North Notts on fire as John Players are demolished

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North Notts Hockey Club second pre-season friendly saw the Manor Park based side make the short trip to Nottingham and breeze past John Players 8-0.

With the opposition based a league below, Notts manager Jay Faulkner used the game to continue to blood new talent.

After impressive performances last week both Charlie Shaw and Simon Atkin were retained in the squad along with Rhys Jepson making his first X1 debut.

Notts began the game slowly with Jarvis and Kanalas struggling to gel in the Notts midfield.

For 10 minutes Notts failed to take command of the game and it seemed that John Players’ basic yet enthusiastic team play could hamper Notts’ progress.

After a slight tweak to the side Notts began to take control of the game and as manager Faulkner rolled the changes, Notts struck first blood and a five minute salvo saw Allen Butler add two quick fire goals followed by a cheeky finish from Barton to effectively end the game as a competition, Barton then added to his tally on 18 minutes, although Atkin also laid claim to the goal as he made sure the ball crossed the line as Notts threatened to run riot and embarrass players in front of their own fans.

Notts went in at the break 5-0 after Barton completed his hat-trick, again from close range.

Manager Faulkner’s words at the break were of fitness and not to get complacent and concede.

A more scrappy second half ensued with Faulkner opting to leave feinge players on the pitch to give them the much needed experience.

Shaw and Jepson didn’t disappoint and both chipped in with goal apiece, Butler adding a fierce top corner drive in-between to see Notts to run out comprehensive winners 8-0.

This week will see Notts face a much sterner test when they travel North to face Chesterfield in what always proves to be a competitive fixture.

Notts will also have Josh Singleton and William Butler to select from as the start of the season draws closer.