Ipswich men set to merge with Ladies

THE proposed merger between two of the biggest hockey clubs in Ipswich, has come a step closer.Ipswich Sports Club, of which the hockey club is a major member, voted overwhelmingly at an extraordinary general meeting to join forces with Ipswich Ladies – and the whole deal could be cut and dried by next week.

By Martin White

By MARTIN WHITE

THE proposed merger between two of the biggest hockey clubs in Ipswich, has come a step closer.

Ipswich Sports Club, of which the hockey club is a major member, voted overwhelmingly at an extraordinary general meeting to join forces with Ipswich Ladies – and the whole deal could be cut and dried by next week.


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The Tuddenham Road club, whose first team was among the founder members of the National League back in the 1980s, will hold their EGM on Tuesday and it is expected they will also vote for the move to go ahead.

With Ipswich men's first team now in their second season in Division Two of the English Hockey League, the merger would provide a major springboard for both sides and bring the two clubs under the same umbrella.

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Richard Wrinch, Ipswich men's hockey club chairman, said today: "If the move goes ahead, as we hope it will, I believe it will bring a lot of good things.

"Our current ladies' section, Orwell, will be strengthened considerably, we will have a site with floodlights at Tuddenham Road for training purposes and matches, a second pitch and a second clubhouse.

"The move will also provide a great deal of flexibility between the two existing clubs and if we are to go from strength to strength we need the extra facilities this deal would provide.

"In my view it would be a very big plus for both clubs and turn us into a major hockey club from a comparatively parochial one."

He added: "There are tremendous benefits to both sides and I see very few, if any, negative things. Ipswich Ladies already have a big sponsorship deal with BTExact Technologies and we naturally hope that will continue to flourish.

"There are many other matters which need to be ironed out and while nothing can be done until the ladies have held their own meeting, I am excited about the prospect."

Ipswich Ladies have been looking to merge and expand for some years and although they voted against such a move on the last occasion, it could well be the time is now right for such a deal to go ahead.

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