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News for 22 October 2016

All the news for Saturday 22 October 2016

Malaysia beat China 5-1

By Jugjet Singh

MALAYSIA, wearing an all-white outfit, were not clinical but still beat China 5-1 to move closer to the semi-finals of the Asian Champions Trophy in Kuantan Friday.

Coach Stephen van Huizen, elated with the three points, agreed that there are areas that need improvement.

"We got the three points, and even though the team has been scoring more from penalty corner rebounds in two matches, I'm happy cos they are still goals.

"I understand that China are a young team, but the pressure was not on them and so they played calmly," said van Huizen.

China coach Song Yi is looking at the next four years to groom his side.

"We played in the national championships two weeks before the ACT and selected a young side because we are looking for results in four years time. The scoreline was big, but my players can play better but did not perform against Malaysia," said Song.

Razie Rahim, the No 1 penalty corner flicker could not execute powerful flicks, but they were on target and Haziq Samsul made the rebounds count.

Haziq scored off penalty corner rebounds in the sixth and 20th minutes, while Fitri Shaari's world class field goal in the 22nd minute gave coach Stephen van Huizen's men some breathing space going into the half-time break.

China pulled one back off Wang Bowen in the 33rd minute, but Shahril Saabah scored off a penalty corner attempt in the 37th minute to take a three-goal lead again.

Goalkeeper S. Kumar played one of his beat game yet, as he pulled off stunning saves to deny China.

Firhan Ashaari made it 5-1 with a penalty corner rebound in the 54th minute.

After a days rest, Malaysia play Japan and a win would ensure their semi-finals slot.

In another match, Pakistan edged South Korea 1-0 with a last minute penalty corner goal scored by Abdul Khan.

RESULTS: Pakistan 1 South Korea 0, Malaysia 5 China 1.

SATURDAY: India v South Korea (6.30pm), China v Japan (8.30pm).

SUNDAY: India v Pakistan (6.30pm), Malaysia v Japan (8.30pm).


         P  W  D  L  F  A  Pts
MALAYSIA 2  2  0  0  9  3  6
INDIA    1  1  0  0  10 2  3
PAKISTAN 2  1  0  1  3  4  3
S. KOREA 1  0  0  1  0  1  0
CHINA    1  0  0  1  1  5  0
JAPAN    1  0  0  1  2  10 0

Jugjet's World of Field Hockey

Pakistan defeats Korea 1-0

After losing the opening tie 2-4 to World's 14th ranked Malaysia, 13th ranked Pakistan defeated the 11th ranked South Korea 1-0 in the 4th Asian Champions Trophy Hockey Tournament in the Malaysian city of Kuantan.

The only goal of the exciting contest came in the last minute. Of Pakistan's fourth penalty corner, instead of going direct, Aleem Bilal pushed the ball towards the left side of the goal and Haseem Khan dived to flick the ball in, to give Pakistan a well deserved victory.

Unlike yesterday, Pakistan appeared well composed from the beginning.

In a high octane encounter, they matched the Koreans in fitness throughout.

Although, the 60 minute play saw just one goal but there were plenty of thrills in the game which saw attacking play  throughout.

There was a lot of goal mouth action and both the net minders shone.

Korea couldn't make of their seven penalty corners though four of them came in succession.

Today, Pakistani rushers Ejaz and Rizwan Senior' through their fast sprints halted the opponents' penalty corner strikes on the top of the circle taking them on stick or foot.  On a couple of occasions, when the Koreans opted for indirect drill, Pakistani defence was up to the task.

Pakistanis displayed good team work and understanding. They had more possession and made seven attempts on the goal of the 17 circle penetrations as compared to Korea's five out of 13.

Sunday sees the most eagerly awaited encounter of the event. The two traditional rivals and past rulers ofworld hockey, Pakistan and India would lock horns.

Many rate India as the favourites but after today's show, Pakistan should enter the field with enhanced confidence.

PHF Media release

Pakistan defeat South Korea in Asian Champions Trophy Hockey Tournament

Pakistan, ranked 13th, defeated 11th ranked South Korea 1-0 in the 4th Asian Champions Trophy Hockey Tournament here in the Malaysian city of Kuantan.

The only goal of the match came in the last minute.

The goal was scored by Haseem Khan on Pakistan's fourth penalty corner of the match.

Instead of going for a direct shot, Aleem Bilal pushed the ball towards the left side of the goal and Haseem Khan dived to flick the ball in, to give Pakistan a well deserved victory.

Unlike Thursday, when Pakistan lost the opener 2-4 to hosts Malaysia, Pakistan appeared as a well composed outfit from the outset.

In a high octane encounter, they matched the Koreans in fitness throughout. Although, the 60 minute play saw just one goal but there were plenty of thrills in the game which saw attacking play.

Korea could not capitalise their seven penalty corners, though four of them came in quick succession.

Pakistani rushers Ejaz and Rizwan Senior halted the opponents' penalty corner strikes at the top of the circle, taking them on stick or foot.

When the Koreans opted for an indirect drill, Pakistani defence was up to the task, with the national team displaying good team work and understanding.

Sunday will see an eagerly awaited encounter of the event as Pakistan takes on its traditional rival India.


Abdul's last minute goal helps Pakistan beat Korea

KUANTAN (Malaysia): Pakistan clinched a 1-0 victory through a last-minute penalty corner goal from Abdul Khan in the round-robin league encounter against South Korea in the fourth Asian Champions Trophy on Friday.

A last-gasp Korean attempt to exert pressure on the rival citadel led to a Pakistan counter-attack that earned them a penalty corner with just 28 seconds left for the hooter.

Abdul was allowed space by the Korean defenders to take a step forward and sent in a low shot that went through a few sticks to sound the boards and spark celebrations in the Pakistan team.

The Koreans dominated the possession but failed to convert it into goals and even muffed six penalty corners.

Having lost their opening match to Malaysia 2-4 on Thursday, Pakistan were desperate for three points from this game, but striker Muhammad Irfan Jr muffed a sitter in the 39th minute when he failed to connect to a diagonal ball from Abdul that even went across goalkeeper Hong Doopyo.

Pakistan had earlier failed to make use of two penalty corners and were forced to wait until the dying seconds for the match-winner.

Pakistan coach Khawaja Junaid was delighted at the turn of events and praised his players for maintaining structure in their game even when under persistent pressure from the Koreans.

"The Koreans were everywhere and they built a lot of pressure on us, but the boys did well to defend stoutly and keep the structure," Junaid said.

He said Pakistan had squandered away the lead in yesterday's match against Malaysia, but this victory had out them back on track.

South Korea team coach Paul Lissek expressed his annoyance at the award of the penalty corner, but said his players should not have been too ambitious in the last minute.

"Because I am annoyed at the decision to award the last penalty corner, I won't say anything other than that I through the reverse shot by the Pakistani striker was a dangerous shot and the umpire should have blown for foul rather than award a penalty corner," said Lissek.

"But we made a bad mistake in opening up our defence to a counter attack. When you cannot score a goal in 59 minutes, it is not wise to try too many difficult things in the last minute," the coach said.

Lissek said there was a lot his young side could do in this tournament, despite losing the first outing through a last minute goal.

"Inexperience cost us this game, but we have a lot to play for," said Lissek, asserting that his boys would give India a tough contest tomorrow.

"India are a good side and we must look to capitalise on our chances. We lost 1-2 to India in the Champions Trophy in London earlier this year," said Lissek.

In London, India went on to make their first appearance in the final of the Champions Trophy.

In another match, hosts Malaysia outplayed China 5-1 for their second successive victory and climbed to the top spot in the round-robin league standings after two days with a maximum six points.

China's failure to defend against Malaysian penalty corners was the key element of the contest as four of the Malaysian goals came from penalty corners.

Haziq Samsul twice capitalised on penalty corner rebounds (in the sixth and 20th minutes), while Shahril Saabah did so in the 37th. Only Firhan Ashari capitalised with a direct penalty corner shot for Malaysia in the 54th minute.

The lone field goal for the hosts came through Fitri Saari in the 22nd minute, while China salvaged some pride through an open play strike by Wang Bo Wen in the 33rd minute.

The Times of India

Indo-Pak matches are always filled with emotions: Junaid

Junaid said his team includes several young players and was relatively inexperienced compared to the Indian rivals.

Indian men’s hockey players celebrate after a goal against Pakistan. File photo

Pakistan hockey team coach Khawaja Junaid says Sunday’s encounter against India will be the showpiece match of the Asian Champions Trophy and his side will provide an exhibition of attacking sub-continental hockey.

“An India-Pakistan hockey match is always a game of emotions,” said Junaid, asserting that these popular encounters “showcase skills that attracts millions of spectators to the sport.”

“Hockey’s popularity has a lot to do with the India-Pakistan matches. We promise to give a good display against India tomorrow,” said Junaid, whose is the two-time defending champion in the Asian Champions Trophy.

Junaid said his team includes several young players and was relatively inexperienced compared to the Indian rivals.

“The inexperience is what we have to tackle. We have just had one international tournament in one year,” he said.

“After the World League Semifinals in Antwerp last year, the Pakistan team’s only outing was the Sutan Azlan Shah Cup, where we played seven matches.”

Pakistan were missing from the Olympic Games line-up after failing to earn qualification through the Hockey World League. A loss in the final of the 2014 Asian Games in Incheon to India meant the automatic Asian qualification went to the Indians, who were the only Asian team featuring in the Olympic men’s event in Rio de Janeiro.

Junaid said tomorrow his team will be pitted against a side that had gained a lot of international experience in recent years.

“After the 2012 Olympic Games in London, where India finished last in the12—team event, the Indian team has worked on a five-year play,” said Junaid.

“Since then, the Indians have played more than 200 matches and their international experience is a reason for climbing up the world rankings,” he said.

The Pakistan coach was pleased at the way his boys had soaked in the pressure to prevail 1-0 over South Korea on Friday after suffering a shock 2-4 loss to hosts Malaysia a day earlier.

“I am quite pleased at the way our boys handled the pressure built on us by South Korea. Whenever we got possession, we make it count. The ball was not easily given away and the team kept maintained the structure even under tremendous pressure,” said Junaid.

“For us, the last-minute goal against South Korea last night was the comeback into the tournament,” he said.

“We were pretty disappointed to have given away a lead and lost the opening match to Malaysia, but now we’re back on track.”

Junaid implored his players to keep their emotions in check and stick to the game-plan.

“The players need to keep their emotions in check. It was our exuberance that squandered away the lead against Malaysia. We must also maintain the structure of our game,” he added.

The Indian captain, PR Sreejesh had yesterday implored his players to play it cool when they take on Pakistan.

Seeking to cool the nerves of his players, Sreejesh said the preliminary league fixture against Pakistan was just one of the matches.

India had won the inaugural Asian Champions Trophy in 2011 by defeating Pakistan in the final. Pakistan reversed the result in the title encounter the following year.

Pakistan retained the title by defeating Japan in the final in 2013, when India sent their under-21 team and finished fifth.

The Hindu

Sreejesh simmers down ahead of India-Pakistan Asian Champions Trophy clash

KUANTAN (Malaysia): India captain PR Sreejesh is keen that his players play it cool when the Asian Champions Trophy's key encounter against arch sub-continental hockey rivals Pakistan comes up on Sunday.

Seeking to cool the nerves of his players, Sreejesh says the Indian team has set sights on winning the Asian Champions Trophy title and the preliminary league fixture against Pakistan is just one of those games.

"Pakistan is just one of the teams in the tournament. We are right now looking for three points from Saturday's match against South Korea," said Sreejesh as prepares for two key matches against former Asian champions South Korea and sub-continental hockey rivals Pakistan on successive days.

"Pressure could build up on the players from back home, so I have advised the players to focus on the match here and try to stay away even from the social media," Sreejesh said as he downplayed the recent political tension between the two countries.

However, Sreejesh had made a contrasting comment following the Uri terror attack in September.

"India-Pakistan match brings a lot of excitement to the table. We want to give hundred per cent. We don't want to disappoint our soldiers by losing, especially when they sacrifice their lives in the exchange of fire at the borders," Sreejesh said.

Pakistan came into this tournament as the defending champions, but suffered a shock 2-4 defeat by hosts Malaysia in the opening fixture yesterday, while India launched their campaign with a rousing 10-2 victory over Japan.

India had won the inaugural Asian Champions Trophy in 2011 by defeating Pakistan in the final. Pakistan reversed the result in the title encounter the following year.

Pakistan retained the title by defeating Japan in the final in 2013, when India sent their under-21 team and finished fifth. For the next two years, this tournament was scrapped from the international fixtures.

Sreejesh played a key role when India dethroned Pakistan as the Asian Games hockey champions at Incheon in 2014. That loss to India in the Asian Games final led to Pakistan's failure to qualify for the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.

Coming in the wake of Pakistan having missed a place in the 2014 World Cup lineup for the first time, it has been a frustrating period for Pakistan hockey.

The Times of India

Indian eves depart to participate in Asian Champions Trophy

NEW DELHI: The Indian women's hockey team, led by forward Vandana Katariya, on Friday departed for Singapore to participate at the Asian Champions Trophy that will get underway from October 29.

The squad has been training at the SAI centre in Bhopal and will be competing at the tournament featuring continent's five best teams -- Japan, China, Korea, Malaysia and India following a round-robin format, followed by the bronze and gold medal matches.

Besides Katariya, defenders Sunita Lakra, Namita Toppo and midfielder Rani Rampal will add the experience to the squad.

Coach Neil Hawgood said, "After the Olympics, this is a key step to ensure we are in good form, and as a team we can keep improving our standards constantly. We have had a good training camp and are now looking forward to do well in the Asian Champions Trophy."

The Times of India

Dragons back on top with Daring in Belgium

KHC Dragons rose to top spot in the Belgian league on Thursday as they produced one of the strongest performances of the season to beat Royal Leopold 4-1.

They did so in spite of the absence of Felix Denayer – out for four weeks – but were ahead within 11 minutes via Florent van Aubel. Maxime Plennevaux equalised from the penalty spot but Mathieu Rombouts restored the lead by half-time.

Alex Hendrickx’s corner made the game safe with 12 minutes to go before Thomas Briels completed the victory. It was their sixth win from seven games and put them level with Daring whose perfect run of results came to an end.

They fell to a surprise defeat to Antwerp 4-3 as they struggled without the services of Nick Woods, Sergi Enrique, Geoffroy Cosyns and Fredy Mesa. Jim Briels opened the scoring for the home team at the 19 th minute before Kane Russell doubled the advantage from the first corner of the game.

Manu Brunet closed the gap only for Briels to make it 3-1. Cyril Hermans and Tanguy Cosyns made the game level at 3-3 but Gregory Stockbroekx got a fortuitous late goal to earn Antwerp their second win of the season.

Racing Club de Bruxelles moved into a share of third place thanks to a 6-2 win over Oree. They share it with Waterloo Ducks who drew 2-2 with Herakles.

Euro Hockey League media release

Kenya Police, USIU Spartans launch Sana Cup defence


KCA University's Felix Mochama (left) vies for the ball with Kennedy Siblieche of Kenya Police during their Kenya Hockey Union Premier League match at City Park Stadium on October 9, 2016. PHOTO | MARTIM MUKANGU |  NATION MEDIA GROUP

The Kenya Hockey Union league takes a break this weekend with teams heading to Mombasa for the annual Sana Cup set to be held at the Mombasa Sports Club.

The seventh edition of the tourney, which is held in honour of the late hockey legend Agnelo de Souza, has attracted 16 men and eight women teams.

Men’s and women’s defending champions Kenya Police and United States International University of Africa (USIU-A) Spartans are top seeds for the two-day event.

Four-time winners Kenya Police are in Pool A and will get their title defence underway against Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology (JKUAT) at 10am on Saturday before facing Technical University of Mombasa and 2012 winners Sikh Union Nairobi later in the day.

Fresh from securing a league play-off spot last weekend, the law enforcers will be out to extend their good run in Mombasa. Police coach Kenneth Kaunda has said he will use the competition to rotate his squad.

“I shall rest some of my top players who have been playing consistently over the last two months and bring in some fresh faces. As the defending champions, all eyes will be on us to go all the way,” Kaunda told Saturday Nation Sport.

Two wins will ensure Police advance to the knockout stage set for Sunday. Last year’s losing finalists Impala are in Pool B alongside top-flight side Greensharks, Wazalendo Veteran and Malindi Hockey Club.

Impala, who are eyeing promotion to the premier league, take on Sharks at 10.30 am in what should be a cracker.

Impala coach Amwai Olubayi wants his charges to go one better this year after last year’s heartbreak.

“The match against Sharks will be like a final because they are having a good season and it will be exciting to test ourselves against a top league side,” Olubayi said.

Sharks on the other hand will be looking to bounce back from last weekend’s 2-0 loss to Police as they prepare for next month’s play-off clash with league champions Butali Sugar Warriors.

Butali have for the third straight year opted out of the competition as they prepare for the play-offs and next year’s African Club Championship.

USIU men’s team headline Pool C and will face hosts Mombasa Sports Club, who were relegated from the top-flight last season.

Three-time winners USIU Spartans will open their campaign against Amira Sailors in a Group A women’s clash.

Telkom Orange, who have also won the cup thrice, are in Group B and will face JKUAT in their opening match.

Daily Nation

Sidhu, Juniors hoping to make lasting impression as Senior Camp comes to a close

Shaheed Devji

Harbir Sidhu at Men’s National Program Carding and Identification Camp on October 19, 2016

The Men’s National Program 2017 Carding and Identification Camp is set to come to a close with a scrimmage Friday evening, and many junior athletes are keen on making a lasting final impression.

With the roster for Canada’s 2016 Junior World Cup team to be announced next week, there is no need for motivation to perform.

But the World Cup implications are not the only reason this week’s Camp has carried weight for some of Canada’s juniors.

“I really want to crack the Senior Team or make some tours,” says Harbir Sidhu, who is in contention for a spot on this year’s Junior World Cup team. “Right now I’m trying really hard to show what I’ve got, and show that I can filter in and play the way that we’re supposed to play.”

Sidhu is one of a handful of player who, at times, trained with the Senior group throughout this past year.

And players like him are hoping to make enough of an impact this week and potentially at the Junior World Cup in December to be in conversation for Senior selection in 2017.

And according to man at the head of the program, there is a good chance that happens.

“There is always that eye on that and what the underpinning guys are doing and how they might add value to the senior group,” says Men’s National Team head coach Anthony Farry. “So there is a real possibility that a few of these junior guys could come straight into the Men’s National Team let alone the Senior Development Squad.”

But to do that, it will come down to more than just play on the field.

“A lot the stuff that we’re going to do is around their character, to see what kind of character they are,” he says.

“We know there’s a lot of guys here that can play hockey, but we want to make sure they’re the right fit for the group moving forward, not only in terms of being a good hockey player but being a really good person.”

Sidhu, who has spent the last year as both a part of the Junior and Senior Development Squads, heard the message loud and clear.

“Sometimes you just have to grind it out,” he says of his approach to the Carding Camp and moving forward into the next year of competition. “They keep on telling us ‘character, character.’

Whether it’s running four hundreds or running back and forth between drills, it’s just working as hard as you can. I think that they see big value in that; showing that you can put it all out there.”

Field Hockey Canada media release

British players abroad

Helen Richardson Walsh celebrates

Almost immediately after returning from the Olympic Games, four of the Great Britain gold medal winners headed off their new homes over in the Netherlands. Kate and Helen Richardson-Walsh, Maddie Hinch and Sophie Bray had all signed contracts pre-Olympics to go and ply their trade in what is widely considered the best league in the world.

Sky Sports have been keeping a close eye on their fortunes with reporter Jane Dougall heading over to the Netherlands to see how the players have settled in as part of their coverage for the SportsWomen programme.

“We train four times a week and also do a series of video sessions. There’s a real professional set up here.” Kampong’s Sophie Bray tells Dougall. “in terms of the level, it’s just down from international level. It’s the best league in the world.”

 Bray’s Kampong side currently sit in fifth place in the table whilst international team mate Maddie Hinch’s SCHC side are in second. Next weekend (30 October) they face each other head on, with Hinch aiming to stop Bray adding to her tally of seven goals in seven games, a total that has taken her to third in the top scorers' charts. Kate and Helen’s Bloemendaal side have endured a tough start to the season. With a young inexperienced side, the Great Britain duo are set to play a key role in helping their side to move away from the foot of the table whilst passing on their wealth of knowledge to their team mates. Hinch too has become involved with the development of talent at her new club, taking on the coaching responsibilities for the junior goalkeepers.

Whilst all four have thrown themselves into their new challenges, they are still fully aware of what is going on back home with hockey and the increased interest in the sport. Hinch told Sky Sports:

“We must capitalise on this period. We’ve never had this interest in the sport. There’s a lot of work to be done but I’m confident the guys back at Bisham Abbey know what needs to be done and are doing it. This is the start of something exciting. If we don’t make the most of it now the game will never change.”

With club numbers swelling and the media glare on hockey brighter than it ever has been, as Hinch says, the time is now to capitalise. For the time being however, the four golden girls are focusing on the task of competing in the best league in the world.

You can watch the full video of the girls in Holland on the Sky Sports website.

England Hockey Board Media release

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