A PATCHED-UP Ludlow side suffered a heavy home defeat to Stafford in the West Midlands Premier Hockey League.

Ludlow, who were missing some regular starting players, had to rearrange the team to cover the absentees but they struggled to cope with Stafford’s fast forwards.

The visitors took an early lead after a penalty corner was deflected by a defender over the diving keeper.

A strong Stafford side doubled their lead after 20 minutes but Ludlow managed to keep the score to 2-0 heading into half time.

The second half was much of the same, however, with Stafford extending their lead shortly after the break.

Ludlow looked good going forward but they fell further behind and the visitors continued to run up the score.

The game finished 6-0 to Stafford and leaves Ludlow - who have dropped to eighth in the table - with plenty to think about ahead of a blank week.

They return to action on Saturday, December 9 when they host bottom side West Bromwich.

Ludlow Ladies also had a difficult weekend as they were beaten 10-0 by Telford & Wrekin.

Elsewhere, Tenbury Ladies could only name 11 players for their trip to leaders Stourport 3rds in the Worcestershire Women’s Hockey League Division One.

With Tenbury players forced to play out of position, Stourport took advantage early on and raced into a 4-0 lead.

Following the arrival of Jo Turvey 20 minutes in, Tenbury were able to regroup and conceded just once more before half time.

Tenbury showed fantastic spirit after the break but failed to score despite attempts on goal from Naomi Burgoyne, Emily Moseley and Cat Mumford.

A penalty flick from Stourport led to the only goal of the second half as they ran out 6-0 winners.

Tenbury face Pershore at home next week in their final game before the Christmas break.

Tenbury Ladies 2nds drew, meanwhile, following an evenly matched affair at Droitwich Spa Ladies.

Ebony Prescott impressed for the Tenbury juniors and they head into their Christmas break sitting second in the Worcestershire Women’s Hockey League Division Three behind leaders Stourport Ladies.