Hockey: Grange come good to make Euro Club final

GRANGE may have disappointed domestically this season but they raised their game when it mattered most to come second in the EuroHockey Club Trophy.

The Scottish Cup holders had to accept second best in the EuroHockey Club Trophy in Cardiff yesterday but going down 6-3 to strong Russian outfit Dinamo Elektrostal was certainly no disgrace. And earning second place in Europe should provide a welcome boost ahead of the Scottish Cup semi-finals.

The Russians stormed into yesterday's final by winning all their three Pool A games and scoring 12 goals in the process. They only lost two goals in the three games.

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Grange won Pool B by drawing both their opening games before disposing of Welsh outfit Whitchurch 4-0 to make the final. They scored six goals and lost two.

Unfortunately, the Russians continued their purple patch in the final at Sophia Gardens and stormed to a 4-0 lead in the first half. But battling Grange, who are in sixth place in Scotland's Division One, picked up the pace and stemmed the tide in the second-half which they won 3-2.

It was Grange's first defeat in the competition but Colin Clarke, Grange's player/coach, said: "The boys have worked all year for this and have improved with every game.

"We did our homework and knew it would be tough against the Russians who we watched training and they are a good side."

"Four games in four days is hard going but credit to the guys and their fitness. Getting to the final was our target and we've had a good tournament."