Slough resign from league

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The Independent Online
Slough, once one of the country's great sides and European club champions in 1980 in Barcelona, have taken the unprecedented decision to resign from the National League.

The club, which numbers among its life members the current president of the Hockey Association, Robin Elliot, and the chairman of the HA competitions committee, Rodney Rigby, and also provided Paul Barber and Ian Taylor for Great Britain's Seoul Olympic gold medal squad, notified the association earlier this week of their decision.

Kenny Partington, the club's chairman, expressed his bitter disappointment at the need for the decision yesterday, saying: "It's like having your stomach torn out. I feel that 20 years of my life has gone."

Partington highlighted the changing face of the game together with the lack of facilities the club can provide as the root of the problem: "We have not been a fashionable side during the past few years and without an artificial pitch at our own ground we have been struggling to attract players. We just cannot compete with other neighbouring National League sides to attract players and without our own ground it has been impossible to have a youth policy."

Partington said that when training got under way for the new season, Paul Loudon, the manager, had no more than seven players available from last season's squad and, unable to boost the ranks with recruits nor able to find other club players willing to play at National League level, had no option but to recommend withdrawing. It is understood that the HA has reacted to the news with horror.

Slough, who won the last of their four national indoor titles in 1984 and are current Buckinghamshire champions, plan to continue with an indoor squad and to honour their second and third XI commitments with the Pizza Express London League.