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News for 26 June 2015

All the news for Friday 26 June 2015

HWL2015 Antwerp (M): Magical Malaysia shine in Pool B

Day 5: On a day of glorious sunshine in Antwerp, Malaysia produced a magical performance to defeat Ireland’s Green Machine and move to the top of Pool B. Also in Pool B, Great Britain found top gear and motored to a big win over China to take them into second place in standings ahead of their meeting with Malaysia at the weekend.

Malaysia, Great Britain and Belgium are now certain qualifiers from Pool B for the cross-over quarter finals, although the exact finishing positions are yet to be decided. Despite losing three matches, China still have a chance to qualify but anything less than a victory in Friday’s game against Ireland would see them confirmed in the 9-10 classification game.

More details on today matches can be found below.

Pool B
Malaysia 4-2 Ireland
Two goals from Ahmad Tajuddin helped Malaysia defeat Ireland and make it two wins from two matches, moving his side to the top of Pool B.

Tajuddin scored goals in the first and fourth quarter, with a green card in the second and a yellow in the third capping an eventful day for the Malaysian number 8.

Team captain Rahim Razie and Mutalib Sukri were also on the score-sheet, with Peter Caruth and Shane O’Donoghue registering fine strikes for the Green Machine.

Although the Irish were guilty of wasting some good chances, Malaysia were worthy winners and could easily have had more were it not for the agility of goalkeeper Davey Harte, who denied Rahim Razie from the penalty spot with a brilliant reaction save.

“We fought really hard in this game because we knew what we wanted to do and we achieved it today”, said Malaysia’s Tengku Ahmad, who was clearly delighted to win in what was his 200th senior international appearance for his country. “As a team we achieved what we wanted, but personally it is a really special day to win on my 200th game.”

Ireland captain and goalkeeper Davey Harte was in a reflective mood after the match, stating: “It is bitter disappointment for us as we came into the game on the back of a pretty strong performance against Great Britain (2-2), but we gave away too many soft goals today and didn’t convert our chances, which often comes back to haunt you.”

Great Britain 8-1 China
It proved to be third game lucky for Barry Middleton’s Great Britain, who finally got their first Pool B win with a hugely convincing triumph over China.

Nick Catlin, Sam Ward and Mark Gleghorne both scored doubles in the rout to help GB move into second place in the pool, ahead of hosts Belgium but behind Malaysia.

Catlin was the first GB player to make their mark on the score-board, slapping a high ball into an open net to finish off a decisive attack, with Ward and Gleghorne netted second quarter goals before China’s Li Zecheng made the score 3-1 at half time. Four Great Britain goals arrived in the third quarter, the pick of which came from a brilliant back-hand effort from Ashley Jackson either side of fine finishes from Gleghorne and Ward before Alastair Brogdon and Catlin completed the scoring.

When asked to sum up his feelings about the game, GB’s Nick Catlin said: “We were much improved today, as we were looking to bounce back from our disappointing performance against Ireland (2-2), so I’m really pleased with what we did out there. When you play well, the scoreline kind of takes care of itself. We want to finish as high in the pool as we can, and we know that if we win the next game we will be in a really strong position.”

Great Britain’s final Pool B match will be against current table-toppers Malaysia on Sunday (28 June), while China will be back in action on Friday (26 June) when they face Ireland.

More details about the event including video clips, imagery and official competition info can be found on the event website.

#HWL2015 #RoadToRio

FIH site

HWL2015 Antwerp (W): Punt rains on Blyth’s big day

Day 5: Another cracking day of action at FINTRO Hockey World League Semi-Finals featured outstanding team performances, landmark individual achievements and world class goals as the race for the HWL Final and Rio 2016 Olympic Games tickets continued in Antwerp.

In Pool A, Korea finally kick-started their race to the HWL Finals with their first win of the competition, while Italy continued to enhance their reputation with a hard-earned and extremely valuable draw against Japan thanks to a double strike from Valentina Braconi.

Meanwhile in Pool B, New Zealand’s Black Sticks emerged victorious against Australia’s Hockeyroos in an feisty Oceania derby that witnessed the respective team captains both break records for their country. It was also a good day for Belgium, who thrilled the home fans with another win.

Extended details of the day’s matches can be found below.

Pool A
Korea 11-0 France
Korea’s quest for a ticket to the end of year showpiece Hockey World League Final picked up momentum on Thursday courtesy of a big win over Pool A rivals France.

Kim Jongeun, Park Mihyun, Oh Sunsoon and Han Hye Lyoung all scored doubles, with Cheon Eunbi, Baek Eeseul and Kim Bomi also on target. It was a fourth successive defeat for the brave French girls, who graciously stepped into competition at late notice in place of Azerbaijan but are now certain to feature in the 9-10 Classification match.

Apolline Rogeau, the captain of France, described the competition as a learning experience for her side, believing that the chance to play here will massively benefit them ahead of their upcoming EuroHockey Championship II tournament in Prague, Czech Republic.

“Today we tried got play hard but we were really tired, although we have shown fighting spirit and it has been nice to play in this tournament as it is such a big event.”

Japan 2-2 Italy
16th ranked Italy’s brilliant start to the FINTRO Hockey World League Semi-Finals continued on Thursday (25 June) when they achieved a second successive draw against supposedly superior opposition, tying 2-2 with 10th ranked Japan.

The Italians added another point to the four earned from a win against France and draw with Korea and remain unbeaten after three matches, currently sitting second in Pool A with one match remaining. Japan’s Cherry Blossoms lead twice in the match through goals from Akane Shibata and Akiko Kato, but were pegged back on both occasions by goals from Italy’s number 7 Valentina Braconi.

“We are happy with all of the results and we know that the draw today means that we are still capable of fighting for either second or third place in the Pool”, said Italy captain Chiara Tiddi.

Pool B
Poland 0-2 Belgium
Belgium’s Red Panthers claimed their second win of the competition with a 2-0 victory over Pool B opponents Poland, making their place in the cross-over quarter-finals a certainty in the process.

As usual, the fans flocked to Antwerp’s KHC Dragons venue to watch the home team in action, and they were given plenty to cheer about thanks to strikes from Emilie Sinia and Manon Simons.

Speaking about the energy given to her players from the vociferous, passion-fueled crowd, Belgium captain Liselotte van Lindt said: “We are really happy because it was not easy to win this game, and the crowd were amazing. They made a lot of noise and it was really great for us.”

The defeat for Poland means that New Zealand, Australia, Belgium and Poland are all confirmed for the quarter-finals, with the upcoming final round of matches nailing down the positions within the pool.

Australia 0-2 New Zealand
New Zealand’s Black Sticks took the spoils in a classic Oceania derby match, with the world number 4 defeating 2nd ranked Australia in the final match of the day in Antwerp thanks to goals from Anita Punt and Ella Gunson. The result puts New Zealand onto nine points at the top of Pool A, three points clear of their Australian rivals.

Black Sticks captain Punt’s goal - which came shortly after half time from a trademark penalty corner drag-flick - was her 78th senior international goal, making her New Zealand’s top international scorer of all time.

Despite defeat, it was also a momentous day for Hockeyroos captain Madonna Blyth, who played her 304th senior international match to surpass the Australian women’s national record of 303 previously held by Nikki Hudson.

“We came out with a pretty clear vision about what we wanted to do today but we didn’t do it very well”, said Madonna Blyth after the match. “Credit to New Zealand though, they played at that pace that we all know they can, and we know we have a lot to improve on heading forward into the ‘quarters’ and our next pool match”.

New Zealand’s new all-time record scorer Anita Punt said: “It was a really tough battle but to come away with the win is awesome with the girls. We just had to keep fighting and it was great to get the two goals.”

More details about the event including video clips, imagery and official competition info can be found on the event website.

#HWL2015 #RoadToRio

FIH site

Black Sticks Women storm past Australia

Anita Punt (c) became the Black Sticks all time leading goal scorer. Photo courtesy Kiwi Hockey

The Black Sticks Women have maintained their perfect record at the FIH World League Semi-Final in Antwerp with a stunning 2-0 win over Australia.

It was a timely result for the Black Sticks, who last defeated the Hockeyroos almost two years ago at the 2013 Oceania Cup in Stratford.

Captain Anita Punt was hugely influential on the game and her 33rd minute strike made her New Zealand’s top goal scorer, breaking the previous record of 77 held jointly by Katie Glynn and Krystal Forgesson.

Head coach Mark Hager said the result was extremely pleasing and that everyone stepped up against a very tough opponent.

“I thought we played really well for the majority of the game tonight, especially our defence which still hasn’t conceded a goal at the tournament,” he said.

“It’s the first time we have managed to open up Australia that much in a long time – we stuck to the game plan and moved the ball well on both sides of the ball.

“The biggest thing for us is not to get overconfident, we have a tough game still to come against Belgium and then of course the sudden-death quarter final.”

The Black Sticks opened the game full of running and were quickly into attack mode earning an early penalty corner chance, although the Hockeyroos defence held firm.

Australia turned up the pressure in the second quarter and put together some dangerous runs which forced goalkeeper Sally Rutherford to make several high quality saves.

With the game locked up 0-0 at halftime, the Black Sticks came out firing and quickly lit up the scoreboard when Punt fired home a pin-point drag flick in the 33rd minute.

Both sides created some good opportunities throughout the second half but it was New Zealand who came out on top when Ella Gunson sealed the result with a powerful reverse shot through the keeper’s legs late in the fourth quarter.

The Black Sticks have a rest day tomorrow before going up against hosts Belgium in their final pool game at 2am on Sunday morning (NZ time), with live coverage on SKY Sport 4.

A top four finish at the World League Semi-Final would earn the Kiwis a spot at the World League Final at the end of the year, while the tournament also doubles as an opportunity to qualify for Rio with a top three placing securing an automatic berth.

BLACK STICKS 2: (Anita Punt, Ella Gunson)
Halftime: 0-0

Hockey New Zealand Media release

Hockeyroos lose to NZ

Blyth's record breaking game ends in 2-0 defeat

The Hockeyroos went down 2-0 to their New Zealand Black Sticks rivals in a typically tight trans-Tasman affair at the Hockey World League, a result that keeps the Australian women in second place in the pool.

Kiwi Anita Punt’s penalty corner goal early in the third quarter was all that separated the sides until the later stages when Ella Gunson found space inside the Australian circle to convert a reverse stick strike from the penalty spot.

Before the match, Australian captain Madonna Blyth was celebrated as the Hockeyroos’ most capped player ever as she took to the field for the 304th time, surpassing former captain and Sydney Olympic gold medallist Nikki Hudson’s 303-game record.

Speaking afterwards, Hockeyroos coach Adam Commens said, “I thought it was as expected, a really intense and difficult match. New Zealand played well on the counter, which they do always, and they can go full length of the pitch on their counter.

“We created some really good opportunities and didn’t finish them. We’ve been quite effective with our penalty corner attack throughout the tournament and unfortunately that deserted us today. But I thought we created more than enough field goal scoring opportunities. We didn’t make the most of those opportunities where, at the other end, New Zealand did.

“They know how we want to play and we know how they want to play. It’s just about who executes a game plan. I thought [New Zealand’s] Stacey Michelsen and Anita Punt were very good again and the other players around them play some pretty good camero roles. They do their job well.

“I was disappointed with our ability up front to create opportunities when we had space. When you have space you’ve got to make something of it, you can’t just play it into the defence and not use that space. That was a little disappointing today. I know we can be better and I’m pretty confident we will be in the next matches.”

Acknowledging the remarkable achievement of his captain, Commens said of Madonna Blyth, “Madonna’s had a wonderful career and you can see by her performances at this tournament that real competitive nature, that ability to win balls, get going quickly and create things.

“She’s been the life blood for the Hockeyroos going on now ten or 11 years. She’s really led by example. I’ve said it many times before that she’s an example to all young players coming through of how you want to be and how you’d want to present yourself on and off the pitch, at training and in competition.”

Hockeyroo Rachael Lynch was the busier of the two goalkeepers. The Victorian stopper pulled off a string of critical saves in the opening quarter and again early in the third, shortly before Punt’s drag flick found the inside of the net.

Despite their endeavours and quick attacking style, the Hockeyroos’ goal shots were limited. Penalty corner specialist Jodie Kenny went close from her set pieces but her slingshot efforts flew narrowly over the top, while Kathryn Slattery also came close for Australia with a reactive flick on a deflected ball that dropped narrowly wide.

Jane Claxon was denied late on when New Zealand goalkeeper Sally Rutherford kept out her powerful strike from the edge of the circle.

The Hockeyroos remain second in Pool B, three points behind leaders New Zealand and ahead of third place hosts Belgium on goal difference. India, Australia’s opponents on Saturday, sit three points further back in fourth place, ahead of Poland, who have completed their four matches, suffering four defeats.

Australia’s match against India is at 4:00am AEST on Sunday, 28 June.

Hockey World League
Antwerp, Belgium

Pool B, Match 3

Anita Punt 33 (PC)
Ella Gunson 53 (FG)
Hockeyroos squad v New Zealand
Name (Hometown/State) Caps/Goals
Madonna Blyth (Brisbane, QLD) 303/67
Kirstin Dwyer (Mackay, QLD) 76/2
Anna Flanagan (Canberra, ACT) 146/33
Jodie Kenny (Wamuran, QLD) 140/83
Rachael Lynch (Warrandyte, VIC) 122/0
Karri McMahon (Berri, SA) 66/7
Brooke Peris (Darwin, NT) 56/9
Casey Sablowski (South Coast, NSW) 225/44
Kathryn Slattery (South Stirling, WA) 18/5
Emily Smith (Crookwell, NSW) 120/49
Mariah Williams (Parkes, NSW) 17/2
Used Substitutes
Teneal Attard (Mackay, QLD) 209/10
Edwina Bone (Evatt, ACT) 74/2
Jane Claxton (Adelaide, SA) 63/5
Georgia Nanscawen (Melbourne, VIC) 158/31
Ashleigh Nelson (Wagin, WA) 178/63
Georgie Parker (Berri, SA) 79/25

Unused Substitutes
Ashlee Wells (Morwell, VIC) 50/0
Match Schedule - Hockeyroos' Fixtures (dates and times all AEST)
28 June – Hockeyroos v India – 02:00 AEST
30 June – TBC - Quarter Final
2 July – TBC - Semi Final / Classification
4 July – TBC - Medal Matches / Classification

Hockey Australia media release

Black Sticks stun Australia

By David Leggat

Anita Punt. Photo / HB Today

New Zealand pulled off an outstanding 2-0 win over tough rivals Australia this morning at the women's world league hockey semifinal in Antwerp.

The win is just the 17th by the women's Black Sticks against Australia in 112 matches.
Captain Anita Punt put New Zealand ahead with a well struck penalty corner shot shortly after halftime. It was the first goal in the 13th attempt from a penalty corner during the tournament.

The tireless Punt had a hand in setting up the crucial second goal with a clever run and deft pass to midfielder Ella Gunson, who took her chance well to double the lead.

The win leaves fourth-ranked New Zealand top of pool B, three points ahead of world No 2 Australia going into the final round of group games, in which New Zealand will meet hosts Belgium on Sunday.

The top three teams at the tournament are guaranteed places in next year's Rio Olympics.

''It was a really tough battle and to come away with a win is awesome for the girls," Punt said.

''It was definitely a pretty fast game and we're going to need to recover well after this."

Punt, whose goal made her New Zealand's leading scorer, going ahead of striker Katie Glynn and now-retired attacker Krystal Forgesson, said it was a case of keeping on fighting as the game wore on and she was confident if they did that ''it would fall for us".

Australian captain Madonna Blyth, playing her record 304th international, was disappointed her team didn't put their game plan into action as effectively as they had hoped.

''Credit to the New Zealand girls. They played well and at that pace we all know they can do.

''We've got a lot to do looking ahead to the quarter-finals."

Australia had a fine penalty corner conversion rate going into the match but today failed to find the net with any of their five attempts. New Zealand managed one from their four opportunities.

Australia's chief shooter Jodie Kenny had her radar on the blink today but New Zealand defended the set piece impressively, while goalkeeper Sally Rutherford pulled off a string of quality saves, including one from Jane Claxton with four minutes remaining, which would have given Australia impetus for a final late push.

Auckland defender Liz Thompson, a key figure in a strong defensive operation, admitted there were tired legs in the New Zealand dressing room but ''we're pretty over the moon to be honest".

''Our game plan is to go forward and attack a lot and I think Australia play a pretty similar style so these games finish up really fast and full on, so it's good to finally come away with a win."

Thompson reckoned the key was the team collective effort.

''The work ethic, chasing and running hard to put Aussie under a lot of pressure. We also turned over a lot of ball which helped keep the game in our favour."

Thompson acknowledged Australia had something of a habit of snatching late goals against the Black Sticks to either secure a draw or pinch a win.

''It was really good for us to keep on top of our defence, keep fighting and grinding to the end."

Punt and midfielder Stacey Michelsen were outstanding contributors for New Zealand, who maintained their 100 percent winning record at the tournament today.

In the other pool B game Belgium beat Poland 2-0 while in pool A Korea thumped France 11-0 and Japana nd Italy drew 2-2.

The New Zealand Herald

Black Sticks women earn deserved win over Australia


Anita Punt's goal saw her become New Zealand's all-time leading scorer. Warwick Smith/FAIRFAX NZ

The New Zealand Women's Hockey team have beaten Australia 2-0 in the Hockey World League in Belgium.

The Black Sticks New Zealand women's hockey team have earned a deserved 2-0 win over their old foe Australia at the World League Semi-Final.

Two second half goals to Anita Punt and Ella Gunson sealed the win, as the Black Sticks dominated the second term.

It was a different story in an entertaining opening half, when both teams had a host of chances but were unable to convert.

Anita Punt's goal saw her become New Zealand's all-time leading scorer.

Australia had two penalty corners in quick succession in the first quarter, but Australia's leading scorer, Jodie Kenny, failed to covert.

Sally Rutherford made a good low save from the first opportunity.

Both teams had chances in the second quarter, with the best falling to the tournament top scorer, Black Sticks striker Gemma Flynn, just before halftime.

A sharp cross was fired across the face of goal but Flynn was unable to turn it home.

At halftime, Black Sticks coach Mark Hager said they were playing well but just lacking a bit of quality in the final third.

"We just have believe in [ourselves], we've been in this situation before and let it slide."

That belief was on display just three minutes later as the Black Sticks took the lead from a penalty corner.

Skipper Anita Punt drilled her drag-flick into the bottom left corner, in turn becoming New Zealand's all-time leading scorer with 78, passing Krystal Forgerson and Katie Glynn.

Kenny continued to threaten from penalty corners - aiming for the top corners but seeing her shots go agonisingly over.

New Zealand kept the lead into the fourth quarter and were dominant throughout the final term, making the most of their 54 per cent possession.

After Petrea Webster and Flynn missed great chances, Ella Gunson smashed home a reverse shot through the legs of Rachel Lynch in goal with six minutes on the clock.

Rutherford came up with another crucial save with four minutes to go to keep the two-goal cushion.

It was a deserved victory for the Black Sticks, earning them just their 17th win over Australia in 112 meetings.

Australia, who came into the game with the best penalty corner conversion rate at the tournament, failed to convert any of their opportunities as their captain, Madonna Blyth, became Australia's highest-capped player with 304.

After the game, Punt said it was great to get the result after such a tough game.

"We're going to need to recover well after this one.

"We just had to keep fighting and knew it would fall for us and it was good to get the two goals."

Hager said the result was extremely pleasing and that everyone stepped up against a very tough opponent.

"I thought we played really well for the majority of the game tonight, especially our defence which still hasn't conceded a goal at the tournament," he said.

"It's the first time we have managed to open up Australia that much in a long time – we stuck to the game plan and moved the ball well on both sides of the ball.

"The biggest thing for us is not to get over-confident, we have a tough game still to come against Belgium and then of course the sudden-death quarterfinal."

The win takes the Black Sticks three points clear at the top of their pool and will need just a draw against the hosts Belgium in their final game at 2am on Sunday morning (NZ time) to secure top spot.

Even a loss could see them finish top, as they have a healthy goal difference of 19, 10 ahead of the Australians in second.


NZ put dampener on hockey captain's record

New Zealand have put a dampener on Australian hockey captain Madonna Blythe's record-breaking match at the World League Semi-Final tournament.

The Black Sticks beat Australia 2-0 to remain top of their group in Belgium on Friday (AEST) and spoil the party for Blythe, who became Australia's most-capped women's player when she took to the field for the 304th time.

"We were pretty disappointed with the result," Blythe said.

"We went into it pretty confident that we would be able to execute things well and I think there were a few things that let us down today."

Blythe succeeds fellow Queenslander and former captain and Olympic gold medallist Nikki Hudson as the most capped Hockeyroo.

The pair grew up playing hockey together and Blythe says she "really looked up to and admired" her former teammate.

Coach Adam Commens said Blythe had been the "life blood" of the Hockeyroos over the last decade and led by example.

The captain said she felt privileged to play for the team.

"That doesn't change with as many games as you play," she said.

"I've had that leadership role for a while now so it's just about making sure that I play well now every game that I get."

Black Sticks captain Anita Punt scored a second-half goal and set up the other to also enter the record books as New Zealand's all-time record scorer with 78.

Australia entered the game behind New Zealand only on goal difference and now sit three points behind the Group B leaders and ahead of third-placed hosts Belgium on goal difference.

Commens said his team had failed to finish good opportunities and was not impressed with their corner penalty attacks.

"But I thought we created more than enough field goalscoring opportunities. We didn't make the most of those opportunities where, at the other end, New Zealand did."

India, Australia's opponents on Saturday, sit three points further back in fourth place.

New Zealand's last pool game is against Belgium.

A top-three finish at the 10-nation tournament secures automatic entry to the 2016 Rio Olympics.

Daily Mail

New Zealand women stun Australia in World Hockey League

ANTWERP (Belgium): New Zealand pulled off the biggest surprise of the ongoing World Hockey League Semifinals with a 2-0 win over World Cup silver medalists Australia in the women's preliminary league.

After a goalless first half, World No. 4 New Zealand surged ahead through captain Anita Punt's penalty corner conversion in the 37th minute at the KHC Dragons Stadium.

The match was put beyond Australia's reach by a open field goal from Ella Gunson in the 54th minute, taking New Zealand to the top of Pool B with victories in all three outings, giving them the maximum nine points.

World No. 2 Australia are placed in second spot with six points from three outings and now take on India in their last pool outing on Saturday.

New Zealand will meet hosts Belgium in their last game. Belgium, who started with a 1-0 victory over India, defeated Poland 2-0 last night. The Belgian girls now have six points from three outings, having suffered the only defeat at the hands of Australia.

In Pool A matches, Asian Games gold medalists South Korea outplayed France 11-0, while Japan were held to a 2-2 draw by Italy.

The Times of India

Malaysia destroy Ireland 4-2

by Jugjet Singh

MALAYSIA played like Tigers to tame Ireland 4-2 and qualify for the Quarter-finals of the World League Semi-finals in Antwerp, Belgium yesterday.

Only four out of the five teams in each group advance to the knock-out stage, and it looks like in Group B Ireland and Chaina will battle for the fourth spot.

With six points from two matches, Malaysia have a good chance to finish either second or third in Group B, which will surely avoid world No 1 Australia in the quarter-finals.

With matches against Belgium today and Britain Sunday, Malaysia can afford to blow both and still finish third as China have lost two matches to date.

Tengku Ahmad Tajuddin played his 100th cap today, and he was as impressive as ever.

The first quarter belonged to Malaysia as they pressed hard and scored off their first penalty corner. Razie Rahaim's rebound saw Izwan Firdaus score a rebound goal in the 12th minute.

However, two minutes later Ireland equalised with a cheeky goal from Peter Caruth who touched an airborne ball to deflect it past goalkeeper Roslan Jamaluddin.

Ireland started the second quarter by losing their video referral, when they protested Malaysia's second penalty corner. And this time Razie made sure with a push which went past goalkeeper Harte David in the 16th minute.

The low push was used as Harte is a 6' 5" giant who is difficult to beat with high flicks.

Ireland used the same low trick to equalise off their first penalty corner in the 18th minute when Shane O'Donoghue grounder beat Roslan.

Deadlocked at 2-2 Malaysia went into the half-time dressing room in a fiery mood.

And the dressing room pep-talk saw results as Malaysia played with much more determination and in the 38th minute, re-took the lead at 3-2.

This time Faizal Saari took the penalty corner and when the ball rebounded off goalkeeper Harte, Shukri Mutalib sent it crashing in with a diving attempt.

Malaysia could have taken a comfortable lead but with seven minutes remaining on the clock Razie Rahim missed a penalty stroke.

But Izwan Firdaus, nick named Pak Din, makes sure Malaysia win the match 4-2 with a 65th minute field goal -- his second of the match.

Meanwhile, Malaysia will play Belgim today (Friday) with one player in mind --- Tom Boon.

The Belgian destroyed Malaysia in the Netherlands World Cup by scoring four goals in their 6-2 win. Razie Rahim scored both of Malaysia's goals off penalty corner attempt and he will also be on the Belgian mind and game plan to stop Malaysia.

Malaysia took the lead and were at one stage at 2-2 but Boon  killed the game.

In this tournament Belgium drew 2-2with Britain and scalped China 6-0 but Boon has yet to get into the scoring act.

Speaking after the  China match, Red Lions striker Tom Boon said: "We came good in the end and we had some good periods, but we cannot forget that we also had some bad spells too. We want to win every game so now we will look forward to our next match against Malaysia. All of the teams from Asia are getting better and we cannot underestimate any of them. We need to fight as hard as we can, and if we do that we will have a good chance to win.”

Jugjet's World of Field Hockey

Faiz the Malaysian giant

by Jugjet Singh

IF pint sized Faiz Helmi Jali, 23, wears a school uniform and walks into any school in Malaysia, nobody would give him a second look.

He could even sit in a Form Two class, and heads would not turn nor would anybody bat an eye.

Standing at 5' 1" and weighing 50kgs, he does not fit the bill for a successful hockey player. But in reality he has a bigger heart than many of his team-mates, and when push comes to shove, Faiz has fought back gallantly with those who are double his height.

He is one of the heroes of the 2013 Junior World Cup squad which finished fourth in New Delhi. And having played in the 2014 Commonwealth Games and then the senior World Cup at the Netherlands at such a young age -- Faiz wants the Olympics ticket by the time he is 24 and not a day older.

"Biasa la bang (It's normal brother) he started in Bahasa and then changed to English.. Every player wants to be at the Olympics which I heard is really a special and magical place to be.

"I have played in the Junior World Cup, the Commonwealth, and the senior World Cup and nothing is going to stop me from helping Malaysia qualify for the Brazil Olympics," said Faiz.

It is not mere talk from a small boy, as Faiz put up a super front in the World League Semi-finals in Johor Baru to help Malaysia finish fifth and qualify for the World Cup at the Netherlands.

This five-footer would be up against Irish giants, all six footers, with their goalkeeper David Harte standing at 6' 5" (without padding and shoes) but don't bet against Faiz today.

Jugjet's World of Field Hockey

Beat Ireland or start packing

by Jugjet Singh

THREE-TIME Olympian Nor Saiful Zaini was shivering on the stands while watching Britain and Ireland play in the World League Semifinals in Antwerp, Belgium.

The match ended in a 2-2 draw, and Nor Saiful made a chilling observation: "It not going to be easy against Ireland, they have a hard-running side which attacks from every part of the field and they just keep coming at you, no matter what."

And his assessment: "Don't get into the trap of playing their style of hockey, its the only way for Malaysia to beat the Irish."

In layman's term, Malaysia must play their own style -- which is attacking without fear like they did in the World League Round Two in Singapore where they grabbed the gold by beating Poland 8-0 in the final.

Today is reckoning day for Malaysia as a win against Ireland will place them in good footing to challenge for an Olympics spot, but if they lose, the door will be half shut.

Rest assured, as an experienced player and now assistant coach to Tai Beng Hai, Nor Saiful would have parted his observation to the Malaysian players.

Malaysia, who beat China 31st ranked China 3-2, were guilty of defending after taking a 2-0 lead and that was exactly what Britain did wrong against Ireland.

After grabbing an easy looking 2-0 lead the British slowed down, and in came a charging Irish squad to level the score and steal a point even though they are ranked 14th and Britain fifth.

Beng Hai was more prepared as he knows the Irish style well: "That's what they are good at. They just keep coming and coming in waves no matter what. Its a very stubborn team and we can't take it easy even for a minute until the final hooter is blown."

Ireland goalkeeper David Harte 6' 5", and a giant added by padding, played in the last match against Malaysia -- where they lost 2-4.

"I was there in Kuantan (Champions Challege) and it was 2-2 until the last 10 minutes and a Malaysian blitz saw us loose the bronze.

"This is an experienced Malaysian side, but now, both teams are fighting for an Olympic berth, and it not going to be east for both sides."

The giant Harte, covering half the goalmouth when arms a stretched, will be tough to beat with direct penalty corner flicks. And this is where Beng Hai must use the many set-pieces to get the goals.

Harte knows our No 1 flicker Razie Rahim very well , as he was also there to deny Malaysia a berth in the final of the Dublin Olympic Qualifier. Then, Malaysia drew 1-1 with Ireland in the semi-finals, and the Irish in turn were beaten by a nine-second from regulation goal by South Korea in the final for the sole London Olympic ticket.

Jugjet's World of Field Hockey

What a win for Malaysia in World Hockey League

by S. Ramaguru

Faizal Saari of Malaysia is tripped by Ireland goalkeeper in the World Hockey League Semi-Final Group B match in Belgium on Thursday. Malaysia won 4-2. - FRANK UIJLENBROEK

ANTWERP: Malaysia have virtually qualified for the last eight of the World Hockey League Semi-Finals – but not before some heart-stopping moments!

Two goals by forward Izwan Firdaus inspired Malaysia to a hard-fought 4-2 win over Ireland at the KHC Dragons Stadium here on Thursday – and put them top of Group B.

It was definitely not a match for the faint-hearted as Malaysia not only lost their lead twice, they even muffed a penalty stroke.

But in the end, goals by Izwan, skipper Mohd Razie Rahim and Mohd Shukri Mutalib were enough to hand Malaysia their second win in as many matches. Malaysia had defeated China 3-2 in their opening match last Sunday.

Peter Caruth and Shane O’Donoghue scored for Ireland.

Coach Tai Beng Hai’s men can now look ahead to the matches against host Belgium on Friday and Britain on Sunday with greater confidence.

“The players stuck to the game plan and were not afraid to attack when they had the chance. It was a team performance ... we were in control of the match, despite letting them come back twice,” said Beng Hai.

“The difference is that my boys played with confidence today. This win has eased the pressure on the team.

“But we won’t stop here. We want to get a good result in our next two matches. The quarter-final is some way to go, so let’s not worry about it ... but at least this win will see us avoid meeting Australia in the last eight.”

Like the coach, two-goal hero Izwan also paid tribute to the team.

“It’s great to have scored ... and to score two is a bonus. I was confident that I could deliver the goods when it mattered. I’m very happy ... this is a team effort,” he said.

“We can now look forward to the other matches with greater confidence. And yes, I want to continue scoring ... I’m excited at playing against the bigger teams.”

In the Ireland match, which saw forward Tengku Ahmad Tajuddin earning his 200th international cap, Malaysia scored off their first penalty corner in the 12th minute.

Razie’s initial effort was foiled by the Ireland goalkeeper David Harte, but the ball fell to the lurking Izwan, who slotted it home.

It took Ireland just two minutes to equalise when Caruth deflected from close range after a swift counter attack.

Malaysia began the second quarter in style, with Razie on target with a direct flick off their second penalty corner in the 16th minute.

Again the Irish hit back, with O’Donoghue flicking home a direct attempt off their first penalty corner in the 19th minute.

Undaunted, Malaysia pushed on and were rewarded with a third goal, also from a set piece move. Faizal Saari’s effort hit the goalkeeper and rebounded into play. Mohd Shukri was at the right place to slam home the rebound.

In the 53rd minute, Malaysia earned a penalty stroke but Razie’s flick was saved by Harte.

Malaysia, however, were not to be denied a fourth goal as Izwan got his second – and the team’s fourth – two minutes later with a high flick from close range.

The Star of Malaysia

Green Machine defeated by Malaysia 4-2

The Green Machine faced Malaysia in their second pool game of World League in Antwerp and it was a goal-filled encounter which saw Malaysia take the spoils.

The Malaysian side showed their pace and acceleration in the opening exchanges of the first quarter. Both sides created a few chances but it was Malaysia who converted first from a penalty corner. Ireland responded quickly with a shot hitting the post before Mitch Darling’s reverse stick shot was expertly deflected into the goal by Peter Caruth.

Malaysia began the second quarter with a goal from another well worked penalty corner routine but again Ireland responded and Shane O’Donoghue scored off an Irish penalty corner. Both goalies were called into action thanks to fast paced counter attacks but the half finished at 2-2.

The goals didn’t ease in the second half and Malaysia earned a penalty corner and duly converted off a rebounded ball. Another corner for Malaysia lead to a 4th goal, which was subsequently disallowed as the umpire felt the deflected ball had been struck over the backboard.

Kirk Shimmins won a penalty corner early in the final quarter which drew a terrific high stick save by the Malaysian keeper. The Malaysian counter attack and speed continued to look threatening but the Irish defence remained calm and dealt with the danger.  However a minute later the Green Machine conceded a penalty stroke, which David Harte expertly saved to keep the score at 3-2. The ever-dangerous Malaysian counter attack earned a 4th goal a minute later and the game finished at 4-2.

Speaking after the game Craig Fulton said “A disappointing result today but we played well for the majority of the match. We’ve got to correct a few things from today and we’re more than capable of doing that. We’ll go back and do some video work, and are looking forward to tomorrow’s match against China.”

Ireland’s next match against China is at 1pm Friday 25th June and will be shown live on Sky Sports 1.

Hockey World League Semi-Final  Antwerp

Final Score:

Malaysia 4 vs Ireland 2 (Caruth, O’Donoghue)


Harte, Jackson, Gormley, Magee, Caruth, Shimmins, O’Donoghue, Darling, Good, Gleghorne, Harte.


Fitzgerald, Bell, Watt, Cargo, Sothern, Dowds, Carlisle.

Irish Hockey Association media release

Ireland well beaten by Malaysia in Olympic hockey qualifier

Men’s side struggle defending set pieces in Belgium

Mitch Darling scored Ireland’s first equaliser in the Olympic qualifying tournament game against Malaysia in Belgium. Photo: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

Malaysia 4 Ireland 2
Ireland could not stage a comeback in the second match of their Olympic Qualifying tournament in Belgium.

Having drawn 2-2 with Britain in their first game after going behind, Ireland didn’t have the game to chase down Malaysia, who deservedly won the match from the front.

While Ireland hit the crossbar twice in the match, they fell behind in the 13th minute when Izwan put Malaysia ahead from their first penalty corner after some scrappy Irish defence.

The Malaysian set pieces were a menace to Ireland throughout the match and in the end they scored three of their goals from corners.

Three Rock Rovers’ Mitch Darling cracked in a back hand equaliser from play on 14 minutes to draw Ireland level 1-1 as the first quarter drew to a close.

But Malaysia were always threatening, especially on the counter attack, and minutes after the restart a low right flick from captain Rahim at the second penalty corner put them ahead once again.

Again hard-working Ireland hit back, this time from the first Irish set piece with Shane O’Donoghue dragging it low and right at 127 km/h for 2-2.

Malaysia, playing a fast attacking game, earned their fourth and fifth corners and once again they made them count, the initial shot from the fifth effort rebounding off goalkeeper David Harte’s pads and Mutalib diving in to clean up past him and the Irish line men for 3-2.

Harte was then forced to save a penalty as Malaysia went through their best phase of the match. But again another Asian counter-attack sealed Irish fate as Izwan collected and spun in the circle before flicking into an empty net for 4-2 with just five minutes remaining.

Ireland must regroup now and earn a result against China in their third match on Friday. A top four place in the pool is a must for Ireland if they are to keep Rio hopes alive. The higher the team finishes in the pool, the lower the team they face in the first of the crossover games.

Irish Times

Malaysia take top spot in pool B; Great Britain rout China

ANTWERP (Belgium): Izwan Firdaus scored two goals to propel Malaysia to a 4-2 victory over a strong Ireland side and surge to the top of Group B in men's Hockey World League Semifinals at the KHC Dragons here on Thursday.

Izwan scored in the 13th and 55th minute to help Malaysia spike the challenge from Ireland. Having earlier prevailed 3-2 over China, Malaysia now head the group with six points from two outings.

Captain Razie Rahim (16th minute) and Sukri Mutalib (39th) were the others shooting on target for Malaysia in a match that was tied 2-2 at half time with Ireland's goals coming from Peter Caruth (14th) and Shane O'Donoghue (19th).

Malaysia are one point ahead of Great Britain, whose 7-1 rout of China on Thursday gave them five points from three outings. Britain were held to identical 2-2 draws by hosts Belgium and Ireland in earlier outings.

Leading the British charge today were Nick Catlin, Sam ward and Mark Gleghorne, with two goals each, while star striker Ashley Jackson managed to open his account in the tournament with one strike in open play. Li Zecheng pulled one back for China.

Hosts Belgium, who are ranked fourth in the world, top Group A with four points from two outings, while Ireland have one point from two matches. China have lost all their three matches and will need to change the trend dramatically if they are to advance to the quarterfinals from the five-team pool.

In Group B, World champions Australia and India both have maximum six points from two outings, but Australia are the top of the pool with a far superior goal-difference.

After their loss to Australia yesterday, Pakistan are on three points from two matches and take on arch sub-continental hockey rivals India in the showpiece fixture on Friday.

France also seem heading for the quarterfinals after their victory over Poland, who have lost three successive matches and play world No.1 Australia in their final group outing on Friday.

The Times of India

Great Britain blitz China in World League rout

Mark Gleghorne for GB against China

Great Britain ran riot against the World No32 China, firing in eight goals to pick up their first win of the competition and sending them into Sunday’s clash with Malaysia in fine form. Doubles from Nick Catlin, Sam Ward and Mark Gleghorne alongside strikes from Ashley Jackson and Alastair Brogdon did the damage with Zecheng Li pulling one back for China.

Great Britain got off to the perfect start, taking the lead inside the first five minutes. Ashley Jackson broke free down the left and fed Barry Middleton who fired the ball goalwards. Although his shot was saved by Rui Xu, David Condon’s ball back across was tapped in on the volley by Nick Catlin. Xu then excelled himself with a fine save to block from Mark Gleghorne from close range as Great Britain hunted a second goal. Zhixuan Zhang broke into the circle with a lovely piece of skill and his shot hit a defender’s foot to win a penalty corner. Yixian Lu went for goal but George Pinner got down well to make the save and it stayed 1-0 at the break.

China threatened first in the second quarter and Middleton almost deflected the ball into his own net as he tried to clear. Great Britain hit back and doubled their advantage in the 18th minute. David Ames broke free and set up Middleton. His fierce shot was diverted past the goalkeeper by Sam Ward to open his account for the tournament. Mark Gleghorne then made it 3-0 with a low shot into the bottom corner from just inside the circle as Bobby Crutchley’s side continued to dominate their opponents.

China clawed one back late in the half. Tim Whiteman conceded a penalty corner, picking up a yellow card in the process and although Pinner saved the first effort Zecheng Li was on hand to slot in the rebound, making it 3-1 at the half time break.

Early in the third quarter Bobby Crutchley’s side cut China apart almost at will. Middleton almost set up David Condon with a pinpoint aerial pass but the East Grinstead man couldn’t get the ball under control and Xu made the save. Then Brogdon blazed over from the right side of the circle before they won their first penalty corner in the 36th minute. Up stepped Gleghorne to beat Xu with a powerful flick to the goalkeeper’s left for his second and GB’s fourth. China replaced Xu and brought on Rongyao Yan in goal but the substitute goalkeeper’s first action was to pick the ball out of the net after a searing backhand strike from Jackson made it 5-1. Brogdon seized on a mix-up in the Chinese defence to make it six and then immediately afterwards Michael Hoare’s cross was turned in by Ward to make it 7-1.

Great Britain won a penalty corner at the start of the final quarter. Gleghorne lined up in search of his hat-trick but his effort flew wide. It was 8-1 with just over five minutes to go. Catlin jinked past the defender and hit a bullet shot into the bottom corner to notch his second. Great Britain forced another corner but Jackson whipped his effort over the top. Ward almost grabbed his third with a deft deflection from a Jackson pass but the goalkeeper made a good save and the score remained 8-1 at the final whistle.

Great Britain’s next match is against Malaysia on Sunday 28 June at 13:00 UK time.

Quotes - Great Britain Captain Barry Middleton

Obviously 8-1 is a good result it’s what we’ve wanted after the first couple of results. I thought we did well. We put our game out there, we were patient, kept the ball and made them work hard. It’s hard work to win by seven goals and people don’t see that sometimes. We need to get some rest and take some time off. We’ll look at the video and prepare like we always do for the next game. We’ll try to put our game on them, control the play and be good around the circle.

Great Britain Head Coach – Bobby Crutchley

“We were good today. Early on they gave us some trouble but once we negated that we controlled the game. We could’ve been more clinical but we’re pleased to get some goals. It’s great to see our strikers get on the board, but generally it was good we got a game in quickly which allowed us to get frustrations out from the last match. Today it was important to put in a good performance. We’re not really worried about other results, we’re aiming to peak at the right time. We know these tournaments are about the key games and making sure you play well in those, so after a slow start hopefully we’re playing into form for the most important games. Malaysia next will be a difficult challenge. They’re experienced and played well today against Ireland. They play a different style but we’ll be going for another win and hopefully progressing and improving each game.”

Great Britain (8)
Nick Catlin 4, 55 (FG, FG)
Sam Ward 18, 43 (FG, FG)
Mark Gleghorne 23, 36 (FG, PC)
Ashley Jackson 38 (FG)
Alastair Brogdon 42 (FG)

China (1)
Zecheng Li 26 (PC)

Great Britain Hockey media release

Team GB crush China 8-1 to reach quarter-finals of World League semi-final in Antwerp

By Mike Haymonds

Nick Catlin celebrates with Ashley Jackson after scoring in the 8-1 win over China

DOUBLES from Nick Catlin, Sam Ward and Mark Gleghorne helped Great Britain's men to a crushing 8-1 win over China which clinched their quarter-final place at the World League semi-final, which is also an Olympic Qualifier, in Antwerp.

It was a dramatic turnround from their disappointing 2-2 draws with the hosts Belgium and Ireland in their opening group games and was a must win one.

It was only the second time GB had played China, the first a 5-0 victory in 1983 for the team that won bronze medals the following year in Los Angeles and gold in Seoul in 1988.

GB applied immediate pressure and Catlin struck in the fourth minute but the next goals did not come until the second quarter when Ward and Gleghorne netted within a minute.

A corner strike by Li Zecheng reduced the deficit for China but GB's goal rush resumed with four further strikes in the third quarter from Gleghorne, their only corner goal, Ashley Jackson, Alastair Brogdon and Ward.

A second for Catlin, five minutes before time, completed the rout.

GB coach Bobby Crutchley said: "We were good today. Early on they gave us some trouble but once we negated that we controlled the game.

"We could have been more clinical but we're pleased to get some goals. It's great to see our strikers get on the board but generally it was good we got a game in quickly which allowed us to get frustrations out from the last match.

"It was important to put in a good performance. We're not really worried about other results. We're aiming to peak at the right time. We know that these tournaments are about the key games and making sure you play well in those. So after a slow start hopefully we're playing into form for the important games.

Malaysia next (on Sunday) will be a difficult challenge. They are experienced and played well today against Ireland. They play a different style but we'll be going for another win and hopefully progressing and improving each game.

Mark Gleghorne said: "We're pretty pleased with today's result. We were not too bad in the draw with Belgium but we did not play well against Ireland.

"Today we put them under a lot of pressure. We were winning the ball high and creating breaks.

"Today we got into our game immediately and kept a high intensity in attack and defence. Our decision making was much better which put them on the back foot."

GB meet Malaysia in their final pool game on Sunday.

Daily Express

Great Britain men keep Olympic hopes on track with 8-1 China mauling

Great Britain make hay in latter stages with raft of goals as China put to the sword in Antwerp, Belgium

Back on song: Nick Catlin, right, celebrates with Great Britain captain Barry Middleton Photo: WORLDSPORTPICS.COM

Great Britain finally found their form in front of goal with an 8-1 win over China giving their World League Semi-final hopes a much-needed shot in the arm in Antwerp.

After conceding leads to draw their opening two matches there was little chance of a repeat against a team 26 places below them in the world rankings.

Having secured a 3-1 half-time lead thanks to goals from Nick Catlin, Sam Ward and Mark Gleghorne GB upped up the tempo in the third quarter.

In a seven-minute spell Gleghorne added a penalty corner and Ashley Jackson smashed home a fearsome reverse-stick before a defensive mix-up between goalkeeper and defender presented Alastair Brogden with an open goal and Ward got on the end of a move he had started for the seventh.

Catlin's drilled near-post finish five minutes from time completed the rout and, more importantly, eclipsed Belgium's 6-0 win over the same opponents.

The hosts are likely to be GB's main rivals for top spot in the pool but Saturday's encounter against current leaders Malaysia will be decisive.

"Eight-one is obviously a good result and I thought we did well," said captain Barry Middleton in his post-match interview.

"It is hard work when you win by seven goals but people don't see that some times."

• GB had played China only once before - winning in Hong Kong in 1983 - thanks to a brace from Sean Kerly and David Westcott.

The Telegraph

Poland crash out of World Hockey League

by S. Ramaguru

ANTWERP: The quarter-finalists from Group A of the World Hockey League Semi-Finals in Belgium are virtually confirmed.

World champions Australia, India, Pakistan and France have made it. Poland, who have lost all three matches thus far, are the unlucky team.

On Wednesday, Australia routed Pakistan 6-1 to top Group A while France recorded their first win with a 4-1 triumph over Poland.

The Pakistanis gave the Australians a hard time in the early stages, including pulling level after the world champions had taken an early lead.

In the end, though, Australia showed their true class to romp home easy winners.

Australia took the lead when Jacob Whetton finished off a brilliant team move in the ninth minute.

Pakistan took just five minutes to restore parity through a Mohamed Irfan penalty corner.

The Australians stepped up their game considerably in the third quarter and went 3-1 up with goals from Daniel Beale (32nd minute) and Matthew Swann (42nd).

Veteran forward Jamie Dwyer made it 4-1 in the 49th minute before Blake Govers sealed a comfortable victory with a brace in the 54th and 58th minutes.

In the other Group A game, two penalty corner drag-flicks by Victor Charlet enabled France to collect their first points in the tournament.

A penalty stroke conversion by Hugo Genestet in the 25th minute got the ball rolling for the French.

Charlet made it 2-0 in the 43rd minute before finding the net again two minutes from the end.

The other French goal came through Jean-Laurent Kieffe in the 56th minute.

Maciej Wejezowski scored for the Poles in the 45th minute.

The Star of Malaysia

India plays Pakistan today


With six points in the kitty from two successive victories, the second surfacing against Poland in a convincing manner, India locks horns with the traditional challenger, Pakistan, in a needle contest today in the HWL semi-final league at Antwerp.

No clash between India and Pakistan in hockey has ever remained uneventful. The only predictability is the unpredictability of the outcome.

But the matches have always produced a different depth, dimension and design leading to millions across the globe looking forward to the feast, notwithstanding the numerous occasions culminating in bitterness and blame games.

Therefore it is not difficult to conclude that the heat will be at its peak tomorrow when the match number 162 since 1947 takes off. Interestingly, the record rests with Pakistan with 80 victories in its favor and 52 defeats. Eighty matches have concluded with a result.

Statistics, however fascinating, hardly compensate for the romance of action on the field. India is determined to wipe off the stain of defeat sustained in front of the home crowd in the semi-finals of the Champions Trophy at Bhubaneswar in December last year.

However, the fragrance of victory in the Asian Games at Incheon lingers on even now. It must be mentioned that India lost the match to Pakistan in the league stage of the competition.

The Indian team is just settling to a rhythm after a rusty opening game against France. The 3-0 win over Poland certainly has raised hopes of a semi-final berth.

What has impressed everyone so far is the splendid showing of the two young Walmiki brothers, Devinder and Yuvaraj. They were outstanding against Poland and Devinder had a memorable debut by scoring against France.

While the sheet anchor for the team continues to be the relentless attacker Sardar Singh from the mid-field, there is still a lacuna in the harmony displayed in the mid-field. Goalkeeper, Sreejesh has been a tower of strength, but the deep defense looks vulnerable.

As coach Paul van Ass admitted the team is missing the role of the penalty corner striker Rupinder owing to injury. Yet this fantastic hitter gave India the match winner against France in the first game.

Desperate to be in the world reckoning after missing the berth for the last World Cup, Pakistan’s fortunes took a disastrous turn on Wednesday when the reigning champion pumped in six goals conceding one in the Pool match.

After a struggle against Poland in the opening match, Pakistan’s defeat raises grave misgivings against India tomorrow.

Meanwhile, the women’s team cornered some degree of merit scoring a 3-1 victory over Poland thanks to the brace by Ritu Rani. India did well to restrict the home team to a solitary goal in the opening match. Only the Kiwis proved too good for the Indian girls.

The results: Men: June 24: Pool A: Australia beat Pakistan 6-1; France beat Poland 4-1; Pool B: Belgium beat China 6-0;

WOMEN: Pool A: Italy beat France 4-0: Pool B: Australia beat Belgium 2-0; INDIA beat Poland 3-1.

Thyagarajan's Facebook page

Pak vs India first time after rude gestures hit clash

Pakistan hockey player Shakeep Butt Ammad gestures to spectators to keep quiet as he and teammates celebrate their win over India in the Champions Trophy 2014 semifinal. (AFP Photo)

Indian hockey fans won't forget in a hurry the last time their team played Pakistan — neither the loss nor its aftermath.

Pakistan players let emotions get the better of them after beating India 4-3 in the Champions Trophy semi-final in December 2014.

The crowd in Kalinga Stadium in Odisha capital Bhubaneswar watched aghast as Pakistani players taunted them with rude gestures including a raised middle finger.

The manner of celebrations by the victorious Pakistani team led to a few suspensions.

That evening on the sports field had a backstory. Barely two months earlier, India had beaten Pakistan in a thrilling shoot-out to win the Asian Games gold and earn a direct berth to the 2016 Olympics in Rio.  

Come Friday, the two teams meet for the first time since that clash in Bhubaneswar: in Pool A of the Hockey World League Semifinals.

Coming into the event, the Indians are a relatively relaxed bunch and coach Paul van Ass is trying out options. The stakes, however, are much higher for Pakistan. They are yet to seal their spot in the Olympics.

India could afford not to field their best squad in the HWL semifinals, which otherwise is the last chance for some teams to qualify for the Olympics.

The top 4 sides from the 10-team tournament will proceed to the HWL Final to be played in November-December in India. The top-3 teams will qualify for the Rio Olympics.

But some teams ranked slightly lower may also get a chance if any of the countries also feature in the five places available to winners of continental tournaments.

Form book

Going into the contest, both India and Pakistan's strikers have been erratic and wayward.

India have won their first two outings against France (3-2) and Poland (3-0) but van Ass' wards were far from impressive.

Pakistan, on the other hand, managed to beat Poland 2-1 before being outplayed by Australia. The Australians hammered Pakistan 6-1 after being 1-1 at half-time.

Indian captain Sardar Singh said even though their Rio Olympic berth was secured, they wanted to take this opportunity to produce some positive results ahead of the World League Finals. "We want to win against Pakistan ahead of the game against World champions Australia the next day."

For coach van Ass, to be a part of an Indo-Pak contest, is a new experience.

"It's going to be my first experience of an India-Pakistan hockey encounter. But during the 2010 World Cup in Delhi, I saw the excitement it causes," the former Dutch national coach said.

The showstopper encounter between Asian Games champions India and Champions Trophy silver medallists Pakistan has raised the stakes in the diamond city of Antwerp.

For both India and Pakistan, a victory in this preliminary pool match will pave the way for a favourable quarterfinal draw.

Hindustan Times

India faces Pak test in HWL semifinals on Friday

Indian men's hockey team during a training session in Antwerp, Belgium. File photo   

For both India and Pakistan, a victory in this preliminary pool match will pave the way for a favourable quarterfinal draw.

After two unconvincing wins, a misfiring India face their first real test when they take on arch-rivals Pakistan in a much-anticipated Pool A encounter of Hockey World League Semifinals, in Antwerp on Friday.

The showstopper encounter between Asian Games champions India and Champions Trophy silver medallists Pakistan has raised the stakes in the diamond city of Antwerp.

The misfiring Indians enjoy the luxury of having already qualified for the 2016 Olympic Games, but Pakistan has promised to go all-out into attack in Friday’s sub-continental contest.

For both India and Pakistan, a victory in this preliminary pool match will pave the way for a favourable quarterfinal draw.

Tomorrow’s match is also the first encounter between the sub-continental hockey rivals since their clash in the tense, incident-marred Champions Trophy semifinals in Bhubaneswar, where some gestures during onfield celebrations by the victorious Pakistani team lead to a few suspensions.

There remains some palpable tension between the teams over that incident, but on Friday both the side would seek to showcase the attractive sub-continental style of hockey.

Going into the contest, both India and Pakistan’s strikers have been erratic and wayward.

India has won both their first two outings against France (3-2) and Poland (3-0) but Paul van Ass’ wards were far from impressive.

Pakistan, on the other hand, managed to beat Poland 2-1 before being outplayed by Australia.

Australia hammered Pakistan 6-1 on Wednesday evening after being 1-1 level at half-time.

India captain Sardar Singh said even though their Rio Olympic berth is secured, they want to take this opportunity produce some positive results ahead of the World League Finals, to be played at home at the end of the year.

“We want to win against Pakistan ahead of the game against World champions Australia the next day,” said Sardar.

For India’s new chief coach Paul van Ass to be a part of an Indo-Pak contest comes as a completely new experience.

“It’s going to be my first experience of an India-Pakistan hockey encounter. But during the 2010 World Cup in Delhi, I saw the excitement it causes,” said Van Ass, a former Dutch national coach.

Van Ass says he had only seen the current Pakistan team on television before the ongoing tournament, but insisted India were focused on their own game.

“We need to control the ball well and our penalty corners ought to be better executed,” said Van Ass, who has used the tournament to try out new strategies and also some young players.

“The young boys always give lots of energy,” he said.

Several injuries to some key players and the new coach’s plan to test juniors is the reason India are not here in full strength.

In comparison, Pakistan have a well-settled side, which is here in full strength.

“Our lineup has not changed since the Incheon Asian Games and the Champions Trophy at Bhubaneswar last year,” said Pakistan coach Shahnaz Sheikh, a former captain and Olympian himself, who was also the coach at the Asian Games and Champions Trophy.

“We have a lot at stake in this tournament,” said Shahnaz, seeking to play down the controversy about over-the-top celebrations that followed the last encounter between the two neighbours.

“Let bygones be bygones and let’s put up a fine exhibition of hockey,” said Shahnaz.

“We want to win this one to improve our position in the group and get a good draw in the quarterfinals,” said Shahnaz.

For Pakistan this tournament is the last opportunity to qualify for the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, having lost the Asian Games gold medal to India, who thus became the first team to secure passage to next year’s quadrennial event.

Three Olympic qualification spots are available to the top-placed teams from this competition, but some sides ranked slightly lower may also get a chance if any of the countries also feature in the five places available to winners of continental tournaments.

Pakistan have played at every Olympics since their first appearance in 1948, but they failed to feature in the 2014 World Cup, an event that they have won more times than any other country.

The top three teams in this tournament will also advance to the World League Final in India in December.

The Hindu

India meet Pakistan in explosive Hockey World League encounter

ANTWERP: Six months after their controversial and tempestuous Champions Trophy semifinal in Bhubaneswar, eternal arch-rivals Pakistan and India meet once again, this time in a highly anticipated Pool A encounter of the Hockey World League Semifinals on Friday.

Having beaten the hosts 4-3, thanks to a goal in the dying stages of that match, the Pakistani players engaged in over the top celebrations. Amjad Ali and Mohammed Tousiq even waved their middle finger to the crowd that resulted to the crowd that resulted in them getting suspended for the final against Germany.

That game and India's Asian Games final victory over Pakistan in Incheon has added spice to an already hyped contest. India, who have won their first two games against France (3-2) and Poland (3-0), in rather unconvincing fashion, face their first real test, against an opposition that has beaten them in two of their previous three meetings.

While Sardar Singh's side have already qualified for the 2016 Olympics thanks to their win in the Asian Games, a match against Pakistan is enough motivation to get the competitive juices flowing among his boys.

For both teams, a victory in this match will pave the way for a favourable quarterfinal draw. Pakistan, however, will find themselves under pressure given the fact that they scraped to a 2-1 win over Poland, and got hammered 6-1 by Australia.

Sardar Singh said that even though there's not much at stake for his team in this tournament, they are keen to take this opportunity to produce positive results ahead of the World League Finals.

"We want to win against Pakistan ahead of the game against World Champions Australia," said Sardar.

For India's new chief coach Paul van Ass, to be a part of an Indo-Pak contest, comes as a completely new experience. "It's going to be my first experience of an India-Pakistan hockey encounter. But during the 2010 World Cup in Delhi, I saw the excitement it causes," said Van Ass.

The Times of India

‘Pakistan need to be sensible against India’

Mohammad Yaqoob

"We need to avoid letting emotions get the better of us against India - Photo courtesy FIH

LAHORE: Former Olympian and Pakistan head coach Khwaja Junaid reckons the national hockey team need to play sensibly against India in their crucial match of the Hockey League Semi-finals in Antwerp on Friday.

Talking to Dawn on Thursday, a day after Pakistan were thrashed 6-1 by Australia, Junaid said: “We need to play a very sensible game against India.

“We played an ill-planned game against the Australians and now we need to avoid letting emotions get the better of us against India. We need to avoid forced errors as the Indians will go all out in involving our players in a physical game.”

The HWL semi-finals present Pakistan a last chance to qualify for next year’s Rio Olympics and Junaid said that Pakistan shouldn’t have gone for a victory against Australia.

“Australia and India have already secured their berths in the Olympics and our priority should’ve been to lessen the margin of defeat against Australia,” he said.

“Pakistan are a better side than India but the only difference is that the Indians have already punched their tickets to Rio so they can be more relaxed.

“Against India, attacks should be coordinated and the whole team should go forward rather than a lone individual. Pakistan should start with a counter-attacking approach against India and not allow them to build up pressure.”

Junaid added that Pakistan have a solid goalkeeper in Imran Butt and have good experience in their ranks.

“Imran was great against Australia and saved no less than four goals in the opening two quarters,” he said. “We capitulated afterwards though and couldn’t hold onto possession against the Aussies.”

India qualified for the Olympics after beating Pakistan in the final of last year’s Asian Games in Incheon, South Korea. Pakistan, however, won the last game between the two sides when they beat India 4-3 in the semi-finals of the Champions Trophy in December.


Stats Speak :India-Pakistan Hockey Highlights

By B.G.Joshi

Sehore-Bhopal, India: India-Pakistan’s hockey match is special feast to hockey enthusiasts in the globe. Players of both the team play with hearts and shows exemplary skills to win the match. Today in Antwerp pool A match between these giants is inconsequential, as both Asian giants have booked their quarterfinals tickets.

However as usual exciting match on the card. Here are important stats and records of India-Pakistan’s Hockey matches:

  • It is match number 162, so far India have won 52; Pakistan wins 80; remaining 29 were drawn.
  • Antwerp is 64 venue of India-Pakistan match.
  • On neutral venue in 90 matches India wins 29; Pakistan wins 43; remaining 18 were drawn.
  • Sohail Abbas is all time top scorers with 53 goals. For Indian point of view Sandeep Singh has netted most 21 goals.
  • Dhanraj Pillay is the only player, who have scored hat trick in final match in 5-2 triumph in Chennai SAF Games 1995.
  • Mohd. Shahid is most successful, winning 6 out of 15 matches played under his captainship.
  • On Friday (prayer day of Muslims) it is 32nd match today, highest in week days.  So far in 31 matches Pakistan wins 18; India wins 6 and 7 were drawn. However India had registered first ever biggest win by 7-4 in Amstelveen Champions Trophy league match on Aug 22, 2003, which was Friday. On Oct 10, 2010 India also beats Pakistan by 7-4 in New Delhi Commonwealth Games on Sunday.
  • 27 title matches has been played between India-Pakistan. India wins 12, whereas Pakistan 15. In last title match at Incheon (South Korea), India won in shoot out and entered in Rio Olympics (2016) being Asian Games Champions. Pakistan have to win medal in Antwerp for entry in Rio Olympics.


Total hockey is doing the trick for India

Cedric D’Souza

The Indian men's team continues its winning streak in the Hockey World League semifinal with two wins in two games - a 3-2 victory against France in their opener and a 3-0 win against Poland in their second game. In both games one could visibly witness the Paul Van Ass methodology of total hockey where the team moves up as a single unit in attack and retreats as a single unit in defence.

It is truly heartening to see that the team is slowly but surely integrating into the new system. So far possession in the enemy half has been really high and this leads to numerous circle penetrations and shots at goal, yet I do sincerely believe that the percentages of possession to circle penetrations and ultimately shots at goal can and should definitely increase. In the end it's not about how much possession you have but how many goals you score.

After having closely studied both the games, I feel, I need to make a critical but constructive analysis especially with regards to the conceding of goals. We did let in 2 against France. The first goal was started on our 23 right hand side where the French player Hugo Genestet cut into the circle and was pressured and channeled wide by Jasjit Kullar to the base line. Genestet's intention was to pass the ball across the goal mouth for a tip in - but Shreejesh saved and the ball rebounded to the top of the circle where Olivier shot the rebound home.

Although we were more in numbers there was:

* A lack of communication

*The double teaming of defence where the support player Bimal Lakra had to step up and meet the man on the forehand did not happen although the channeling of the attacker by our player Jasjit Kullar pressurizing him along the base line was really well done.

* Two defenders Bimal Lakra and Chinglensana were standing on the reverse and not one on the reverse and one on the fore

* We were caught ball watching

* We left one of their players totally free

* Sreejesh should have closed down the space quicker once he gave the rebound

The second goal started deep in the enemy half near the 23 meter line, and again though two players pressured their ball carrier by Nikkin Thimmaiah from the back and Ramandeep Singh from the side the French played a long route one ball to the midfield where Lalit Upadhay chased and pressured their midfielder who was running towards the 23. The ball was switched to the right where Tom Genestet leading on the right beat Gurmail with a deft dink over the stick and Martin Simon Brisac who was in the circle shot off the back foot into the goal beating Sreejesh at the near post.

Again although we were more in numbers there was:

* Bad positioning in the double teaming of Nikkin and Ramandeep

* Lalit who was in the midfield was also out of position and so the route one ball was easily played

* Although Lalit pressured their player who was approaching the 23, Jasjit Kullar stayed rooted and did not move up to tackle - so our double teaming was again not properly done

* Gurmail was too deep on the left when the ball was switched to Tom Genestet

* Sreejesh's shuffle to his left should have been quicker as he conceded on his first angle.

However in the game against Poland, India really pulled up their socks both in ball possession and non-ball possession. In ball possession:

* The ball speed was much faster

* The final pass which has been quite a perennial problem was really much better

* There was no unnecessary carrying of the ball but quick one touch passes

* The creation of space by off the ball running and leading into deep pockets was top notch

* the control and dictating of pace was clearly visible

While in non-ball possession:

*The double teaming was really good

*The communication of a very high order

*The closing down was really quick

*The getting back on turnovers was super

The way we scored the three goals showed total team work and cohesion. Yuvraj Walmiki scored the first - it was his presence of mind and quick hands flicking over the keeper Matuszak who was closing him down. Captain Sardar Singh the second - controlling the midfield found ample space on his left as he beat the Polish defenders and fired a tomahawk that flew straight through goalkeepers Matuszaks pads. Devinder Walmiki the third - shaking his marker to receive a measured pass from Chinglensana and deflect home from the top of the circle.

Controlled aggression the mantra against Pakistan

We now play 10th-ranked Pakistan in our next fixture and as we all know this is the game that receives the most hype, creates the most emotion and fires each and every player to different heights. The key is how does one control his emotions, stick to the plan and not get carried away by the crowd or the frenzy this game creates. In short, 'controlled aggression'.

In addition to the manner we played against Poland, I would like to see our team's defence compressing and closing out the centre in non-ball possession. Whilst in ball possession, would like the strikers to move in front of the defender to receive a long pass, use the width (stretch the defence) then switch play (move the defence) and then fire long hits into the circle, throw long aerials especially when the Pakistan players move into our 23 and target Md Imran their captain who though has good positioning and game sense is slow in his recovery.

Another aspect that should be considered is that whilst in ball possession we must be strong on the ball while carrying it and strikers leading up and wide, so that the centre is available for Sardar to exploit.

Last but not least they have a back door pass in their penalty corner routine so our charge outs must be aware of this and run accordingly.

We must remember we are on the road to Olympic Glory and so maintaining our winning streak is the focus. In the end this match against Pakistan is all about "Mind over matter".

The Times of India

Stats don’t bother Belgium in clash with Malaysia

by S. Ramaguru

ANTWERP: The statistics may favour Malaysia but try telling world No. 4 Belgium that.

The two countries have met 26 times. Malaysia won 14 matches, Belgium five and seven were drawn.

Belgium, however, are not bothered about the numbers ahead of their clash against Malaysia in the World Hockey League Semi-Finals Group B game on Friday.

The hosts are second in Group B with four points, after a 2-2 draw with Britain and 6-0 hammering of China.

Malaysia are top with the full six points after victories over China (3-2) on Sunday and Ireland (4-2) on Thursday.

Belgium have, in recent years, developed into a fast and attack-oriented side feared by the top teams.

They finished fifth in the World Cup last year but have since moved up a rung in the world rankings.

Malaysia did play against Belgium twice during their European tour last month. Belgium won one and drew the other.

Officially, though, their last international face-off was at last year’s World Cup group phase, which the Belgians won 6-2.

Dutchman Marc Lammers coached the Belgians then.

The team are now handled by another well-known Dutchman – former international defender Jeroen Delmee.

There are 10 players in the current Belgium side with 100 caps or more.

They are John-John Dohmen (280 caps), Jerome Truyens (270), Thomas Briels (220), Felix Denayer (190), Tom Boon (170), Simon Gougnard (160), Eliot van Strydonck (130), goalkeeper Vincent Vanasch (110), Florent van Aubel (110) and Loick Luypaert (100).

But it’s the free-scoring Boon who is the player to watch out for in this tournament.

The Malaysians should know him well.

He scored a hat-trick in the 6-2 win at the World Cup.

“We are looking forward to playing Malaysia.

“Our aim here is to win every match and to top the group,” said Boon.
“We have a good line-up. We had a slight blip against Britain ... but we’re still on the right track.”

The Star of Malaysia

The French connection

By Jugjet Singh

THE French women's hockey team are not Olympic contenders in Belgium, but their determination to play hockey is a story by itself.

They were one of the teams, including Malaysia, who received an invitation to replace Azerbaijan who disappeared in transit in Turkey.

And while Malaysia, Belarus and Chile turned it down due to distance and logistics -- the French women packed their bags in haste, put on a thin layer of make-up and dashed from their base in Lille to arrive in Antwerp still looking fresh and pretty in one hour and 30 minutes.

That was the easiest part of their journey to play the game they love most, but have yet to master.

Upon arrival, the French were mauled 11-0 by the Netherlands, and the very next day, they were hit 6-1 by Japan.

This scribe then met their coach Steven Colledge, an Australian, by chance and after a few drinks he opened up.

Colledge then told of how much they had to sacrifice when the International Hockey Federation (FIH) offered them the Azerbaijan slot.

First, they were lucky because three quarter of the team are based in Lille, which is just a short drive from Antwerp, and all the coach needed to do was make a few calls and the ladies were at his doorstep.

But they were not ready to face the Netherlands and went crashing. And after the Dutch match, six of the French ladies packed a smaller bag and rushed back to Lille, to sit for examinations, and go to work.

They six rushed back just in time for the the Japan match, after which it was off to Lille again for school and work.

They had a two day break where only about 10 players stayed back to train, while the rest did their schools and work run commute.

Colledge lamented that while women's hockey is not big in France, his ladies have a big heart and took the missing Azerbaijan opportunity without hesitating because opportunities to play against the higher ranked teams are rare for them.

Malaysia were just too far away to take up the FIH offer, but if they had scrambled the Sea Games team and asked the FIH to push back some of their matches, the experience would have been invaluable as Malaysia did play in the World League Round Two -- to try and enter the WL Semifinals but failed.

The French boys were not as fortunate though.

France beat Malaysia on penalty strokes in the semi-finals of the Junior World Cup in New Delhi, but the silver medallists will not be in next year's edition in New Delhi again.

The reason -- they were relegated to the second rung of the European Championships and will not get a chance to compete in the Junior World Cup qualifier which is only for teams in the first rung of the European Championships.

For Malaysian Juniors, four slots will be made available for New Delhi in the Junior Asia Cup in Kuantan in November -- and for sure coach Arul Selvaraj's boys will be among the semi-finalists together with India, Pakistan and South Korea/Japan.

A missed opportunity for the Malaysian women, but invaluable experience for the French ladies. 

Jugjet's World of Field Hockey

Crazy days ahead in Toronto

Sarah Juggins and Stephen Findlater, for PAHF

For Uruguay and Canada women's teams at the Hockey World League Semi-Finals in Valencia, the top-flight international event was both a baptism of fire and a reckoner. One dead certainty to emerge from the competition: both teams will be raring to go in Toronto. "We will go crazy at the Pan Ams," was Canadian captain Kate Gillis' promise.

In Valencia, Uruguay finished bottom of the 10 teams, beaten in the 9/10th play-offs by their north American rivals in a spirited 2-0 game, but with the two teams ranked 29th and 20th respectively, the results were no great surprise.

What was perhaps a surprise to many in the hockey world, was how quickly both teams adapted to life in the top flight. Janine Stanley expressed it best. "When we came here we had very little experience of video referrals, we have very little experience on water-based pitches, we were playing top-flight teams whose athletes are in full-time training, but we competed well."

For Kate Gillis, captain of the Canadian team, ninth place was definitely not where they wanted to finish. "We had a tough tournament and didn’t finish where we wanted to. But it was important for us to finish on a good note and go into the Pan Ams on a high."

Until that final win over Uruguay, Canada had failed to get any points on the board, finishing the pool in last place with 16 goals against them and just two – albeit against a strong Great Britain team – to their name. The most devastating loss for the squad in terms of a missed opportunity was a 3-0 to Spain, a game the team had targeted as a winnable match. Prior to that, they and suffered a 6-0 mauling at the hands of Argentina and a 3-0 loss to China.

In the immediate aftermath of the Spanish game, the Canadian players were inconsolable, but two days after the event, Gillis had regained perspective: “We had a great opportunity to learn from a bunch of teams. This was the first time we have played a whole group of teams at this level. Usually, we play Argentina and the USA in different circumstances. But here, every game, we play an amazing team. We can learn from ourselves and also from the other teams."

Janine Stanley had a similar take on the competition. "Look, we came here as 29th in the world, we played against the best teams and we didn't disgrace ourselves. In fact, against South Africa (a 1-1 draw) we could have won the game and against Ireland we came close (3-2). Both those teams are ranked much higher. (South Africa is currently ranked 11th and Ireland is ranked 14th)."

"We will go back to Uruguay with more confidence, more experience of top level hockey and with an awareness of just how fast this game can be played. Over the course of this competition, well you saw, we got better with each game."

Uruguay certainly won admirers for their performances in Valencia. For a country that has no water-based pitch to train on, they adapted quickly to conditions. "Our learning curve was huge," says Stanley, "every game we discovered new things about ourselves and about the team as a whole."

Both Canada and Uruguay came to the tournament as prepared as resources would allow. For Uruguay this meant training every day since February and then a three week camp in Valencia prior to the tournament to get used to the pitch. "Our players, they work or they are students so the training has to take place in the evenings," said Stanley. "Sometimes we would train really late at night, but this is the sacrifice we have to make."

With four players at 20 or under in the squad, Uruguay are definitely a team to watch in the future. Constanza Barrandeguy and Milagros Algorta were particularly impressing in Valencia. "Yes, we have a lot of young players and we are committed," says Stanley. "We are targeting a semi-final place at the Pan-American Games this year, and that will draw more attention to hockey from the government."

She explains that the economy at large plays a big part in hockey's development in Uruguay. "We are a small country, and not a wealthy country, so our infrastructure is poor. When we take part in big tournaments like the Hockey World League, that gets us noticed and hopefully, our federation will be able to get more resources."

Canada also has an inexperienced team. Gillis points out that the highest number of caps for any Canadian player is 130, which is "average" for the top 10 teams. While this is good for the future of the team, she says, it has meant that the young players have had to grow up quickly in Valencia. “We have had a lot turnover of players in the last couple of years so it is hard to sustain experience, which to us would mean the world. We are trying to get as much experience as we can but you can’t put a fast-forward button on that. Even though we are young, if we can keep the same group and build common experience and common exposure, we can progress a bit quicker."

The Canadian Hockey Federation has been investing in its hockey teams, both men's and women's, increasing the back room staff and the professionalism in the team's support network. “There’s been a big push for our staff members to be more involved and doing more roles," says Gillis. "Before, we had staff doing three roles and it didn’t work out well. Now, we have a nutritionist, physiologist, our own physiotherapist. That level of professionalism has come into our sport and helped us to get to places like this."

Combine this new level of support, the experience gained by their players at the Hockey World League and the fact that, like Uruguay, Canada is a relatively young team, and you can see why Gillis is optimistic about her team's prospects in the future. Asked about her thoughts on Canada's immediate prospects at this year's Pan American Games, she says: "We can test the top sides and cause a shock. We take every game as an opportunity to play our best and if we do that, we look to win. We have Argentina in the pool so we want to use the info from how we played them here, see what we can change and bring it to the pool play.

“We’ve been lucky to be at the Hockey World League Semi-Finals and have this exposure to all three Pan Am teams before the event (Uruguay, USA and Argentina) and hopefully we will bring a different style of play and cause a few shocks. One of the things about the Hockey World League Semi-Finals is that we have learnt we can compete at this level. Knowing that, coming into each game feeling confident, knowing we can move the ball around the back really well. We now know we can play a high intensity game and go crazy at the Pan Ams."

While Argentina and the USA currently dominate the Pan American hockey scene, fans of the game will be delighted to see just how fast the challengers to their dominance are growing into their role. The support and awareness of field hockey in both Canada and Uruguay is growing, something that Gillis thinks can only be helped by the forthcoming Pan Am Games. "Hopefully, we can grow the sport and having the Pan Am Games at home in Toronto will be huge for people to come and watch. We want them to see what field hockey is all about because, obviously, Canada is more known for its ice hockey.

“A lot of people in Canada have never heard of field hockey. We are centralised in Vancouver because of the weather where it’s not as harsh and you can play almost all year round. Toronto has a big base too. With the Ireland series we had before coming here, we had friends and family out and we are slowly gaining fans and exposure. Once people start to know what it’s about, it can really take off in Canada. Now it’s all about ice hockey and soccer and we’re hoping to bring it to the people and show them what we can do. Show them how fast the game can be!"

Pan American Hockey Federation media release

Our Turf, Our Time: Men's team named for 2015 Pan Am Games

Men open tournament on July 14 vs Brazil

Shaheed Devji

The Canadian Olympic Committee (COC) and Field Hockey Canada have announced the sixteen men who have been selected to represent Canada at the TORONTO 2015 Pan American Games from July 10 to 26 in Toronto, Ontario.

The Pan American Games field hockey competition, which will be held at the new Pan Am Fields at the University of Toronto, serves as an official 2016 Olympic Games qualifying tournament, with both the men’s and women’s winner earning a spot at the Summer Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil next summer.

"Our guys have worked extremely hard to prepare for the Pan American Games,” says Men’s National Team Head Coach Anthony Farry. “Contending for a major title on our own turf will be a wonderful opportunity to showcase our sport to our home fans and to continue to prepare for our ultimate goal of competing at the Olympic Games."

Canada’s roster is highlighted by veterans Scott Tupper and David Jameson, both of whom have played more than two-hundred international matches, and veteran goalkeeper David Carter, who was named the Player and Goalkeeper of the Tournament at the 2015 World League Semifinals in Buenos Aires, Argentina.

"It will be a big honour to play in front of a home crowd in Toronto,” says Tupper. “We rarely get to play major events with a grandstand full of Canadians, and I'm sure that support will help drive our performance throughout the tournament."

The men are coming off a strong showing in Argentina, where they finished fourth after defeating two teams – Spain (11th) and New Zealand (7th) – higher in the World Rankings.

The Men’s National Team, currently fifteenth in the field hockey world ranking, will enter the tournament as the second ranked team, behind only Argentina (World No.6). Canada and Argentina have met in the last ten Pan Am Games finals, with Argentina wining in 2011 and Canada in 2007.

The Canadian men begin play on July 14th at 7pm ET against Brazil. Click here for Canada's tournament schedule.

Canada will field the largest team in its Pan American Games history with more than 700 athletes expected to be named to the Team at the Games in Toronto. With TORONTO 2015 providing a “home Games” experience, as well as a number of qualification opportunities for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, these Games will offer a tremendous experience for Canada’s high performance athletes.






Adam Froese


Abbotsford, BC


Ben Martin


Vancouver, BC


Brenden Bissett


New Westminster, BC


David Carter


Vancouver, BC


David Jameson


Vancouver, BC


Devohn Noronha-Teixeira


Mississauga, ON


Gabriel Ho-Garcia


Burnaby, BC


Gordon Johnston


Vancouver, BC


Iain Smythe


Vancouver, BC


Mark Pearson


Tsawwassen, BC


Matthew Guest


Calgary, AB


Matthew Sarmento


Vancouver, BC


Paul Wharton


Vancouver, BC


Scott Tupper*


Vancouver, BC


Sukhi Panesar


Surrey, BC


Taylor Curran


North Vancouver, BC




Head Coach – Anthony Farry (Canberra, ACT, Australia)

Assistant Coach – Paul Bundy (Vancouver, BC)

Team Manager – Celia Plottel (Vancouver, BC)

Physiotherapist – Joshua Ferguson (Melbourne, Australia)

Performance Analyst – Paul Mounter (Vancouver, BC)

Team Doctor – Dr. Navin Prasad (Vancouver, BC)

Sports Psychologist – Dr. Bruce Pinel (Victoria, BC)


Assistant Umpire Manager - Chris Wilson

Judge - Ozias D'Souza

Technical Officer - Tony Stewart  

Umpire - Gavin Caldecott

Field Hockey Canada media release

Our Turf, Our Time: Women's team named for 2015 Pan Am Games

Women open tournament on July 13 vs Dominican Republic

Shaheed Devji

The Canadian Olympic Committee (COC) and Field Hockey Canada have announced the sixteen women who have been selected to represent Canada at the TORONTO 2015 Pan American Games from July 10 to 26 in Toronto, Ontario.

The Pan American Games field hockey competition, which will be held at the new Pan Am Fields at the University of Toronto, serves as an official 2016 Olympic Games qualifying tournament, with both the men’s and women’s winner earning a spot at the Summer Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil next summer.

“We’ve played a number of the top teams in the world of the last two years, now it’s the last opportunity we have to qualify for the 2016 Olympics,” says Women’s National Team Head Coach Ian Rutledge. “The team we’ve picked represents the best sixteen players in the country at this time for us achieve that goal.”

The Canadian roster is led by captain Kate Gillis, who is from Kingston, Ontario, and vice-captains Thea Culley (Rossland, BC) and Danielle Hennig (Kelowna, BC). Culley is the Canadian women’s active cap leader with 136 senior matches to her name.

“To play for Canada on home soil is something I have been looking forward to ever since Toronto was named as host for the 2015 Pan American Games,” says Gillis, who is from Kingston, Ontario, and is one of three Eastern Canadian athletes named to the team. “Wearing the maple leaf on your chest and representing your country is an indescribable feeling of pride.”

“To be able to share that with our family and friends of a home crowd dawning the red and white, with an opportunity to qualify for the Olympics, will be an unforgettable experience.”

The Women’s National, currently twentieth in the field hockey world ranking, enters the tournament as the third ranked team, behind Argentina (World No.3) and the United States (World No.5). The Canadian women begin competition on July 13th against the Dominican Republic. Click here for Canada's full tournament schedule.

The Canadian women last medaled in 1999 in Winnipeg, the last time a Pan American Games was held in Canada.

Canada will field the largest team in its Pan American Games history with more than 700 athletes expected to be named to the Team at the Games in Toronto. With TORONTO 2015 providing a “home Games” experience, as well as a number of qualification opportunities for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, these Games will offer a tremendous experience for Canada’s high performance athletes.






Senior Caps

Abigail Raye


Kelowna, BC


Alex Thicke


Vancouver, BC


Amanda Woodcroft


Waterloo, ON


Brienne Stairs


Kitchener, ON


Danielle Hennig*


Kelowna, BC


Hannah Haughn


North Vancouver, BC


Holly Stewart


North Vancouver, BC


Kaitlyn Williams


White Rock, BC


Karli Johansen


North Vancouver, BC


Kate Gillis**


Kingston, ON


Maddie Secco


Victoria, BC


Natalie Sourisseau


Kelowna, BC


Sara McManus


Tsawwassen, BC


Shanlee Johnston


Vancouver, BC


Stephanie Norlander


North Vancouver, BC


Thea Culley*


Rossland, BC





Head Coach – Ian Rutledge (Orange, WSA, Australia)

Assistant Coach – Stephanie Andrews (Perth, WA, Australia)

Team Manager – Carrie Trumpy (Victoria, BC)

Video Analyst – Stefanie Sloboda (Winnipeg, MB)

Physiotherapist - Elliot Usher (Vancouver, BC)

Athletic Therapist – Michelle Meckling (Kelowna, BC)

Team Doctor – Dr. Navin Prasad (Vancouver, BC)


Assistant Umpire Manager - Wendy Stewart                

Communication's Officer - Ali Lee          

Judge - Laurie Hogan

Technical Officer - Tony Stewart             

Umpire - Megan McLennan          

Umpire - Megan Robertson

Field Hockey Canada media release

Revered 2015 U.S. Pan American Women’s Field Hockey Roster Revealed

Team USA Looks to Repeat Their Pan American Gold Title

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – U.S. Women’s National Team Head Coach Craig Parnham has announced the 16-athlete roster and two replacement athletes that will travel to Toronto, Canada for the 2015 Pan American Games, July 13-25. This event proves as another opportunity to qualify for the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, an accomplishment and process the program is familiar with as this is how the red, white and blue earned their way to the 2012 London Olympic Games. Heading into Toronto, the United States is placed in Pool B along with Chile, Uruguay and Cuba. Represented in Pool A are Argentina, Canada, Mexico and the Dominican Republic.

“We are looking forward to the Pan American Games getting underway,” said Parnham. “The team is in the final preparation phase this week looking to refine some areas of our game following the World League Semifinals in Valencia.”

The Pan American Games are the world’s third largest international multi-sport games. More than 7,000 athletes from across the Americas and Caribbean come together every four years for a showcase of pure athleticism. Years of intense training, perseverance and sacrifices enable athletes to be at their best performing ability as they contend in one of the 36 respective Pan American sports.

In Guadalajara, during the gold medal match at the 2011 Pan American Games, Team USA defeated their perennial rivals Argentina in a 4-2 victory. As a result of winning the event, the United States was awarded the selection space for the 2012 London Olympics.

2015 U.S. Pan American Women’s Field Hockey Team Roster:

Jackie Briggs (Robesonia, Pa.), Lauren Crandall (Doylestown, Pa.), Rachel Dawson (Berlin, N.J.), Julia Reinprecht (Perkasie, Pa.), Stefanie Fee (Virginia Beach, Va.), Katelyn Falgowski (Landenberg, Pa.), Michelle Kasold (Chapel Hill, N.C.), Alyssa Manley (Litiz, Pa.), Kelsey Kolojejchick (Larksville, Pa.), Melissa Gonzalez (Mohegan Lake, N.Y.), Michelle Vittese (Cherry Hill, N.J.), Katie Reinprecht (Perkasie, Pa.),Katie O’Donnell (Blue Bell, Pa.), Jill Witmer (Lancaster, Pa.), Kat Sharkey (Moosic, Pa.), Paige Selenski (Shavertown, Pa.), (P) Emily Wold (Freehold, N.J.) and (P) Alesha Widdall (Whitney Point, N.Y.)

USFHA media release

Harvestehuder aiming to nail down playoff place

The final two sides to compete in the German final four and, ultimately, for the three places in the Euro Hockey League will be decided this weekend with the last matches of the regular season.

With Rot Weiss Köln and UHC Hamburg already qualified, Harvestehuder THC are next best placed with five points to spare over fifth placed Crefelder.

It means that if they can win on Saturday against mid-table Mannheimer or Rot Weiss on Sunday they will be home and hosed with the minimum of fuss.

Below them, Crefelder will be in confident mood having been the form side in the league since the start of 2015. Their schedule sees them go to tenth place Munich on Saturday and seventh placed Nürnburger on Sunday.

"In every game, my team has shown an extreme willingness and quality time and time again," says their coach Matthias Mahn with pride. "And that's what we are approaching in Munich and Nuremberg. Against these teams, they always make things difficult but we have been preparing this week very diligently for it."

Berliner are the side in their firing line, clinging on to fourth place by a single point. Their schedule pits them against Club an der Alster on Saturday before meeting high-flying UHC.

Uhlenhorst Mülheim are the other side battling for a top four place but have struggled of late with one win in their last six games. They go to Nuremburg on Saturday and then to Munich in a reverse of Crefelder’s fixture list.

Euro Hockey League media release

ABN AMRO Cup raises curtain on Dutch season

The line-up for the ABN AMRO Cup for 2015 has been confirmed with all 12 of the Dutch Hoofdklasse sides lining out in the event which runs from September 3rd to 6th.

The first night sees the 12 sides divided into four groups of three, playing their preliminary phases at four centres – Pinoké (Amsterdam), MOP (Vught) LOHC (Oegstgeest) and HC Naarden – where the youth academy is supported by ABN AMRO.

At Pinoké, the host club will meet Amsterdam and Hurley; in MOP, OZ, Den Bosch and SCHC will duke it out; in Naarden, there is a real derby flavour with neighbouring Voordaan, Schaerweijde and Kampong in action while LOHC is probably the highest quality centre with HGC, Bloemendaal and Rotterdam playing.

The sides will play two 35 minute games each on the night. From there, the winner of each group will go into the top four players, second place into the 5th to 8th and third place into 9th to 12th playoffs.

These playoffs will be played in Rotterdam on the weekend of September 5th and 6th.

Euro Hockey League media release

Olton rescues point for Magnolias

TRIPPED  UP: Defence Force’s Neil Lashley, centre, trips over the ball while surrounded by Queen’s Park CC trio from left, Dominic Young, Jordan Reynos and Mark Ayen in their T&T Hockey Board Men’s Championship Division match at the National Hockey Centre, Tacarigua on Sunday. The match ended 1-1. Photo: Anthony Harris

Amie Olton kept Shandy Carib Magnolias in the hunt for the T&T Hockey Women’s Championship Division crown when she netted to earn her team a 1-1 draw with fellow title chasers Harvard Checkers at the National Hockey Centre, Tacarigua on Wednesday. Both clubs entered the match level on 16 points with defending champions Paragon, but from nine matches to the latter’s eighth and four points behind leaders Georgetown Cricket Club which has already completed its 12-match campaign.

After a tense opening quarter, former national forward Yesenia Luces fired Checkers ahead in the 19th minute which they held onto until the final quarter, in which Olton tied the match in the 51st minute to grab a vital point for her club. The draw left Magnolias second on the table with 17 points and two matches left, the same as Checkers, but with a superior goal-difference while Paragon is fourth with 16 points, but four matches still to play.

Tonight, Checkers and Paragon will have chances to go top and second respectively when they resume play. Paragon will meet winless Ventures and Checkers tackles Malvern.

Current T&THB selected tables

Men’s Championship:
Teams        P        W        D        L        F        A        Pts
Petrotrin    11    9    1    1    41    16    28
Notre Dame    11    6    3    2    29    17    21
QPCC    12    5    4    3    29    21    19
Paragon    11    6    1    4    29    25    19
D/Force    12    2    6    4    24    26    12
Malvern    12    2    4    6    18    24    10
Fatima    11    2    3    6    16    30    9
Paradise    10    2    0    8    17    48    6

Women’s Championship:
GCC    12    6    2    4    22    20    20
SC Magnolias    10    5    2    3    24    11    17
Harvard Checkers    10    5    4    1    11    6    17
Paragon    8    4    4    0    18    7    16
Notre Dame    8    3    1    4    13    15    10
Malvern    8    2    2    4    15    16    8
Ventures    8    0    0    8    1    29    0

Trinity Men:
Notre Dame    8    4    1    3    24    13    13
QPCC    6    4    1    1    18    7    13
Paradise    6    4    1    1    18    11    13
Malvern    6    4    0    2    9    6    12
Paragon    6    3    0    3    4    10    9
Carib    4    2    0    2    6    6    6
Shape    5    2    0    3    7    9    6
Fatima    5    0    1    4    3    14    1
Police    4    0    0    4    1    13    0

Trinity Women:
Magnolias    5    5    0    0    27    0    12
Checkers    4    3    1    0    21    3    10
Paragon    5    3    1    1    11    10    10
Malvern    3    1    0    2    10    8    3
Police    4    1    0    3    4    14    3
Paradise    4    0    0    4    1    12    0
Raiders    3    0    0    3    0    27    0

Under-19 Boys:
Malvern    7    7    0    0    54    2    21
QPCC    7    6    0    1    37    6    18
Fatima    6    3    1    1    13    12    11
Paragon    7    3    1    3    15    10    10
Petrotrin    7    2    1    4    7    43    7
Shape    4    2    0    2    11    10    6
Paradise    5    1    1    3    8    14    4
Notre Dame    8    1    0    7    9    38    3
Raiders    5    0    1    4    0    19    1

Under-19 Girls:
Magnolias    5    5    0    0    75    1    15
Paragon    5    3    1    1    47    5    10
Malvern    5    3    1    1    30    13    10
Checkers    5    1    2    2    10    4    5
Notre Dame    3    1    0    2    3    13    3
Petrotrin    5    1    0    4    3    90    3
Raiders    4    0    0    4    2    42    0

The Trinidad Guardian

England U21s in action in Scotland

Chris Proctor drives forwards against Scotland for England U21s

On Saturday England travelled to Glasgow and faced a Scotland side eager to maximise home advantage and put on a good performance for a partisan crowd. It was the England side however who started the stronger, scoring two early goals. With more clinical finishing and better decision making around the circle, the game as a contest could have been over before half time. Scotland however rallied forcing themselves back into the game late in the first half before drawing level in the early part of the second half. The equaliser instigated a response from the England squad who went onto score four goals without reply. Final score 6-2 to England.

Goals v Scotland (Won 6-2)

Taylor 3 63 (PC PS)
French 16 46 (FG PC)
Proctor 61 FG
Calnan 70 FG

Sunday and game two versus Ulster U23. England again dominated the early stages of the game and were two goals to the good inside 10 minutes. England were guilty of not taking advantage of further pressure against a resolute and resilient Ulster team. England had to wait until ten minutes into the second half before making it 3-0. Ulster took advantage of some sloppy defending to remain in the game at 3-1 before a final goal in the 69th minute secured a 4-1 victory for England.

England U21s threaten the Scotland goal

Goals v Ulster (Won 4-1)
Taylor 3 (PC)
Simpson 7 (FG)
Horler 46 PC
Albery 69 (FG)

Following a rest day on Monday, England faced a Wales Development squad at Glasgow Green. England started well, but had to wait until the 11th minute to open their account. England dominated possession and should have been further up before a second goal eventually came on the 32nd minute. England continued to dominate possession in the second half, scoring three further goals, running out 5-0 winners

Goals v Wales (Won 5-0)
French 11 (PC)
Horler 32 45 (PC, PC)
Clee 50 (FG)
Taylor 55 (PS)

The final game of the trip came against a Scotland side eager to respond the the defeat on Saturday evening. An early start didn’t dampen the mood of the England squad who ably broke down a Scottish side who were unable to sustain possession of the ball. England scored six goals without reply to go into the half time with a seemingly unassailable lead. The interval didn’t detract from the momentum the England side had built up in the first period. Three further goals were scored by England in the second half resulting in a 9-0 victory.

Goals v Scotland (Won 9-0)
Taylor 8 46 (PC PS)
Simpson 14 (FG)
Horler 21 33 53 65 (PC, FG, FG, FG)
Boon 22 (FG)
Albery 29 (FG)

England Hockey Board Media release

Scotland U16 sides set to tackle England challenge at Lilleshall

Scotland U16 Boys & Girls will travel to Lilleshall, England this week for three international matches against their English counterparts.

The young Scots recently competed in matches against Ulster, with a number of good results. The squads will be aiming to build on these performances when they face England, who will present a tough test.

Match Schedule

Friday 26 June

Scotland U16 Girls v England, 15.30
Scotland U16 Boys v England, 17.30

Saturday 27 June

Scotland U16 Girls v England, 14.00
Scotland U16 Boys v England, 15.30

Sunday 28 June

Scotland U16 Girls v England, 11.00
Scotland U16 Boys v England, 12.45

Scotland U16 Boys





Timon Van Rensburg



Jack Cochrane



Jack Jamieson

Glasgow School of Sport


David Nairn

Hutchesons’ Grammar School


Alasdair Richmond

Hutcheson's Grammar School


Andrew Lochrin

St Andrews

EK Avondale

Barry Platt

Uddingston Grammar


Ben Pearson

Dollar Academy

Dunfermiline Carnegie

Cameron Golden

High School of Dundee

Grove Menzieshill

Duncan Gladwin

Thomas Telford

Telford and Wrekin

Ewen Mackie

Balerno High School


Fraser Moran

Glasgow School of Sport

Western Wildcats

Kyle Bannerman

Douglas Academy

Western Wildcats

Kyle Wright



Lewis Pyke

Perth Academy


Matthew White



Sam Weissen

Fettes College


Ryan Drysdale






Scotland U16 Girls





Emma McDiarmid

Douglas Academy


Kayleigh Justice


Clydesdale Western HC.

Lucy Findlay

Kelvinside Academy


Margery Justice

Craigholme School

Clydesdale Western HC.

Rebecca Conroy

Hutcheson’s Grammar


Mairi Fletcher

Hutcheson’s Grammar

Clydesdale HC

Imogen Davies

St Columba's

Kelburne HC

Lexi Sabatelli

Bellahouston Academy


Maddie Cleat

St Columba's

Kelburne HC

Iona Colquhoun

Cults Academy

Bon Accord

Maris Cawthorn

Selkirk High

Fjordhus Reivers

Rhona Gowans

Galashiels Academy

Fjordhus Reivers

Iona Kellett

Selkirk High

Fjordhus Reivers

Emily Dark

Glasgow Academy

Dundee Wanderers

Katie Stott


Grove Menzieshill HC

Isla Hewitson

Barnard Castle School

Durham City HC

Lorna Mckenzie

Wrekin College

Telford & Wrekin HC

Ella Watt

George Heriot's School

Inverleith HC

Emily Cross

The Mary Erskine School

CALA Edinburgh HC

Hanna McKie

The Mary Erskine School

CALA Edinburgh HC

Scottish Hockey Union media release

Subway Sponsor All Ireland Schools Championships & Ireland U18's  

SUBWAY® Stores franchisees all over Ireland will be encouraged to get behind their local school hockey teams this coming season as the brand becomes the title sponsor of the SUBWAY® All Ireland School Boys and School Girls Championships.  In addition, SUBWAY® Stores are also new secondary kit sponsors of the U18 Irish International Boys and Girls teams as a partner of Hockey Ireland.

The sponsorship comes on the back of a recent announcement which will see the brand sponsor schools basketball throughout Ireland and continues SUBWAY® Stores commitment to supporting school sports in Ireland.  The brand, which now has 237 stores around the country, will put full activation support in place including kit for schools, training sessions with International players and the opportunity to enjoy nutritional advice from qualified professionals.

Speaking about the announcement, CEO of Hockey Ireland, Mike Heskin said, “Hockey Ireland is delighted to have SUBWAY® as the title sponsor of the All Ireland school boys and girls tournament. We are also pleased to announce SUBWAY® as a secondary kit sponsor of the Under 18 girls and Under 18 boys squads. Partnering with an international brand such as SUBWAY® allows us to invest in the future hockey heroes of Ireland. “

Neil Black, SUBWAY® Ireland Development Agent said, “We’re delighted to become a supporter of Hockey Ireland. Hockey introduces the values and skills of team sport to young people as they go through school. The All Ireland Schools Championships are hotly contested and supported each year and we’re really looking forward to getting involved.  Our support of the International U18 team is a natural follow through as these talented young athletes represent Ireland on a worldwide stage.

Hockey has some 16,429 secondary school players and 187 schools around the country play hockey. The SUBWAY® brand also works with sports stars throughout the world including Tommy Bowe, Pelé, swimmer Michael Phelps, and boxer Anthony Ogogo to encourage people to lead a healthier, more active lifestyle.

The SUBWAY® brand is leading the way when it comes to giving Irish consumers delicious, Low Fat options on the go. At the core of the SUBWAY® brand offering is the Low Fat Range of Subs, flatbreads and salads, which contain less than 3g of fat per 100g. All 6-inch Subs and flatbreads contain one of the recommended five portions of fruit and vegetables a day when customers choose the standard salad items. The range of breads used to make the SUBWAY® brand Subs also has added vitamin D and calcium. The 9-Grain Wheat Bread is also high in fibre, containing at least 6g of fibre per 100g.

Irish Hockey Association media release

RIP Reg Treacy

REG TREACY (1940 - 2015)

The Irish hockey community were very saddened to hear of the passing of Reg Treacy.

Reg was a skilful forward who played for Cork Church of Ireland, Munster and Ireland. His exquisite skill and weaving runs with the ball made him one of the most popular players with Irish and international supporters. In 2006, he was elected as one of the inaugural members of Irish Hockey's hall of fame.

He won 53 caps for Ireland between 1960 and 1974 including appearances at the 1970 and 1974 European Nations Cups and being part of the winning Irish team at the 1972 Santander 8-nation tournament which beat Great Britain in the final.

He played his club Hockey at Cork Church of Ireland and was part of the team that won three Irish Senior Cups in a row (1967, 68 & 69), won thirteen Munster league titles in a row between 1961 and 1975 and came 5th in the European Club Championships at Club Egara, Spain in 1970. He represented Munster during this time and was a member of the two interprovincial winning teams of 1965 and 1981.

After retiring from playing hockey, he continued to be heavily involved with hockey at Munster Branch and club level, most notably with his coaching of underage Hockey at Garryduff. He coached hundreds of children on Sunday afternoons, giving many the inspiration to continue with the game at a variety of levels and several to emulate him in having international careers.

He was an immensely popular man, always ready to help, contribute and give advice. His wide group of friends throughout the country and beyond will be very saddened at the passing of this true sportsman.

Our sympathies are with his wife Jean, son Derek, daughter Alison, grandchildren Cameron, Jenny, William and Annabelle and the wider Treacy family.

Irish Hockey Association media releas

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