Molly Redgrove came agonisingly close to leading her Framlingham College Under-18 Girls side to the gold medal at the National Indoor Hockey Finals, writes Russell Claydon.
The 17-year-old from Twinstead captained the Suffolk side at Bromsgrove School as they created history by gaining the school’s first ever place in the final of the prestigious national competition.
The former Sudbury Hockey Club full-back fired in two goals in a pulsating semi-final with Dean Close which saw Framlingham come back from 3-0 down to force a penalty strokes decider, which they duly won.
But they twice squandered the lead in the final against the mighty Cranleigh to end up with the silver medals after a 4-2 defeat in the competition’s showpiece.
Redgrove’s mother Cathie, who was among the crowd cheering her on with father Nick, said she can be very proud of her achievement though.
“When a small school from Suffolk goes up against the big sporting schools it is a tremendous achievement. We were over the moon,” she said.
“When I looked at the Cranleigh bench, eight were in the England squad.
“They have huge sports funding to entice the best players in.”
Redgrove will now turn her attentions to the National Outdoor Finals, where she will hope to captain Framlingham to another medal, having won bronze last year, at the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in March.
From Easter, the Cambridge City player’s mind will turn back to the international scene where she will join up with the England Under-18s for games against Holland, Wales, Scotland, Germany and Belgium ahead of the European Cup in Spain, in July.
“She has never played in the European Cup as it is every two years and only played at under-18 level,” explained Cathie.
Redgrove’s first international call-up came to the England Under-16s in spring 2016, where she impressed national selectors at a trial before going on to play in the Six Nations tournament in Belgium.