Witham Hockey Club have one eye firmly on the future as they look to wrap up the East League division three south east title as early as possible.

Local rivals Phoenix were unable to halt Witham’s forward momentum last weekend as the won a 11th straight game to strengthen their place at the top of the division.

Witham’s 3-2 win was hard-fought but it brought them to within touching distance of gaining promotion back to division two and they know they can wrap up the title in their next two games.

Skipper Richard Marshall would love them to achieve that not only to round off a hugely successful campaign, but also to help planning for a return to division two next year.

He said: “I think the only way we can lose out on promotion now is if we lose all our (remaining four) games and other teams score about 50 goals.

“We have the side who are bottom of the league coming up in two weeks so we’re looking to get it wrapped up then.

“It would be nice to do it as early as we can."

See this week's paper for the full version of this story and more pictures from the derby game.