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News for 24 January 2017

All the news for Tuesday 24 January 2017

Turner's double strike sets up win for Kalinga Lancers

OVER THE MOON: The Kalinga Lancers players celebrate a goal against Ranchi Rays in their HIL match on Monday.  

BHUBANESWAR: Australian Glenn Turner struck twice as Kalinga Lancers beat Ranchi Rays 4-2 in an entertaining match of Hockey India League here on Monday.

Turner scored in the 44th and 50th minutes while Sarvanjit Singh pulled one back for Ranchi Rays in the 53rd minute.

Played in front of a vocal and partisan home crowd, there was no doubt that this top of the table clash was going to be dished out with pace and skill and the teams did not disappoint the spectators at the Kalinga Stadium.

Both the sides raced out of the blocks at a frenetic pace, attacking each other constantly, almost without a break from hooter to hooter.

It was Kalinga Lancers' young custodian Abhinav Kumar Pandey who had a busier first quarter in the goal, his saves keeping his team from dropping behind too early in the game. He padded away Christopher Ruhr's drag flick in the 7th minute of the game, a superb effort to keep his team in the game.

Pandey's brilliant show continued in the second quarter when he dived towards the right to stop the ball fiercely struck by Ranchi Rays drag flicker Ashley Jackson attempting to convert a penalty corner in the 23rd minute.

Jackson asked for a video referral for dangerous play within the striking circle, as the ball deflected off Pandey's stick. The umpire upheld his appeal but Jackson failed to convert yet again.

Later, Kalinga Lancers earned as many as five penalty corners but failed to convert a single goal as both teams went into the first half in stalemate.

Starting the third quarter at 0-0 score, the hosts were quick to earn a penalty corner in the 31st minute of play but captain Moritz Fuerste could not convert this opportunity.

While the pattern continued into this quarter with both teams constantly rushing at each other looking for opening, it was interesting to see how Kalinga Lancers' top scorer from last season Glenn Turner was constantly marked by at least three Ranchi Ray's men at any given time.

But the lanky Australian forward was relentless. He attempted a penetration in the 43rd minute and earned a penalty stroke for his team, thanks to a sloppy tackle by a Ranchi Rays defender.

Turner made no mistake in converting the stroke as he fiercely put one past Tyler Lovell to give Lancers the much-needed 2-0 lead.

Turner struck again for Kalinga Lancers in the 49th minute when he converted a remarkable field goal that came off a rebound.

It was not the end of the action though as Ranchi Rays made a late comeback in the 53rd minute when Sarvanjit Singh scored a field goal to make the score 4-2 but it was not enough to stop the hosts from ending the match in Kalinga Lancers' favour.

The Hindu

Kalinga Lancers on a roll, all hail Amit Rohidas

Tazeen Qureshy

Last edition’s finalists Kalinga Lancers have begun the Hockey India League journey on a high note. With two wins from two matches and ten points in their kitty, the team will now look to keep up the momentum for rest of the league.

Amidst the team, which has got together to give a spectacular show, the strong defense has caught the attention of all. Local lad Amit Rohidas has been exceptional on field, thwarting the opposition’s attacks and clearing the ball with equal ease.

“It is all due to the hard work we have put in. Our camp started from January 8. The results of the efforts we have put in, is out for everyone to see,” says Amit, as the crowd keeps chanting his name.

“Personally, I am very happy with my work so far. I hope to carry on with this performance throughout the league.”

With coach Mark Hager and skipper Moritz Fuertse already making it vocal that defense would be their key focus area this season, a lot is dependent on Amit to keep up with the expectations.

“Defense was crucial in both the matches we played. In the last two matches, we conceded seven penalty corners, so defense had to be very tight. However, we had clear instructions on man to man marking and tackling a few important opposition players. So, we didn’t give away any goal in all the 14 PCs we conceded in the last two matches,” he says.

Kalinga Lancers, who were runners-up in the last edition, have raised similar hopes this year, thanks to their good show in the last two matches. But, Amit is not thinking so far yet.

“The team is in control and is a confident lot. We next play Ranchi in their home ground. We will plan match by match and then think of the end results. We have a host of world class players who are holding the team together. There is a fighting spirit among all. Hopefully, we will not disappoint the huge crowd and Kalinga Lancers fans this time,” he signs off.


I kept my promise: KL skipper Moritz Fuerste

Tazeen Qureshy

A day after Kalinga Lancers skipper Moritz Fuertse expressed his displeasure over a few “questionable decisions” made by his team in the first match against Delhi Waveriders, he was a happy man on Monday, after posting a 4-2 win against Ranchi Rays.

“We had a really good game today. I kept my promise. We did exactly what we had planned. The first quarter was even as both teams got chances but for the rest 45 minutes, we controlled the game completely. We got more chances and corners,” said Moritz, who had stressed on being more calm and stable after yesterday’s 1-0 win over Delhi.

“We can go to Ranchi with a lot of confidence. We are a improved lot since last year and are more committed. The guys are enjoying,” he added.

Though Kalinga Lancers dominated most of the match, they failed to convert even one of the six penalty corners they got, while conceding seven to the opposition.

“They (Ranchi) defended well. These days, the goalies are better, the first runners are good. Of course, we will still look into it. As far as conceding is concerned, the good thing is we also defended well.”


Dharmaraj: our work has just begun

By Jugjet Singh

Dharmaraj charging up his players during the famous semi-finals win again Italy. Picture by Joe Pengkalan

THE Malaysian women's hockey team ended their World League Round Two campaign with honours, but the work has just begun for coach K. Dharmaraj.

The former national men's senior and juniors' coach took over the women's job a year ago and turned a whipping side to silver medallists at the Tun Razak Stadium on Sunday.

World No 15 Italy were beaten in their campaign, but they lost steam and collapsed 3-0 to world No 16 Ireland in the final.

Dharmaraj used unconventional ways to train his charges by waking them up by 4.30am to train by 5am.

After that they hit the gym for five days a week -- something that has never done with the women's side. He also took them on uphill runs, and they threw car tyres during training -- akin to a gladiator competition.

When asked about his team's fantastic showing in the World League Round Two Dharmaraj said: "... the work has just begun for me and the players, as I aim to qualify for the World Cup (2018 in England)."

England will host 16 teams, and not the usual 12, and so Malaysia have a good chance of qualifying based on double qualifications from the five continental tournaments.

In the World League Semifinals, Malaysia will either play in South Africa (July 8-23) or Belgium (21 June-7 July) with both having six strong seeded teams.

The six seeded teams in Belgium are reigning world champions Netherlands, hosts Belgium, Oceania champions Australia, Hockey World League Season Two runners up New Zealand, China and Asian champions South Korea.

And in Johannesburg the teams who have qualified are, England (represented by many athletes who won the Rio 2016 Olympic gold medal for Great Britain), reigning Champions Trophy and World League champions Argentina, Olympic bronze medallists Germany, African champions South Africa, Pan American champions United States and Japan.

Each of the World League Semifinals will add four more teams to complete a pool of 10 after the Round Two ends in other countries.

"We will be playing against established sides in the WL Semifinals and so it does not make a difference if we are placed in Belgium or South Africa.

"Both venues have teams with great achievements, but that does not bother me. With 16 teams playing in the next World Cup, I will plan for Malaysia to be among them," said Dharmaraj.

Dharmaraj whipped up a Junior World Cup side which finished fourth in the 2013 Edition in New Delhi -- and he is well known to have the touch to turn things around.

And the plan involves a round of thrashing in Europe.

"My plan is to take the team to Europe and play at least 20 matches against higher ranked teams there. Ireland and Italy have agreed to play with us if we make the trip, and I also want to play against other higher ranked teams to make my players lose their fear.

"I am willing to see my team thrashed in the process, as I believe that is the only way to become better," said Dharmaraj.

Malaysian Hockey Confederation (MHC) Technical Director Terry Walsh confirmed that the Europe trip is planned for the end of April.

For the record, the Malaysian women's team qualified for the WL Semifinals for the first time and have never played in the World Cup before.

But with Dharmaraj as the coach, his players can start dreaming about making their World Cup debut in England 2018 -- provided they are willing to sweat blood for the next six months during their coaches' unconventional training methods.

Jugjet's World of Field Hockey

Schopman Announces 2017 U.S. Women's National Developmental Squad

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. - In November 2016, USA Field Hockey along with U.S. Women's National Team Head Coach, Janneke Schopman, announced the introduction of the U.S. Women's National Developmental Squad. To account for the transitional phase from the U.S. U-21 Women's National Team to the senior USWNT, the squad’s purpose is to nurture the talent of college students who no longer are permitted to be on the U-21 USWNT due to age restrictions but show great promise in hockey. After much evaluation at the 2017 U.S. Women’s National Team Trial which was held Sunday, January 15 to Tuesday, January 17, Schopman and her staff are pleased to announce 16-athletes to the Developmental Squad.

“The Developmental Squad or Shadow National Team, as I’d like to call it, completes the pipeline for all athletes in college and therefore will make transition to the National Team easier,” said Schopman. “At the same time it provides an opportunity for players who just fall short of the senior national team to keep playing and practicing, giving them extra time to get ready for the national team. It is something that is needed as we don’t have a good system in place to play after college.”

Congratulations to the following athletes selected to the 2017 U.S. Women's National Developmental Squad:

Abby Barker (Michigan State, Columbus, Ohio), Carly Celkos (Penn State, Berlin, N.J.), Isabella Delario (UMass, Rehoboth Beach, Del.), Caleigh Foust (Virginia, Bryn Mawr, Pa.), Karlie Heistand (UConn, Hamburg, Pa.), Dani Hemeon (Iowa, Gilroy, Calif.), Kellie Joyce (New Hampshire, South Pomfret, N.Y.), Natalie Konerth (American, Huntingtown, Md.), Ainsley McCallister (Michigan, Ann Arbor, Mich.), Emily McCoy (Boston College, Litiz, Pa.), Eryn McCoy (Boston College, Litiz, Pa.), Erin McCrudden (Louisville, Yorktown Heights, N.Y.), Megan Miller (Richmond, Palymra, Pa.), Kasey Tapman (Maryland, Annapolis, Md.), Sarah Thornhill (Wake Forest, Richmond, Va.), Carissa Vittese (Virginia, Cherry Hill, N.J.)

In addition to the players selected above, three athletes will be offered a trial at the Developmental Squad's first training camp which will take place at Duke University in Durham, N.C. from Friday, March 17 to Sunday, March 19. Those three athletes are Mary Beth Barham (Yale, Fairfax, Va.), Sam Carlino (UMass, Kennett Square, Pa.) and Sarah Helgeson (Stanford, Landisville, Pa.).

Leading this squad of 16 will be Jun Kentwell, current U.S. Women's National Indoor Team Head Coach who is also assisting with the USWNT on skill development.

The Developmental Squad will be attending several training camps throughout the year between March and May, where they will train and scrimmage against the U.S. U-21 Women's National Team and college teams. In June, they will compete as a team at the Young Women's National Championship held at Spooky Nook Sports in Lancaster County, Pa.

Click here to view the 2017 U.S. Women's National Team Olympic Developmental Pipeline to better understand the implementation of the U.S. Women's National Developmental Squad.

USFHA media release

Scottish Woman’s indoor semi-final places booked

Champions Dundee Wanderers seemed to have returned to normal service with a comfortable 6-1 victory over city rivals Grove Menzieshill, thereby securing their place in next weekend`s semi-finals.

Wanderers were three ahead at the interval - playmaker Vikki Bunce scored twice and in between Katie Mulholland added another.

The champions continued to add to their tally in the second half through Amy Snell, Ruth Blaikie and Bunce again for her hat-trick, before Susie Hamilton notched a consolation for Grove Menzieshill.

The champions cruised their way past bottom side Inverleith in their second match with a seven goal victory. A double from Amy Snell along with strikes by Rachel Osborne and Katie Mulholland put the Taysiders four up at the interval. In the second half Snell completed her hat-trick and Vikki Bunce and Julie Bryce got the others.

Grove Menzieshill has laid claim to second spot in the pool and a place in the semi-final after seeing off Wildcats 5-0. Grove Menzieshill were two ahead in as many minutes through Susie Hamilton and Pauline Stott at a penalty corner. The Olympian added a third five minutes from the interval to effectively end the contest.

The Dundonians added two more in the second half through Katie Stott and Leigh Fawcett, both from penalty corners.

In the other pool Edinburgh University returned to winning ways with a 6-3 win over Milne Craig Western to confirm their pole position.

The scores were tied at 1-1 at the interval, both goals coming in the closing minutes from a spot conversion by Edinburgh`s Susan Graham cancelled out by Kayleigh Justice.

The foundation of the victory came in the second half from a quick-fire hat-trick by Edinburgh`s Becky Dru inside seven minutes for a 4-1 lead. Western retaliated with strikes by Lexi Sabatelli and Millie Stieger to bring the score back to 4-3.

But any hint of a comeback was stifled by a late double from Annie Arthur and Graham again to give the students the crucial three points.

However, Edinburgh were taken to the wire by local neighbours CALA in the second match of the day, and they finally emerged 4-3 winners in the end.

Amy-Jayne Russell and Angie Davie gave CALA a two goal lead approaching the interval, but an overtime penalty corner strike by Becky Dru reduced the deficit to 2-1 at the break.

There seemed no change in the second half, Susan Graham levelled for the students after two minutes, then Harriet Bascombe put CALA ahead again. But in the final quarter Kirsty Abraham and then Dru again from another penalty corner stole the points for the students.

Western confirmed their second spot in the pool and a place in the semi-finals with a 7-2 win over Aberdeen Bon-Accord. Sisters Kayleigh and Marjory Justice gave Western a four goal lead in the first half, the latter scoring a hat-trick, while Nicola Davidson replied for the Granite City side.

Western continued to press their advantage with further goals from Ali Eadie from the spot, Laura Mann, Lexi Sabatelli and Kayleigh Justice again, while Davidson produced the consolation for the Aberdonians.

Wildcats secured their presence in the top flight next season with a 2-0 win over Inverleith who are consigned to the relegation play-off. Captain Catriona Booth led from the front with a double in the first 14 minutes, and that was the end of the scoring.

Bon-Accord`s points advantage was quickly dissipated when they went down 5-2 to CALA Edinburgh. Both sides now sit on three points and the destiny of the relegation play-off spot may well come down to goal difference.

Scottish Hockey Union media release

EHL appoints new commercial agents

The EuroHockey League (EHL) are pleased to announce that they have appointed Rahusen Consultants as their commercial agents with immediate effect.

They are charged with the task of developing new partnerships to join long-standing supporters ABN AMRO in the innovative and popular pan-European league which has been such a success since its inception 10 years ago.

EHL Chairman, Hans Erik Tuijt said: “I am delighted that we have the Rahusen Consultancy on board at this important time for the league and the sport.

"Hockey throughout Europe is incredibly strong and the world’s top players are eager to play in this exciting competition. Of equal importance is the fact that the world wants to watch the action too and through our celebrated television coverage and streaming, this is entirely possible making for talking points in Mumbai as well as Madrid.”

European Hockey Federation President and EHL Board member, Marijke Fleuren added: "We have gone with an agency that we believe will give their full energy to this important sporting property.

"Hockey may be a niche market but it is a growing and sophisticated one with an audience who are well educated, have above average disposable income and are media and brand savvy."

Arjen Rahusen is the experienced owner of Rahusen Consultancy who are based in the Netherlands. Arjen has a wealth of experience in sports marketing and is well known for creating events that have worked for sport and the commercial partners including Heineken, Rabobank, Delta Lloyd and Shell.

Arjen has been joined by Nick Irvine who will work primarily, but not exclusively, on UK leads. Nick has a background in Marketing and PR and is a freelance broadcaster and journalist specialising in international hockey. For several years he was also responsible for servicing sponsorships for English hockey’s national governing body.

Additional Information:

Arjen Rahusen has been involved in hockey for many years. After a long career as an active player, he joined the Dutch leading sports marketing agency Trefpunt Sports and Leisure Marketing. There he was involved in national and international hockey for three decades, working as a client director for the Royal Dutch Hockey Board (KNHB), European Hockey Federation (EHF) and, for 8 years, as the event manager for the International Hockey Federation (FIH).

Through these clients, Arjen has been involved for in many world level hockey events and also was responsible for the sponsor-interests for all the mentioned federations at their events.

"I believe in the brilliant concept of the Euro Hockey League and I think that it can be the natural breeding ground to showcase potential future international players. Hockey at this level deserves to be televised around the world in order to showcase just how exciting the sport can be.

"Working with Nick Irvine has always been a privilege and we share the love for the game. We believe that we can attract commercial partners and give them incredible value for their investments. We see attractive new possibilities to accomplish new ideas for the sport and those that partner it. Those ideas are based on our extensive experience, together with the fast and evolving possibilities that the digital era brings to sports marketing and the game of hockey and its supporters. The strong values that hockey holds dear will be attractive to commercial partners in 2017."

Nick Irvine is a well-known name - and voice - in the hockey world. Nick is a passionate supporter of the EuroHockey League and has been in the television commentary box for every game in the proud, 10-year history of the premium event.

"Hockey is in my DNA and the EHL is my favorite event as it is inspiring to see our game’s leading international players demonstrating just how much their clubs mean to them. Clubs are the fabric of hockey and what makes the hockey family so very special.

"It is widely accepted that the EHL is the best club competition in the hockey world and the innovations that the EHL has introduced have changed the game for the better. I look forward to introducing commercial partners to that family and jointly demonstrating the loyalty and opportunities that association will offer’

"Arjen and I know each other very well and are on the same page with so many things regarding commercial partnerships and hockey. Our long involvement in and passion for the sport will ensure that no one will work harder for the partners that we will attract and the synergies that will flow."

Euro Hockey League media release

Mini astro turf being laid at Edhi hockey stadium

Anwar Zuberi

KARACHI: Work on laying a mini synthetic astro turf for six-a-side competitions at Abdul Sattar Edhi hockey stadium is in full swing and is likely to be completed by the end of this month.

The green turf has been donated by Chief of the Naval Staff Admiral Moham­mad Zakaullah at the prize distribution ceremony of the inaugural CNS hockey championship that was held at the same venue last year.

The turf is being laid behind the goalpost and in front of the Athletic Fitness School (AFS) which is run by veteran athletic coach Mohammad Talib free of cost for the last four decades.

Pakistan Navy has borne all the cost including its import from abroad. The naval officers are supervising its early completion, a visit to the site by this correspondent on Monday reveals.

The stadium is getting a face lift as the CNS Admiral Zakaullah is expected to inaugurate the facility on Feb 4.

It is the first mini turf that is being laid in the country.

“When laid, the facility will be used for six-a-side hockey and will go a long way in improving techniques including dribbling, dodging, stopping, goal-keeping of the players,” former player Waseeq Ahmed, who is director administration of the stadium, told Dawn.


Scottish Hockey announces Notts Sport as official Facilities Partner

Scottish Hockey is delighted to announce leading synthetic surface supplier Notts Sport as its official Facilities Partner.

The partnership will be in place for three years as Notts Sport looks to support hockey north of the border with Scottish Hockey.

Working in collaboration, Notts Sport and Scottish Hockey aim to grow the game at all levels and support clubs, schools, and local authorities to deliver the best new and refurbished hockey facilities, helping the sport thrive in Scotland.

Notts Sport will become the title partner for the Inter Districts competitions, which will be called the Notts Sport Inter Districts. Scottish Hockey looks forward to sharing details of this initiative.

Scottish Hockey will also work closely with Notts Sport through HockeyFest. HockeyFest is the social event of the season, offering clubs a fantastic opportunity to promote themselves, show off their current facilities and raise funds for new equipment or projects. HockeyFest, held throughout August and September, is open to everyone and gives clubs the chance to develop unity and excitement in the build-up to the season.

David Sweetman, CEO of Scottish Hockey, said: “We’re delighted to work in partnership with Notts Sport to grow hockey in Scotland. With a shared passion for hockey I’m looking forward to a bright future working in collaboration for the benefit of the sport. The expertise available through this partnership will help ensure more quality playing surfaces in Scotland.”

Scottish Hockey Union media release

India still wants apology for 2014 CT incident: Shahbaz

KARACHI: Pakistan Hockey Federation Secretary Shahbaz Ahmad on Monday said that Hockey India still wants a formal apology from the PHF over the 2014 Champions Trophy incident in Bhubaneswar.

He said former Hockey India chief and current FIH president Narendra Batra has repeatedly sought a formal apology from the PHF over that controversial incident.

Pakistani players took off their shirts and made obscene gestures at the crowd at the full-house stadium after winning the semi-final of the Champions Trophy against India.

"Narendra Batra has repeatedly asked me to send a formal apology for the alleged bad behaviour of Pakistani players after the Champions Trophy semifinal against India," Shahbaz said.

"Batra still wants the apology although we feel that our team was not allowed to take part in the World Junior Cup held in India last month only because of this issue," the former Pakistan captain said.

"They said we did not confirm our participation on time. We did not get visas from the Indian High Commission. But in the end, I got this feeling it was all due to that incident in 2014. Pakistan hockey was punished for it," he said.

The former magical forward conceded that Pakistan hockey had been hit because of not being allowed to play the World Junior Cup in Lucknow in December last which India eventually won.

"We had eyes on some of the players and we wanted to see how they perform under pressure on Indian soil. It never happened."

Shahbaz made it clear that given the existing strained relations between Pakistan and India, the PHF is not in a position to submit any apology.

"The previous PHF management has already expressed regrets for what happened but in such an atmosphere it is better if this matter is closed and hockey bilateral relations are looked at," he said.

He said the PHF has written to its international parent body as well as International Olympic Committee over the way the country was not allowed to field a team in the Junior World Cup held in India last year but nothing has happened so far.

"Nothing has happened so far. We want a logical solution because next year the World Cup will be held in India as well," said Shahbaz.

The Times of India

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