THAME men’s first team lost their 100 per cent record as they were beaten 2-1 away by arch rivals West London.
Despite the loss, Thame remain top of the league and must now look to the reverse fixture to restore their pride.
The two sides are familiar foes having faced each other in the last three seasons but it was West London who made the most of that familiarity by deliberately setting out to neutralise Thame’s free-flowing style of hockey.
The home side packed the midfield and did not allow key players Will Sawrey-Cookson and Gareth Birkett time on the ball.
As a result there was space on the wings but the visitors were unable to exploit it or adapt to the West London set up.
Thame still had the lion’s share of possession but were unable to take their chances. Good play from Manny Trailor consistently went unrewarded and the home keeper made great saves to deny Birkett and Sawrey-Cookson.
At the other end, West London’s chances were few and far between but a great solo effort from the home side’s star player broke the deadlock as he danced through the normally resolute Thame defence and finished well. Almost instantly they scored a second from a well-taken penalty corner, only their second of the game.
Jaypee Wentzel grabbed one back for Thame and the final few minutes were tense but West London held on for the win.