Betts: History-making March Town Hockey Club men’s first team ‘belong at this level’

PLAYER-coach Jody Betts believes March Town men’s first team will hold their own in Division One after his side created hockey club history on Saturday.

Newly-promoted March drew 2-2 at Felixstowe as they played their first match at the club’s highest-ever level in the East Men’s Hockey League ladder.

March battled back from 2-0 down to secure a well-deserved share of the points thanks to goals from David Hodson and a last-minute equaliser from Scott Welcher.

Betts said: “We’re absolutely delighted because knew it would be a close game but the draw almost feels like a win.

“Despite playing so well you sort of think – is this what it’s going to be like all season? Felixstowe were so clinical and we didn’t deserve to be behind. We showed great character to get back into the game.

“Our fitness work over the summer really showed in the last 10-15 minutes and definitely helped us gain the draw. Credit goes to the guys for their hard work and commitment during pre-season.”

March – who are now playing just three levels below the national league set-up – have been boosted by a host of new faces during the close season.

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Adam Graham and Matt Bamford have returned to the club from Ely and have brought Grant Gilmore with them. Richard West has returned from university while Welcher has completed his spell in Afghanistan.

March host much-fancied Broxbourne – who beat Ipswich II 6-2 on Saturday – at the Neale-Wade Astroturf tomorrow (2.30pm kick-off).

Betts said: “It’ll be a tough game against Broxbourne, who are a good side, but if we play as well as we did against Felixstowe every week we should be able to hold our own in this league.

“We have improved our squad, this is the level we belong at and hopefully we’ll surprise a few teams this season.”