Cookstown face IHL make or break weekends

Mandatory Credit: Rowland White / PressEye
Men's Hockey: Premier
Teams: Annadale (white) v Cookstown (red)
Venue: Lough Moss
Date: 3rd January 2015
Caption: Mark Crooks, Cookstown and Peter McKibbin, Annadale

Mandatory Credit: Rowland White / PressEye Men's Hockey: Premier Teams: Annadale (white) v Cookstown (red) Venue: Lough Moss Date: 3rd January 2015 Caption: Mark Crooks, Cookstown and Peter McKibbin, Annadale

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Cookstown HC face two of the most important matches in their season across the next two weekends.

If they are to avoid relegation from the EY Hockey League - Ireland’s top flight - they can almost assuredly do it with victories over Annadale in the back-to-back series of games starting this Saturday at Steelweld Park at 2.30pm.

Cookstown had a superb win over Glenanne last weekend, and to back it up with two more three-pointers would be a terrific achievement for the squad.

The Reds best performances have all come against Ulster opposition this season with narrow losses on the road to table-toppers Lisnagarvey and perennial championship challengers Banbridge.

“As a team we defended really well and limited Glenanne to low percentage chances,” Captain Mark Crooks told the Mail. “Again Ian Hughes was outstanding and we attacked with real purpose which is something we haven’t really been able to do this year.

“The next two weeks are huge for both sides. It is the chance for one of us to start to pull away from the other and begin to look up the table.

“What is important from our point of view is to bring the same positive, hard working and resilient attitude from the Glenanne game into the next two fixtures.

“The boys are keen to take it a quarter at a time. If we do that, we won’t look too far ahead and will instead focus on what we can control there and then in the game,” Crooks described.