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News for 18 October 2017

All the news for Wednesday 18 October 2017

Argentina Tops Standings, Canada & USA Undefeated. Day 1 Womens Indoor Pan Am Cup

Uruguay suffer first loss while Guyana, Barbados and Trinidad & Tobago search for first points

2017 Indoor Pan American Cup - Argentina vs Trinidad & Tobago. Photo: Yan Huckendubler   

Canada 2 v Guyana 0

An enthusiastic crowed welcomed Guyana and Canada for the opening match of Day 2 They were disappointed when Michelle Weber opened the scoring for Canada.  Some nice passing and good finish by Kathleen Leahy doubled their lead.  Alysa Xavier saved a penalty stroke to keep the margin close, but Canada held possession through strong passing and finished the half with momentum on their side.

Canada continued pressure in the second half and Guyana responded with great penalty corner defence.  A nice spin move by Gabriella Xavier earned a penalty corner that was saved by KJ Williams.   Guyana earned repeated corners and were not able to convert, their best chance saved on the line by Alison Lee.  A disappointing loss for Guyana dropping them to 0-3 while Canada remains undefeated after two matches.

Click here for photos from the match

Argentina 4 v Trinidad & Tobago 0

Argentina was looking to strengthen their spot at the top of the table and a string of sharp passes from the opening pushback found Carina Guzman striking the ball into the empty net.  Juliana Rios Ferreyra added another before Trinidad & Tobago settled in and started to move the ball well.  The first half was abrupted by a power outage, but the music kept playing and kept the fans in a boisterous mood.

The second half featured a brace of early goals by Emma Yanzi creating steep hill for Trinidad & Tobago to climb. TTO was not able to createchances in the remaining time and drop to 0-3 and face Canada tomorrow.  Argentina solidified their spot at the top of the pool with a perfect 3-0 record.

Uruguay 1 v United States 3

These two teams last faced off in the 2014 Indoor Pan American cup where the USA won the bronze medal in a shootout.  This time the USA started strong with a goal by Sammy Popper in the 2nd minute to show that they are over an residual fatigue from travel.   Uruguay was not to fall that easily, Augustina Nieto had a neat reverse stick shot that sailed just high.

Second Half started with Patricia Campos earning a penalty corner on a spin shot.  Sweet finish by Carolina Mutilva on the layoff brought Uruguay even.   But there would be no denying the USA, great finish by Ali Campbell and Popper closed out the result 3-1 for the USA.

Pan American Hockey Federation media release

Canada and Trinidad & Tobago Convincing on Day 2 Mens Indoor Pan Am Cup

Argentina earns first points while Barbados, Mexico remain winless

2017 Indoor Pan American Cup - Guyana vs Trinidad & Tobago. Photo: Yan Huckendubler   

Canada 6 v Barbados 1

Day 2 of the Mens Cup opened with Canada playing Barbados.  Initially Barbados held possession for periods of time but were susceptible to the strong passing and quick attack from Canada.  Canada scored 4 evenly spaced goals in the first half with two coming from Lyle Fernandes for a comfortable lead.

Club teammates Jonathan Roberts and Jeewan Bath were in-sync after years of playing hockey together and were key in this match.  Keenan Knight made several saves for Barbados and prevented a more lopsided score.   Akeem Rudder scored a consolation goal at the final hooter but Canada moved to the top of the group with full points from two matches.

Click here for photos from the match

Guyana 0 v Trinidad & Tobago 4

A lively atmosphere at Cliff Anderson Sports Hall greeted Guyana and Trinidad & Tobago with both looking to build on their victories a day earlier and solidify a spot at the top of the ladder.  A frantic first half had both teams laying siege to their opponents’ goal.  Both keepers Ron Alexander (TTO) and Medroy Scotland (GUY) held steady to keep the match scoreless at half time.

The second half started with pressure from Mickell Pierre who intercepted frequently but couldn’t find a gap in the Guyanese defence.  A burst from Kareem McKenzie and Andrew Stewart nearly put Guyana in the lead, but seconds later, TTO responded with a strike from Aidan de Gannes.   Very quickly TTO earned a penalty corner and a stroke which was slipped home by Jordan Reynos to provide a bit of a cushion.  

With time running out Guyana pulled their keeper to look to break through.  TTO helped with two consecutive cards that took them down to 4 players.  Not only did they hold, but they scored two more in the final minutes to lock up the match and join Canada at the top of the standings.

Mexico 0 v Argentina 12

Both team started day two winless and looked to make their mark in Georgetown.  Argentina brought the urgency and tallied twice in the 4th minute and again 3 times in the final 5 minutes of the first half to take a commanding lead.  Juan Eleicegui and Agustin Ceballos scoring twice each.

The second half featured a carnival of goals from Argentina, the highlight being an amazing lob goal by Eleicegui bringing the crowd to its’ feet.  There was no stopping Argentina at this point, nine goals between Eleicegui and Ceballos gave them a convincing 12-0 victory.

Pan American Hockey Federation media release

Indoor USWNT Tops Uruguay 3-1 in Second IPAC Match

Image courtesy of Yan Huckendubler/PAHF

GEORGETOWN, Guyana - The U.S. Women’s National Indoor Team withstood a long period of sustained pressure in the first half from a talented Uruguay squad to secure a 3-1 win at their second women’s Indoor Pan American Cup match in Georgetown, Guyana.

Sammy Pooper (Blue Bell, Pa.) found a seam through the middle to Katie Gerzabek (Springfield, Pa.), who surprised Uruguay's goalkeeper with a quick shot in the second minute to give USA the early 1-0 lead. Uruguay immediately countered taking the game to USA and moving the ball with speed and accuracy around the court. As a result the USA defense stretched thin with Uruguay going in close with three reverse stick shots, but could not capitalize on any of the shots, including one that deflected off the crossbar.
As the second half started in the same vain, Uruguay forced an early penalty corner. The resulting low shot eluded two USA defenders to tie the game at 1-1. Little by little, USA recovered back into the game. Gerzabek rounded the goalkeeper only to see her shot saved on the line, and from a good passing move, USA was awarded their first corner of the game. Ali Campbell (Boyertown, Pa.) found a lane through the legs of the runner out. On the ensuing penalty corner she made no mistake with a powerful shot into the top corner to regain the lead. Two minutes later, Popper intercepted a pass, cut across the court past two defenders and put a hard shot through the onrushing goal to put the USA up 3-1. Less than a minute later Mary Beth Barham (Fairfax, Va.) found herself free on the right, but her shot sailed past the far post. Annie McDonough (Kenneth Square, Pa.) saw her own follow up shot saved by a defensive stick on the line.
With both Campbell and Barham receiving green cards in the last five minutes, USA's players held their nerve and saw out the player advantage. Uruguay was awarded a penalty corner in the dying moments of the game which USA successfully defended as time ran out to secure the 3-1 win.
“The Uruguay team made us work very hard for this win," commented Jun Kentwell, Indoor USWNT Head Coach. "Our players pressed very well. We looked more confident in each other, and I was pleased that we created some good scoring chances against a very good team tonight.”

The Indoor USWNT go right back to work Wednesday, October 18 at 4:30 p.m. ET against Argentina. For more information about the 2017 women’s Indoor Pan American Cup, including event schedule, results and live stream, visit the IPAC Event Page. #IPAC2017

FIH Hero Indoor World Ranking No. 18 Uruguay
FIH Hero Indoor World Ranking No. 28 USA

Goal Scoring Summary:
Team     Minute     Player     Action     Score
 USA      2      #6 Gerzabek      FG      1 - 0
 URU      22      #6 de Maria      PC      1 - 1
 USA      27      #5 Campbell      PC      2 - 1
 USA      29      #10 Popper      FG      3 - 1

USFHA media release

‘Calypso Stickmen’ stun Argentina

Nigel Simon

T&T’s Jordan Reynos goes past an Argentina player during their 2017 Indoor Pan American Cup Men’s Tournament match at the Cliff Anderson Sports Hall, in Georgetown, Guyana on Monday night. T&T won 5-2. PICTURE YAN HUCKENDUBLER

Australian-based Akim Toussaint scored two first-half field goals to lead T&T ‘Calypso Stickmen’ to a 5-2 upset of Argentina in the third and final match of the opening night of competition in the Indoor Pan American Cup Men’s Tournament at the Cliff Anderson Sports Hall in Guyana on Monday night.

The early moments favoured Argentina but after wasting two penalty corners opportunities, the South Americans needed their goalkeeper Francisco Demonte to make a huge save to keep the momentum going.

Not to be outdone at the other end, T&T custodian Ron Alexander dove to stop a Juan Eleicegui shot after being set up by a brilliant run Alejo Lacaze.

T&T would eventually break the deadlock in the 14th minute when a midfield intercept and spirited run by Jordan Riviera found Toussaint and his poised finish gave the ‘Calypso Stickmen’ the 1-0 lead.

Remarkably, Toussaint doubled the lead in the same minute of a mishandled pushback by the Argentines.

Argentina continue to falter on their penalty-corners with Alfreda Sosa shooting wide and Eleicigui mis-trapping at the top, before Leandro Leotta finally scored from the field with a blistering shot that found the mesh in the 18th.

The second-half featured three early goals for T&T with Dwain Quan Chan (23rd), Jordan Viera (24th) and captain Solomon Eccles (26th) that put Caribbean nation in the drivers seat at 5-2 ahead.

Despite the three-goal gap Argentina continued to push forward and managed to get a second item two minutes from full-time time when Alfredo Sosa scored from a penalty-corner.

Yesterday, the Raphael Govia-coached T&T men were back in action and improved to a perfect six points with a 4-0 triumph over Guyana via second-half items from Aidan De Gannes in the 25th, Jordan Reynos, a 28th minute penalty and Mickell Pierre and Jordan Vieira, both in the 40th minute.

In yesterday’s two early matches, Canada also improved to 2-0 with a 6-1 defeat of Barbados while Mexico came up against Argentina last night.

Today, T&T meets Barbados from 3.15pm followed by Mexico and Guyana at 5.45pm, and Argentina and Canada to close off the night from 8.15pm.

The six-team round-robin series will continue daily until Friday, at the end of which, the top two teams will contest the final, from which the tournament winner will qualify to the Indoor World Cup in Berlin, Germany, next February.

Stickwomen suffer third straight loss

T&T women’s indoor hockey team dropped to a 0-3 record in its Women Indoor Pan American Cup seven-team series at the Cliff Anderson Sports Hall, in Georgetown, Guyana yesterday.

This after the Alanna Lewis-captained ‘Calypso Stickwomen’ went under to Argentina yesterday and Uruguay on Monday night by similar 4-0 margins to add to their 7-2 loss to USA on Monday morning.

In the loss against Argentina, Emma Yanzi scored a second-half brace in the 21st, a penalty-stroke and 26th minute after Carina Guzman, first minute opener was followed by Julianna Ferreyra’s eighth minute item.

And Uruguay on Monday night Maria Teresa Viana Ache (20th), captain Augustina Nieto (25th), Camila de Maria (38th) and Constanza Barrandeguy (39th) were on target for the winners.

In yesterday’s first women’s encounter Canada blanked Guyana 2-0 to improve to maximum six points, three behind the Argentines while Uruguay (six points) came up against USA in the late match.

In Monday night other matches, Argentina blanked Guyana 3-0 and Canada spanked Barbados 5-1.

Today (Wednesday), T&T meets Canada from 2pm followed by Argentina and USA at 4.30pm and Guyana and Barbados at 7pm.

The seven-team round-robin series will continue daily until Friday, at the end of which, the top two teams will contest the final, from which the tournament winner will qualify to the Indoor World Cup in Berlin, Germany, next February.

The Trinidad Guardian

India take on tricky South Korea

World No. 6 start Super 4 journey with a clash against the dangerous counter-punchers

Indian forwards Akashdeep Singh (in pic), SV Sunil and Ramandeep Singh are in good form and have linked well with the Manpreet Singh-led midfield. Against Pakistan, Akashdeep set up the first goal, scored by central midfielder Chinglensana Singh. HI file photo

Dhaka: India will look to continue their winning run as they face defending champions South Korea in their first match of the Super 4 round in the Asia Cup hockey championship here on Wednesday.

After three successive wins in the pool stage, Sjoerd Marijne’s wards are prepared to begin their four-team round-robin stage. Malaysia and Pakistan are the other teams in the second round.

South Korea are fighting a battle of their own — they will be under added pressure as they are the only ones in the Super 4s who have not qualified for next year’s World Cup in Bhubaneswar.

India have registered convincing wins against Japan (5-1), Bangladesh (7-0) and Pakistan (3-1). Indian forwards SV Sunil, Akashdeep Singh and Ramandeep Singh are in good form and the midfielders, led by Manpreet Singh, are linking up with the defence and attack-line smoothly.

Marijne has put centre-half Sardar Singh in the backline to make up for the lack of experience among the defenders and the former captain has been performing his role as a free-moving player nicely.

“We got off to a good start in the tournament. Though I would have liked to see a better performance against Pakistan, it’s good to have won all the three matches,” Marijne said on the sidelines of the team’s training session on Tuesday.

“In the Super 4s too we will have a similar approach, which is to take one match at a time; and right now the focus is on the match against Korea,” stated the Dutchman.

South Korea suffered one loss against Malaysia but won against China and Oman to make the Super 4 stage. Korea have a good penalty corner conversion rate and are a high-quality counter-attacking side, and India will need to be patient against them, cautioned Marijne.

“It will be an interesting match. We need to be patient and have good control. It’s important for us to focus on our own structure. They are good on the counter and we need to be aware of that when we play against them,” he added.

The last time India played South Korea was in Kuantan, Malaysia, during the Asian Champions Trophy in October 2016. India had won the semifinal in a penalty shootout after a 2-2 draw in regulation time. India had gone on to beat Pakistan in the final.

The Tribune

Red-hot India to play Korea in Super 4s on Wednesday

DHAKA: An unbeaten India would start as overwhelming favourites against an under-performing but dangerous South Korea in their first match of the Super 4 stage in the 10th Asia Cup hockey tournament on Wednesday.

India, who finished the pool stages with an all-win record, looked the most dominating team in the tournament so far in all aspects of the game.

Korea, on the other hand, were far from impressive as they finished second in Pool B behind the ever-improving Malaysia.

Playing under a new chief coach Sjoerd Marijne, the Indians rose to the occasion and have displayed beautiful one-touch hockey, which they are known for.

The Indian strike force comprising Ramandeep Singh, Akashdeep Singh, Lalit Upadahay and Chinglensana Singh has been the most impressive, scoring field goals at will with their deft stick work.

The Indian midfield has been controlled well by talismanic Sardar Singh in the company of skipper Manpreet Singh.

The backline, too, have shown bright under the watchful guard of Amit Rohidas, Harmanpreet Singh and young Dipsan Tirkey.

What would be a matter of concern for Marijne is the penalty corner conversion rate even though Harmanpreet has been on target on a few occasions.

But going by India's performance so far - 5-1 win over Japan, 7-0 thrashing of Bangladesh and 3-1 win over arch-rivals Pakistan - they are expected to prevail over Korea with consummate ease.

In terms of world rankings as well, the Indians start as favourites. While India are placed sixth in the world, Korea occupy the 13th spot.

In the absence of the experienced PR Sreejesh, two young Indian custodians - Suraj Karkera and Akash Chikte - have risen to the occasion and have shown that they are no pushovers at the international stage.

But all said and done, the Indians can't afford to relax and be complacent, especially against a side like the Koreans, who are known for their fast, counter-attacking play.

The nimble-footed Koreans will be eager to prove a point, especially after a unimpressive showing in the pool stages, and can rattle any opponents with their pace on their given day.

Having said that, the Indians are expected to win the encounter with ease, but they can't afford to relax, especially at this stage where all the four top teams will play against each other and the top two sides will eventually progress to the final.

Meanwhile, in the other Super 4 match of the day, Pakistan will take on Pool B toppers Malaysia, who have turned out to be the surprise package from the pool stages.

The Times of India

Stats Speak: Korea have to win for World Cup berth

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

Most 4(1993,1999,2009,2013) Gold medals  in Asia Cup  have won by Korea. Veteran Jang Jong Hyun is playing 5th Asia Cup.Podium finish in every Asia Cup  is a record of Korea. But in  Dhaka Korea have to  win  championships for entry in World Cup(2018). India, Pakistan  and Malaysia have already booked their tickets for World Cup .If any one of these 3 wins in Dhaka, China will make debut in World Cup.

It is interested that in  Asia Cup Pakistan  have never lost to Malaysia, won 9,drawn 1 in 10 matches played  so far.

Here are highlights of India-South korea in international hockey since inception:










For India

Goals For









In  Asia Cup







Last 10








*India won in  shoot out in Azlan Shah(2015)  and Kuantan Asian Champions Trophy(2016).


Greenshirts to take on Malaysia in Super 4s opener

By Shahid Khan

Pakistan will meet Malaysia in the opening game of the Super 4s in the Hero Asia Cup Hockey 2017 tournament at the National Hockey Stadium in Dhaka on Wednesday.

After their 3-1 defeat against arch rivals India in last pool match, Greenshirts still managed to progress into the 2nd round after they secured 2nd spot in Pool A with 4 points by virtue of better goal difference compared to Japan. In their pool match against Japan, Pakistan had played 2-2 draw.

Earlier in the year at the World League in London India had inflicted heavy defeats (6-1 and 7-1) on Pakistan but with the recall of some of its senior players Greenshirts put a spirited performance against their nemesis in the latest encounter. Although India took a 3-0 lead in the match Pakistan managed to reduce the deficit through Ali Shan and had clear cut chances which they could have converted to put India on the back foot.

Malaysia ranked 12th in World meanwhile will be brimming with confidence as they come into the match having topped their Group with 3 victories, 7-1 against both China, Oman and 2-1 versus Cup holders South Korea.

At the June World League, Malaysia finished as the top Asian side in 4th position and recorded a 3-2 victory over the favourites in the Asia Cup India. 

The other teams India and South Korea will also play in round-robin format before the knockouts.

The top two teams after the Super 4s will square off in Sunday’s final while the bottom two will fight for the bronze medal


Pakistan meets Malaysia in opening match of second round

Pakistan plays Malaysia in its opening match of the second round (super four) of the 10th Hockey Asia Cup at Dhaka's Maulana Bhashani Stadium on Wednesday.

Pakistan and Malaysia have come across nine times in Asia Cup.

Pakistan have been victorious as many as eight times with one match ending in draw.

In two editions, 1993 & 2013, they met twice, in pool match as well as the third place game.

Malaysia, who have hosted the event four times, more than any other country, have had just one podium finish in Asia Cup, bronze in 2007. They ended fourth no less than five times.

In recent times, Malaysian team is on a roll. In their last international tounament, the Hockey World League semifinals in London this summer, Malaysia were the only Asian team to make it to the semifinal.

They reached the last four by upsetting India in the crucial pool game. The fourth position in that event also enabled Malaysia to qualify for the 2018 World Cup.

Here, in Dhaka, Malaysia topped its pool winning all the three matches.

Pakistan- Malaysia match starts at 2:00 PM (PST)

PHF Media release

Pakistan face Malaysia in first super four match today

LAHORE: Pakistan face Malaysia in their opening match of the super four round in the Asia Cup hockey tournament at the Maulana Bhashani Stadium in Dhaka on Wednesday.

Though the head-to-head Asia Cup record favours Pakistan who have won eight out of nine matches (remaining one being draw), Malaysia this time around are likely to pose a stiff challenge to the Green-shirts.

In this event, an improved Malaysia side topped pool ‘B’ (winning all three preliminary-round matches securing nine points) and one should not forget the fact that in the last World Hockey League Malaysia were the only Asian side that qualified for the semi-finals.

They have also made next year’s World Cup. Malaysia qualified for the semi-finals after upsetting India. Malaysia, who have hosted the Asia Cup four times — more than any other country — have had just one podium finish in the Asia Cup, bronze in 2007. They ended fourth no less than five times.

Pakistan, on the other hand, have been the Asia Cup champions thrice — winning the first three editions in 1982, 1985 and 1989. While India have lifted the cup twice, in 2003 and 2007.

The Pakistan-Malaysia match on Wednesday starts at 2:00pm Pakistan time.

In the other super-four round match on Wednesday, India face South Korea.

Currently, India lead pool ‘A’ with 9 points followed by Pakistan (4, points). In pool ‘B’, toppers Malaysia are followed by second-placed South Korea (six points).

On Thursday, Pakistan will be up against South Korea and on Saturday Pakistan will once again lock horns with arch-rivals India. The top two teams from the super round round will meet in the final on Sunday. The bottom two sides will play for the third position on the same day.

The teams which have finished third and fourth in pool ‘A’ and pool ‘B’ will figure in the classification matches for fifth to eighth places.


Pakistan face Group B toppers Malaysia in Super-4 stage today

KARACHI: Pakistan hockey team, after qualifying for the second round, will face Malaysia in their first match of the Super-Four round of the 2017 Men’s Asia Cup Hockey Tournament in Dhaka, Bangladesh on Wednesday (today). The Greenshirts entered round two by finishing on the second position courtesy a 7-0 win against Bangladesh, a 2-2 draw against Japan and 1-3 defeat against India in Group A. Malaysia and South Korea finished on the first and second position respectively to make it into the final-four from Group B. The results of the ground rounds pit Pakistan against Malaysia in their first match of second round, while India face South Korea in the other match.

Pakistan captain Muhammad Irfan is optimistic to rectify the mistakes which led to a draw and a defeat in the group matches. “We are working on our weak areas and are focusing more on finishing our moves successfully, which requires more coordination in the field,” he said. “We missed a lot of chance in all three matches which is a weakness we have been working on for the last couple of days. We are optimistic to do well in our next match.”

Meanwhile, head coach Farhat Khan said the players were in a good form and they just needed to get their act together in the midfield to produce better results. “The other teams are taking advantage of this, they judge our move and defend their goal. We have to create and finish moves which the other team don’t expect,” he said. Farhat added that defenders need to reset their focus on providing better balls to the midfield. “The defenders are doing fine,” he said. “They just need to keep focus a bit more on the ball. You can’t take your eye off the ball even for a second; otherwise, you lose the move. We’ll be putting to test all the practice in the match against Malaysia.”

Pakistan and Malaysia have come across nine times in Asia Cup. Pakistan have been victorious as many as eight times with one match ending in draw. In two editions, 1993 and 2013, they met twice, in pool match as well as the third place game. Malaysia, who have hosted the event four times, more than any other country, have had just one podium finish in Asia Cup, bronze in 2007. They ended fourth no less than five times. In recent times, Malaysia are on a roll. In their last international tournament, the Hockey World League in London this summer, Malaysia were the only Asian team to make it to the semifinal. They reached the last four by upsetting India in the crucial pool game. The fourth position in that event also enabled Malaysia to qualify for the 2018 World Cup.

The Daily Times

SA hockey women chasing after seventh heaven at Afcon

South Africa celebrate after scoring against Ireland in the 2017 Hockey World League Women quarter finals in July. Photo: Aubrey Kgakatsi/BackpagePix

JOHANNESBURG - A strong South African team will take on five of the continent's best in their quest to win the Africa Cup for Nations tournament for a record seventh time.

Although the team has already secured a spot at the 2018 Hockey World Cup in London, there are still important world ranking points up for grabs.

“The team selected is a highly competitive group focused on earning vital world ranking points at this premier African hockey event,” said Sheldon Rostron, the SA women’s team head coach.

“We will be looking to carry the momentum created at World League in Johannesburg to grow and win the tournament. Winning tournaments is really important to us and with the support from Private Property we have managed to spend more time with the national squad. We are taking an experienced team to the Africa Cup for Nations. However, we are also exposing a couple of new youngsters to the group, which is always exciting.”

Said Simon Bray, CEO of Private Property: “It is phenomenal to see the growth in support for the SA Women’s hockey team. The recent World League saw great numbers attend the games and 117 039 view the live matches on Super Sport. Their excellent 5th place finish means the team has already earned a spot at the FIH Hockey World cup next year. We wish them well as they head to the Africa Cup for Nations in preparation towards the World Cup in London.”

Two “new caps” join the SAW team. Sylvia van Jaarsveldt of Potchefstroom University was joint top goal scorer at the Premier Hockey League last year playing for Madikwe Rangers.

Kristen Paton is a talented youngster who represented the national U21 team at the Junior World Cup in Chile last year. Izelle Verster and Erin Hunter both return to the national side as does Olympian, Dirkie Chamberlain. Injured Shelley Jones has withdrawn.

The South Africa women’s hockey team: Phumelela Mbande, Nicole La Fleur, Nicolene Terblanche, Celia Evans, Kara Botes, Jessica O’Connor, Erin Hunter, Quanita Bobbs, Stephanie Baxter, Kristen Paton, Ilse Davids, Izelle Verster, Lilian Du Plessis, Candice Manuel, Tarryn Glasby, Sulette Damons, Dirkie Chamberlain, Sylvia van Jaarsveldt

Pretoria News/Independent Online

Hockeyroos Excited To Face Top Teams At IFoH

Ben Somerford

Hockeyroos coach Paul Gaudoin cannot wait to see how his side handles facing some of the world’s best sides next month’s International Festival of Hockey in Bendigo and Melbourne.

Australia will come up against world number one Netherlands, along with the United States who won their World League Semi-Final in South Africa in July.

The Hockeyroos will also come up against Japan, currently ranked 11th in the world at the tournament.

“We need to make announcements of that team next week,” Gaudoin said.

“We get to play against Holland, the number one in the world. The US who won their World League Semi-Final, so we’re playing some very good teams and Japan. It’s another great hit-out for us.

“We want to make good decisions about the squad for next year. We’ll maybe look at some other people for the next few matches.”

Gaudoin refused to give much away around selection, although notably Edwina Bone, Karri McMahon, Jordyn Holzberger and Laura Barden all missed the Oceania Cup due to injury and will want to press their claims.

The Australia coach was open to the idea of rotation among the selected team but said decisions were yet to be made, with a view to next year’s Commonwealth Games and World Cup.

“We’ll go back and the selectors will talk about it,” Gaudoin said.

“We certainly want to be in a position where we can make the best educated selection we can and do that you need to give people opportunity.”

Australia will also play three matches against Japan in Adelaide, after the International Festival of Hockey.

Gaudoin said Australia’s Oceania Cup success could build some momentum ahead of 2018 and winning the International Festival of Hockey and Test series against Japan could be a significant confidence boosts too, which was a factor in selection.

“There’s a core of players we want to retain and keep going,” Gaudoin said.

“Everything we do as a whole squad, let alone as a team, we understand what we want to do and where we’re going.

“We get five-six matches in Melbourne and Bendigo and three matches in Adelaide, so we can start to build again for next year with Commonwealth Games and World Cup.”

Australia commences its International Festival of Hockey against the United States in Bendigo on November 6.

Hockey Australia media release

Kookaburras: IFoH Will Be Vital Preparation For World League

Ben Somerford

The Kookaburras will use next month’s International Festival of Hockey in Bendigo and Melbourne as vital preparation for December’s World League Final.

December’s World League Final in India could see second-ranked Australia leapfrog Argentina into top spot on the FIH Rankings, although coach Colin Batch insisted they’re not focused on that.

When the next FIH Rankings are released, Australia will be aided with a points boost after taking out the Oceania Cup in Sydney on Sunday.

There’s no ranking points up for grabs at next month’s International Festival of Hockey where Australia will face New Zealand, Pakistan and Japan.

“We have a tournament in Melbourne and Bendigo in a couple of weeks and it’s all preparation for World League Four and then the players will have a break,” Batch said.

“If it (the number one ranking) comes along then great. At the moment, Argentina are in the top position.

“We want to produce good performances and if you can constantly do that, maybe at the end of the day you’ll become number one but it’s not something we specifically talk about being the number one team in the world.”

Batch said next month’s International Festival of Hockey would be another opportunity for the Kookaburras to develop their game ahead of next year’s Commonwealth Games and World Cup.

“It’s going to evolve. What we’re doing at the moment, we might not be doing it at the World Cup for instance,” he said.

“You try to get the best out of the players. Sometimes you’ve got to try and play a different structure or system and that’ll evolve over time.

“It’s a young evolving group and we’ve got a few older players who we don’t know whether they’ll be with us in a few years’ time. It all changes.

“At the moment we’re spending a lot of time getting our culture right. We’re heading in the right direction.

“We’ve got a group that’s on board and they want to perform. It’s nice to be a part of it.”

Batch also said he expects New Zealand to be stronger in Victoria, with a few more senior players to return.

The International Festival of Hockey runs from November 5-12 starting with two Test matches against the Black Sticks in Bendigo.

Hockey Australia media release

Black Sticks men's coach says no need to panic after two big losses to Australia


Black Sticks Kane Russell is due back from Europe to rejoin the side. John Cowpland / www.photosport.nz

Black Sticks men's hockey coach Darren Smith says there is no need to press the panic button ahead of next year's Commonwealth Games after two hidings at the hands of world number two Australia.

The Black Sticks have had a season of ups and downs, culminating in a 5-1 loss to Australia in pool play at last week's Oceania Cup tournament and a 6-0 drubbing in the final.

But Smith - in his first season as head coach - said, on the whole, the Black Sticks have been competitive and are on track for a good performance at Gold Coast Commonwealth Games in April.

The Black Sticks defence was exposed by Australia at the Oceania Cup, with the world number ones beating the visitors 5-1 and 6-0. Photosport

The 2017 season has seen the Black Sticks lose a series to Pakistan, finish 4th at the Azlan Shah Cup in Malaysia, which included a draw with Australia, finish 6th at the world league semifinal in Johannesburg - including a loss to second-rate side Ireland, followed by second place at the Oceania Cup.

Smith said part of the reason the Black Sticks under performed against Australia was because they were missing up to nine key players due to injury and commitments in the European competitions.

Seven of those had been Olympians with more than 1000 test matches between them.

"They [Australia] are world champions and they give you days which can be a bit harder, but there is no need to have a reduction in optimism.

"They were a pretty strong Australian team, they rallied out and we have a few of the guys not with us at the tournament.

"We would have liked a better showing than 6-0. It was a tough week, but there were some good signs come out of the tournament."

Black Sticks Oceania Cup absentees included stalwarts, Simon Child and Blair Hilton (both out with injury), Nick Haig, Blair Tarrant, Shea McAleese, Kane Russell, Hugo Inglis, Jacob Smith, Rob Creffier and Nick Ross, who were all playing for their European clubs.

Smith said many of the younger players pulled in to the squad after good performances at the National Hockey League tournament last month showed great future prospects.

"The positives were it gave some of the guys another chance to play at top level and continue that exposure of these guys to top hockey.

"You put a guy in a test match situation and sometimes he can play at the top of his game and he is made for it."

Smith wasn't concerned about the big margins just five months out from the Commonwealth Games, as several players would be returning from Europe and the side would be spending a lot more time together between now and then.

Australia had exposed the Black Sticks defensively and had punished them for turnovers in the midfield. Smith said those were areas the team had been working on and would continue to.

"I want to see us more fluid and holding the ball in the midfield."

The Black Sticks will have another shot at Australia next month if they are to progress through to the playoffs at the Four Nations tournament in Bendigo and Melbourne. They will need to have good results over Pakistan and Japan to do so.

The team will then have a training camp in December, which will include several more young players not already named in the side. Smith will pick his Commonwealth Games squad by February.

Australia have won all five Commonwealth Games gold medals since hockey was added to the programme in 1998. New Zealand won a silver medal at Manchester in 2002 and bronze at Delhi in 2010.

The Black Sticks finished fourth at Glasgow in 2014 behind Australia, India and England after losing a penalty shootout in the bronze medal match.

New Zealand are ranked eighth in the world and fourth in the Commonwealth, behind Australia (2nd in the world), India (6th) and England (7th).

Four Nations tournament draw
Sunday 5 November 2017, Bendigo
Australia v New Zealand

Monday 6 November 2017, Bendigo
Australia v New Zealand

Wednesday 8 November 2017, Melbourne
New Zealand v Japan

Thursday 9 November 2017, Melbourne
Pakistan v Japan
Australia v New Zealand

Saturday 11 November 2017, Melbourne
 New Zealand v Pakistan (men)

Sunday 12 November 2017, Melbourne


Maryland field hockey keeps rolling with second top 10 win in 48 hours

Maryland Athletics

The Terrapins have won five straight games, including three straight over ranked opponents. Maryland Athletics

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. — The 12th-ranked Maryland field hockey team (11-5, 5-2 Big Ten) handled No. 3 Virginia (12-3) for 68 of 70 minutes to capture a 5-4 win in Charlottesville Tuesday evening. The Terrapins led 5-1 in the second half, but late goals by the Cavaliers in the final two minutes cut into Maryland’s lead.

The Terrapins have won five straight games, including three straight over ranked teams after beating No. 25 Ohio State Friday, No. 6 Penn State Sunday and the third-ranked Cavaliers Tuesday.

"This is an outstanding outcome on the road," Maryland coach Missy Meharg said. "Three games in five days and we couldn't be more proud of the women's physical and mental stamina over this tough stretch. Our attack penalty corner unit is working so well and that's a credit to Marvin Bam and Katie Bam with scoring. To get five goals against a team like Virginia is quite a feat. It's a tribute to the work our forwards have been doing every day."

Virginia got on the board first with a score by Izzy McDonough off the rebound on a penalty corner 4:46 into the match.

Sophomore Linnea Gonzales tied it for Maryland just over three minutes later when she cracked a hard shot from the top of the circle.

Freshman Kyler Greenwalt scored her first of two goals on the day in the 17th minute to give the Terps the lead. She put back a rebounded shot off a penalty corner.

In the 31st minute, Maryland leading scorer senior Lein Holsboer scored off a shot from the left post after inserting on a penalty corner. Less than three minutes later, junior Melissa Wilken deflected in a shot from sophomore Kelee Lepage to give the Terps a 4-1 lead at halftime.

Greenwalt added her second goal in the 49th minute when she tapped in a loose ball in the circle for a four-goal lead with 21 minutes to play.

Virginia scored three straight goals to end the match. Greta Ell made it a 5-2 game with just over 11 minutes left when she pushed in a pass from Pien Dicke. With 1:46 to play, the Cavaliers were awarded a penalty corner. Dominique van Slooten scored off the corner to make it 5-3. Just 38 seconds later, Ell scored off another penalty corner to make it 5-4 with 1:04 to go.

Maryland outshot Virginia 21-13. Junior goalkeeper Sarah Holliday made five saves in the win. The Terrapins held the nation’s leading scorer Tara Vittese without a goal.

The Terrapins will close out the regular season with a matchup at No. 21 Rutgers (9-6, 3-3) Sunday at 1 p.m. ET. The matchup will be televised on the Big Ten Network.


Maryland field hockey ranked No. 12 after beating No. 6 Penn State

By Scott Gelman

The Maryland field hockey team is ranked No. 12 in the NFHCA coaches poll released ahead of the Terps' game at No. 3 Virginia on Tuesday.

Coach Missy Meharg's squad was No. 16 in last week's poll but beat then-No. 25 Ohio State and No. 6 Penn State in College Park over the weekend. The win against the Nittany Lions was Maryland's second victory against a Top-10 opponent this season.

The Terps, whose offense struggled to score early in games toward the end of September, scored a combined five goals in the two wins. Freshman defender Bodil Keus, who Monday earned Big Ten Freshman of the Week honors, has anchored Maryland's backline and added a goal against the Buckeyes.

Connecticut and Duke remain in the top two spots in the rankings, respectively. Michigan dropped a spot to No. 4, and the Nittany Lions remained at No. 6 despite falling to the Terps in double overtime.

Northwestern, Rutgers, Ohio State and Iowa are among the other Big Ten teams ranked entering play this week.

The Diamondback

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