Hockey: No Luckes for East Grinstead

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The Independent Online
Cannock went into the mid- season break last Christmas with a four-point lead, yet failed to win the Premier title. As they currently lead the Premier table, four points ahead of East Grinstead, they will go into the break in the lead again this year, whatever the result of tomorrow's game against Old Loughtonians.

The Sussex side, who make the short trip to Canterbury, will be without their Olympic goalkeeper David Luckes, who had a knee operation earlier this week. Luckes, who was in brilliant form last weekend, will be replaced by James Westwood, who could be in for a busy afternoon.

Canterbury, currently in third place with Dave Hackett back in the centre of their midfield, have looked promising recently, and with their England Under-21 strikers, David Mathews and Stuart Humphries, scoring regularly, they look strong championship contenders.

Several key matches will be affected by the absence of England Under- 18 players, who have a training weekend. Relegation-haunted Beeston travel to Southgate forced to leave out Matt Taylor, Phillip Sully and Andrew West on schoolboy duties, but will be relieved that Paul Sheardown is fit after a leg injury.

New recruits, South African James Edington and James Stacey from Harleston Magpies, are included in their squad. The holidaying John Shaw will be missing from the Southgate line-up.

The absence of Greg Nicol and Gregg Clark - with the South African squad in Argentina - from First Division leaders Surbiton, who entertain Hull, could give second- placed Havant the chance of leapfrogging them.

Chris Wilson, the former Surbiton forward, makes his long-awaited debut for Chelmsford.

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