THEY may be ending 2019 in the promotion places, but Wilmslow Hockey Club men’s firsts will have to rediscover their best form in the new year if they are to stay there.

A winless run of five matches means Newcastle and Sheffield are now snapping at their heels in Division One of the North Hockey League.

Saturday’s 2-2 draw with Urmston was their third stalemate in succession as they were forced to come from two goals down to rescue a point.

A flat start led to Urmston taking the lead from a short corner before two stunning Simon Pickering saves limited the damage.

Wilmslow could not get going and although they started the second half positively, they conceded again through another improvised short corner.

However, going 2-0 down sparked the hosts into life and when Cam Armstrong was taken out in the D, Pete Hallinan scored the resulting penalty stroke the halve the deficit.

Wilmslow were now well on top and Hallinan poached an equaliser from a short corner after Martin Wright’s initial shot was saved, but they could not force a winner.

The seconds won 4-3 at Didsbury Northern’s firsts while the thirds beat Bangor City 3-0 at home.

The fourths lost 2-0 to Macclesfield’s thirds while James Bell scored both goals in the Vets’ 2-1 win over Crew Vagrants.

Meanwhile, the women’s firsts continued their good form as they won 2-0 at University of Durham, with Lindsay Rachubka scoring both goals from breakaway attacks.

The seconds and thirds both enjoyed good results against their opposite numbers from Neston, winning 2-1 and 3-1 respectively.

There were draws for the fourths and fifths – 3-3 at Wrexham’s seconds and 2-2 at home to Golborne’s thirds respectively – while the Vets also drew 3-3 with Bowdon, who went on to win on penalty flicks.