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News for 29 August 2016

All the news for Monday 29 August 2016

Pakistan Juniors Wins BCE International Hockey Tournament at Enschede, Netherlands

Pakistan under 21 hockey team has won the international tournament in Enchede, Netherlands.

Apart from the hosts EHV H.C. and Pakistan under 21, two German sides, Kahlenberg and Raffelberg also participated.

In the single league format, all the teams played three matches each over the weekend.

The games were of 40 minutes duration with two halves of 20 minutes.

Pakistan jrs beat the hosts EHV HC in the opening match 4-0

They also won the matches against the two German sides by identical scores of 5-0.

Pakistan's scorers in the tournament:
( Bilal Qadir 3, Dilber 2,Hassan Anwar 2, Shan Irshad 2, Shakeel Emad Butt, Abu Bakr, Mubashar Ali,  Fahad and Atiq Arshad).

Thus ends the Netherlands' leg of the tour. The national junior side won all its six matches. It scored 33 goals and conceded five.

In the second and the last leg, the team moves to Spain where they play three matches against their national junior side.

PHF media release

Sapura shock champs Terengganu to top standings

by Aftar Singh

KUALA LUMPUR: Sapura surged to top of the Premier Division when they stunned double champions Terengganu 2-0 in the Malaysia Hockey League (MHL) match.

Mohd Firhan Ashaari gave them the lead in the 23rd minute off a penalty corner. Sapura extended their advantage through Oscar William Bookey off another penalty corner in the 30th minute at the Tun Razak Stadium on Sunday

Sapura have nine points from three wins and a defeat while Terengganu dropped to fourth place with four points in the six-team league.

Sapura coach Yahya Atan was full of praise for his players.

“It is never easy playing Terengganu as they have a solid team. But we turned the tables on them and now we are the leaders,” said Yahya.

At the Kuala Lumpur Hockey Stadium, Tenaga Nasional, two goals down, staged a magnificent fightback to hold fancied Kuala Lumpur Hockey Club (KLHC) to a 2-2 draw.

The KL team powered by six foreigners were leading 2-0 before Tenaga turned on the power to score twice with seven minutes to play.

KLHC took an early lead in the fifth minute through Argentina’s Pedro Lopez-Alonso off a field goal.

And they doubled the score in the 39th minute off a penalty corner drag flick by South Korean Nam Hyun-woo, which sailed past goalkeeper S. Kumar.

But Tenaga, led by an all-local line-up, had other ideas and surprised their opponents with goals from Syed Mohamad Syafiq Syed Cholan (53rd) and Muhammad Firdaus Omar (60th).

KLHC are in second spot with eight points from two wins and two draws while Tenaga remain at the bottom of the standings with just two points in four matches.

Tenaga coach Mohd Amin praised his players for their commitment.

“My players put up a good fight in the dying minutes and if we had more time we could have beaten them,’ said Amin.

“But I’m happy with the results as my players have proven that they can play well against a strong team.”

KLHC coach Harun Al-Rashid lamented that his boys’ poor defending proved costly.

“We cannot take it easy even if we are leading by two goals. We must stay focus throughout the match,” said Harun.

“We’ve lost two points and this is not good for us.”

The Star of Malaysia

Tale of two games teaches lessons to top-ranked Tar Heels

Sam Doughton

On Saturday, the No. 1 North Carolina field hockey team got knocked down, losing 1-0 when No. 10 Michigan scored off a penalty corner with no time on the clock.

The next day, the Tar Heels not only got back up, they got up swinging — outshooting Iowa 14-2 on their way to a 4-1 victory.

“(We just wanted) to come out strong, not be defeated...” said senior captain Julia Young. “And just kind of take revenge on the next team, which just happened to be Iowa.”

The Michigan game was a defensive battle. With neither team having a ton of chances for open play, each side relied on penalty corners instead to generate offense.

Young said the team wasn’t as tough as it needed to be in the first game of the weekend.

“(The) Big Ten is known to be really physical — they’re gonna body up on you,” Young said. “And I think we weren’t ready for that.”

The Wolverines’ physicality made it difficult for UNC to dribble through the defense — which Head Coach Karen Shelton said the team tried to do too much — instead of passing like North Carolina usually does.

This lack of execution left the door open for Michigan’s late goal on Saturday, giving UNC its first season-opening loss since 2002.

The Tar Heels started much faster on Sunday, with senior Kristy Bernatchez coming up from the back line to take a penalty corner just over 10 minutes into the game. Bernatchez sent the ball into the circle, where sophomore Ashley Hoffman was ready to shoot.

Hoffman’s shot bounced off the Hawkeye keeper to Bernatchez, who poked the ball into the cage for the Tar Heels’ first goal of the season.

“It was good to get that out of the way,” Bernatchez said. “And it kind of opened the can of worms.”

The Tar Heels scored three of their four goals off assists and generated several more shots because of their passing game.

Redshirt first-year Catherine Hayden earned her first career assist when she drew the keeper out of the cage late in the first half and passed the ball to sophomore Mackenzie Mick, who scored on the open net for her first career goal.

Senior Lauren Moyer also got on the score sheet thanks to some nifty passing. Redshirt senior Emma Bozek drove down the side of the end line before dumping the pass off to first-year Megan DuVernois, who passed to Moyer for the easy goal.

Even the lone unassisted goal of the day, scored by first-year Eef Andriessen, was set up by a through ball from junior Gab Major.

Shelton was delighted by the adjustments the Tar Heels made in the passing game between contests.

“They understood,” she said. “They know the game. They’re smart players. I just think we got into a battle yesterday, and it was so early in the season we didn’t handle it well.”

As the team looks forward to the rest of the season, Shelton said the Tar Heels will use situations like the Michigan loss to motivate themselves — just like they did Sunday.

“They could’ve hung their heads and felt sorry for themselves,” Shelton said. “And instead, they made the changes that they needed to make in order to open teams up.”

Daily Tarheel

Prague set for Hockey World League Round 1

Going for glory in Prague

The next round of Hockey World League Round 1 events start tomorrow (August 30) in Prague, Czech Republic.

After all the excitement of the Olympics, the appetite for hockey across the globe is immense and the structure of the Hockey World League is such that it gives all teams the chance to qualify for one of the two showcase events – the Olympics and the Hockey World Cup.

In the 2016-17 Edition of the Hockey World League, earning qualification to the 2018 Hockey World Cups is on the line, and for numerous teams the journey starts right here. 

Crucial FIH Hero World Ranking points will also be on offer to every team participating in the League, which could prove vital in terms of qualification for future events.

Men’s and women’s teams will be competing in Prague, with the host nation ranked the top men's team competing (FIH Hero World Ranking: 24), and their women's team ranked the second top (WR: 26) in the women's competition. They will be hoping that the support of the home crowd will drive them towards the next round of competition.

They will face stiff opposition however. In the men’s event, Ukraine has been making progress on the world stage and sits just three ranking positions below the Czech team.

The last time the two teams met in Hockey World League action in 2014, the Czech Republic came away with a 4-2 win over Ukraine, but both teams were beaten in that competition by the team from Belarus.

Ivan Lutsevich was the man doing the damage with his ferocious penalty corner routines then, and Belarus (WR: 39) will be hoping to upset the FIH Hero World Rankings once again.

Italy come to the competition ranked 35 in the world. They will have ambitions to progress to Round 2 after mixed fortunes in the 2014 edition. On that occasion they lost out to a strong Austrian team, but will be seeking to build on that experience.

The other two teams in the men’s competition are Lithuania and Cyprus, ranked 56 and 57 respectively.

Lithuania will be hoping to improve upon its fifth place finish in the 2014 edition, while for Cyprus, this is new territory. They feature in the opening game of the event, playing the host nation.

In the women’s competition, Adela Bizova, the Czech captain, who was recently on red hot form during the indoor season, will be hoping to lead her team to Hockey World League Round Two. Czech Republic opens its account against Turkey, who come into the tournament with the lowest ranking at 37.

The first match of the competition however, features Ukraine, ranked 34, and Lithuania who are ranked at 36.

Ukraine will be looking to their experienced trio, Yevheniya Moroz, Ohla Hulenko and captain Yana Vorushylo to get the campaign off to a good start.

While those three players alone have amassed a combined total of over 500 caps for their country, the Lithuanians have a relatively inexperienced team, with eight of the squad on 10 international appearances or less.

The team to beat in the women’s competition will be Poland. Ranked 20 in the world, Poland made it through to the Hockey World League Semi-Final in Antwerp and will be bringing all they learnt from that experience to the event in Prague.

The top two men’s and top three women’s sides will progress from Hockey World League Round 1 event in Prague through to the next round, which will take place in 2017.

Hockey World League is all part of the FIH 10-year strategy, the Hockey Revolution. One of the aims is to get more people around the world following the sport, something the Hockey World League is helping to achieve.

To follow the Men's event, click here.
To follow the Women's event, click here.

FIH site

2016 National Futures Group Announcement

Over 60 athletes named

Holly MacNeil

Hockey Australia has announced its 2016 National Futures group, featuring over 60 young talented athletes from across Australia

The National Futures Group is a composite age bracket of athletes identified from various under age championship throughout 2016. The National Futures Group is a formalization of an assessment process that recognizes individuals that have demonstrated potential to develop into the next generation of Hockeyroos or Kookaburras.

This program ensures that Australian hockey’s international standing and success is sustainable for the future, focusing on athlete development rather than competition.

2016 Men’s National Futures Group
Athlete (Home Town, State)
Tim Andrew (Mosman Park, Western Australia
Cade Banditt (Kholo, Queensland)
Tom Brown Coraki, (New South Wales)
Lachlan Busiko (South Plympton, South Australia)
James Doherty (Campbelltown, New South Wales)
Dylan Edge (Lockleys, South Australia)
Nathan Ephraums (Keysborough, Victoria)
Harrison Farrell (Mt Louisa, Queensland)
Michael Francis (Bulimba, Queensland)
Alexander Fraser (Willetton, Western Australia)
Harry Golding (Fremantle, Western Australia)
Sam Gray (Lithgow, New South Wales)
Coby Green (Salter Point, Western Australia)
Anand Gupte (Hawker, Australian Capital Territory)
Ehren Hazel (Tamworth, New South Wales)
Nathan Hochman (Marrara, Northern Territory)
Fraser Jilley (Dunsboough, Western Australia)
Braydon King (Brentwood, Western Australia)
Aaron Knight (Florey, Australian Capital Territory)
Callum Mackay (Nowra, New South Wales)
Dylan Martin (Wagga Wagga, New South Wales)
Daniel McBride (Eltham, Victoria)
Linden McCarthy (Burnie, Tasmania)
Sam McCulloch (Sandy Bay, Tasmania)
Felix Melder (Essendon North, Victoria)
Josh Mulder (Mount Martha, Victoria)
Marshall Puzey (Halls Head, Western Australia)
Samuel Poppenbeek (Burwood, Victoria)
Cooper Powardy (West Beach, South Australia)
Ben Rennie (Warrandyte, Victoria)

2016 Women’s National Futures Group
Athlete (Hometown, State)
Lines Appleyard (Mitchell Park, South Australia)
Sienna Archer (Como, Western Australia)
Ashleigh Barbetti (Waterloo, Western Australia)
Morgan Blamey (Lindfield, New South Wales)
Julia Bradley (Coogee, New South Wales)
Annie Collins (Gympie, Queensland)
Isobel Cowell (Elberta, New South Wales)
Ashleigh Deacon (Oxley, Australian Capital Territory)
Olivia Downes (Brighton, Victoria)
Layla Eleison (Ipswich, Queensland)
Jade Emblem (Brassall, Queensland)
Ciara Faichney (Ocean Reef, Western Australia)
Litiana Field (Double Bay, New South Wales)
Sara Foster (Redlands, Western Australia)
Morgan Gallagher (Brisbane, Queensland)
Georgia Graf (Alawa, Northern Territory)
Jamie Hemmingway (Wingham, New South Wales)
Shannon Hebert (Whyalla Playford, South Australia)    
Kate Holland-Smith (Millswood, South Australia)
Grace Jeffrey (New Lambton, New South Wales)
Bree Johnson (Pinjarra, Western Australia)
Erin Lidbetter (Virginia, Northern Territory)
Hannah Lowry (Gladstone, Queensland)
Montana Marsh (Kiama, New South Wales)
Morgan Mathieson (Mermaid Waters, Queensland)
Ashlyn McBurnie (Bald Hills, Queensland)
Zoe Newman (Gymea Bay, New South Wales)
Miriam Pritchard (Glebe, New South Wales)
Sage Rogers-Uff (Dalkeith, Western Australia)
Bethany Russ (Williamstown, Victoria)
Courtney Schonell (Narellan Vale, New South Wales)
Annabelle Scutt (Sandy Bay, Tasmania)
Zoe Smart (Kingscliff (NSW), Queensland)
Maddison Smith (Marrara, New South Wales)
Karri Somerville (Kensington, Western Australia)
Emma Spinks (Chain Valley Bay, New Soth Wales)
Aisling Utri (Moonee Ponds, Victoria)
Caitlin Whipp (Smithfield, Queensland)
Neva Williams (Whitebridge, New South Wales)

Hockey Australia media release

‘Dhyan Chand deserved Bharat Ratna before anyone else’

Several former hockey greats came together to reiterate the demand on Sunday

Photo: R.V. Moorthy   

Ever since sports was included among the categories eligible for Bharat Ratna in 2011, there has been a clamour for awarding the country’s highest civilian honour to hockey legend Dhyan Chand.

A day before the country celebrates National Sports Day on his birthday, several former hockey greats came together to reiterate the demand on Sunday.

Led by Dhyan Chand's son and World Cup winner Ashok Kumar and former India captain and Rajya Sabha MP Dilip Tirkey, the assembled Olympians hoped the central government would take note of Dhyan Chand’s achievements and confer the honour on the legend who led India to consecutive Olympic gold medals in 1928, 1932 and 1936.

“I feel there is discrimination against Dhyan Chand, discrimination against hockey and there is a general discrimination between sports. When he played hockey, it was for the love of the game and to make India proud on the international stage and not for any personal benefit. He played when there were no rewards for winning. We request the Government of India to rectify this shortcoming at the earliest,” Tirkey said.

Ashok said it was sad they had to demand honour for someone who did so much for the country. “Every year there is this discussion whether Dadda (as Dhyan Chand was known) would get it or not. I think it is disrespectful for someone of his stature. I don't know why we have to even ask for it, the government should have itself taken a decision on this long ago. Players like Dhyan Chand are rare and [we] request and expect the government to not neglect such people,” he added.

Then sports minister Jitendra Singh had recommended Dhyan Chand as the first sports recipient for Bharat Ratna back in 2013 when UPA was in power, but Sachin Tendulkar was chosen instead. Asked whether he expected a positive response from the present government, Ashok said he hoped so.

“It was good to hear Prime Minister Narendra Modi talk about dadda in his Mann Ki Baat address. It shows he acknowledges the greatness. So I am hopeful,” Ashok said.

Modi had said “Major Dhyan Chand was a live example of true sportsman spirit and patriotism” and noted that great players from other games like cricket also used to praise Dhyan Chand.

“In 2014 also PM Modi had supported our cause but it hasn't worked out so far. Dhyan Chand is at par with Don Bradman in cricket, Mohd. Ali in boxing and Pele in football. Even players from other sports agree he deserved the Bharat Ratna before anyone else. We wish the government would take steps to do so,” Zafar Iqbal said.

Former captain Ajitpal Singh added that for anyone who knew anything about sports, Dhyan Chand’s name would automatically be on the top of the list of people who deserved Bharat Ratna. “That didn't happen, but it should happen now. I don't want to compare any player. But Dhyan Chand played when India was not even an independent nation and yet he put India on the world stage. That must be recognised by the government,” he said.

Several former internationals flew in from across the country to join the demand including M.K. Kaushik, Ashish Ballal, A.B. Subbaiah, Mohammed Riaz, H.J.S. Chimni and Mukesh Kumar. Renowned sand artist Sudarshan Pattnaik also presented an artwork on the occasion to support the demand.

The Hindu

Three Olympic gold, yet no recognition for Dhyan Chand: Dilip Tirkey

Ishan Chowdhury

NEW DELHI: The "Path of Protest" in Jantar Mantar was crowded with distinguished former hockey players reminiscing Major Dhyan Chand - one of the country's most known names in sport - and ' demanding+ ' that a Bharat Ratna award be given to him posthumously.

Addressing a crowd, former India hockey captain and now Rajya Sabha MP Dilip Tirkey would pause briefly every few sentences to allow a gentle smile to grace his face. It set the mood of an event that was strictly "not a protest". His words, though, were well thought out.

"Look at how much we are struggling to win medals in the Olympics now. This is a man who won three gold (1928, 1932 and 1936 Olympics) and yet isn't getting the recognition he deserves. I feel that there may be some political reason behind this," Tirkey told TOI. Like all others taking the stage, he was also wearing a white T-shirt that had the Major's face printed on the front.

Even PM Narendra Modi spoke about Dhyan Chand in his radio talk on Sunday morning, remembering the hockey maestro's contribution to sports. Tirkey said, "It's encouraging that he is interested in sports. But the time for action has come and we hope that things will move briskly from here."

Dhyan Chand's son and former India hockey international Ashok Kumar who also won the 1975 World Cup, was also present on the occasion. He said: "It is a shame that we have to ask for this, but if the government is continuously ignoring our plea then we are left with no option." The debate is not new, but since the sportspersons were made eligible for Bharat Ratna in 2012, it is the first time that such a large number of athletes have got together and signed a memorandum to be sent to the President and Prime Minister.

Saying that 'dada' Dhyan Chand should have been the first to receive the award, possibly ahead of former cricketer Sachin Tendulkar (2014), former hockey player Zafar Iqbal - gold medal winner in the 1980 Moscow Games - said, "We can only hope that he gets it. Dhyan Chand is the most deserving sportsperson the country has had."

'Other sports are being discriminated against'

Continuing the argument of Sachin Tendulkar winning the award ahead of those who deserved it as much, Tirkey drew attention towards the lack of respect shown to other sports. "The government has to promote all sports equally. If someone is doing something extraordinary, the same type of reward should be there for all sportspersons competing on the global stage," he said.

Sand structure steals show

Sudarsan Pattnaik, one of India's finest sand artists, had arrived six hours before the event to create a sculpture of the legend. Next to the stage, he had made a big model of the sporting icon with the text 'Bharat Ratna for Dhyan Chand'. "I'm a good friend of Trikey, and he has been discussing this with me for a while now. Coming here and presenting my work for such a good cause is my way of paying respect to the finest athlete we have ever had," he said.

The Times of India

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