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News for 29 September 2015

All the news for Tuesday 29 September 2015

Pool C top four confirmed

Eyes on finals for ACT, QLD, NSW and VIC at women's AHL

Anna Flanagan’s hat-trick and Edwina Bone’s strike earned the Canberra Labor Club Strikers their spot in the top four - Pool C - after a solid 4-1 victory over the Tassie Van Demons at the women’s Australian Hockey League (AHL) powered by Premier Technology Solutions.

Sitting on top of Pool A with a 100% record, the NSW Arrows denied the WA Diamonds of their opportunity to join the top four teams in the next phase of the tournament after securing a 5-2 win. Strikes from NSW Arrows’ Grace Stewart, Lisa Farrell, Georgina Morgan, Emily Smith and Kate Jenner presented the Arrows with a chance to defend their 2014 national crown later in the week. Forwards Kim Lammers and Kathryn Slattery contributed to the WA Diamonds' tally.

In Pool B, South Australian Karri McMahon’s two on-target drag flicks coupled with strikes from Hockeyroos teammate Georgie Parker, Anna Busiko and Leah Welstead afforded the SA Suns their first victory, 5-1 over the NT Pearls. Tegan Richards also hit target for the Northern Territory earlier in the match. 

The top two teams in Pool B - the Queensland Scorchers and Victorian Vipers - went head-to-head for the top spot in the standings after having been guaranteed a place in the top four after day two. Strikes from Georgia Nanscawen and Emily Hurtz sealed the deal 2-0 for the Victorian Vipers, bumping the Queensland Scorchers from the top.

The Canberra Labor Club Strikers, Queensland Scorchers, NSW Arrows and Victorian Vipers will make up the top four teams in Pool C, while the NT Pearls, SA Suns, Tassie Van Demons and WA Diamonds will compete in Pool D on day four of the women’s competition.
Women's AHL, powered by Premier Technology Solutions
Day 3
Sydney, NSW
Canberra Labor Club Strikers 4-1 Tassie Van Demons
NSW Arrows 5-2 WA Diamonds
SA Suns 5-1 NT Pearls
Queensland Scorchers 0-2 Victorian Vipers

Pool A
NSW Arrows (9 points)
Canberra Labor Club Strikers (6 points)
WA Diamonds (3 points)
Tassie Van Demons (0 points)

Pool B
Victorian Vipers (9 points)
Queensland Scorchers (6 points)
SA Suns (3 points)
NT Pearls (0 points)

Upcoming Fixtures - Women, Tuesday 29 September
Tassie Van Demons v NT Pearls
WA Diamonds v SA Suns
Canberra Labor Club Strikers v Queensland Scorchers
NSW Arrows v Victorian Vipers

>>Watch day four live from Sydney

Hockey Australia media release

Tigers & Vikings join top four

Tasmania and Victoria join Queensland and WA in men's AHL Pool C

The winner of the 2015 men’s Australian Hockey League will be one of Queensland, Tasmania, Western Australia and Victoria after the four qualified from their phase one pools to progress to Pool C.

Going into Monday’s matches the Queensland Blades and WA Thundersticks were already assured of their places in the final four. The Tassie Tigers joined them with a stunning 4-2 win over NSW Waratahs and Victoria’s Vikings progressed courtesy of a 2-2 draw with the RAMS Home Loans Canberra Lakers.

The draw was enough for Victoria, who twice took the lead through Aaron Kleinschmidt and Josh Pollard only to be pegged back by Troy Sutherland and Aaron Kershaw. The Lakers though required a win if they were to overtake the Vikings and so find themselves in Pool D playing for fifth to eighth places.

Having weathered a New South Wales storm in the early stages of their win-or-bust encounter, the Tassie Tigers capitalised in the most emphatic style when the Waratahs temporarily found themselves down a man. First James Dick and then Eddie Ockenden converted and when Kurt Mackey made it three soon after the half time restart the Waratahs were in trouble. Geoff Cock’s fourth goal early in the second half extended the Tasmanian advantage and despite throwing everything they could at the Tigers’ circle the Waratahs could only pull back two goals, through Blake Govers and Tom Craig.

The WA Thundersticks progressed from Pool B with maximum points after a 4-2 win over a spirited SRA Territory Stingers side that almost pulled off a surprise comeback. With WA three goals up through Aran Zalewski, Trent Mitton and Jake Harvie the Stingers responded with two of their own in the final ten minutes, from Jamie Hullick and Robert Duguid. As NT pressed for an equaliser in the dying minutes Mitton wrapped things up for WA with his second.

In the final game of the day, Queensland Blades ensured they progress with maximum points after a 3-0 win over SA Hotshots. A Jake Whetton double and a penalty stroke from Jamie Dwyer sealed victory.

Teams in Pool C bring forward the points from their match against the other team progressing from their initial pool, A or B. They then face the other two teams to have qualified. The top two in Pool C on Thursday night will reach Friday’s grand final with the bottom two in Pool C playing off for bronze.

The format is the same for Pool D with the top two teams on Thursday evening playing off on Friday for fifth and sixth places, the bottom two play off for seventh and eighth.

Men's Australian Hockey League
Powered by Premier Technology Solutions

Day 3 Results
Victorian Vikings 2-2 RAMS Home Loans Canberra Lakers
WA Thundersticks 4-2 SRA Territory Stingers
Tassie Tigers 4-2 NSW Waratahs
Queensland Blades 3-0 SA Hotshots

Pool A
1. Queensland Blades (9 points) - progress to top four, Pool C
2. Tassie Tigers (6 points) - progress to top four, Pool C
3. NSW Waratahs (3 points) - progress to bottom four, Pool D
4. SA Hotshots (0 points) - progress to bottom four, Pool D

Pool B
1. WA Thundersticks (9 points) - progress to top four, Pool C
2. Victorian Vikings (4 points) - progress to top four, Pool C
3. RAMS Home Loans Canberra Lakers (2 point) - progress to bottom four, Pool D
4. SRA Territory Stingers (1 point) - progress to bottom four, Pool D

On social media, use #AHLMen

Forthcoming fixtures, Tuesday 29 September
2pm: NSW Waratahs v RAMS Home Loans Canberra Lakers (Pool D)
4pm: SA Hotshots v SRA Territory Stingers (Pool D)
6pm: Tassie Tigers v Victorian Vikings (Pool C)
8pm: Queensland Blades v WA Thundersticks (Pool C)
(All times ACST, local time in Darwin. AEST is 30mins ahead)

Hockey Australia media release

10 weeks to go until women's Argentina Hockey World League Final

Saturday 26 September marked 10 weeks to go until what will be one of the biggest hockey events of the year - the women's Argentina Hockey World League Final in Rosario, Argentina.

The Final concludes the second edition of the Hockey World League League which started back in Singapore in June 2014.

It brings together eight of the world's best national women's hockey teams, who will go head to head as they battle to decide who will be crowned Hockey World League champions.

These teams will be represented by the best players in the world - hockey heroes and rising stars.

With all the teams taking part in Rosario already qualified for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, it is certainly shaping up to be an exciting event. Fans will experience displays of exceptional skill and outstanding physical fitness, with non-stop action and plenty of goals.

Reigning Olympic and World Champions Netherlands will be looking to defend their title against many of the top ranked teams. They won the last Hockey World League Final when it was held in San Miguel de Tucumán, Argentina in 2013.

This year they will be up against Australia, ranked number two in the FIH World Rankings; Argentina (3); New Zealand (4); Germany (5); China (6); Great Britain (7, based on England’s ranking) and Korea (9).

The Estadio Mundialista de Hockey in Rosario will hold this year's event. It was built to host the 2010 women's BDO FIH World Cup before later being used to stage the 2012 women’s Champions Trophy.

Up to 6,000 people will be able to watch each and every game live at the venue throughout the nine days of competition, while millions more around the world will be able to watch on TV and online.

Keep up to date with all the latest news and exclusive content via FIH.ch during the 10 week countdown.

For more information about the upcoming Hockey World League Finals visit: http://bit.ly/1HaCSSr

FIH site

Hockey World League hosts rewarded by FIH for outstanding events

During the Hockey World League (HWL) Rounds 1 and 2, FIH challenged hosts to stage innovative sports events, with cash prizes on offer to those who either excelled in the promotion of their events or for those who created the best looking events.

The incentive was provided to encourage and empower hosts to do all that they can to help make their events exciting and entertaining for everyone involved in them - from athletes and officials to the thousands of spectators who attended.

Following reports and feedback about each event, two hosts were awarded with prizes from HWL Round 1 events, and three from Round 2.

Round 1 hosts Siauliai in Lithuania were the first to receive a prize after their efforts resulted in exceptional media attendance. This translated into widespread coverage - not only in terms of traditional media but also through social media as well.

Sveti Ivan Zelina in Croatia also picked up a prize for outstanding promotional activity throughout the city in the lead up to the tournament, including a number of giant billboards, which resulted in hundreds of fans coming along to the games each day.

Round 2 host Montevideo in Uruguay received another one of the cash prizes as they also ensured their event was packed-out. A key contribution to this was the thousands of passionate fans who turned out to cheer on their national hockey team throughout the competition.

Dublin, Ireland also brought a lot of attention to their event, helped by the visit of Irish President, Michael Higgins. They also engaged extensively with the local community as their women's national team visited local schools, promoting the event and inspiring hundreds of young people to get involved in hockey.

New Delhi in India was the third Round 2 host to be rewarded, primarily for their high level of organisation, which led to an extremely enjoyable event for both athletes and spectators. This in turn helped promote women's hockey in India, inspiring many more women to get involved in the sport.

This is the latest initiative introduced by FIH as part of the Hockey Revolution which aims to raise the global status and popularity of hockey.

One of the key goals of FIH is to develop innovative and exciting entertainment events, with the events mentioned above contributing towards this overall aim.

For more about this, visit the Hockey Revolution pages on FIH.ch by clicking here.

FIH site

Financial woes hamper hockey tour

Kalesi Mele

FIJI'S participation in the Oceania Cup is in doubt with money woes hindering their participation at the regional event.

Fiji Hockey Federation president Dr Robin Mitchell said they withdrew both national teams from participating because of the lack of funding.

"We have had a request from the Oceania Hockey Federation for the teams to compete despite our withdrawal from the event so we are reviewing the possibilities," he said.

The federation's management team would convene to decide on whether to send both teams or just one to the event.

"We have just come back from Papua New Guinea so it's a bit hard, for small sports like hockey we usually have to raise the money ourselves," he said.

The tournament is scheduled for October 21-26 and includes Australia, New Zealand, Fiji and Samoa. The tournament usually determines which two teams receive an automatic berth to the Hockey World Cup and the Summer Olympics.

Fiji is the defending Pacific Games champions in the men's and women's divisions

The Fiji Times

India Junior Men Team announced for 5th Sultan of Johor Cup

New Delhi, 28 September 2015: Hockey India announced the India Junior Men squad for the upcoming 5th Sultan of Johor Cup to be played in Johor Bahru, Malaysia from 11th to 18th October 2015. The Junior Men Team, will be led by Captain Harjeet Singh with the support of Dipsan Tirkey as the Vice- Captain.

The 18-member squad, post finishing fourth in the recently culminated Volvo Invitational U-21 (Men) Tournament 2015 will be looking to bounce back to claim the title in the upcoming 5th Sultan of Johor Cup.

The tournament will witness India, Australia, Great Britain, Argentina, Pakistan and Malaysia and will be played in Round Robin format.

India is the two time defending champion and will be clashing against Pakistan, in its first match of the tournament.

For full schedule click here.

Captain Harjeet Singh: “We are the defending champions and the boys are excited about retaining the title. We are not allowing pressure to take over us. The team is in a very good shape and confident to perform as per expectations in the upcoming 5th Sultan of Johor Cup. We are undergoing scrupulous training sessions and we feel huge improvement in the way we are passing the ball to each other and the way we are working on converting on opportunities. Also, we are effectively working on rectifying the mistakes committed in the previous tournaments which will help us to achieve desired goals.”

Coach Harendra Singh: “The boys are confident of the tournament ahead and they aim to retain the title. Our opening match is against Pakistan and the boys are excited about their clash against them. The team has worked on their game as per each teams’ performance in the recent past. We have spent time watching past videos, understanding where all did we make mistakes and how well do we ensure that the same is not repeated. The team is all geared up face the challenge ahead.”

List of Players -


1. Suraj Karkera
2. Vikas Dahiya


3. Varun Kumar
4. Dipsan Tirkey - Vice Captain
5. Anand Lakra
6. Vikramjit Singh
7. Harmanpreet Singh


8. Nilakanta Sharma
9. Harjeet Singh - Captain
10. Santa Singh
11. Simranjeet Singh
12. Manpreet


13. Arman Qureshi
14. Gurjant Singh
15. Ajay Yadav
16. Parvinder Singh
17. Sumit Kumar
18. Ajit Kumar Pandey


Harjeet to lead junior team

Midfielder Harjeet Singh will continue to lead as the junior Indian men’s hockey team aims to defend its title at the 5th Sultan of Johor Cup later this month.

The 18-member squad for the tournament, to be played from October 11-18, was announced on Monday and the two-time defending champion is keen to make it a hat-trick this time around. India beat Great Britain 2-1 in the final last year with a winner in the dying minutes.

The tournament also saw young drag-flicker Harmanpreet Singh, come of age as the top-scorer for India.

This time around, India would open its campaign in the competition, played in round-robin format, against Pakistan, whom it thrashed 6-0 in the previous edition.

Australia, Great Britain, Argentina and host Malaysia are the other teams in the fray. The Indian side recently finished fourth at the Volvo Invitational Tournament.

“We are not allowing the pressure of being defending champion overwhelm us. The team is in a very good shape and we are undergoing strenuous training. There is a huge improvement in our passing and scoring,” Harjeet said.

“The boys are confident and aim to retain the title. Our opening match is against Pakistan and the boys are excited about their clash against them. We have understood our past mistakes and the team is geared up for the challenge,” coach Harendra Singh said.

The squad:

Goalkeepers: Suraj Karkera, Vikas Dahiya; Defenders: Varun Kumar, Dipsan Tirkey, Anand Lakra, Vikramjit Singh, Harmanpreet Singh; Midfielders: Nilakanta Sharma, Harjeet Singh, Santa Singh, Simranjeet Singh, Manpreet; Forwards: Arman Qureshi, Gurjant Singh, Ajay Yadav, Parvinder Singh, Sumit Kumar, Ajit Kumar Pandey.

Schedule: October 11: India vs Pakistan, October 12: India vs Great Britain, October 14: India vs Argentina (all at 4.05 p.m.), October 15: India vs Malaysia (6.05 p.m.), October 17: India vs Australia (4.05 p.m.); October 18: classification matches.

The Hindu

Gurjant Singh is chasing dreams on the hockey turf

Gurjant Singh had been named in the Indian junior hockey team for the 5th Sultan of Johor Cup to be played in Johor Bahru, Malaysia, next month.

by Nitin Sharma

It was a joyous moment for former Chandigarh Hockey and Football Academy (CHFA) trainee Gurjant Singh. He had been named in the Indian junior hockey team for the 5th Sultan of Johor Cup to be played in Johor Bahru, Malaysia, next month, and his family and coaches at the CHFA were an elated lot.

Singh said, “There was nobody in our village who played hockey. When I would visit my maternal grandparents near Batala, I would watch my cousins play hockey and they also had decent jobs. In 2005, I played there for three months but soon I shifted to the Chandigarh Hockey and Football Academy. It was an arduous routine for all of us as we had to attend high school apart from playing for the academy and Chandigarh in national tournaments.

Now, playing for the Indian junior hockey team means a lot for me. My former coach, Jasbir Bajwa, died in 2011. He would have been very happy to see me playing for the Indian junior team. Our coach, Gurminder Singh, also supported us a lot,”shared Gurjant Singh, who has been selected as a forward in the 18-member hockey team.

Gurjant also starred in Chandigarh’s title win in the U-17 School Nationals in Chandigarh and U-19 School Nationals played in Madhya Pradesh apart from featuring in Chandigarh’s title win in the U-17 Nehru Cup played in Chandigarh during the later part of the last decade.

Later Gurjant also guided the Punjab U-21 team to the title in the U-21 nationals in 2012 before shifting his base to Haryana. Gurjant was also a part of the Indian junior team which toured Europe earlier this year and has played for the Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC) on a scholarship.

“I would keep meeting our seniors, Rupinderpal Singh and Dharamvir Singh, who play for the senior Indian team, when we trained at the academy. Playing and winning the titles in the school nationals for Chandigarh and later for Punjab did boost my confidence. Incidentally, Rupinder, who is now drag-flicker in the senior team, is a distant relative of mine. I have been seeking tips from him,” shared the 20-year-old forward, who completed his training from CHFA in 2011.

Indian junior team’s chief coach, Harendra Singh, also believes that Gurjant will improve with time.

“Gurjant has been shaping well for the team. He is a keen learner of the game. This tour is important for him as it will provide him an opportunity to compete against the best players in Asia,” shared Harendra.

And with skipper Harjeet Singh also hailing from Kurali near Chandigarh, Gurjant is confident.

“Harjeet has been a constant support and is the most capped player in the junior circuit. He also comes from Kurali, and we often share stories about our Chandigarh days,” shared Gurjant, who was a student of Government Model School, Sector 42, and Government Model Senior Secondary School, Sector 35.

Indian Express

Junior hockey team camp commences in Rawalpindi

LAHORE: Pakistan junior hockey team’s training camp for next month’s Sultan of Johor Junior Hockey Tournament resumed after a four-day break at Pakistan Army Hockey Stadium in Rawalpindi on Monday.

“This is the final phase of the camp and it will conclude on October 6,” an official of the Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF) said.

The first phase of the camp was held at Naseer Bunda Hockey Stadium in Islamabad.

The official said that 26 boys had already been short-listed for participation in the event, slated to be held in Malaysia from October 11 to 18.

Olympian Tahir Zaman, who has recently been appointed as head of the team, is supervising the camp while Olympian Zeeshan Ashraf and former international Muhammad Irfan are officiating as assistant coaches.

The Sultan of Johor Cup is an annual international under-21 field hockey tournament held in Malaysia since 2011. It is the only invitational junior hockey competition played at the international level. Pakistan have participated in all the previous four tournaments but failed to reach the final of any of the events.

The Daily Times

Junior hockey team resumes training

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan junior team’s camp for next month’s Sultan of Johor junior hockey tournament resumed after a four-day break at the Pakistan Army Hockey Stadium in Rawalpindi on Monday.

“This is the final phase of the camp and it will conclude on Oct 6,” an official of the Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF) said on Monday.

The first phase of the camp was held at the Naseer Bunda Hockey Stadium, Islamabad.

The official said that 26 players had already been shortlisted for participation in the event, slated to be held in Malaysia from Oct 11 to 18.

Olympian Tahir Zaman, who has recently been appointed head coach of the team, is supervising the camp while Olympian Zeeshan Ashraf and former international Mohammad Irfan are officiating as assistant coaches.


Women’s Junior National Team named for World Cup qualifier tune-up in Chile

Shaheed Devji

Nineteen athletes have been named to the Canadian Junior Women’s National Field Hockey Team that will be travelling to Santiago, Chile for training and seven test matches against Chile from January 6th-26th, 2016.

It is the first competition of what is a big year for the Canadian Women’s Junior Program. The Junior Women will be attempting to qualify in March for the 2016 Junior World Cup.

“This is our last chance to be together as a group before Junior World Cup qualifying in Trinidad and Tobago,” says Women’s Junior National Team Head Coach Steph Andrews. “It will be a good way to assess the progress of the girls and give us a chance to evaluate players in competition ahead of qualifying.”

The announcement comes on the heels of a busy summer rife with opportunities for talent identification and assessment, including Junior Development Camps, as well as the Field Hockey Canada Under-16 and Under-18 National Championships.

The team travelling to Chile consists of players with a variety of experiencing, including with the senior women’s National Team and also comprises of winners of the 2015 Under-18 National Championship.

Shortly after the Chile tour, Canada will name the roster that will compete at the World Cup qualifier. The 2016 Junior World Cup will be held in Santiago at the end of the year.

Canadian Junior Women’s National Team – 2016 Chile Tour

Name, Position, Hometown

Katarina Angus, Defender, West Vancouver, BC
Ellie Cookson, Midfield, Oakville, ON
Alexis DeArmond, Midfield, Victoria, ON
Hannah Eborall, Defender, Beamsville, ON
Samantha Gomes, Defender, Brampton, ON
Sara Goodman, Midfield, Duncan, BC
Adrienne Houle, Midfield, Burlington, ON
Rowan Harris, Goalkeeper, Ottawa, ON
Lauren Logush, Goalkeeper, Richmond Hill, BC
Cassandra Mascarenhas, Defender, Mississauga, ON
Samantha McIlwrick, Defender, Coquitlam, BC
Laura McLachlan, Forward, North Vancouver, BC
Ashley Mendonca, Defender, Brampton, ON
Chelcie Mendonca, Forward, Brampton, ON
Margaret Pham, Forward, Mississauga, ON
Shannon Pereira, Midfield, Scarborough, ON
Thora Rae, Forward, Vancouver, ON
Priya Randhawa, Forward, Surrey, BC
Nikki Woodcroft, Midfield, Waterloo, ON

Canadian Junior Women’s National Team Staff – 2016 Chile Tour

Head Coach- Steph Andrews
Assistant Coach- Robin D’Abreo*
Manager- Diane Gillis
Video- Stefanie Sloboda
Athlete Therapist- Angie Hurley

*To be confirmed

Field Hockey Canada media release

Dragons five clear in Belgian league

Dragons have built an impressive five point lead at the top of the Belgian Audi Hockey League as they claimed two wins in quick succession to head up the division.

They beat fellow EHL side Royal Leopold 5-1 in midweek with Florent van Aubel’s delightful volleyed goal a highlight of a game brought forward due to Leo's involvement in the EHL next week.

Dragons followed up with a 3-2 win at Braxgata with Felix Denayer and Jeffrey Thys scoring in the latter stages to swing the tie their way.

Racing Club de Bruxelles moved into a share of second place with Waterloo Ducks when they beat Leopold 3-1.

The Ducks dropped their first points of the campaign in a 3-3 draw with Royal Daring, giving up a 3-0 lead. The Molenbeek side trailed to goals from Loïc Sidler, Maxime Capelle and Victor Charlet at half-time.

Daring’s Arno Devreker, Manu Brunet and Alexander Belehelped snatched a brilliant point. Gent stunned KHC Leuven 5-2 while Pingouin got their second win of the season with a 3-1 win at Beerschot while Herakles moved up to seventh with a 3-2 win over Antwerp.

Euro Hockey League media release

Rot Weiss unscathed after HTHC and UHC battles

Rot Weiss Köln came through their bumper weekend with EHL rivals Harvestehuder THC and UHC Hamburg with four points from six in a potentially significant weekend in the German season despite being so early in the campaign.

Indeed, it might have been even better for Rot Weiss but for Michael Körper’s last ditch goal on Saturday afternoon as they shared a 4-4 draw with HTHC.

Reflecting on that tie, André Henning said his side “played well for two 10 minute periods but otherwise were not so good”. They trailed 2-1 to goals from Körper and Anton Pöhling but Florian Adrian and Alexander Schöllkopf swapped the lead.

Körper added his second to make it 3-3 before Tom Grambusch put Rot Weiss 4-3 ahead with five minutes remaining only for the Austrian Körper to complete the scoring with his hat trick goal.

A day later, goals from Marco Miltkau, Grambusch and Christopher Rühr built a 3-0 lead against UHC who fought back late on with two goals from Moritz Fuerste but too late to upset the result.

Mannheimer sit second behind Rot Weiss despite Saturday’s 2-0 loss to Uhlenhorst Mülheim but they bounced back with a 5-0 win over Nürnburger on Sunday.

Harvestehuder are third after a 2-1 win at Crefelder with Jan-Philipp Heuer grabbing another late goal, this one coming in the 68th minute for the victory.

UHC Hamburg are back in eighth place after a tough start to the season, drawing on Saturday with Crefelder in another 4-4 match.

Euro Hockey League media release

Dream debut for Racing's Campuzano

Racing Club de France have established a five-point lead over the rest of the French league after just three rounds of matches thanks to a hard fought 1-0 win over Wattignies.

Racing were without Celestin Duschesne (hamstring), Antoine Ferec (knee) and Simon Martin-Brisac (tibia) but boosted by Spaniard Eduardo Campuzano for his first game in the Ciel et Blanc jersey.

They found Wattignies hard to break down, missing out from five first half penalty cornes as the northern French club sat deep and defended in numbers.

They kept the scoreboard blank until eight minutes from the end as Nicolas Martin-Brisac and Jean-Laurent Kieffer with Campuzano pushing home from mid-circle for a debut winner.

It earned a third win from three games to see them lead the way on nine points. Elsewhere, there were plenty of surprises.

Le Touquet beat Lille 3-2 with the return of French international Aristide Coisne a key factor after two weeks of suspension. It was also his birthday, adding to the occasion.

The game was very tight and tough. Lille scored their two goals on from corners but Le Touquet replied with goals from Belgian player Henri Cavenaille and two from Aimeric Baudoin.

Montrouge beat Saint Germain 2-1, a real surprise with Montrouge employing a very young team this year. After a scoreless first half, Montrouge broke the deadlock in the third quarter and doubled the lead in the fourth. Saint Germain scored by Gregoire Samson from a corner but too late to affect the result.

Paris Jean Bouin and Lyon, the two promoted sides to the elite division, played out a spectacular 4-4 draw. PJB started well, building a 3-1 half-time lead with two goals from Fabien Magner.

But Lyon came back from nowhere with a beautiful goal from Gaspard Baumgarten and a penalty stroke from Stephane Panigoni helping them swap the lead before PJB equalised just before the end.

Racing sit top on nine points with Saint Germain, Lyon, Le Touquet, CA Montrouge and Lille all sitting on four points after three weeks.

Euro Hockey League media release

Men's Cup produces giantkillings

Banbury celebrate scoring during the EH Trophy Final.

The first round of the England Hockey Men’s Cup threw out some interesting results with a number of giantkillings taking place this past Sunday.

Cannock, the only Men’s Hockey League Premier Division side to enter the draw at this stage ensured they were not one of those to fall, putting in a professional display to see off Oxford Hawks 5-1.

Banbury, newly promoted to the South Premier Division pulled off one of the results of the round, dumping Conference North outfit Olton and West Warwicks out 5-4. The Oxfordshire side led 4-1 at the break thanks in part to a brace from Harry Loxton and although Olton rallied with a strong second half display, it was Banbury who held on.

Didsbury Northern also accounted for a Conference North side, holding their nerve after a 2-2 draw with Sheffield Hallam to win the penalty shootout 4-2. The other Steel City club, Sheffield University Bankers, who won the Men’s Trophy last season, continued their love affair with England Hockey’s knockout competitions with a 5-3 win over Doncaster.

Havant, also a South Premier Division side accounted for Conference East outfit Oxted whilst the three all Men’s Hockey League ties went the way of Brighton, Chichester and University of Birmingham.

With the draw for the next round featuring the Premier Division sides there are some mouth-watering ties.

Banbury’s reward for their efforts is a home tie against Conference East side Teddington. Holders Reading travel to Havant whilst last year’s runners-up Surbiton will make the journey to Chelmsford. Hampstead and Westminster take on Brighton. Premier Division outfit Canterbury will face Sussex club Lewes, who are coached by Canterbury midfielder Stuart Goodman.

Cannock have a tricky trip to University of Birmingham and Brooklands have a home tie to look forward to. Lindum have the big clash they dreamed of, welcoming star studded Beeston to Lincolnshire.

Round 2 draw in full:

Banbury v Teddington
Barford Tigers v Lichfield
Brooklands MU v Boots / University of Nottingham*
Chelmsford v Surbiton
Chichester Priory Park v Team Bath Buccaneers
City of Peterborough v Norwich City
Didsbury Northern v Preston
Guildford v University of Cambridge
Hampstead & Westminster v Brighton and Hove
Havant v Reading
Henley v Southgate
Lewes v Canterbury
Lindum v Beeston
Plymouth Marjon v Robinson's
Sheffield University Bankers v Sutton Coldfield or Berkswell & Balsall Common^
University of Birmingham v Cannock

Ties take place 1 November 2015.

* Subject to player eligibility query
^ Match being played on Sunday 3rd October

For details of all the draws and rounds in the cup this season click here.

England Hockey Board Media release

Taylor Full of Praise for his Young Guns

Beeston Coach Matt Taylor

Beeston coach, Matt Taylor believes his young players, Joshua Pavis and Elliot Hibell can go all the way to the top.

The Bees recorded their first win of the league campaign with a 3-0 victory against East Grinstead a week ago. The goals came from an 18-year-old and two 19-year-olds.

However, Taylor spoke very highly of both Pavis, 16, and Hibell, 18, when asked if anyone can have breakthrough seasons.

He said: “They stand out because of their game understanding. Junior players take time to get that, whereas Josh and Elliot already seem to know when they should and should not do certain things.

“Josh’s biggest asset is his gameplay understanding. At 16, he is years ahead of himself."

Beestons Josh Pavis in action for England

“Elliot’s asset is on the ball. He will be in a situation where you don’t back him because the numbers are stacked against him but he reads it, and his skill execution is unbelievably high,” he added.

Taylor also emphasises the need to give the youth as much as chance as possible in order for them to progress.

He explained: “Wherever, I have coached, I have always given youth an opportunity.

“People look at my squad and say it’s heavily linked with senior internationals but my squad for the Surbiton game, had a 16 year old boy in it.”

He added: “These boys are given a chance even when international players are available. I am very confident they will both go through to become senior international hockey players at some stage.”

It seems Beeston’s young guns have a very promising future.

England Hockey Board Media release

Laura Unsworth enjoying fresh challenge at East Grinstead

By Graham Wilson

Laura Unsworth left Holcombe for a fresh challenge. GETTY

WHILE England players flocked to join big-spending Kent club Holcombe, Laura Unsworth decided to leave.

Unsworth, who was the defensive shield in England's winning of the European Championship last month, wanted "a fresh challenge" and switched to newly-promoted East Grinstead in the Investec League and, while many of her fellow internationals rested, she went straight into action for the Sussex outfit.

She scored her first goal from a penalty corner on Saturday on her home debut in a 4-0 win over Leicester and the club are two points off leaders University of Birmingham, who crushed Bowdon Hightown 5-1. 

Maude Van Der Kamp, Lucy Bairner and Pippa Chapman were East Grinstead's other scorers.

Unsworth said: "I am really enjoying myself.  I wanted to get away from the centralised playing and meet different people. Club hockey is so good like that.

"It is like having a break in itself. East Grinstead are a very friendly club. We have had a great start. We have seven out of nine points.

"We will have to see how it goes but it would be great to make the play-offs. The league is going to be a really competitive this season and it is a big year with the Olympic Games coming up so I have to stay fit and healthy.

Holcombe scorer Sam Ward in action for England this summer. STANISLAS BROCHIER

"We have the World League finals in Argentina in December, we go to Australia for Test matches in February and then we are staging the Champions Trophy at the Olympic Park just before we go to Rio. We hope London will give us a fantastic send-off."

The London 2012 bronze medallist is still reeling from the European Championship win which culminated in England coming back from two-nil down in the final to draw 2-2 and then win a shootout against Olympic and world champions the Netherlands.

Unsworth plays in front of the back line and played a key role in keeping out the Dutch as the English defence came under siege.

"It has still not sunk in," said Unsworth. "What we did against the Dutch was amazing. But once we came back into the game, we knew we had the best goalkeeper in the world in Maddie Hinch to win it for us."

Birmingham had found themselves a goal down after Natalie Wray opened the scoring for Bowdon Hightown.

But Bowdon could not live with the students in the second half. Rebecca Condie hauled Birmingham level before the break, and Emily Defroand, Hannah Martin, Holly Hunt and Lily Owsley all got on the scoresheet.

Canterbury crushed Reading 5-0 as Anna Kolarova scored twice with Jen Wilson, Kirsten Greaves and Susannah Townsend also finding the target.

University of Birmingham women's hockey team. PH

Champions Surbiton secured their first win when they beat Buckingham 5-0 with two goals from Jo Hunter and others from Jenna Woolven, Sara Page and Charlotte Calnan.

Clifton staged a late comeback to rescue a 2-2 draw at Holcombe after Emily Kirkham scored twice in the final three minutes. Stef Elliot and Emily Maguire scored for Holcombe.

In the men's premier division, England striker Sam Ward notched up another two goals as Holcombe took the scalp of Cannock 4-1.

Fellow internationals Nick Catlin and Ashley Jackson added second-half strikes.

Surbiton battled to a 3-2 win at Beeston as Alan Forsyth scored twice, with penalty corner specialist Andy Hayward hitting his first open play goal for the club.

Mark Gleghorne and Chris Proctor scored second-half goals for the Bees.

The Bees had their full squad of seven centralised players appearing for the first time under their new manager Steve Musson, who replaces Graham Griffiths after 28 years of sterling service.

After the match Surbiton coach Todd Williams said: "We may have only one GB international but If we want to get into Europe this season, we he have to be playing to international standards."

To make that happen Todd has set up an Australian-style leadership group of five players, spearheaded by captain Chris Grassick.

Champions Wimbledon secured their first win of the season, beating East Grinstead 3-2.

Phil Roper scored twice and Caspar Phijffer added a third just before half-time. Simon Faulkner and Adam Seccull scored for East Grinstead, who still have to secure a first win.

Neil Hamilton scored in each half as Hampstead and Westminster won 2-1 at Canterbury, while Ali Parkes also bagged a brace to help Reading to a 3-1 win over Brooklands Manchester University.

Coach Bobby Crutchley's Great Britain men's squad will start off their Hero World League Final campaign in India from November 27 to December 6 against Canada and also face world champions Australia and Belgium.

World League title-holders Netherlands begin against Olympic champions Germany on the opening day following the match between hosts India and Argentina.

Daily Express

Hockey loses ground to metro rail waste

Dumping of waste of the Kochi metro rail project has taken its toll on the hockey field at Maharaja's College.- Photo: Thulasi Kakkat

Twelve-year-old Saddam was gifted with brilliant stick work and was predicted to go places.

But even before the potential was turned into real skills, Saddam, along with 100-odd students from three schools in the city, was left with no place to hone their hockey skills.

So, when he turned up for a recent inter-school hockey contest, his talent was rusted and the spark gone.

Owing to the Kochi metro-related works, a portion of one of the full-field hockey pitches in the district on the southern end of Maharaja’s College ground has gone under rubble, which turns even worse during the rain when it looks more like a swimming pool.

The hockey fraternity rues the sorry state of the field, which had in the past hosted State and national level championships.

“It was initially decided that the compensation of Rs.8 crore received from the takeover of the ground would be used for renovating the hockey field and laying Astroturf. But even the Rs.1 crore pledged thereafter remains a distant dream now,” said Sunil D. Emmatty, former State captain.

With the only other full-field pitch at UC College at Aluva, students from city schools and colleges have been left with make-shift facilities.

Hibi Eden, MLA, said the Kochi Metro Rail Limited had in principle agreed to spend Rs.10 crore for renovation of the college hostel and the main ground ahead of the Under-17 Football World Cup, to host which the city is in contention. But he was not sure whether the damaged hockey field formed part of that package.

College authorities said they hoped the field would be restored and returned in its original form once the metro works are wound up, by which time many hockey talents are likely to be lost.

The Hindu

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