. But now we have to look ahead and we are determined to do well in our home match against Peterborough next Saturday."

The team on the day was:
Connor Bennet in goal, Branislav Slivka (8), Etienne Szomonyak, Fernando Candeias (6), Ian Weir (1), Khalid Amrane (6), Remy Turc (2) and Rob Grant (2).
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Norwich HC 6 - 56 Brentwood HC

On Saturday, 15th March, BHC made their long journey to King's Lynn to play Norwich HC.

Unfortunately, four Norwich players let their team down and did not show up to play. This left Norwich with a very reduced squad, but both teams decided to go ahead with the match regardless.

The match was played in the best spirit of handball, with respect and camaraderie by all involved. Norwich must be applauded for their fantastic effort and fighting spirit in such challenging and exceptional circumstances.

All BHC players scored on the day and there were some very nice goals too. Coincidentally, both halves started and finished in the same way, with Fernando scoring the opening goal and Philippe the last. The half-time result was 3-30.

The team on the day was:
Connor Bennet in goal, Branislav Slivka (10), Félix Branchu (7), Fernando Candeias (11), Ian Weir (8), Khalid Amrane (4), Phil Duffield (1), Philippe Kouessan-Ettori (8) and Remy Turc (7).


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Brentwood HC 27 - 27 Cambridge HC

On Saturday, 8th February, BHC played their home match against Cambridge HC. This was the second leg against Cambridge HC and BHC, having lost the away game in Cambridge, were very motivated to do better this time.

It started well with Ian opening the score for Brentwood, but Cambridge soon equalised and took the lead. With the score at 2-3, Khalid netted in the equaliser followed by a goal by Félix. The opponents scored to level at 4-4 but soon Brentwood were leading again with goals by Khalid and Fernando. Despite some beautiful goals much appreciated by the Brentwood bench, BHC were not able to pull away and soon there was a setback for Brentwood when the Captain, Philippe, got injured and had to sit on the bench for the rest of the match. With 10 minutes remaining in the first half the score was level at 9-9. Khalid then converted a penalty putting Brentwood ahead but the lead did not last as Cambridge managed to draw level yet again. The last few minutes of the first half were very intense, with both teams putting in a great effort and scoring great goals. The half-time result was 14-15.

The second half got underway with a goal by Fernando putting the score level at 15-15. The match went on to be a neck-and-neck affair, with both teams fighting really hard trying to pull away. Chris Littlejohn, who rejoined his team for the first time this season, scored a nice goal, and Connor brilliantly saved one penalty, in a half that saw 2-minute suspensions for both sides. Ten minutes before the end, Cambridge HC managed to gain a three-goal lead at 22-25 but BHC had a terrific fight back with goals by Rob Grant, Chris Baker and Khalid. Fernando put his team ahead and Chris Baker extended BHC's lead to 27-25, only to see Cambridge managing to come back in the closing moments of what was a very tight and exciting match throughout. The final score was 27-27.

After the match, coach Hans-Jörg said: "It was a very good handball match between two equally strong teams that gave their all. I am quite happy with my players today - we played at good level, with great and fluid moves and good understanding amongst the players. We are all a bit frustrated though for not bagging in a victory but we achieved the most important today, which was not to lose this match."

The team on the day was:
Connor Bennet in goal, Chris Baker (3), Chris Littlejohn (1), Etienne Szomonyak, Félix Branchu (5), Fernando Candeias (10), Ian Weir (1), Khalid Amrane (6), Philippe Kouessan-Ettori, Rob Broad and Rob Grant (1).


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Ipswich HC 26 - 39 Brentwood HC

On Saturday, 18th January, BHC travelled to Ipswich to play their away match against the local team, Ipswich HC.

Ipswich opened the score on the day, but Philippe soon equalised setting his team off to a fine display of handball and a very entertaining match. Khalid scored Brentwood's second goal putting BHC ahead by 1-2. The first 15 minutes of the match saw a very close score, with Brentwood not able to pull away despite beautiful goals from Fernando, who made his debut for BHC in this match, and also from Khalid and Rob Broad. Brentwood's good play finally broke the tie with goals from Fernando and Ian without reply. The Captain then showed that BHC meant business when he hammered in a goal in a fast break making it 10-13 for Brentwood. From then on, BHC were clearly dominating and kept extending their lead, while Mark contributed by saving almost 50% of the shots at his goal during the first half. The half-time result was 13-20.

Ian opened the score after the break but the opponents started their second half well scoring three goals without reply. The Brentwood players however, were in a determined frame of mind and wonderful goals from Rob Grant, Fernando, Félix, Philippe, Khalid and Ian widened the margin to 21-34. With ten minutes remaining, Ipswich tried hard to cool the Brentwood Fire and managed to score five more goals with Félix closing the score on the day. The final score was 26-39.

After the match, coach Hans-Jörg said: " I'm very pleased that today we saw good understanding amongst the players and some fantastic individual performances. We had a highly motivated team and over quite considerable stretches of time we played a very nice and efficient handball with good ball circulation and swift moves. I wasn't happy with the way we conceded some goals though, especially in the second half, but everyone did very well and it was great to watch."

The team on the day was:
Mark Cory in goal, Etienne Szomonyak, Félix Branchu (7), Fernando Candeias (12), Ian Weir (4), Khalid Amrane (7), Philippe Kouessan-Ettori (6), Rob Broad (1) and Rob Grant (2).



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