Hockey: Late strikes seals title for Slough

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The Independent Online

Slough went through the formalities of winning the women's Premier League title at the weekend. They followed up their 3-0 win at Chelmsford on Saturday with a 2-0 victory over Hightown yesterday, thanks to late second-half goals from Sam Wright and Kate Walsh, to claim their eighth title in 13 years.

Reading's 4-1 victory at Teddington, with goals from Scott Ashdown, Ken Robinson, Jonty Clarke and Andy Todd, takes them eight points clear at the top of the men's Premier League and was a big boost before their European Cup-Winners' Cup competition in the Netherlands next weekend.

It was a good weekend for Cannock, who moved into second place ahead of Surbiton, whom they beat 1-0 yesterday with a last-minute goal from Andy West after a comprehensive 6-3 win against Southgate on Saturday. For Southgate, it was a disastrous weekend which, but for a miracle, commits them to the First Division next season. Following Saturday's defeat at Cannock, Southgate were thrashed 9-1 at Canterbury, with England's leading goalscorer at the recent World Cup, David Mathews, hammering home four.

Old Loughtonians celebrated Sponsors Day with a narrow 1-0 victory over Hampstead and Westminster. The Welsh international, Owen Griffiths-Jones, converted a penalty stroke, which was won following a powerful drive through the Hampstead ranks by Sam Jennings. Griffiths-Jones, the hero of the moment, within a minute was the villain as he was temporarily suspended to put his side under unnecessary pressure.

Both teams are now three points clear of Guildford, in the relegation play-off spot who only managed a 2-2 draw away to Loughborough Students.

MEN'S EHL Premier: Cannock 6 Southgate 3; Hampstead & Westminster 3 Loughborough Students 2; Canterbury 9 Southgate 1; Loughborough Students 2 Guildford 2; Old Loughtonians 1 Hampstead & Westminster 0; Surbiton 0 Cannock 1; Teddington 1 Reading 4. Standings: 1 Reading (P14, Pts37); 2 Cannock (15-29); 3 Surbiton (13-25).

WOMEN'S EHL Premier: Canterbury 2 Olton & West Warwick 2; Chelmsford 0 Slough 3; Clifton 2 Fyffes Leicester 1; Doncaster 2 Ipswich 3; Hightown 2 Sutton Coldfield 0; Slough 2 Hightown 0. Standings: 1 Slough (P16, Pts36, champions); 2 Fyffes Leicester (16-29); 3 Olton & West Warwick (16-28).

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