OLTON & West Warwicks, situated pretty close to Shakespeare's country, were involved in something of a horror story at Reading Hockey Club last Saturday, writes Dave Wright.

Their Investec Women's League Conference West play-off hopes were dealt a blow by Reading's own Shakespeare, with the first name of India, who wrote her name twice on the goal sheet in Reading's 3-2 victory.

In a physical game, Tracey Johnson netted the winner which keeps Blues in the hunt for a top-six finish which will see them qualify for Divison One, which is being newly formed for next season.

They currently occupy fifth place in the standings, but have Swansea and ISCA breathing down their necks with just two games remaining.

"The result will go a massive way in securing our target of a top-six finish," commented player-coach Jo Ellis.

"The girls have worked tremendously hard, stuck together and ran their socks off to ensure a positive result."

Her side fell behind on the half-hour mark when former England ace Sally Walton converted a penalty corner, her 16th goal in 12 appearances.

Reading pulled level through Shakespeare in the 41st minute, only to fall behind again two minutes later when Amy Tennant, back between the posts following her FIH Pro League duties with Great Britain, was beaten by Laura Collins following a penalty corner.

Upping the tempo in a game they could not afford to lose, the hosts improved their passing game and it reaped dividends.

Teenager Shakespeare, now with four goals in her last four games, restored parity when finishing off a good team move in the 49th minute and further pressure led to a 52nd-minute winner for Johnson.

The visitors – level on points with Reading but above them on goal difference – fought hard to get back on terms, but Reading soaked up the pressure to secure an important win.

Their player-of-the-match award was shared by Abbie Dixon and Fran Clements.

Blues' last away fixture of the season is this Saturday (12pm) when they travel to Gloucester City, who look set to finish runners-up in the division.

They won 3-0 at Sonning Lane early in the season.

Reading Ladies Rockets are through to England Hockey's Tier 3 Championship final after an excellent 5-1 win away to Loughborough Students 4ths last Sunday. They sewed victory up in the opening 35 minutes, going in at half-time 4-0 ahead.

Lucy Scott, their player-of-the-match, bagged a hat-trick with Lizzie Mansell and Ellie Mann (penalty stroke) completing the scoring.

The final will be against Oxted 1sts at Lee Valley on May 4 (2.30pm).