THE top two sides in the Investec Women’s Hockey League Premier Division face each other on Saturday, with leaders Surbiton heading east to take on Canterbury.

Surbiton will start as favourites having the strongest attack and defence in the Division, but Canterbury will be buoyed by a gritty 2-1 win over Leicester last weekend.

Canterbury captain Grace Balsdon said: “We took a lot of confidence from the three points we got at Leicester. We scored really good goals from excellent patterns of play.

“We need to make sure we play well for 70 minutes. Last time we played Surbiton we only had a few opportunities, so we’ve got to make sure we take them.

“We’ve got a lot of footage of Surbiton which we will go through this week, and our training will be geared towards making the most of our opportunities.”

Elsewhere, Clifton, who inflicted a first defeat of the season on Holcombe last week, will hope to continue their excellent form against Bowdon Hightown. Holcombe are aiming to preserve a top four spot when they entertain Buckingham.

Beeston, who earned their first point of the season last Sunday, will be looking for more against a Reading side who are on a run of three consecutive defeats, while Leicester are at home against a University of Birmingham side who beat the Sonning Lane side last weekend.

Investec Conference West leaders Slough travel to Oxford Hawks on Saturday, while Swansea City – who were held to a draw by Isca last weekend – are at home against Stourport.

In the Investec Conference North Wakefield are second only on goal difference, and they face a tough test against third-placed University of Durham. Meanwhile, leaders Brooklands Poynton are at home against Whitley Bay and Tynemouth.

Leaders East Grinstead take on third-placed Sevenoaks at home as they aim to preserve top spot in the Investec Conference East, while second-placed St Albans host Chelmsford and will be looking to bounce back after a loss at home to Harleston Magpies last weekend.

* Photo of Grace Balsdon is by Ady Kerry.

Investec Women’s Hockey League (Saturday, November 22 2014)

Investec Premier Division
Beeston v Reading 12:00
Clifton v Bowdon Hightown 13:00
Holcombe v Buckingham 14:00
Leicester v University of Birmingham 14:00
Canterbury v Surbiton 16:30
Investec Conference West
Isca v Bristol Firebrands 12:00
Olton and West Warwickshire v Gloucester City 12:00
Oxford Hawks v Slough 12:00
Swansea City v Stourport 12:00
Trojans v Cheltenham 12:00

Investec Conference North
Brooklands Poynton v Whitley Bay and Tynemouth 12:00
Loughborough Students v Sutton Coldfield 12:30
Wakefield v University of Durham 13:00
Ben Rhydding v Liverpool Sefton 13:30
Cannock v Kendal 14:00

Investec Conference East
East Grinstead v Sevenoaks 12:00
St Albans v Chelmsford 13:00
Harleston Magpies v Maidenhead 14:00
Ipswich v Wimbledon 14:00
Horsham v Bedford 14:00

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