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News 24 April 2014

All the news for Thursday 24 April 2014

Home sides lose out narrowly in warm-up matches in Glasgow

Chris Grassick sets Scotland off on the attack. Photo Credit: Duncan Gray

With the Men’s 4 Nations and FIH Champions Challenge looming this weekend, Scotland Senior Men and Women were in action in warm-up friendlies against Argentina and Ireland at the Glasgow National Hockey Centre this evening.

Scotland Senior Men lost out 3-2 to Argentina despite striker Kenny Bain putting the home side 2-0 up inside the first seven minutes.

Scotland's Kenny Bain was on target with two goals against Argentina. Photo Credit: Duncan Gray

The Hurley marksman opened the scoring in the third minute with a cracking reverse stick strike into the bottom left hand corner, and he doubled the advantage for the national side four minute later when David and Alan Forsyth combined down the right flank to play in Bain inside the circle, where he finished with a low flick past the Argentinian goalkeeper.

However, a Matias Paredes penalty corner in the 20th minute, plus two goals from Guillermo Schickendantz in the 28th and 41st minutes gave the away side a narrow 3-2 success.

Scotland Senior Men now look forward to the opening match of the Men’s 4 Nations competition on Friday evening, when they play Belgium at the Glasgow National Hockey Centre (7pm)

Meanwhile, Nikki Kidd’s penalty corner strike couldn’t prevent Scotland Senior Women going down to a 2-1 defeat at the hands of Ireland earlier this evening.

Nikki Kidd was Scotland's goalscorer against Ireland in Glasgow. Photo Credit: Duncan Gray

Nicola Evans gave the visitors the lead in the 11th minute courtesy of a penalty corner strike, before Kidd pulled the Scots level eight minutes later with a trademark drag-flick down the centre of the goal.

In the 43th minute, Ireland notched the winning goal, Michelle Harvey scoring from a penalty corner.

Scotland Senior Women also face Belgium in their next match, this time on Sunday afternoon when they play in the opening Pool A match in the FIH Champions Challenge (2.30pm).

Scotland's Morag McLellan in action against Ireland this evening. Photo Credit: Duncan Gray.

Scottish Hockey Union media release

England men in Glasgow for Four Nations tournament

Wimbledon's Phil Roper named in England squad for the Four Nations tournament in Glasgow

As the England men’s team continue their World Cup preparations they have travelled to Glasgow for a Four Nations tournament against Argentina, Belgium and Scotland.

The event, which is being hosted by Scottish Hockey as part of their Commonwealth Games preparations, will run from 25-29 April and all matches will be played at the Glasgow National Hockey Centre - the venue for hockey during games time.

England men’s head coach Bobby Crutchley has named his squad of 18 who will face World Cup sides Argentina and Belgium and hosts Scotland. The squad sees little change from the team which beat Ireland 3-0 earlier this month in the NOW: Pensions Nations Cup, however Beeston’s Adam Dixon has been sidelined with an ankle injury which he suffered playing for his club in the Euro Hockey League last week. Crutchley has also brought Reading’s James Bailey back into the fold as reserve goalkeeper and with 10 caps already to his name Wimbledon’s Phil Roper gets a call up after continuing to impress on the training ground back at Bisham Abbey.

England captain Barry Middleton will receive his 300th combined [England & GB] cap when he steps out against Argentina on Friday evening.

Speaking ahead of the tournament Crutchley said, “This Four Nations tournament will give us a chance to test ourselves against other World Cup contenders [Belgium and Argentina] and will help us to gauge what progress we have made since we last played these sides. With the World Cup being just over five weeks away our focus is very much on that tournament however it’s also fantastic to get to play at the venue for the Commonwealth Games.”

The Four Nations matches will all be capped and match reports, including quotes, will be sent out following England’s matches; all results, squad information etc can also be found here.

Please note: there will be training matches played outside of the tournament schedule, however these will be uncapped and no reports will be sent out.

Four Nations squad – Name (Club)

James Bailey (Reading)
Alastair Brogdon (Wimbledon)
Tom Carson (Reading)
Nick Catlin (Reading)
David Condon (East Grinstead)
Dan Fox (Holcombe)
Mark Gleghorne (East Grinstead)
Michael Hoare (Wimbledon)
Ashley Jackson (East Grinstead)
Iain Lewers (East Grinstead)
Simon Mantell (Reading)
Harry Martin (Beeston)
Barry Middleton (Holcombe)
George Pinner (Beeston)
Phil Roper (Wimbledon)
Dan Shingles (Reading)
Tim Whiteman (Beeston)
Ollie Willars (Beeston)

Four Nations match schedule

Friday 25 April

1700 - England v Argentina
1900 - Belgium v Scotland

Saturday 26 April

1500 - England v Scotland
1700 - Argentina v Belgium

Monday 28 April

0900 - Scotland v Argentina
1100 - Belgium v England

Tuesday 29 April

0900 - 3rd v 4th
1100 - 1st v 2nd

England Hockey Board Media release

Tengku Ahmad: I’m more than just a forward

By S. Ramaguru

National hockey player Tengku Ahmad Tajuddin Abdul Jalil (right) is one of the most experienced players in the team with 221 caps to date. - BERNAMA

KUALA LUMPUR: Forward Tengku Ahmad Tajuddin Abdul Jalil’s goals have dried up but he’s hoping to hit a rich vein of form when Malaysia open their Champions Challenge I campaign against France in Kuantan on Saturday.

The Perlis-born player is the most experienced of the six forwards in the national hockey team and is likely to shoulder the burden of not only scoring field goals but also from penalty corner set pieces.

The other forwards are Mohd Firhaan Ashari, Faizal Saari, Mohd Shahril Saabah, Ismail Abu and Rashid Bahrom.

“I’m very frustrated with myself. I just don’t have a clue as to why I’ve suddenly lost my scoring touch. I’m doing everything else right on the pitch ... it’s just that I haven’t been able to find the net consistently of late,” said the 28-year-old Tengku Ahmad, who has 221 caps to his name.

“But I’m very grateful that the coach (K. Dharmaraj) still has faith in me. I hope to repay him with a good performance in Kuantan.”

In the Champions Challenge I tournament in Kuantan, Malaysia will also have Canada and South Korea for company in Group B while New Zealand, Japan, Poland and Ireland are in Group A.

Tengku Ahmad, whose nickname is Zidane, scored only once in the Sultan Azlan Shah Cup in Ipoh in March and just twice in the recent six-match Test series against China at the National Hockey Stadium in Bukit Jalil.

Tengku Ahmad, however, feels that he should not be judged on his goals alone but on what he can offer to the team, especially with his vast experience.

“With the experience that I have, I can help the younger players get into their strides. In the last few matches, I did a lot of running from midfield and also tracked back to help the defence,” he said.

Malaysia’s best-ever achievement in the Champions Challenge I is a fourth placing (in 2001 and 2012) but Dharmaraj is looking at capitalising on home ground advantage to win the tournament and qualify for the 2016 Champions Trophy in Buenos Aires, Argentina.

Hopefully, Tengku Ahmad will hit a purple patch in Kuantan and help Malaysia join the hockey elite in Buenos Aires.

The Star of Malaysia

Champions Challenge I Starts on Saturday

Both Ireland’s National Hockey Teams will being their Champions Challenge I tournaments this weekend – the women in Scotland and the men in Malaysia. This tournament has vital world ranking points at stake as Ireland continue preparing both teams to qualify for the Olympics just 28 months away – Rio 2016.

Ireland’s men, Green Machine, kick off proceedings this Saturday in Kuantan facing New Zealand. This tournament is made up of 2 pools of four Ireland are in Pool A against New Zealand Poland and Japan. Pool B is comprised of Canada, Korea, Malaysia and France. Where you finish in your pool determines your opposition in the Quarter finals on May 1st from the opposing pool – where winning teams then progress to the semis on May 3rd and Finals on May 4th.

Ireland’s women, the Green Army, start a day later on Sunday 27th facing South Africa, Spain and the USA in Pool B while pool A is made up of Scotland,  Belgium, Korea and India.

Tournament information WOMEN / MEN

Ireland’s Match Schedule.

Saturday 26th April
15.00 Pool A Ireland v New Zealand (m)

Sunday 27 April
12:00 Pool B South Africa v Ireland (w)
17.00 Pool A Ireland v Poland (m)

Monday 28 April
16:00 Pool B Spain v Ireland (w)

Tuesday 29th April
17.00 Pool A Ireland v Japan (m)

Wednesday 30 April
11:30 Pool B USA v Ireland (w)

Thursday 1 May
Quarter Finals (w)
Quarter Finals (m)

Saturday 3 May
Classification Matches / Semi Finals (w)
Classification Matches / Semi Finals (m)

Sunday 4 May
Classification Matches / Finals (w)
Classification Matches / Finals (m)

Irish Hockey Association media release

Scotland provides stage for teams to reach hockey's premier league

The Champions Challenge 1 is both an exciting event and a chance for teams to qualify for a Champions Trophy spot

(Photo: Grant Treeby)

The Hockey Champions Challenge 1 has been held every two years since 2001. While an exciting competition in its own right, the tournament has always held an extra frisson as the winner qualifies for a place at the Champions Trophy.

This year will be the last Champions Challenge 1 as the Hockey World League is replacing it in the hockey calendar, but this year's event, held in Glasgow, will be as exciting and highly-competitive as ever. Adding to the pressure the teams are facing, some of the teams – USA, South Africa, Belgium and Korea – will all be competing in the Rabobank Hockey World Cup to be held 31 May-15 June so, for them, this tournament doubles up as preparation for that event.

The women's competition in Glasgow will feature two top-10 ranked teams in Korea and the USA, while close on their heels will be South Africa, Belgium, India, Spain, Ireland and host nation Scotland. Every team participating will be looking for their first Champions Challenge gold medal, with eyes firmly fixed on a spot at the 2016 Champions Trophy event as well as the chance to claim valuable ranking points. New Zealand is the only country to have won the title twice, first in 2005 and again in 2009, while the USA, South Africa and Korea have each acquired two silver medals. Other countries who have won the tournament include England, Germany, China, Japan and Australia.

The tournament format involves two pools of four teams squaring off with quarter-final crossovers and semi-finals to fill the six-day tournament.

Action gets underway in Glasgow on Sunday 27 April. Both finals will take place on the 4th May. For more information about the Champions Challenge 1 event visit our official tournament event site by clicking here. The event pages will bring you all of the news coming from the event including written match reports, action photos, official match documents, goal scoring statistics, match highlights and much more. The site will also publish any late squad changes, with updated rosters being available ahead of the start of competition.

FIH site

Meet the teams competing in Pool A at Champions Challenge 1

Korea might be favourites, but this pool could be full of surprises

(Photo: Frank Uijlenbroek)

With the start of Champions Challenge 1 just two days away, we take a quick look at the teams who will be participating at the National Hockey Centre in Glasgow. The teams will play in two pools, followed by a quarter-final crossover and a final, which will take place on Sunday 4 May. Here is the low-down on Pool A.

Pool A – Korea, Belgium, India, Scotland

Korea (world ranking 7)

Korea come into the Champions Challenge 1 event in Glasgow as hot tournament favourites, being the highest ranked team in the competition. That being said, they have not had it all their own way over the past 12 months. The side missed out on winning the Asia Cup when they were beaten in the tournament final by lower ranked Japan last September, while an eighth place finish at the Argentina Hockey World League Final at the end of the year was certainly below expectations. They will be fiercely determined to win this event and claim their place back among hockey’s elite at the Champions Trophy in 2016. Korea women have never won a Champions Challenge 1 event, but have come mighty close on two occasions by winning silver both at the 2001 (Randburg, RSA) and 2007 (Baku, AZE) tournament. A gold medal performance in Glasgow would be a welcome boost ahead of their participation in this summer’s Rabobank Hockey World Cup in The Hague, Netherlands. 

Belgium (12)

Belgium is one of the rising superpowers of global hockey. Very much like their male counterparts, the women’s national team – known as the “Red Panthers” –have made massive strides forward in recent years, powering up the world rankings from 27th in 2005 to their current position of 12th. 2012 proved to be something of a landmark year for Belgium’s women thanks to a brilliant performance at the Olympic qualifying event on home soil in Kontich, where they stormed to the title and secured their first ever appearance at an Olympic games. The side finished 11th in that tournament courtesy of a 2-1 classification match victory over fellow Champions Challenge 1 hopefuls USA. Their performances in 2013 provided further evidence that they are a growing force on the world stage, with a fourth place finish at the TriFinance EuroHockey Championships and qualification for this summer’s Rabobank Hockey World Cup in The Hague, Netherlands being their two stand-out achievements. The team, coached by Pascal Kina, could be among the front runners for the title in Glasgow.

India (13)

With an average age of just 21.9 years, India come into the Champions Challenge 1 with a youthful but extremely talented group of players who are more than capable of mixing it with the big guns in Glasgow. The team contains seven members of the India U-21 squad that won bronze at last year’s Ergo Junior World Cup in Mönchengladbach, Germany, with Deep Ekka, Monika, Lily Mayengbam, Poonam Rani, Vandana Katariya, Namita Toppo and Sushila Pukhrambam all being selected by head coach Neil Hawgood. Team captain Ritu Rani (160+ caps), Kirandeep Kaur (130+) and Deepika (110+) are the most experienced members in the squad, while youngsters Navneet Kaur (18) and Neha Goyal (17) – two of five teenagers in the group – will be making their senior tournament debuts for the Eves here in Glasgow. Although India failed to qualify for this summer’s Rabobank Hockey World Cup, a strong showing at the Champions Challenge 1 would be a welcome success ahead of their summer return to Glasgow for the Commonwealth Games.

Scotland (16)

Host nation Scotland may be the lowest ranked team in the Champions Challenge 1, but don’t let that statistic fool you into thinking that they have no chance of success in Glasgow. The team coached by Gordon Shepherd have performed excellently in the last two editions of this event, claiming the bronze medal at the Dublin 2011 competition before finishing fourth in 2012, which also took place in the Irish capital. Scotland also have the advantage of playing at home, and with Commonwealth Games fever currently gripping Glasgow you can be sure that they will have plenty of fans cheering them on from the stands.   Shepherd has named a strong squad for this event, with six players having surpassed the 100 international appearances marker: Vicky Bunce (160+ caps), Ali Bell (110+), Catriona Ralph (140+), Ailsa Wyllie (120+), Nikki Kidd (120+) and 34 year old team captain Linda Clement (210+). Star defender Emily Maguire has not yet reached that landmark, although she does have an Olympic bronze medal in her trophy cabinet thanks to her terrific displays for Great Britain at the London 2012 Games.


Year Location Placing

2001 Randburg (RSA) 1. ENG 2. KOR 3. IND 4. RSA 5. USA 6. RUS
2003 Catania (ITA) 1. GER 2. ESP 3. JPN 4. NZL 5. USA 6. ITA
2005 Virginia Beach (USA) 1. NZL 2. RSA 3. JPN 4. ENG 5. USA 6. ESP
2007 Baku (AZE) 1. CHN 2. KOR 3. ENG 4. USA 5. NZL 6. AZE
2009 Cape Town (RSA) 1. NZL 2. RSA 3. JPN 4. ESP 5. ITA 6. CHI 7. AZE
2011 Dublin (IRL) 1. JPN 2. USA 3. SCO 4. ESP 5. RSA 6. IRL 7. IND 8. AZE
2012 Dublin (IRL) 1. AUS 2. USA 3. IRL 4. SCO 5. BEL 6. RSA 7. IND 8. WAL

For more information about the Champions Challenge 1 visit our official tournament event sites by clicking here. The event page will bring you all of the news coming from the event including written match reports, action photos, official match documents, goal scoring statistics, match highlights and much more. The site will also publish any late squad changes, with updated rosters being available ahead of the start of competition.

FIH site

Meet the teams competing in Pool B at Champions Challenge 1

South Africa and the USA favourites, but Ireland and Spain are unknown quantities

(Photo: Frank Uijlenbroek)

With the start of Champions Challenge 1 just two days away, we take a quick look at the teams who will be participating at the National Hockey Centre in Glasgow. The teams will play in two pools, followed by a quarter-final crossover and a final, which will take place on Sunday 4 May. Here is the low-down on Pool B.

Pool B – United States, South Africa, Spain, Ireland

United States (world ranking 10)

USA have a strong reputation in the Champions Challenge 1, having claimed the silver medal at the two most recent editions of the competition. Japan and Australia took the respective gold medals in the 2011 and 2012 events, but they will be hoping to make it third time lucky at the 2014 tournament in Glasgow. They have produced some fine form in coming into this competition, having recently recorded a 4-0 series win against North American neighbours Canada. Their squad is packed full of experience. Eight players have represented the USA senior side over 100 times, with ace midfielder Rachel Dawson and team captain Lauren Crandall having also surpassed the 200 cap mark. Dawson, defender Katie Reinprecht and attacking midfielder Kathleen Sharkey are all world class talents, a fact proven by the trio’s inclusion in the 2013 Pan American Elite Team, which recognises the finest players in the Pan Am region. The team is coached by Englishman Craig Parnham, with former Dutch international Janneke Schopman joining the staff in the role of assistant coach. Schopman, a double Olympic medallist, brings masses of world level experience to the table, being able to pass on her knowledge to a group that is aiming to achieve big things both here in Glasgow and at this summer’s Rabobank Hockey World Cup in The Hague, Netherlands.

South Africa (11)

The USA may well be considered favourites to top Pool A, but South Africa – who sit just one ranking place below the Americans – are expected to push them all the way in Glasgow. Head coach Giles Bonnet has made his title intentions clear by naming a squad that contains no fewer than 13 players who have made over 100 senior appearances for their country, ensuring that the African champions are more than capable of mixing it with the best teams at this tournament. That being said, the team will have to do it without two key players, with world record goal-scorer Pietie Coetzee and midfielder Jade Mayne both absent through injury. The Champions Challenge 1 in Glasgow is the first of three major international tournaments on European soil for South Africa, with the Rabobank Hockey World Cup (The Hague, NED) and the Commonwealth Games (Glasgow, SCO) also on the horizon.

Spain (14)

Spain have been going through something of a transitional phase recently, with head coach Adrian Lock very much looking to the future following their failure to qualify for the London 2012 Olympic Games. The English born tactician has started spent the first 12 months of his reign introducing a large number of talented youngsters to the rigours of senior international hockey. The fresh faced team managed to grab a fifth place finish at the TriFinance EuroHockey Championships, suggesting that this inexperienced but gifted group is making big strides in the right direction. Lock will be looking for further improvement at the Champions Challenge 1, a tournament where they have achieved fourth place finishes on two occasions (2009 in Cape Town, South Africa & 2011 in Dublin, Ireland).

Ireland (15)

Despite being the second lowest ranked team in the tournament, Ireland are certainly not a side to be taken lightly. They have competed in the last two editions of the Champions Challenge 1, finishing 6th at the 2011 event in Dublin before claiming the bronze medal in 2012, which also took place in the Irish capital. They have improved massively in recent years and will be determined to continue that progression in Glasgow. Earlier this year, head coach Darren Smith took a largely experimental side to Terrassa for a training camp and four matches against Spain. It proved to a very successful exercise, with Ireland winning the series against their marginally higher ranked opponents by two games to one. Many of the players involved in that series victory have been given their chance to shine in the Champions Challenge 1 tournament, including 18 year old goalkeeper Ayeisha O’Flynn and Emily Beatty, 20. These young guns have plenty of experienced players to look up to, with Michelle Harvey (120+ caps), Cliodhna Sargent (130+), Shirley McCay (150+) and Audrey O’Flynn (100+) all having reached the 100 cap landmark.


Year Location Placing

2001 Randburg (RSA) 1. ENG 2. KOR 3. IND 4. RSA 5. USA 6. RUS
2003 Catania (ITA) 1. GER 2. ESP 3. JPN 4. NZL 5. USA 6. ITA
2005 Virginia Beach (USA) 1. NZL 2. RSA 3. JPN 4. ENG 5. USA 6. ESP
2007 Baku (AZE) 1. CHN 2. KOR 3. ENG 4. USA 5. NZL 6. AZE
2009 Cape Town (RSA) 1. NZL 2. RSA 3. JPN 4. ESP 5. ITA 6. CHI 7. AZE
2011 Dublin (IRL) 1. JPN 2. USA 3. SCO 4. ESP 5. RSA 6. IRL 7. IND 8. AZE
2012 Dublin (IRL) 1. AUS 2. USA 3. IRL 4. SCO 5. BEL 6. RSA 7. IND 8. WAL

For more information about the Champions Challenge 1 visit our official tournament event sites by clicking here. The event page will bring you all of the news coming from the event including written match reports, action photos, official match documents, goal scoring statistics, match highlights and much more. The site will also publish any late squad changes, with updated rosters being available ahead of the start of competition.

FIH site

SECR, Maharashtra XI in All India hockey semis

Suhas Nayse

NAGPUR: South East Central Railway (SECR) Nagpur and Maharashtra XI defeated their respective rivals to storm into the semifinals of the 1st All India VHA-Nagpur Gold Cup Hockey tournament at the VHA ground on Wednesday.

The six-day tourney is being organized by the Vidarbha Hockey Association and is being held under the aegis of Hockey India.

In the first quarterfinal of the day, SECR Nagpur thrashed Rajnandgaon 6-2. At the half time the city railmen were leading by 2-1.

For SECR, Irshad Mirza (2nd, 61st), Sheikh Imran (31st PC), Shadab Khan (43rd), Karan Kushwaha (57th, 69th) scored while Naveen Tirkey (4th) and Rajesh Nimbalkar (44th) reduced the margin for Rajnandgaon.

In the second quarterfinal, Maharashtra XI rallied back to beat South Central Railway, Secundrabad 5-4 in an edge-of-the-seat encounter. At the lemon break, both the teams were locked at 2-2.

For Maharashtra XI, Rajendra Pawar (10th), Narad Bahadur (17th), Sadiq Sheikh (56th, PC) and Navneet Swarankar (61st, 69th) scored a goal each. Mayank James (7th, 34th) and MG Punacha (41st PC, 47th) fought hard for SC Railway, Secundrabad.

Today's matches (quarterfinals)

Chennai XI vs SAI, Sundergarh at 2.30 pm

2nd Quarterfinal: Pomposh, Rourkela vs Dhyanchand Hockey Academy, Nagpur at 4 pm.

The Times of India

We have loads of self-belief, says Indian fullback Rupinder Pal Singh

s2h team

The recent exposure tour of the Netherlands was a handy examination for the Indian team ahead of the 2014 World Cup, which will be held in The Hague from May 31 to June 15. And one man who is richer with the Dutch experience is burly drag-flicker is Rupinder Pal Singh. “Overall, the trip was a big learning curve – we fought hard in all the matches and the experience will definitely stand us in good stead for the World Cup,” he says in an exclusive interview.

The 23-year-old defender was one of the finds of the Netherlands tour, scoring five goals. The muscular fullback equalized for India against Belgium, a game which the former lost 1-2. Rupinder also gave India an early game against the much-fancied Netherlands in their final practice before the Dutch pulled up their socks to win 2-1.

The national team has shown the signs of not just staying ‘competitive’ against top teams, but also beating them. The memories of India beating Olympic champions Germany at the 2014 Hockey World League Final in New Delhi are still fresh. Rupinder feels that India would have to be mentally ‘strong’ while playing against top teams like Netherlands, Australia and Germany. “I don’t think there is any skill gap – it has more to do with our mental make-up – we have to be strong mentally and I’m sure we can beat top teams. Most of your boys are in the 22-23 age bracket and once they gain more experience, I have no doubt that Indian hockey will go places,” he remarks.

The Faridkot lad, who honed his hockey skills in his formative years at the Chandigarh Hockey Academy, reckons the team is teeming with self-belief. “This team have loads of self-belief – all the boys are a confident lot and back themselves to match the best in the business,” he says with a bullish tone.

How does he assess India’s World Cup chances? “Look, all the participating teams are going into the World Cup thinking they will do the best to win it, but it is only one team that will eventually win. Obviously, we will be leaving no stone unturned to live up to the expectations of our fans, but on a personal level I think a top-six finish will be a good achievement for us. Just keeping our fingers crossed,” the Indian Overseas Bank (IOB) employee harbours hope.

The Terry Walsh-coached India team have the luxury of four top-notch drag-flickers – Vokkaliga Raghunath, Sandeep Singh, Gurjinder Singh besides Rupinder – something not many international teams have. “You are right, we have a potent group of drag-flickers. Sandeep is one of the world’s best drag-flickers, while Raghunath is an extremely handy option – Gurjinder is also a bright prospect. If we get our act together, India will hugely benefit in PC routines, says the six-foot four-inch player.

Rupinder, who made his senior international debut in the 2010 Sultan Azlan Shah Cup Hockey Tournament, is more than happy to raise the performance bar all the time. “I don’t easily get satisfied. Complacency is the last thing in my mind. I want to pick new tricks of the trade and follow what my coaches tell me to do and try to implement them on the pitch,” the Delhi Waveriders player says matter-of-factly.

The big man from Punjab has fond memories of the 2011 Sultan Azlan Shah Cup Hockey Tournament where he was the top-scorer, which included a sizzling hat-trick against Great Britain. “I have fond memories of the 2011 edition a year after my senior debut in the same tournament. I have special memories of my hat-trick against Great Britain” recalls the youngster, who was a standby in the 2010 Commonwealth and 2010 Asian Games squads.

Nicknamed ‘Bobby’, Rupinder loves to gorge on European food. “The Dutch trip gave me an opportunity to try European food. I have a penchant for European food as it is healthy and less oily,” says naughtily as he signs off.


Naveed eager to organise 3-Nation Hockey Tournament

LAHORE - Former Pakistan hockey Olympian and coach Naveed Alam has said that he has been endeavouring to invite Pakistan and India teams to Bangladesh to feature in the 3-Nation Hockey Tournament which will prove helpful in promoting hockey in Asian region.

Talking to the reporters here Wednesday, Naveed said: “Bangladesh Hockey Federation (BHF) has allowed me to hold this 3-Nation Hockey Tournament therefore I am in contact with Pakistan and Indian hockey federations to make his proposal viable.” Lamenting on the decline of Pakistan hockey, the ex-Olympian said: “Hockey is the national game of Pakistan but unfortunately, the Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF) has to beg for funds from the government and in case of less or no grant, the game suffers a lot.”

He added that he had been endeavoring to provide maximum opportunities to Pakistani players at international level without getting any good post in the PHF.

“I can see good changes in the PHF and more positive modifications are in line which will prove very beneficial for the revival of hockey in the country. Shahnaz Shaikh and Islahuddin have capabilities to change the fortunes of Pakistan hockey and if they are given freehand, they can help the country in regaining its past hockey glory,” Naveed concluded.

The Nation

Ramesh Patel Shield to recognise top performers

Hockey New Zealand delivers three High Performance tournaments each year – U21, U18 and the National Hockey League.

These are competed for by the eight regions – Northland, North Harbour, Auckland, Midlands, Central, Capital, Canterbury and Southern.

These tournaments are always competitive and produce some great hockey. However there are instances where games in the second half of each week become less important and therefore the intensity and passion can be absent from these games.

To ensure all games at each tournament remain competitive and for the result of this match to become relevant, HNZ has created the Ramesh Patel Shield to recognise the best performed region over the three High Performance Tournaments.

Ramesh is one of our 1976 Gold medalists and a long serving CEO of Hockey New Zealand. Ramesh is a loyal servant and has given his time and energy to ensure the growth and success of the sport in New Zealand and across the world. His is a worthy name for this shield.

The premise of the shield is thus – each region will be allocated points as per normal after each game at the tournament:

Win in Regulation Time  4 points 
Win after Penalty Shootout 2 points
Loss after Penalty Shootout 1 point
Loss in Regulation Time 0 points
Teams finishing in Top 4 1 Bonus Point
Tournament Winners 1 Extra Bonus Point 

At the completion of the NHL, each regions points tallies will be counted and the region with the highest number of points will be awarded the Ramesh Patel Shield as the best performed region across all High Performance tournaments each year.

If there is a tie for the number of points, this will be broken by the number of tournaments won. If there is still a tie, the region who finished highest across both NHL competitions will be the winner.

If there still remains a tie, the results between each region will be taken into account with the results at NHL given precedence in the case of equal results across other tournaments. If there still remains a tie, the shield will be shared.










































North Harbour

































If there remains equality between only two teams they will be ranked according to:
i.    Their respective number of tournaments won
ii.    Combined points at NHL tournament (Men and Women)
iii.    Results between each region across all tournaments
iv.    Results between each region at NHL (Men and Women)
v.    If there still remains equality, the shield will be shared.

If there remains equality between three or more teams, these teams will be ranked according to:
i.    Their respective number of tournaments won
ii.    Combined points at NHL tournament (Men and Women)
iii.    Results between affected regions across all tournaments
iv.    Results between affected regions at NHL (Men and Women)
v.    If there still remains equality, the shield will be shared.

Hockey New Zealand Media release

Investec Women’s KO Finals Weekend

Investec medals

This weekend sees the climax of the Women’s domestic season with the Investec Women’s Knockout Finals at Highfields Hockey Centre, Nottingham.

The event features the Investec Women’s Cup, Trophy & Vase and Women’s 2nd XI Cup & Plate on Saturday, with the Investec Women’s Over 35s Cup & Trophy and Women’s Over 45s Cup & Plate on Sunday, and you can skip straight to the weekend's schedule here.

Women's Second XI Plate Final
Saturday begins with the Women’s Second XI Plate Final, featuring two teams who have never reached the final of a Second XI competition before with Chelmsford taking on London Wayfarers. Chelmsford will be hoping to finish their season on a high, having been relegated from the East Premier Division. In contrast, London Wayfarers have had an extremely successful season finishing second in Surrey Division One and gaining promotion to the Premier Division.

Women's Vase Final
The Women’s Vase Final is the first of the First XI finals with Eastbourne taking on Winchester in an all south affair. The teams on show have had a successful season with Eastbourne being crowned champions of the Sussex Premier Division, and Winchester coming second in Hampshire Division One. Neither side has reached the final of this competition previously, but Winchester will look to follow in the footsteps of their Men’s team who won the Men’s Vase competition last season.

Women's Trophy Final
Henley return to the final of this competition for the second year running looking to defend the trophy they won last season. They come up against a Didsbury Greys team who finished third in North Division One and will hope to be the first Northern team to lift this trophy since 2001.

Women's Cup Final
Hampstead & Westminster become the first team from outside of the National League to reach the Cup Final and will have a mammoth task as they come up against newly crowned Investec Women’s Premier League Champions Surbiton. The two clubs actually met in last season’s NOW: Pensions Men’s Cup Final, with Surbiton coming out winners. Hampstead & Westminster’s incredible achievement of reaching the final came after they beat Surbiton’s league counterparts University of Birmingham, which will give them hope going into the game. Surbiton will be looking to add the cup to their league title for the very first time, having lost in the final twice in the last two years.

Women's Second XI Cup Final
Saturday ends with the Women’s Second XI Cup Final as Old Loughtonians take on Bowdon. Bowdon will look to replicate the success of their First XI at this venue last year when they were victorious in the Women’s Cup. Old Loughtonians come into the final on the back of a second place finish in East Division One South. Both teams will take confidence into the game having won this competition once before, with Old Loughtonians in 2006 and Bowdon more recently in 2009.

Women's Masters O45s Plate Final
Sunday starts with the inaugural Women’s O45s Plate Final, which will see Canterbury in their first of two masters finals over the course of the day, take on Kingston upon Hull who take centre stage in their first ever Women’s Masters National Final.

Investec Women's Masters O35s Plate Final
Next up is the Masters O35s Plate Final with Woking, another team who play their first of two masters’ finals in the day, taking on Sevenoaks. Both teams are making their debut in a final at this age group.

Investec Women's Masters O35s Cup Final
Canterbury return to the Investec Women’s Masters O35s Cup Final hoping to be crowned champions for the third year running. They come up against a Cambridge City side looking for revenge after losing out to Canterbury in last season’s Semi Final. Cambridge City have never reached the final at this age group, but they do have plenty of Masters Finals experience having reached the O40s many times in recent years, finishing runners up in 2007.

Women's Masters O45s Cup Final
The last match of the day sees Sutton Coldfield take on Woking in the first ever Women’s O45s Cup Final. Both teams have been great supporters of master’s competitions over the years and will take great pride in reaching the first national final at this age group.

Match Schedule

Saturday 26 April

09:30 Women’s 2nd XI Plate Final: Chelmsford v London Wayfarers
11:30 Investec Women’s Vase Final: Eastbourne v Winchester
13:30 Investec Women’s Trophy Final: Didsbury Greys v Henley
15:30 Investec Women’s Cup Final: Surbiton v Hampstead & Westminster
17:30 Women’s 2nd XI Cup Final: Old Loughtonians v Bowdon

Sunday 27 April

10:00 Women’s O45s Plate Final: Kingston upon Hull v Canterbury
12:00 Investec Women’s O35s Trophy Final: Woking v Sevenoaks
14:00 Investec Women’s O35s Cup Final: Canterbury v Cambridge City
16:00 Women’s O45s Cup Final: Sutton Coldfield v Woking

England Hockey Board Media release

Region 7 Clubs Qualify for 2014 US National Club Championship

The Gaels Field Hockey Club was host to 11 umpires, 15 college coaches, 17 teams, 43 matches, more than 360 athletes and 500 plus spectators at the Region 7 Regional Club Championships during a beautiful Easter weekend at Blandair Regional Parks’ three turf pitches in Columbia, Md. Region 7 is composed of Maryland, Delaware and the District of Columbia, and to date, has hosted the largest Regional Club Championship.

“It was a great two days of field hockey in Region 7,” said Joan Johnson, Head coach of The Gaels, U19 Winners, and tournament director. “With so many college coaches present and such a high caliber of play, more and more players from Region 7 will be recognized and be moving on to the college level representing our Region. It was like a mini Festival for our region with 17 teams.”

The weekend started Friday with pool play based on club rankings for all teams and concluded Saturday afternoon with the champions being crowned. With eight U16 teams in attendance, SPark went undefeated at 5-0-1 to take home the championship over Freedom Hky in the final game. SPark’s goalkeeper Noelle Frost turned in a stellar weekend in goal, allowing only two goals in six games while her team scored a total of 22 goals. Both SPark and Freedom have qualified for NCCs. The consolation game had a young Gaels team facing a strong Capital Pegasus team who edged out The Gaels 2-1, but The Gaels hold out hope for qualifying for the NCC by gaining entry as an at large team which will be selected by club rankings of those clubs that participated in a RCC.

The U19 division, composed of 9 teams, had Shore and Freedom as the top seeds in each pool after pool play with The Gaels and Capital Pegasus in 2nd place of their pools. The tournament played out to six places with The Gaels finishing number one and Capital Pegasus as number two. Both teams are advancing to the NCC. The consolation and placement games had the following finish, in order: 3rd - Freedom, 4th - Shore, 5th - H2O and 6th - Washington Wolves. Freedom stands the best shot at receiving an at large bid in the U19 division based on their ranking and placement.  Standouts for the U19 division included SParks’ Maeve Dougherty and Regan Leavitt, H2O’s Linnea Gonzales and Sydney and Sabrina Rhodes, Freedom’s Kelly Johnson in goal, Shores’ Sophie Strome in goal and the Gaels’ Erin Shanahan and Emily Lemanski.

Many teams from this Region will continue the competition within the region with the Junior Premier Outdoor League which begins May 10, including all 4 of the teams that have qualified for NCCs.

Congratulations to the following coaches and athletes for qualifying for the 2014 National Club Championship!

1st - U16 SPark FH

Coaches: Jesse Larson, Joe Borneman, Ashley Dalisera

Athetes: Emily Thomas, Stephanie Shanahan, Megan Borneman, Megan Brannen, Dena Lipschitz, Ena Belch, Allison Pollak, Marissa Poliks, Conner Allen, Elizabeth Schepens, Kayley Williams, Regina Openshaw, Ashley Leverrett, Noelle Frost, Madelyn Mcateer, Madelyn Smith

2nd - U16 Freedom HKY

Coaches: Jonathan Geerts, Janessa Pope, Sarah Dawson

Athletes: Megan March, Zoe Summa, Cecile Michon, Abigail Carpenter, Ashley Bates, Peyton Taylor, Amanda Chapin, Sylvia Miller, Annette Jarosz, Marissa Penn, Meghan McGovern, Marybeth Nemecek, Emma Walsh, Delaney Treacy, Alyssa Williams, Kyler Greenwalt, Abby Williams, Hannah Martin, Jillian Ulery, Emerson Krause, Willow Oh, Maggie Ellington, Sydney Bruno, Megan Nemecek

1st - U19 The Gaels

Coaches: Kelly Shanahan, Joan Johnson, Joseph Downey, Terry Edmondson, Stephen Kidd, Teresa Lawn

Athletes: Erin Shanahan, Logan Edmondson, Andi Weinberg, Sydney Behling, Katherine Audino, Karly Campbell, Emily Lemanski, Amber Singer, Mackenzie Parks, Courtney Johnson, Alyssa O'Toole, Megan Eisenhardt, Kallie Butts, Kayla Butts, Ashleigh Myers, Blaine Donnelly, Tatiana Bodnar

2nd - U19 Capitol Pegasus

Coaches: Amanda Saber, Patrick Howley, Randall Buffenbarger, Lloyd Conyers

Athletes: Allison Buffenbarger, Natalie Faust, Rachel Cooke, Caroline Freeman, Megan Rossi, Jamie Wright, Landon Warren, Addie Clark, Kathryn O'Loughlin, Katie Bergamesca, Alicia Holz, Haley Jolly, Marisa Morakis, Elizabeth Wood, Meg Stuart, Lauren Kaup, Kendall Ballard, Meredith Kuser, Julia Lee, Ruby Taylor, Elizabeth Naka, Brooke Steinhoff, Amy Holm, Maggie Lippens

USFHA media release

Longstreth Sporting Goods Announces USA Field Hockey Sponsorship

Preeminent Hockey Retailer signs long-term sponsorship agreement with USA Field Hockey

Longstreth Sporting Goods proudly announces a long-term sponsorship agreement with USA Field Hockey. Longstreth has a long history of dedication and commitment to the game of field hockey and support for young female athletes, and is one of the original corporate partners to USA Field Hockey. This partnership will benefit the development and future of field hockey within the United States.

Founded by Barbara Longstreth, a pioneer in the sport of Field Hockey, Longstreth has a mission to support and grow the sport of field hockey by providing the best gear available for athletes at all levels. Longstreth has consistently been a source for field hockey players – both beginners and elite – for equipment, uniforms, and expert advice. Longstreth’s hockey professionals, all experienced players, work closely with top international and domestic vendors to help develop equipment specifically designed for female athletes. Year after year, Longstreth offers the best of the best in sticks, bags, and goalkeeper equipment to the United States marketplace.

Longstreth looks forward to working with USA Field Hockey. “We are extremely pleased to renew our support for USA Field Hockey, and to make this long term commitment,” says Alli Lokey, Field Hockey Manager at Longstreth. “The National Team has great momentum under new coach Craig Parnham heading into the World Cup, and we are excited about the impact USA Hockey is having at the Club and grass roots levels in building the sport. This partnership will also allow us to work closely in supporting many of the national team players on an individual basis. We look forward to continuing to build the sport of field hockey.”

Longstreth currently supports many of the players on the National Team, and has sponsorship agreements with National Team players such as Paige Selenski, Katie Reinprecht, Lauren Crandall and Shannon Taylor. These players generally utilize equipment from Longstreth’s core internationally renowned hockey brands: TK Hockey of Germany, Gryphon Hockey of Australia, Slazenger Hockey of England and Ritual Hockey of Australia.

Longstreth Sporting Goods has been dedicated for more than 30 years to encouraging and developing women’s sports for young female athletes. While specializing in Field Hockey, Lacrosse, and Fastpitch Softball, Longstreth can also outfit almost any team or athlete. Located approximately 30 miles northwest of Philadelphia, PA, Longstreth supplies uniforms, equipment, footwear, and training gear for female athletes across the United States. Visit www.longstreth.com to see the full selection of products.

USFHA media release

Where will you be watching the Rabobank Hockey World Cup?

The Rabobank Hockey World Cup will reach households all over the globe thanks to an innovative mix of old and new technology.

Where will you be watching the Rabobank Hockey World Cup this summer? With teams from all five continents and 15 nations represented, interest in the event is at an unprecedented level. Global broadcasters will hit all five continents, while digital stream is set to hit 192 countries through You Tube. Through both traditional broadcasting and social media, this year's event is going to be the most highly-accessible hockey event of all time.

And to ensure that the millions of hockey fans around the world are treated to the best spectating experience possible, the use of innovations such as Spidercam and ball-tracking technology has been introduced to enhance HD coverage and analysis. This means that not only can viewers watch every second of action, but the quality of the production will be among the best that hockey fans will have ever experienced.

Leading the way in screening hockey straight into millions of homes is ABC, who will broadcast matches and prime-time highlights throughout Australia, while TEN Sports will show 38 games across India, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka. Hockey fans across South Africa and sub-Saharan Africa can watch all the games thanks to Supersport HD; Sky Sports will be broadcasting games for England and New Zealand; The Astro Network will show 46 games live throughout Malaysia and Singapore and ESPN3 will hit 92 million households in the USA.

The Netherlands, central Europe and South America will also have access to plenty of hockey coverage, including live matches, recorded games and match highlights.

And it is not just through the medium of television that today's hockey fan can stay in touch with the action. YouTube live streaming, on-demand replays, post-game match highlights, fun player features and goal of the day will all be available through Facebook, YouTube, Instagram and Twitter. In addition, the Hockey World Cup mobile app means fans can stay up-to-date with tournament updates wherever they are in the world.

FIH site

Grand Masters show how it is done

Hockey's past heroes return to world stage in The Hague

There are Masters and then there are Grand Masters, and this summer, in The Hague, hockey fans will be able to see some of the great names from hockey from almost four decades ago still strutting their stuff on the astroturf during the Masters Hockey World Cup. The Masters event is one of the side events that is running at the same time as the Rabobank World Cup.

Over 60s (Grand Masters) Hockey started in the Netherlands in 1988, largely on an informal basis, through friendships formed from years on the hockey field. In the early 90s, a couple of international matches were played between The Netherlands, Belgium and France. In February 1995, a tournament for over 60s was held in Lille, France, with players from the Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, France and England.

The first World Cup tournament took place in Athens in 2004, with Scotland and Italy among the new teams to join the movement. Meanwhile in Australia, veterans hockey was big news with all states and territories within the Commonwealth of Australia playing in an annual tournament in various age divisions. Since then there have been regular tournaments and test events between teams of various veteran categories between Europe and Australia. A Japanese team also toured the Netherlands in 2005.

The formalisation of Grand Masters Hockey began after the 1998 Utrecht World Cup. A subsequent meeting in 2002 in Kuala Lumpur at the 2002 Grand Masters World Cup, resulted in the formation of the World Grand Masters Association (WGMA). A strategic plan was developed between the members of the WGMA Executive Board aiming to provide a structure for international veterans over 60s hockey. It was decided to seek recognition of WGMA by FIH which would enable them to develop, assist and promote Veterans Hockey in age categories over 60s, 65s and later the over 70s. This recognition by the sport's governing body was achieved in 2006.

In September 2006, the Grand Masters World Cup in Leverkusen, Germany, ran parallel to the main World Cup tournament in Mönchengladbach. 12 teams participated in over 60s, and 8 teams in the over 65s in a mixture of national and tournament trophy events. Since then, the Grand Masters Hockey has become a regular fixture, attracting a growing number of teams and nationalities. 

More than 74 teams will be competing in the 2014 Masters World Cup in a range of age groups. These teams are from countries as diverse as Egypt, Austria and Ghana, and are ample evidence that hockey can become a lifelong passion. The Masters World Cup will be held in The Hague, 3-13 June.

FIH site

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