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News for 28 December 2016

All the news for Wednesday 28 December 2016

SA Squads for Cape Town Summer Series 2017

The South African Hockey Association today announced the SA Women and SA Mens squads that will be taking part in the Cape Town Summer Series in January 2017. The series participating countries are: Women – China, Belgium, South Africa : Men – Netherlands, Belgium and South Africa.

Sanani Mangisa     SG
Marelise van Tonder     NG
Mmatshepo Modipane     NG
Phumelela Mbande     NG
Lisa Deetlefs     SG
Kara Stella     KZN C
Nicolene Terblanch     NG
Jessica O’Connor     KZN C
Kirsty Adams     BOLAND
Erin Hunter     WP
Nicole Walraven     FS
Christine Roos     NG
Quanita  Bobbs     WP
Celia Evans     NG
Ilse Davids     WP
Shelley Russel     SG
Jade Mayne     WP
Marizen Marais     SG
Stefanie Baxter     SG
Kelly Madsen     KZN C
Izelle Verster     NG
Sulette Damons     NW
Candice Manual     WP
Dirkie Chamberlain     NG
Bernadette Coston     SG
Lilian du Plessis     SG
Kate Koening     KZN C
Tarryn Glasby     WP
Toni Marks     SG
Tanya Britz     FS

Rassie Pieterse     SG
Gowan Jones     KZN C
Siya Nolutshungu     KZN C
Daniel Bell     WP
Robin Jones     KZN C
Gareth Heyns     SG
Jethro Eustice     KZN C
Dylan Swanepoel     WP
Mohamed Mea     KZN C
Tyson Dlungwana     SG
Rhett Halkett     WP
Alex Stewart     WP
Timothy Drummond     KZN C
Ryan Julius     WP
Reza Rosenberg     SG
Clinton Panther     SG
Taine Paton     KZN C
Jonty Robinson     KZN C
Owen Mvimbi     SG
Keenan Horne     WP
Ignatius Malgraff     EP
Tevon Kok     NG
Nqobile Ntuli     KZN C
Brandon Panther     SG
Ryan Crowe     SG
Damian Kimfley     KZN C
Richard Pautz     NG
Ross Hetem     KZN C

SA Hockey Association media release

Eight teams make it to super league of National Hockey

LAHORE -  PIA, Police and Army registered victories in the 63rd Zaitoon National Hockey Championships premier league while eight teams made their way to the super league here at the National Hockey Stadium on Tuesday.

In the first match of the day, although Railways faced 1-2 defeat at the hand of PIA, yet it was sufficient to carry them into super league. Defending champions PIA were already through to the super league but for the young Railways side, they had to avoid a defeat by two goals.

In the first quarter, Railways' skipper Usman had the best chance of the period but he couldn't strike properly. Railways tight marking of the opponents' forwards was quite effective. PIA upped the tempo in the second quarter. In the 18th minute, Irfan sent a measured through ball into the circle. Haseem Khan ran into the space and flicked the ball on the run to break the ice.

The second half hour of the match began with the youngsters of Railways having the better of the exchanges and they were rewarded with the equaliser in the 37th minute. A fine right side move yielded ball to Hamza Waheed, whose top of the circle flat hit found the corner of the board. However, the airmen were again in the front after only four minutes. A combined sortie from the right side was put in by Awaisur Rahman standing close to the goal.

Sharjeel's hat-trick helped Police defeat Port Qasim Authority by 3-2. The cops needed a win while for the PQA, a draw would see them into the super league. PQA dominated the first quarter as Hanif Shahzad scored with a fine grounder in the 13th minute via their fourth penalty corner.

Police appeared a different side in the second quarter which saw an even battle. Chances and penalty corners were created by both the sides. It was 1-1 in the 20th minute when police scored off a penalty corner. After receiving the ball on the top of the circle, the recipient gave a small pass to Sharjeel, who measured hit went into the right corner of the board.

In the third quarter, Police gained the lead. A swift move in the 40th minute, involving four men, was finished by Sharjeel. He had his second goal via a good shot from the right side of the circle. Within two minutes, PQA made it 2-2, again through a penalty corner goal and again through Hanif Shahzad.

Tense battle was witnessed in the last quarter. PQA applied a lot of pressure in the earlier part. Police bounced back as first Bilal Mahmood missed a sitter and then in the 56th minute, Sharjeel's goal on a rebound was disallowed on a review. Despite the disappointment, Police persisted for the much needed goal. And with just 20 seconds left, they were awarded a penalty stroke when their striker, about to make an attempt, was felled by the PQA custodian. Sharjeel with a high flick into the left corner, completed his individual hat-trick and sent the police squad into celebration.

In the last match of the premier league, Army outclassed HEC 3-0. HEC needed a two-goal win over Army to qualify for the super league, but they failed to do so. The first 15 minutes saw a fast paced pole-to-pole spectacle. Both the goalkeepers were tested but it remained 0-0. Army marshaled the field and twice, their raids fetched goals. In the 23rd minute, a well-coordinated move was capped by Abbas. A minute before the half time whistle, skipper Jabbar sent a high ball coming from left side attack into the cage, with his stick held in the air. With two goals lead, Army were in quite a safe situation.

It was heartening to see the HEC rallying well in the third quarter. They were better of the two sides and had a couple of very good chances and a goal disallowed. In the last quarter, soldiers' fitness enabled to regain the upper hand. Army mainly controlled the proceedings and added another goal through Awais' brilliant individual effort. He sprinted from the 23 metre line and on entering the circle, thundered the board with a rasping shot.

The Nation

Stats Speak: Hockey in 2016

By B.G.Joshi (Sehore-Bhopal, India)

Statistical highlights of year 2016 are:

Triumph of Argentina (men) and Great Britain (women) in Rio de Janeiro Olympics.

Silver medal of India (men) and Bronze medal of USA (women) in London Champions Trophy.

India became champions in both men and women category of Asian Champions Trophy.

Red Lions (in Rio) and Red Cougars (in Lucknow) were runners-up

Hockey in 2016- at a glance







India’s Rank


Rio de Janeiro





Champions Trophy






Hockey India League

6 different  places

Punjab Warriors

Kalinga Lancers

Delhi Waveriders


Asian Champions Tr.






Azlan Shah Cup




New Zealand


Hockey Australia Cup



New Zealand



6 nations Invitation T.




New Zealand


South Asian Games








Rio de Janeiro

Great Britain




Champions Trophy






Asian Champions Tr.






Hawkes Bay Cup


New Zealand




4 nations Invitation T.


New Zealand




South Asian Games



Sri Lanka




Junior World Cup







Junior World Cup







na= not applicable, nq= not qualified                                                                   


Scientific Approach and Unity Behind Success, Says Coach Harendra Singh

Arnab Sen

Image credit: Hockey India.

New Delhi: A lot has been written and said about Harendra Singh's emotional side, ever since he guided the junior men's hockey team to the World Cup title earlier this month. While emotions do play an important role in a sportsman's life, Harendra is clear, that this triumph was a result of 'meticulous planning' and 'scientific approach', something that was lacking in Indian hockey for long.

"We had a simple pyramid in mind while creating the blueprint for this tournament. It was all about Vision, Planning, Execution and eventually the Result," the Hockey Junior World Cup winning coach told News18.com during an exclusive interview.

Harendra didn't have a decorated career as a player. But what he had lost out on, on the pitch, he has more than made up by being on the sidelines. He was the assistant coach of the senior men's hockey team during the 2000 Sydney Olympics. India needed a win against unfancied Poland in their last league match, to reach the semi-finals for the first time in two decades. But a late goal put paid to that hope. Sixteen years later India is still waiting to get a shot at an Olympic medal, but Harendra feels things have started moving in the right direction.

"Mental toughness is the key in big tournaments and that is needed to avoid chocking at crucial moments. This is possible when your fitness levels are very high and that is where the big change has come. These boys are so fit that the Europeans and Australians are worried about matching up to them for 70 minutes."

"If you have the gas in your legs till the end, you can stage a comeback at any point. The reason, why you saw the team come back from losing positions to win crucial matches at the World Cup," the coach said.

"We knew the boys could outpace their opponents at any point. Hence we had different strategies for different scorelines. Even when we were leading, the focus was on keeping the ball in the opponent's half without committing too many players forward. The last ten minutes of a hockey match are all about mindgames. A fresh and fit body is the key to a fit mind, and see we didn't fall prey to old habits," Harendra quipped proudly.

"Punjab has always provided top notch players to the Indian team and it was the case this time as well. Hockey has seen a renaissance in Punjab due to Pargat Singh's vision. His decision to bring in experienced coaches like Sukhvir Singh Grewal at the Surjit Singh Hockey Academy changed the lives of Harjeet (captain of the Junior Men's team) and the other boys," Harendra said.

But the biggest clincher, according to Harendra, is the unity in the dressing room. The coach was clear that the boys had to move beyond their regional tendencies to come together as a group and believe in being an Indian team.

"Groupism and factionalism has cost Indian teams of the past dearly. I can say that we have lost out on international medals because we didn't play as a team. I was determined to change this. The first thing I did was to change the room partners. Despite a huge number of players from one state, I ensured that the boys mixed with each other and stayed as a team".

"We did everything as a team. From sitting on the dining table wearing the same coloured clothes to celebrating every festival together, the idea was to create a family. And the results were seen on the pitch, as each player was standing behind the other to support in crucial times," an excited Harendra said during the telephonic conversation.

"This win will serve as a precursor to the senior men's World Cup, which will be held in India in 2018. The target should be a top four finish and then aim at the medals in the Tokyo Games."

Asked if he would be interested to take up a role with the national side, Harendra said, "I am a soldier. Whenever and wherever my country will need me, I will go there."


2016 Review - Men's National Team - Part 1   

Shaheed Devji

We start with our review of 2016 with a look at the year that was for Canada’s senior men’s field hockey team. With the Olympics in August and a busy build-up to the Games, the year was as memorable as any in recent history.

Later this week, stay tuned for Part 2 of the Men’s National Team review, a video in which four members of the team talk about the best parts of the year.

Also coming this week, Parts 1 and 2 of the Women’s National Team Year-in-Review, and we count down the Top Canadian field hockey moments of 2016.

2016 was extra special for the Men’s National Program. Having qualified for the 2016 Olympic Games the year prior, this year was all about the Olympics, from the lead-up, to team selection, and competition.

The year began in South Africa for Canada’s men. With the Olympic Games on the horizon in August, the entire squad went on a training tour to kick off the year.

The trip saw the team on the field twice a day, including a handful of exhibition matches against fellow Olympic-bound teams Spain, Ireland, and Belgium. The team also faced host nation South Africa in front of the excited home fans.

With the majority of the time spent on field, the trip to South Africa gave the coaching staff an early opportunity to assess the team, and it gave the athletes plenty of opportunity to impress with Olympic team selection just a few months away.
Vancouver training-block

After returning to Canada in February, Canada’s men buckled down in their Daily Training Environment.

The men spent their time on field training at West Vancouver’s Rutledge Field. It was a tough stretch for the men, who were on the field through the cold and rainy Canadian winter. But despite the weather woes, the men were able to work on the little things, allowing the coaches to bring the team closer together philosophically and tactically.

The end of the training block brought on a difficult decision: team selection for the 2016 Sultan Azlan Shah Cup in Malaysia. The Azlan Shah Cup was one of only two competitions the men had scheduled before Olympic team selection, making the roster of 18 players an important one to crack.

2016 Azlan Shah Cup

After team selection, in April, Canada’s men headed to Ipoh, Malaysia for the annual Azlan Shah Cup tournament.

With 2016 being an Olympic year, the teams at the 25th edition of the tournament were top-notch. The competition was a perfect place for the Canadians to continue their Olympic preparation.

Canada faced Olympic teams New Zealand, India, and Australia, and also took on Pakistan and host Malaysia. The Canadians finished in 6th place with 1 win, 4 losses, and 2 draws. The tournament was one of two final opportunities for the Canadian men to make a mark before Olympic team selection.

European tour and Olympic Selection

The final opportunity to impress came in June when the Canadian men went to Europe to play a series of exhibition games against Ireland and Spain, both of whom were also headed to the Summer Olympics.

Canada’s performance throughout the trip – and certainly in the final matches against each team, both of which ended in draws – led to increased confidence heading into the Olympics.

With just over a month to go, Canada’s Olympic men’s field hockey team for Rio 2016 was announced in a special way at the top of Cypress Mountain and amidst the Olympic rings from the Vancouver 2010 Games.

Men’s National Team alumni and two-time Olympian Paul “Bubli” Chohan was joined by Olympian and bronze medalist Brent Hayden and a large group of family and friends of the 16 men who were chosen to represent Canada in Rio. The Olympic 16 were presented with their official Team Canada jackets, and their road to Rio was almost complete.

Pre-Olympic prep

2016 Summer Games Sendoff. July 10, 2016. Men's National Team vs USA. 8-1 win. Matthew Guest. Photo: Blair Shier

Prior to leaving for Brazil, the Canadian men had a couple more items to tend to.

The team’s last game action came at the beginning of July when the team hosted the United States for four games in the Lower Mainland of British Columbia. Not only were the four games a good way to head into the Olympics – Canada swept the U.S., with four straight wins – but it was a nice way for the men to be “sent off” to Rio, with family and friends cheering them on in the series of home games.

After the games against the U.S. and like they did in 2008 prior to the Olympic Games in China, the team travelled to Vancouver Island for a short training camp at Shawnigan Lake School. In addition to some final training sessions and time for the Olympic sixteen to bond as a group, the team hosted two clinics with young hockey players.

2016 Olympic Games

Photo by/par Yan Huckendubler

With a new format and budding confidence, Canada went into the Olympics looking to make history and become the first Canadian men’s field hockey team to make an Olympic quarterfinal match, and finish higher than 10th.

After a tough first three matches against Germany, Argentina, and Holland, Canada played its best two games of the Olympics against Ireland India.

The match against Ireland was a see-saw battle, which saw Canada improving throughout the match. If not for early penalty corner goals from Ireland, Canada would have been happy with their effort in the 4-2 loss.

Despite losing its first four games, Canada continued to improve and the final game of the tournament against Number 5 ranked India was their best.

In a game that meant a lot to the Indians in terms of implications for the remainder of the tournament, Canada pushed them to the edge, drawing 2-2 and finishing the Olympics strong.

After the Olympic Games, Canada’s men were rewarded with an improved world ranking to 12th place.

Field Hockey Canada media release

Search for glory goes on

Dismal show in international matches highlights hockey season

By Elizabeth Mburugu

Captain Orange Telecom Tracy Karanja (centre) lead her team mates to receive the 2016 Champion's Ladie's KPL Hockey Trophy at City Park Stadium onSunday, Dec 4, 2016. [PHOTO: JONAH ONYANGO/STANDARD]

This was not the best of years for Kenya hockey teams as former continental giants flopped in their international mission.

The men and women’s national teams could not deliver when it mattered most and were forced to play second fiddle to Ghana in the only international assignment they took part in this year.

The task at hand was the International Hockey Federation World League One in Accra, Ghana in September. The domino effect of uncertainties, financial constraints, poor preparation and team selection brought Kenya on her knees as both teams lost to their hosts, bowing out of the World League series in shame.

They all lost by a solitary goal to Ghana in the round-robin matches played at Theodosia Okoh Stadium.

The Kenya Hockey Union’s (KHU) failure to motivate national teams saw many experienced players opt out of the team citing work commitments. The worst hit was men’s team, which missed the services of seasoned Butali Sugar Warriors trio of Frank Wanangwe, Kenneth Nyongesa, and Barnabas Odhiambo, among others.

The women’s squad was not spared either as players ditched the team at an alarming rate. After Margaret Rotich left last year to build her career in athletics, forward Pauline Naise followed suit as she shifted her allegiance to football. Well, her decision was not in vain as she received a call-up to national women’s football team, Harambee Starlets. Naise’s success was also evident in her new venture as Kakamega High School’s fitness coach when the school won the East Africa secondary schools rugby 15s title.

But perhaps the most shocking was the departure of talented and dedicated former national and Telkom Orange captain Betsy Ommala, who put her passion for hockey aside to pursue other interests in the United Kingdom.

Ommala is remembered for her exemplary leadership skills both at club and national levels. She led the national team to victory in the 2014 World League One, where she was named the Most Valuable Player.

The dismal show has seen Kenya drop in FIH world rankings. The women team is ranked 40th in the 72-team standings, which is 12 places below Ghana and 27 slots lower than South Africa, who are Africa’s top ranked side. The men are ranked 38th, one place above Ghana and 23 below South Africa.

Locally, Orange extended their dominance in the women’s league after they won their 19th title. The league was too close to call as Strathmore University’s Scorpions and debutantes Amira Sailors gave Orange a run for their money.

The Scorpions finished second, while Amira were third, pushing last season’s first runner-up Sliders to fifth.

Despite the league going down to the wire, where the winner was not known until the final day of the season, Orange coach Jos Openda said the competition was still low.

“We have won the title 19 times and no club has come out to wrestle the trophy from us. Our time in the comfort zone is long overdue and we need clubs to challenge us,” Openda.

Strathmore’s Gladiators dethroned Butali Sugar Warriors as men’s Premier League champions. The Gladiators beat Butali 3-0 in post-match penalties to land the crown. Police defeated Greensharks 4-3 to finish third. Technical University of Kenya won the men’s second division title and with it, earned promotion to the Premier League.

KHU changed the playing format from home and away, to pooling for Premier League teams and one-way for men and women’s national leagues. Openda, however, said the move will not add any value to the development of the sport.

“Players need more matches for them to compete well at the international level. With less matches, we cannot expect our players to match their opponents.”

Strathmore’s duo of Yvonne Karanja and Paul Omarorieba bagged the women and men’s player of the year awards. Veteran Jackline Mwangi of Telkom Orange was the top scorer with 15 goals, while Willis Okeyo topped the charts in men’s category. He scored nine goals.

The Standard Online

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