Hockey: Cannock and Slough close to title repeat

HOCKEY
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The Independent Online
CANNOCK AND SLOUGH, who both headed their respective Premier Leagues with points in hand at the end of the season, each have just one more obstacle to overcome in the play-offs, after victories at Reading this weekend, before reclaiming their titles and a place in the European Club Championships next season.

Cannock will play Reading, who yesterday beat Southgate 4-2 with New Zealand striker Ken Robinson scoring twice, in the finals at Milton Keynes on 3 May. With a late goal at a penalty corner from Ben Sharpe, Cannock won through on Saturday against Southgate after losing Justin Pidcock, their England centre half, with a broken kneecap early in the game. It is expected that he will be operated on today and is likely to be out of the game until Christmas.

In the women's final, Slough, who beat Ipswich 2-1 with a brace from Ali Burd, will play Clifton Scottish Life, winners against Hightown on Saturday and then yesterday over Ipswich, against whom they recovered from a two-goal deficit.

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