09:00AM, Saturday 22 January 2022
Photos courtesy of Eva Gilbert (www.evagilbertphotography.com)
Slough women’s 1sts indoor squad have qualified for the England Hockey National Indoor finals which will be held at the Copper Box in London on Sunday, January 30.
After two exhausting weekends and eight intense games, Slough ground out a fourth-placed finish in the Premier Division and qualify for hockey’s ‘Big Day Out’ alongside East Grinstead, Repton and current holders Buckingham.
Slough will take on East Grinstead in the first semi-final at 10.30am followed by Repton v Buckingham at 11.45am with the winners meeting in the final.
Slough produced some great displays to clinch their spot in the final four, drawing with both East Grinstead and Buckingham while only narrowly losing to Repton in the group stages. They now have everything to play for at the high-profile finals.
Slough have a long history of success in the indoor game, having won the title a record 14 times, last lifting the trophy in 2016/17.
They managed to beat Bowden Highton (3-1), Sutton Coldfield (3-1) and Wimbledon (4-1) en route to the finals and picked up resilient draws with East Grinstead (0-0) and Buckingham (2-2). Their three defeats came to Holcombe (1-2), Leicester (4-3) and Repton (2-4). The only club to come close to that record are Hightown, who have won the event 12 times, but as they’ve failed to qualify, Slough have an opportunity to extend their lead and win the unrivalled. opportunity to represent England in Europe next year.
Kat Mcgonigle, Slough's captain, said: "We love indoor at Slough and we were very excited about the return to indoor post the pandemic enforced break that meant last year's indoor season was cancelled.
There are some new faces in the indoor team, but five members of the 2017 winning team still remain and the incredible team spirit continues to be instrumental in our indoor success.
"We believe we deserve our spot as one of the top four teams in the qualifying tournament In the first weekend we were hit with some Covid absences which meant some easier points were dropped but we are keen to show our true squad strengths at the finals.
"Our semi-final is against one of the favourites, East Grinstead, and it's set to be a close, tense affair as we both have huge respect for eachother's indoor game. However our experience, focus and pure determination, backed by the support of our friends and families that will be watching, will no doubt make it an epic finals day and we will be giving everything we have to fight for that place in Europe."
Tickets are available to purchase at https://www.englandhockey.co.uk/competitions-and-events/2022-super-6s-finals-day
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