Smith stands down from GB role

GB Women's coach Cheryl Smith has left the role after seven years (PHOTO: Ice Hockey UK)

Great Britain Women’s head coach Cheryl Smith has stepped down from her role after seven years in charge.

Under her leadership, GB Women won four silver medals and two bronze – and she oversaw GB in an Olympic Qualifying campaign in Kazakhstan.

But she citied other commitments had forced to take a difficult decision in calling it a day after seven years, serving as an assistant coach for a year then head coach from 2015.

“It has been an honour to serve Great Britain and IHUK for the past seven years as assistant coach initially and for the past six as head coach,” she said.

“Unfortunately, because of the pressures of work and the ever-changing situation with covid, I feel I will not be able to give 100% when we restart.

Cheryl Smith has been in charge of the GB Women’s team since 2015 (PHOTO: Ice Hockey UK)

“I would like to place on record my thanks to all the board, but in particular Andy French for his help and support from day one.”

Smith was also responsible for the development of players from under-16s to the senior programme, with dozens of girls progressing to make their full GB debuts in the past seven years.

She represented GB as a player from 1995 to 2001 and returned to the national team fold when she took up the role of assistant coach in 2014.

David Hand, Chair of the GB Programme Board, expressed his gratitude and thanks for her commitment during her seven years with the women’s programme.

“I would like to place on record our thanks to Cheryl for her dedication in her time in the GB set-up,” he said.

“The programme has come a long way in the past seven years and there have been many high points. We’d like to wish Cheryl all the best for the future.”

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