With home advantage, the team, coached by Shelagh Herbert, will be looking to put their experience in reaching the last eight of the Harrod UK Men’s Trophy and the last 32 of the England Hockey Cup to good use at Les Quennevais.
Final selections are yet to be made but the squad, featuring a good blend of youth and experience, welcomes back captain, Bill Aston, following his three months out with an ankle injury. Vice captain, Mark Dicker, who has been in fine goal scoring form this season, will hope to make an impression in this hotly-contested match.
‘The fact that we’ve been involved in so many games against good quality sides is bound to have sharpened up the squad and kept them playing much more high level hockey than in previous seasons,’ said Herbert.
‘Fitness and match sharpness is probably as good as it’s ever going to be at this stage of the season.
‘I think because we’ve had these matches and done pretty well we’ve got a big appetite for this game and will be looking to do much the same as last year but put the finishing touches to it which is what we were missing then.’
The ladies’ 1st team swept past Guernsey 6-0 last year as they retained the inter-insular honours and although they are without a few key players from that winning squad, they will be looking to do much the same this year.
The absence of those players, through illness or injury, has allowed deserving newcomers to join the squad including youngster Fiona Anderson, Zoe Smart and Claire Pettitt.
The back line has been playing together for a few years now and with the addition of Katie Ridley as the goalkeeper, the defence has been further strengthened.
Captain Kerry Warwick will be looking to her strong forward line to continue their goal scoring ways, though the side is well aware that Guernsey will want to overturn their losing run.