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Title joy for Magpies Men

PUBLISHED: 16:48 13 March 2008 | UPDATED: 10:26 12 July 2010

HARLESTON Magpies Men were crowned East Hockey League Men's Premier A Division champions with three games of the regular season to spare after a comfortable 3-0 win over Havering.

HARLESTON Magpies Men were crowned East Hockey League Men's Premier A Division champions with three games of the regular season to spare after a comfortable 3-0 win over Havering.

They now look forward to taking their place in the end of season play-offs against the winners of the country's other regional leagues in search of a coveted place in the National English Hockey League.

Magpies took a deserved lead through a routine Andy Hipwell short corner.

Despite some superb individual skills by a number of the Havering players, it would be their lack of discipline that would cost them when. While reduced for a period to nine men, Hipwell scored his second of the game from a neatly deflected free-hit to put Magpies 2-0 up and within sight of at least the single point required to take the league title.

After a five-minute stoppage while the umpire dealt with an incident involving a spectator, Magpies maintained their discipline and composure and extended their lead when Tom Sumner calmly stroked the ball into an empty net.

This was another game in which Magpies' veteran keeper Ian Martin did not have a save to make, and for the third game in the last four Magpies did not concede a short corner throughout.

Magpies next play lowly Harpenden followed by tough games away against Dereham and at home against Cambridge City.

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