Thompson quits GB to concentrate on Coventry Blaze

Paul Thompson
Thompson led GB to a silver medal at last year's World Championships

Paul Thompson has quit as Great Britain head coach after four years in charge.

Thompson, who is also co-owner and coach of Coventry Blaze, says club commitments are behind his exit.

"Due to the financial situation here in Coventry, I do not feel I can give my full commitment to the programme, I have to concentrate my efforts on the problems we have here [Coventry]."

He leaves with Great Britain having finished second in World Championship Division One, Group B last season.

Thompson took charge of the Great Britain team for the 2007 World Championship, with the team in the second tier, and turned them from relegation candidates into promotion contenders.

They narrowly missed out on promotion to the elite level earlier this year, finishing second behind in Division One, Group B behind Kazakhstan in Ukraine.

He also led the team to a bronze medal in Division One, Group B behind Italy and Ukraine in 2009.

"I am very proud of the job I have done with the seniors, just missing out on gold last season in Ukraine," he added.

"The programme has come a long way, playing for gold medals and not relegation games anymore.

"I feel I have left with the future looking very rosy for the national team and we are so close to joining the elite in world hockey.

"This was a decision that under normal circumstances I would never have made but all my efforts must go back into my business at this time."

Andy French, general secretary of Ice Hockey UK, said of Thompson: "His commitment and dedication to GB has been top class and he has helped not only the senior side, but assisted and advised the junior programme."

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