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News 02 April 2014

All the news for Wednesday 2 April 2014

Revington tipped as national hockey team consultant

By Aftar Singh

Former chief coach Paul Revington (centre) seen here among the coaching staff of the national hockey team during the Sultan Azlan Shah Cup two weeks ago. - Filepic

KUALA LUMPUR: Paul Revington’s contract as national hockey chief coach will end by the middle of this month, but he will probably still serve with the national team until October.

New national chief coach K. Dharmaraj is keen to have Revington continue as a consultant and the South African is expected to be with the team until the Asian Games in Incheon from Sept 19-Oct 4.

“We need a consultant to help improve the team’s performance in tournaments. I believe Revington is the best person for the job.

“He has a vast experience in coaching and furthermore he has been coaching the players since September 2012,” said Dharmaraj.

Revingon has worked with other national sides as well. He was the South African national coach from 2004 to 2007 and Ireland from 2008 to 2012.

Revington was hired in September 2012, but he quit the team in January this year citing personal reasons.

As he still had three months of his contract to serve, Revington has continued working as a coach for the national side.

Dharmaraj, who guided the national juniors to finish a creditable fourth in the Junior World Cup in New Delhi last December, was chosen to replace Revington as soon as the resignation was announced.

While the forty-year-old Revington expressed interested in being a consultant for the team until the Asian Games, he will have to complete his current contract first.

“I need to discuss it with the NSC (National Sports Council) and also my wife,” said Revington, the father of one-month-old twins.

Revington’s infants, who are here with him, don’t have their passports yet.

“It will take a few months before my twins will be able to travel to South Africa,” said Revington.

The Star of Malaysia

Insp Kelvinder keen to play for country again

By Aftar Singh

Ex-national hockey player is now an inspector in the Royal Malaysian Police.

KUALA LUMPUR: Former hockey international Kelvinder Singh is proud to finally serve as a police inspector, and soon he may make a return to the national side.

Kelvinder, who was named the best player in the 2005 Junior World Cup in Rotterdam, started his first day on the job at the Brickfields police station on Tuesday.

The Kuala Lumpur-born midfielder, who underwent nine months of training at the Police Training Centre here last year, will begin his career in the crime department.

The 29-year-old player, who has donned the national colours 150 times since 2006, is keen to return to national duty on the hockey field.

“I am still keen to play hockey for the national team but I need to get the approval of the Royal Malaysian Police first.

“Although I have turned 29, I believe I can still play well,” said Kelvinder, who last played for Malaysia in 2011.

National chief coach K. Dharmaraj is keen to have Kelvinder in the training squad because of his vast experience but Kelvinder will also need to get the approval of the Malaysian Hockey Confederation and the National Sports Council before joining training.

Kelvinder, who obtained a degree in Sports Science from Universiti Malaya in 2012, currently plays with the KL Hockey Club.

His younger brother Harvinder, a former national player, is pursuing his accountancy degree at Universiti Putra Malaysia. Harvinder quit the team in February to focus on his internship at accounting firm Ernst & Young.

The Star of Malaysia

PHF eyes Asian Games title to book Olympics berth

ISLAMABAD - Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF) president Chaudhry Akhtar Rasool said Pakistan are looking to defend their Asian Games title to guarantee an automatic berth in the Olympics and avoid qualifiers for the mega event.

Talking to The Nation on Tuesday Akhtar said with the prayers of millions of Pakistanis he had recovered after spending one month in hospital. “I was very serious and spend several days in ICU but now I am feeling much better and God has given me new lease of life to put Pakistan hockey on right track.”

He said Asian Games always remained top most priority of the federation though lack of funds had hampered Pakistan’ preparations. “I am quite hopeful we would soon get Rs100 million announced by Punjab Chief Minister Mian Shahbaz Sharif. The Punjab government had released the amount and it is now lying with Pakistan Sports Board (PSB). We would meet PSB in a day or two and quite sure that the promised amount would be issued to federation. We would also hold a meeting with Punjab Sports Minister Rana Mashud in next couple of days and discuss in detail problems faced by the federation and their solution.”

About non-participation in Sultan Azlan Shah Cup he said it was an event where we wanted to give chance to our youngsters and were not relying heavily on it for our preparation. He said the PHF took on board ex-Olympians and other hockey related persons and all of them suggested that due to financial crunch and non-availability of funds, it would be far better to skip the event and we made the decision of not participating in Sultan Azlan Shah Cup with consensus and I defend that decision as it was in the best interest of the team and country.

He said the PHF is giving top priority on domestic structure. “We have already organised event at domestic level and now working on organising All-Pakistan Hockey Championship very soon. We had convened executive body meeting on 10th of this month where we would decide about conducting of camp for Asia Cup, selection committee both for senior and junior teams and other important issues would be discussed in detail during the meeting. “I am confident we would decide all the important issues during the meeting and it would also be decided when and where to hold Asian Games camp,” he added.

“We are very thankful to Olympians who had joined hands with the federation for single cause and that is to promote Pakistan hockey and take it back to the old glory days. It is my humble request to all the past greats to shun differences for the sake of the country and let us work jointly on that noble cause. Nation expects a lot from us and we had to deliver and as we are carrying the hopes of entire nation, we can’t afford to take this issue of grave importance lightly. I am very serious about the future of Pakistan hockey and with the grace of God we would reach new heights soon,” Akhtar concluded.

The Nation

Mixed fortunes for Sindh teams in hockey

KARACHI: Sindh Colour crushed Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (K-P) 4-0 in the 28th National Women Hockey Championship Pool A match in Karachi on Tuesday, registering their first victory of the tournament.

Sanam scored the opening goal in the fifth minute of the match, while Nain Tara doubled the lead five minutes later. Sumaiya then scored one in the 45th minute whereas Bushra sealed the victory for Sindh Colours in the 56th minute.

Sindh Colour stand third in Pool A after playing four matches, while K-P have failed to win any match in the tournament so far.

In Pool B match, Balochistan defeated Sindh White 2-0. Both teams played a goalless first-half, but Nasreen scored the opening goal in the 43rd minute and Fatima secured her team’s first win of the event in the 59th minute.

Currently Wapda is leading Pool A with 12 points while Pakistan Railways are at the top in Pool B.

The Express Tribune

Hockey girls ready for Euro challenge

Gagan K. Teja

Patiala - Having stayed out of international action for six months, the Indian women’s hockey team is all set to test its skills at the Championships Challenge, their first international tournament of the year.

The team has a packed schedule as it will play a three-match series in Ireland and will then head to Scotland for the Champions Challenge. They will also be seen in action in the Commonwealth Games.

However, the most crucial tournament of the year will be the Asian Games, which holds a ticket to the Olympics. It will be interesting to see whether the team will be able to end their over 30-year absence from the Olympics.

Speaking to The Tribune, chief coach Neil Hawgood said it was a little disappointing that the team could not play any tournament abroad for six months. “But I am pretty satisfied with their performance and am sure they will soon find their form.”

Expressing his satisfaction with the steady progress the women have made in the past two years, Hawgood said they have already made their presence felt by winning a historic bronze at the junior women’s World Cup and finishing second in the Asian Champions Trophy in Japan last year.

This, he said, has certainly pumped up their morale. “I have been attached with the team for about two years now and in that time there has been a lot of improvement,” he said. “I am sure it is going to improve in the coming months since we have some very important tournaments lined up for the year.”

The players are equally hopeful of a good show, considering their improved form. Captain Ritu Rani said the team was working really hard to remove its flaws ahead of the forthcoming tournaments. “There has been improvement in the penalty-corner conversions and we are hopeful of a good show,” she said.

The Tribune

SAI rides big on Sandeep’s hat-trick

At this level, to guess the topper of each Group in the ongoing Hockey India-junior National men’s championship isn’t going to be a tough task, after all.

Punjab (Pool ‘A’), Odisha (‘B’), Haryana (‘C’) and Sports Authority of India (‘D’) are the likely candidates to qualify for the knockout (semifinals).

On Tuesday, two of the four teams scripted victories to stay on course for a last-four clash.

SAI, thanks to a hat-trick by Sandeep Kumar, posted a 7-1 win over Chhattisgarh.

Odisha, looking to clinch its first title from three finals, defeated Himachal Pradesh 2-1.

Defending champion Punjab will clash with a tricky opponent in Tamil Nadu on Wednesday.

The Tamil Nadu camp feels if it can prevent Punjab from scoring in the first half-hour or so, it can definitely fancy its chances.

The results:

Group B: Odisha 2 (Sunil Ekka, Sanjit Toppo) bt HP 1 (Amandeep Singh); Karnataka 3 (M.D. Rahell 2, Pruthiviraj) bt Mumbai 2 (Vinay Valmiki, Rajendra Pawar).

Group D: Bhopal 2 (Amir Ur Rehman, Shanhnawas Khan) bt Maharashtra 1 (Razik Shaikh); SAI 7 (Navdeep Singh, Pankaj Mishra, Saurabh Kumar, Sandeep Kumar 3, Ankit Mishra) bt Chhattisgarh 1 (Wasiullah Khan).

The Hindu

HI panel bans players, officials for code of conduct breach

NEW DELHI: The Disciplinary Committee of Hockey India on Tuesday handed bans on some players, coaches and officials for breach of code of conduct after hearing the parties.

The bans were imposed after consideration of the facts presented before the committee members and hearing of the players and coaches. The members felt the bans will discourage other players and officials from indulging in similar actions in future and ensure that they follow HI Code of Conduct.

One such case took place during match between Uttar Pradesh and Air India in the 4th Hockey India Senior Men National Championship in Lucknow wherein Uttar Pradesh player Devesh Chauhan stated that when he appealed for a foul, international umpire Sangha used abusive language.

This was reported by Chauhan to tournament director R V Shelar who denied any such incident and rather alleged that Chauhan was doing this to get even with some incident of the past which took place during the Surjit Hockey Tournament.

During the meeting today both Chauhan and Shelar did not turn up and hence a decision was taken to ban both of them for the next three months for making false allegations against each other. The ban will be effective from Tuesday.

The committee discussed another case which took place during 4th HI Women National Championship in Mysore regarding the behaviour of international umpire Anupama Puchimanda.

A ban of two months was imposed on her effective April 1 for not wearing the designated colour t-shirt before the semifinal match. She also tried to dominate her co-umpire giving decisions on behalf of her. Also after the tournament ended, she left Mysore before informing anyone.

In another decision, all 18 members of Madhya Pradesh Hockey Academy women's team have been banned for a period of one month beginning April 1 for walking off the field for 40-50 seconds during a match in 4th Hockey India Senior Women National Championship in Bhopal.

Coach Paramjit Singh, along with team manager Usha Nimbalkar, are banned for two months for breaching Hockey India code of conduct by walking off the field. The ban will be effective from April 1.

All the players and officials can appeal against the decision within 30 days before the Hockey India Athletes Dispute and Grievance Redressal Committee.

The Times of India

NOW: Pensions Men's Hockey League Finals Weekend Championship rundown

East Grinstead's David Condon challenges with Beeston's Stephen Lawrence

From 5-6 April the top four men’s teams will battle it out to be crowned NOW: Pensions League Champions. We’ve got the schedule and we’ve got the standings, so let’s see how the teams will square off against each other.

Saturday and Sunday both start off with two matches from the Play-Off tournament, which will determine which teams will have a place in the Premier Division next season. Following them is the two semi-finals on Saturday, then on Sunday the 3/4 place play-off and the main attraction of the Championship Final. Below we’ve gone through the first two matches and how the two teams match up.

You can see the matches in person at Reading HC: advance tickets are still available, saving you money on the door as well as giving you peace of mind that your entry is guaranteed. Tickets start from £15 for Adults and £6 for U18s

The first semi-final sees first play fourth, and those places are taken by East Grinstead and Surbiton. Finishing the league in first place, East Grinstead have gained an automatic European place and fired back into the Finals weekend with style, after having finished fifth last season. They’re facing up against Surbiton, who are coming into the finals weekend off the back of a brilliant second half of the season – they have two of the top three scorers in the league as Matt Daly and Alan Forsyth have both been on top form. Surbiton will be a force to be reckoned with as they look to consolidate their European place alongside their fight to win the trophy.

Semi-final two features Beeston, who finished second, and Reading, who finished the season in third. Beeston are coming into the Finals weekend as defending champions, but they haven’t been as dominant this season. They’ve got five players in their team who are also members of the England squad, but as two of them might not play it might not be enough to tip the match in their favour. However, they’ve got a secret weapon in Sam Ward, the league’s second highest scorer and looking to add to his tally as the weekend marches on. Their opponents Reading also have a number of England and GB stars in their team – with upcoming star Tom Carson up front and the formidable drag-flick of Simon Mantell, Reading will be looking to play the home advantage to its fullest.

Those are the first two semi-finals, where the winners and losers will determine how the last two matches on Sunday will play out. Let us know your opinion on who'll prevail on Twitter or Facebook then come down to the NOW: Pensions Men's Hockey League Finals at Reading HC to see if your predictions are right!

5-6 April at Reading HC


1030 - NOW: Pensions MHL Play-Offs Match 3
Sheffield Hallam (Premier) v Southgate (East)
1230 - NOW: Pensions MHL Play-Offs Match 4
Cardiff & Met (West) v Brooklands MU (North)
1445 - NOW: Pensions MHL Championship Semi 1
East Grinstead (1st) v Surbiton (4th)
1700 - NOW: Pensions MHL Championship Semi 2
Beeston (2nd) v Reading (3rd)


1000 - NOW: Pensions MHL Play-Offs Match 5
Southgate (East) v Brooklands MU (North)
1200 - NOW: Pensions MHL Play-Offs Match 6
Sheffield Hallam (Premier) v Cardiff & Met (West)
1415 - NOW: Pensions MHL Championship 3v4
Loser Semi 1 v Loser Semi 2
1645 - NOW: Pensions MHL Championship Final
Winner Semi 1 v Winner Semi 2

England Hockey Board Media release

U.S. Junior Women’s Indoor Announces 2014 U15, U16 and U19 Squads

U.S. Junior Indoor Selections were conducted Saturday, March 15 in Broomall, Pa. More than 140 athletes attended the try-out for the junior squads. Selected athletes will train year round to develop their indoor skills and tactical knowledge of International Indoor Hockey. Selected athletes will also have the chance to be chosen for international and domestic competition teams during the 2014-2015 Winter season.

This year's junior squads feature 14 veterans and 11 new members. Additional members may be announced once waivers and callbacks are completed.

 “I would like to thank all the athletes, umpires and selectors for their participation and support of the 2014-15 U.S. Junior indoor try-out,” said U.S. Women's Indoor Coach Rennie Milne. “It was pleasing to see so many young hockey players aspiring to represent their nation in the indoor game, long may this continue. We have identified new potential for the U16 and U19 squads.  I am very much looking forward to working with our returning and new athletes in season 2014-15.”

The following athletes have been named to the 2014-2015 U19 National Indoor Team:

Jennifer Bleakney (Columbia, Md.); Emily Braunewell (Ambler, Pa.); Mayv Clune (Quakertown, Pa.); Megan DuVernois (Collegeville, Pa.); Ashley Dykema (Newport News, Va.); Selena Garzio (McAdoo, Pa.); Cassidy Goodwin (Hayes, Va.); Fusine Govaert (Rye, N.Y.); Abby Julius (Hummelstown, Pa.); Carly Kauffman (Fleetwood, Pa.); Sammy Popper (Blue Bell, Pa.); Meredith Sholder (Alburtis, Pa.); Samantha Steele (Eagleville, Pa.); Cassie Sumfest (Lewisburg, Pa.); Brigid Wood (Plains, Pa.); Corinne Zanolli (Newtown Square, Pa.)

The following athletes have been named to the 2014-2015 U16 National Indoor Team:

Gabrielle Barraco (Allentown, Pa.); Bethany Dykema (Newport News, Va.); Nathalie Friedman (Phoenix, Md.); Margot Lawn (Pasadena, Md.); Abigail Pitcairn (Aspinwall, Pa.); Elizabeth Romano (New Vernon, N.J.); Ava Rosati (Lower Gwynedd, Pa.); Grace Royer (Schnecksville, Pa.); Eleanor Winants (Hamilton, Va.)

USFHA media release

US Men's High Performance Coaches Reflect on Weekend Competition

Last weekend the men’s East Coast High Performance (EC HP) and Ventura County Red Devils High Performance (VCRD HP) competed in a series of high-intensity matches in California. Below both High Performance Coaches, as well as Men’s National Team Coach Chris Clements, provide insight on the teams’ progress and preparation leading to the California Cup.

“East Coast High Performance traveled to Moorpark, Calif. for a series of test matches. We played total of three full-field 11 v 11 games as well as two 6 v 6 training matches. With this series evenly split, we can look back at a great weekend. It was our goal to grow as individual players, technically and tactically as well as gaining some game experience. We succeeded in all those areas as our boys learned a lot this past weekend. We are looking forward to our next training camps in preparation for the California Cup.” 
- EC HP Coach, Rutger Wiese

“Ventura County Red Devils High Performance would like to thank the players, parents and coaching staff from EC HP.

The weekend allowed us to expose all of our players while at the same time creating success for both groups. We achieved this goal. The VCRD family also hosted the ECHP in their homes. There's no doubt that we are creating both a competitive playing environment coupled with the beginning of life long friendships through sport.

There are some tactical and technical areas that need to be improved upon and the matches are a great way to identify and test these, for example receiving and shot selection as well as individual and team defense. We will continue to refine our play in the next month."
- VCRD HP Head Coach, Ben Maruquin

“The desire of the players and staff within our High Performance regions to get their individual and programs play to a higher level is commendable. The teams are progressing well towards the Cal Cup and it should be an exciting series come the end of May.”
- Men’s National Team Coach, Chris Clements

USFHA media release

Playing hockey – got it nailed!

Carpenters and coaches join forces to promote hockey in Tanzania

Using local wood and an army of female coaches, a project in Tanzania is having a remarkable effect upon hockey in the east African country.

Valentina Quaranta is part of the Hockey Tanzania project that is dedicated to raising the standard and number of participants in hockey in the African nation. The project's aim is to spread hockey into primary and secondary schools in the country's capital Dar es Salaam and the surrounding area. Hockey coaching, led by Valentina, but aided by many older players from the region, will begin in May, with some lessons taking place early in the morning before school starts.

Of course, to play hockey, the players need equipment, and Valentina is delighted to tell us about a scheme among the local carpenters to make sticks for the children to use at the practices. The first prototype has been made by Masudi – a fundi or carpenter – in his workshop in Dar es Salaam. The wood he is using is a durable local wood called "Mlingoti".

Valentina says: "I used it for a couple of training sessions and it’s doing it's job so far!"

The carpenters are making just a small stock at the moment, each stick costs around €7/8 and will be shared among the schools. Women from the local senior team will become “walimu wa hockey”, or hockey teachers. Those without jobs will receive some pocket money in return for coaching.

The impact that Valentina and her band of helpers is having is immense. Just a year ago there was no women's national team in Tanzania. Now they appear on the world ranking at number 46.

FIH site

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