It's a family affair

FOR the first time in the history of the English Hockey Indoor finals one team will have three players from the same family playing at the event.Ipswich Hockey Club qualified for the National Finals Day to be held at the Birmingham Indoor Arena on Sunday, February 5, by finishing in fourth place in the Premier League.

FOR the first time in the history of the English Hockey Indoor finals one team will have three players from the same family playing at the event.

Ipswich Hockey Club qualified for the National Finals Day to be held at the Birmingham Indoor Arena on Sunday, February 5, by finishing in fourth place in the Premier League.

Integral parts of that successful team are four players from Norfolk, three of whom are sisters.

Emma Lee-Smith, Becky Baker (nee Lee-Smith) and Charlotte Lee-Smith all joined Ipswich this season from Harleston Magpies and along with fellow ex-Magpie Evie Van Poortvliet they have all played a large part in Ipswich's successful season.

This is the first time that any of the players will play in the Indoor finals and they are obviously looking forward to it.

With more than 4,000 spectators expected and with the final being shown live on Sky Sports 3 this is obviously a huge day for Ipswich Hockey Club and the players involved.

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To continue the East Anglian theme, Ipswich will play local rivals Chelmsford in the first semi-final at 11.10am and should they win that they will play either Bowdon Hightown or Canterbury to be crowned champions of England and earn the right to represent the country in Europe next season.

Just remember to spare a thought for probably the most nervous and proud parent in the crowd, Judy Lee-Smith, as she prepares to ready herself for three times the pain and pleasure of watching your children playing top-level sport.