Ipswich to exploit Slough's absence

Ipswich, at full strength and raring to go, are looking to be three points clear at the top of the Premier Division of the Women's National League after they entertain Hightown at Tuddenham Road tomorrow.

The current leaders, Slough, equal on points with the Suffolk club, are in Amiens for the European Indoor Club Championship, where they are looking to improve on their previous two silver medals in 1990 and 1995. But it will be no easy task to break the German stranglehold on this event.

Slough have been drawn in the same pool as the 1993 winners, Berliner, who last weekend surprisingly only managed to finish third in the German play-offs. Yet, with players like the brilliant 19-year-old Natascha Keller, Irina Kuhnt and the experienced Anke Wild in the squad, they will be formidable opposition when Slough play them in their final pool game tomorrow evening.

With Karen Brown fit and the addition of Ireland's Sarah Kelleher to their experienced squad, English hopes are high. Slough open their campaign this evening against Donchanka, the Russian champions, and then play Lokomotiva Raca from Slovakia tomorrow morning.

Back home, although likely to be without their international striker Sarah Blanks, who was injured in an England training weekend, Balsam Leicester are confident of climbing away from the relegation zone.

Although Clifton, who they visit tomorrow, have lost the services of the Welsh internationals Ann Bevan and Nicky Swann and the long-serving Angie Wright, it will be no easy task for Leicester. The visitors are pinning their hopes on the 19-year-old Carol Voss, who was in impressive form last weekend in the England Under-21 side which beat the senior side.

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