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News for 11 May 2018

All the news for Friday 11 May 2018

Dharmaraj using Asian Champions Trophy meet for exposure

By Aftar Singh

KUALA LUMPUR: National women’s hockey coach K. Dharmaraj (pic) is not putting high hopes on his team in the Asian Champions Trophy, which begins in Donghae, South Korea, this Sunday.

Besides Malaysia and hosts South Korea, the other teams to feature in the tournament from May 13-20 are China, India and Japan.

Malaysia are the lowest ranked team in the tournament, ranked 22nd in the world and they will open their campaign against world No. 9 South Korea on May 13. Their other matches are against world No. 8 China on May 14, world No. 12 Japan (May 16) and world No. 10 India (May 17).

The final and third placing matches will be played on May 20.

Dharmaraj said the four teams India, China, Korea and Japan are using the tournament to prepare for next month’s World Cup in London.

“The tournament in Korea would be a good exposure for us in preparation for the World League Series in Singapore next month.

“The World League Series is the qualifying tournament for the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games,” said Dharmaraj, who guided the Malaysian women’s team to finish runners-up in the World League second round in Kuala Lumpur last year to qualify for the first time in the World League Semi-finals in Antwerp, Belgium, held later in July.

Dharmaraj added he has also included young players Nur Maizatulhanim Syafi Sheik Fuad and Nor Asfarina Isahyifika Isahhiddun.

“Nor Asfarina, who featured in the Asian Youth Olympic Games in Bangkok last month, will be making her senior international debut.

“The time has come for these two young players to gain exposure playing against the more experienced players,” said Dharmaraj.

The Star of Malaysia

Cup victory sees Richard Mantell retire on a high

Richard Mantell shirt presentation

A win in the England Hockey Men’s Tier 1 Championship final was to be the perfect end to an illustrious club career for Richard Mantell, who has now hung up his stick.

That victory came at the end of a dramatic cup final in which Reading fought back from 2-1 down to win on a shootout, ensuring Richard left on a high.

Having been born in Bridgwater, Somerset, he made his international debut in February 2003 at the age of 21 and went on to win 165 outdoor caps for England and Great Britain, scoring 68 goals.

He was part of the teams that won European gold in 2009 and bronze in 2011, represented England at two World Cups and the 2010 Commonwealth Games as well as appearing for Great Britain at the 2008 Olympics.

Richard is also a Reading stalwart, having been a constant figure in their first team for more than 15 years after beginning his career at Canterbury.

Speaking after the victory, Richard said: “It was great to finish my final season with a win in the cup yesterday. Some of the players in our squad weren’t born when I started playing club hockey in 1999 and I’ve been fortunate enough to be part of many successful Reading teams over the years.

“The squad is in great shape at the moment with a lot of talented players pushing for 1st team hockey with an experienced management team so I look forward to following many more successful seasons at Reading from the side lines.”

Everyone at England and Great Britain Hockey would like to thank Richard for all he has given the sport across his career and wish him well in his retirement.

England Hockey Board Media release

Amsterdam emerge from Dutch semis with huge win

©: Koen Suyk/world Sport Pics

AH&BC Amsterdam produced a convincing 3-0 win over HC Bloemendaal to break the deadlock in game three of the Hoofdklasse semi-finals after a 5-5 and 2-2 draw were split via shoot-outs.

A goal and an assist from Mirco Pruijser were crucial along with the performance of goalkeeper Jan de Wijkerslooth to see them through to face SV Kampong with the first leg on Sunday.

Pruijser opened the scoring with a deflection a few minutes into the second quarter. De Wijkerslooth made a number of saves after that and then Jan-Willem Buissant slapped in a rebound after a clearance from Jaap Stockmann fell straight to him following Pruijser’s initial shot.

Valentin Verga then completed the win when Amsterdam latched onto a defensive error from a long overhead from Justin Reid-Ross from the back.

Speaking afterwards, Amsterdam coach Graham Reid said to hockey.nl: "On Saturday (5-5), it was defensively bad. On Sunday (2-2), it was better. Today was very good. The defense was the basis.

"I told the boys before the game: you know how to attack. That is in this Amsterdam team. What we did not do well was defending, fighting, running for each other. What a spirit. What a collective. You saw that back today.

“This was a great win but now we have to focus on Sunday. We have a chance of winning the title and we have to play even better than today.”

As for Pruijser, he said: “I had not scored against Bloemendaal this whole season. It was difficult to get free as a striker.

"It was so strange. But you feel, the whole season, we have chasing Bloemendaal, losing twice to them. But after we came back from 2-0 on Sunday, we felt so good. So strong. We came here with a lot of confidence.”

Euro Hockey League media release

Dragons take first honours as Leo move closer to EHL ticket

©: Frank Uijlenbroek/world Sport Pics

KHC Dragons made a massive statement in the first game of their two-legged Belgian final, smashing regular season champions the Waterloo Ducks 5-1.

It continued a trend in recent years, winning the first leg by a big score as they survived an early Ducks onslaught before Alexander Hendrickx scored a 21st minute corner.

Henri Raes doubled the lead at the half-time break and then further goals from Victor Wegnez, Florent van Aubel and Jeffrey Thys. Five minutes from the final whistle, Loïc Sidler got Waterloo a consolation goal.

"We can be very satisfied after this first duel , said Arthur van Doren said to the Hockey Belgium website. “But the format of the championship does not allow us to rejoice and tell us that this title is already ours.

“Everything remains to be confirmed on Sunday. We have to reproduce the same performance against a team that, remember, has a lot of qualities. We will have to be wary of their counter-attacks.

“In recent weeks, we have focused on our game and our system. And this is finally bearing fruit as we play better and better over the weeks. It's very positive before the return leg. "

Waterloo coach Xavier de Greve said his side “never played our game” but was still pleased to see a reaction even when they were 5-0 behind to get on the board.

“We started to combine and it was a lot better. But it was way too late. We will have to have a different mentality to reverse the trend. I remain convinced that we are stronger than these guys. We still know how to be Sunday's champion and that's the most important thing."

On Sunday, for the return leg, the Waterloo Ducks will have to recover its fundamentals to have a chance to reverse the trend and deprive the Dragons of a fourth consecutive title, the eleventh of its history.

Earlier in the day, Royal Leopold stole a march in the opening leg of the third place playoff for the EHL spot on Thursday afternoon, beating Racing Club de Bruxelles 3-1.

They play again on Sunday. In a change from previous years, both ties will not be decided this year on aggregate goal difference and so a win from the Waterloo Ducks or Racing will see them have a chance of turning things around.

Euro Hockey League media release

Young Madibaz hockey squad remain positive

Madibaz player Arno van Jaarsveld (left) and Ryan Scheepers, of Free State University, duel for possession during their Varsity Hockey match at Wits in Johannesburg last weekend. Picture: Christiaan Kotze/SASPA

The Madibaz men’s squad remain positive ahead of the second weekend of Varsity Hockey matches, starting in Pretoria tomorrow.

This is the situation after they received a sobering lesson in the harsh reality of what the event is all about last weekend.

With 16 of the 18-strong squad making their debuts at the tournament, coach Cheslyn Gie said they always knew they would face a tough assignment in the opening games at Wits.

“Despite the inexperience in the squad, the players fought hard in every match,” he said.

“They learnt a lot from this experience and now understand what it takes to succeed at this level.”

He added that they had played in three different formations and that the players now realised better what was required.

“We scored in every match except against UCT [University of Cape Town] and we want to continue this trend in the second week at Tuks.”

The Madibaz mentor felt they missed opportunities to register wins against UCT and Free State, but that the players improved in each match.

He said they would look to secure at least one win out of their remaining three pool matches.

“We are currently bottom of the log and this will be a huge task for such an inexperienced team,” said Gie.

“But we are in a rebuilding phase and all of these matches will stand us in good stead later in the year at the USSA [University Sport South Africa] Week.”

He said his message to the players would be to stick to their game-plan and to improve on the execution of their strategy.

“Defensively we need to be more patient in the tackle and improve our marking and tracking of the opponents.

“On attack we need to back our abilities more in the one-on-one situation and be more accurate in our penalty corner execution.”

Despite losing all four matches at Wits, Gie said the spirit in the squad remained strong.

“The vibe in the team is very good and the players also understand that, as tough as it was last weekend, we can play with no fear and benefit from the experience as it will only make us better players.

“We will be aiming to utilise our power plays better and get more outcomes from our 23-yard and circle entries.

“Defensively, in the power plays against us we need to be more patient on the ball and maintain possession for longer periods during these spells.”

Fullstop Communications Media release for Nelson Mandela University

Home ground parade congratulates Whangarei's golden girls' hockey success


Sam Harrison, Brook Neal and Stacy Michelson arrive at the welcome ceremony. Kerry Marinkovich/Stuff

Whangarei welcomed home the five Northland players in the Black Sticks team who won the gold medal at the Commonwealth Games in Australia.

Whangarei saluted the five Northland members of the Commonwealth Games gold medallist Black Sticks team with a gold parade welcome on Friday.

Stacey Michelsen, Ella Gunson, Sam Harrison, Brooke Neal and Madison Doar are all members of the Black Sticks who beat Australia 4-1 on April 14 at the games held on the Gold Coast.

"It's pretty special to have five Northland players in the team," parade organiser Sue Shepherd said.

"Never before has a women's team won a gold medal at a Commonwealth Games and Northland has provided five of the team’s players.

"All Northlanders can feel justifiably proud of their girls – what an occasion to celebrate!"

The Black sticks walk through a guard of honour formed by Kamo Intermediate School pupils. Kerry Marinkovich/Stuff

She was delighted with the widespread support she had received to bring the parade together in such short time.

“I have called on my contacts in Hockey NZ, the Whangarei District Council and the business community to make this happen.

"The Vantage Black Sticks are in full training for the next stage of their international programme so getting them all here in Whangarei today has been a major logistical exercise that couldn't have been possible without fantastic co-operation from the coaching staff at Hockey NZ."

Captain Stacey Michelsen and coach Mark Hagar with some of the Whangarei fans. Kerry Marinkovich/Stuff

The players were driven in an open-top classic car cavalcade to the town basin from Forum North where they were walked through a guard of honour formed by pupils from Kamo Intermediate School.

They were then welcomed by a kapa haka performed by Kamo High School.

Deputy mayor Sharon Morgan officially welcomed the players to the district, saying they had "become Whangarei icons and outstanding role models".

Hockey Northland chairman Alan Lints said it was wonderful to see the standard of players coming out of Northland.

He congratulated not only the women's achievements but those of all the people behind the scenes.

He also "the whānau who had supported these young women through the years".

Captain Stacey Michelsen described the gold winning victory moment as "pure excitement".

Asked for a word of advice to up-and-coming players, Ella Gunson said "enjoy it, play it because you love doing it. Work hard and have the right attitude and you can go a long way.

"Year after year we have been supported by the Northland community and we are so proud to have been honoured with this parade and reception," she said.

Hockey Northland chief executive Grant McLeod said the parade was a fantastic opportunity to celebrate the women's success.

The win was a reward for the hard work and commitment they had given to the sport, he said.

He also believed their win had helped raise the profile of Northland hockey.

A further welcome celebration took place at Hockey Northland headquarters at Kensington Park later in the day.

On May 12, players will mix and mingle with the next crop of Black Sticks during junior hockey sessions.


West Vancouver becomes official home for Men’s National Team

Field Hockey Canada partners with West Vancouver Field Hockey Club providing a new home for the Men’s National Team on Rutledge Field

Announcing the partnership at the Men’s Field Hockey Showcase on Saturday, May 12th at Rutledge Field, the Canadian men’s national field hockey program will officially call WVHFC’s turf its training home.

Field Hockey Canada has trained and competed at Rutledge Field in the past and this announcement formalizes an agreement. According to Paul Bundy, head coach of the Men’s National Team, the partnership with WVFHC is about connecting the community and those who play Field Hockey in the region.

“It’s a world-class facility. Our guys love training there,” Bundy said. “We love being a part of a hockey-playing community. Not all training facilities can offer that.” Both organizations share a common passion for high performance and community building. As a result, the national team will engage the community and offer clinics, workshops and showcase games at Rutledge Field.

“We have set up a great relationship that benefits both organizations,” Bundy said. “We feel extremely valued here and we also feel the want and need to give back to the community. It’s a perfect fit.”

“West Vancouver Field Hockey Club has a long tradition of involvement with the Men’s National Team,” said Emma Gibbons, WVFHC Executive Director. “We are proud of our current and former players, many of whom are still very active in the club. This agreement with Field Hockey Canada will allow all our members to benefit from access to players, coaches, programs and hosting events here on the north shore.  We are excited about the opportunities that this partnership has to bring value to our community and to inspire people to get involved in our sport”

Representatives from both parties will celebrate the new partnership at the upcoming Men’s Showcase this coming Saturday, May 12, 2018 at Rutledge Field. All are welcome to attend the free and family friendly day-long event.

About Field Hockey Canada

From grass roots to high performance, Field Hockey Canada is committed to developing and strengthening field hockey across the country, and to position our National Teams for podium contention at the 2018 World Cup, 2020 Olympic Games and beyond. Visit www.fieldhockey.ca for more information.


The West Vancouver Field Hockey Club (WVFHC) is the home of north shore field hockey. Located on the spectacular North Shore of Vancouver, B.C. Canada, WVFHC offers excellent recreational and high-performance hockey-playing opportunities for our 200+ members: girls, boys, women and men of all ages. WVFHC home field is Rutledge Field at Ambleside Park in West Vancouver. Visit www.wvfhc.com for more information

Field Hockey Canada media release

USA Field Hockey Appoints Women’s Junior High-Performance Coaches

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – USA Field Hockey is pleased to announce a well-balanced staff that has been appointed to volunteer coach within the women’s Junior High-Performance (JHP) program for the 2018-19 season.

“We want to thank everyone who expressed interest in the volunteer coaching roles for the JHP teams,” said Janneke Schopman, U.S. Women’s National Team Head Coach. “There were a lot of good candidates and knowing that these coaches are willing to volunteer to coach our athletes in the Olympic Pipeline shows great support for our programs and what we are trying to achieve.”

“We think with assembling the different coaching staffs we have create a good mix who are able to help our athletes in the pipeline to further their learning and development. We are looking forward to start working with everyone!”

U-17 USWNT Coaching Staff:

Daan Polders, Head Coach

Leading the U.S. U-17 Women’s National Team will be Daan Polders. A native of The Netherlands, Polders played field hockey in the Dutch Major League and on the Dutch National Army Team before moving to the United States. He had two very successful coaching stints at Division I programs, Michigan State University and Wake Forest, before leaving the college scene. In December 2012, he accepted the role as the Director of Field Hockey at Colorado Academy in Denver. There, he shifted his focus to non-college players and organized clinics and developed programs for every level and age group. With the Mustangs, he won back-to-back state titles and was named Coach of the Year

In late 2013, Polders became the Director of Field Hockey and the Varsity Head Coach at Villa Maria Academy in Malvern, Pa. In 2017, he led the Hurricanes to a Pennsylvania State AA Championship after being crowned District I and Catholic League Champions. He has been involved within the USA Field Hockey coaching system for many years.

Katie Bam, Assistant Coach

A two-time Olympian and former member of the U.S. Women’s National Team, Bam will join the U-17 USWNT coaching staff as an assistant. Following her playing career at the University of Maryland, she got her first experience coaching as a student assistant coach in 2012. While continuing to play at an elite level with Team USA, Bam started coaching more by instructing and hosting camps and clinics. In 2015, she joined the Millersville University staff as a volunteer assistant coach, where she also assisted student-athletes in performance analysis and scouting opposition. A year later, she become a collegiate coach at Harvard University, leading the Crimson to the 2016 Ivy league title.

In January 2017, University of Maryland’s Head Coach Missy Meharg announced that Bam would be returning to her alma mater to serve as the assistant coach. In her first year back, she helped lead the Terrapins on a remarkable run to the NCAA Division I Championship game. As a result, the Maryland coaching staff was named NFHCA Mid-Atlantic Region Staff of the Year.

Mark Egner, Assistant Coach

A familiar name in the USA Field Hockey Family, Egner has worked for the past several years as a coach, site director and selector for the Futures Program in Virginia. In 2016, he helped coach the U-19 USWNT on their Germany tour and again in March 2018 on their tour to Ireland. For the past two years he has coached at the Young Women’s National Championship.

The 2018 season will mark Egner fourth year of coaching at the College of William and Mary (W&M) and first as the associate head coach. Before W&M, Egner was an assistant coach for two years at Longwood University. Prior to coming across the pond to coach in the United States, Egner spent four years as a coach in his native Ireland. He was an assistant coach and video coordinator with the Irish Hockey Association's U-18 and Senior National teams in 2012, before becoming the head coach at the Fermoy Hockey Club. Egner also served as head and assistant coach of the U-18 women's program for the Munster Hockey Association in Munster, Ireland, selecting and training 18-20 athletes each year for the national team selection tournament.

U-19 USWNT Coaching Staff:

Ole Keusgen, Head Coach

Ole Keusgen will shift to head coach of the U-19 USWNT for the 2018-19 year and be assisted by Ralph Boersma and Tamara Durante. Keusgen joined the Cavalier coaching staff in 2015, where he focuses on the defense line. Keusgen has been playing field hockey since the age of six, including professionally in Germany with one of the most successful field hockey clubs in European history, Uhlenhorst Mülheim. He also competed with the German National Team, winning a bronze medal at the 2013 World University Games in Kazan. In addition to playing, Keusgen spent the last 10 years coaching the sport in both the men’s and women’s first teams of Oberhausener THC.

“I’m very grateful and honored to work with the U.S. U-19 Women’s National Team again,” said Keusgen. “We made great progress within this team over the last two years and I’m excited to see the team’s next steps. In order to prepare them as good as possible for the next level, we try to improve skills, game understanding and game pace. The U-19 program is a great opportunity to work on those things and to compete and practice on a very high and even international level. I’m looking forward to work with the team, Tamara and Ralph.”

Ralph Boersma, Assistant Coach

A native of The Netherlands, Boersma is currently an assistant coach at Duke University since joining the staff in March 2017. He boasts a wealth of prior coaching experience having spent a number of years overseeing teams for the HV Victoria hockey club in Rotterdam, The Netherlands. He most recently served as the head coach of the club’s U-19 Boys Team from 2014-16 and occasionally as a field trainer for HV Victoria’s First Men’s Team. In addition to his time spent with the HV Victoria hockey club, he also coached with HC Hoeksche Waard club program, based in Mijnsheerenland, The Netherlands. Boersma also served as head coach of the First Men’s Team from 2011-15 and head coach of the U-19 Boys squad from 2009-11.

He currently holds a Level 2 Coaching Certification from USA Field Hockey.

Tamara Durante, Assistant Coach

Durante has coached, selected and evaluated many athletes within the JHP, including the Futures Program. She has traveled abroad with many Junior U.S. Women’s National Teams and served as an assistant coach and video coordinator for the U-21 USWNT when they went to the women’s Hockey Junior World Cup in Santiago, Chile in November 2016.

Currently the assistant coach at Michigan State University, Durante spearheads recruiting efforts while working mainly with the goalkeepers and forwards. Prior to joining the Spartans’ staff in 2010, she was with Yale University for 10 seasons. A native of Lachine, Quebec (Canada), Durante worked as a head coach for Quebec Field Hockey and as a video technician for Field Hockey Canada before transitioning to an assistant coach at Ohio University in 2001.

U-21 USWNT Coaching Staff:

Jarred Martin, Assistant Coach

No stranger to the JHP, Martin was the previous U-17 USWNT Head Coach and led them through a successful tour in Uruguay in March 2018. He has been involved with the USA Field Hockey program for over a decade as a player and coach. He was a member of the U.S. Men’s National Team for 12 years, retiring in 2012, with more than 100 international caps. He has been involved coaching the South High-Performance Training Center for eight years and is a USA Field Hockey Level 3 Certified Coach.

Martin is the head coach of Ohio State University’s field hockey team, where he took on the role in December 2016. He spent ten seasons at Duke University (2007-16) as the assistant and associate head coach. Martin helped guide the Blue Devils to seven NCAA Tournament appearances and Final Four berths in 2013 and 2015. Before that, he served as the assistant coach at Skidmore College (2001-07), where he led the Thoroughbreds to three Liberty League titles and two runner-up finishes as well as five NCAA Tournament appearances.

U.S. Women’s National Development Squad Coaching Staff:

Marc Hardy, Head Coach

Leading the helm of the U.S. Women’s National Development Squad will be Marc Hardy, assisted by Mark Atherton and Roz Ellis. Hardy got his first look into the American collegiate coaching system having spent he 2017 season at Columbia University. Prior, he served as the head of physical education at the Whitgift School (2012-16) and was also the head coach of the Bromley and Beckenham Club Men’s 1st XI team (2012-14).

Hardy has had his hand in coaching other various schools and teams in England. Most noteworthy is the Lewes HC Men’s 1st XI Coach and Director of Coaching (2009-11) and Horsham Ladies HC Head Coach (2004-06), where he was the youngest head coach in national league history to win a league, at the age of 21.

“I am excited by the opportunity to work with such a talented group of players,” said Hardy. “We will continue the good work that has taken place over the last few years but also grow the delivery of the program to ensure continued player development.

“As I see it, U.S. Women’s National Development Squad’s role is to push those players currently in the USWNT by continuing to learn and improve. I cannot wait to help the players on this journey.”

Mark Atherton, Assistant Coach

A native of London, England, Atherton is currently an assistant coach at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, joining the Tar Heel staff in July 2016. He holds 17 years of experience at all levels of the game, including coaching internationally in Austria, Spain and The Netherlands. Before that, he spent four seasons as assistant coach and manager for the Surbiton HC Ladies 1st XI and served as the squad manager for the club, overseeing day-to-day operations, player recruitment and managing junior performance players.

Prior to his role with Surbiton Ladies, Atherton spent three years as head coach at the University of Surrey (2009-12), leading the men’s and ladies’ teams to three league titles and three runner-up finishes. He has also served as head coach at Downsend School, City of London Freemen’s School, Surrey Spartans Hockey Club, UCL Academicals Hockey Club and Cheam Hockey Club.

Roz Ellis, Assistant Coach

As the associate head coach at Temple University, Ellis joined the Owls in May 2015 after already having six years of coaching collegiate field hockey experience under her belt. She spent the 2014 season at Louisville, where her duties as an assistant coach included serving as the director of recruiting, as well as assisting with practice and game day preparation and assisting in developing relationships within the field hockey community.

Prior to her stint at Louisville, Ellis spent three seasons as an assistant coach at the University of Massachusetts and served as a volunteer assistant coach at Wake Forest in 2010. Following the 2009 season, Ellis took her playing and coaching skills to Dublin, Ireland, where she competed for the Old Alexandra Field Hockey Club.

She holds a USA Level 2 Coaching Certificate and was named 2012 New England Futures Regional Head Coach.

USA Field Hockey and the U.S. Women’s National Team Coaching Staff are extremely grateful and would like to thank the last coaching staff of each age group who have contributed the past two years.

USFHA media release

Winning feeling for Canterbury HC family

Canterbury HC ehchamps

The sun shone down on the first finals weekend of the re vamped England Hockey Championships.

Families and hockey clubs from across the country made the trip to Lee Valley Hockey and Tennis Centre to cheer on their side in their national final. These teams graced the pitch ahead of the summer where their international heroes will later play on this summer, we even had a few shootouts to warm up the pitch!

The Barnes family from Canterbury certainly celebrated the weekend as both Mum and Dad, Lucy and Neil won their respective finals in the master’s category being cheered on by club mates and their hockey mad children.

Lucy said; ‘I have been part of Canterbury hockey club for at least 20 years, our kids love it there, the club really are my big family. The kids enjoy every minute playing with their friends and it is becoming their extended family.’

Neil continued; ‘It really is the social side of the sport that makes it so great. There is a level for everyone to play at, it isn’t just about the elite side. It doesn’t matter if you are a top player or social player, everyone is welcome to get involved.’

Neil’s final was the first game of the day in a thrilling 3-3 draw going to a penalty shootout where 27 attempts on goal were made before a winner was crowned! He said; ‘It has been very exciting to play in the final of the Championships, I have enjoyed playing here at the national stadium – it was some Final! It is a great day out for the whole family.’

It is always one of the most feel good family events, win or lose for either side you will always have the crowd cheering on the teams one, especially the juniors. It is just like if they are watching England at an international match; ‘Go on Dad!’ ‘Make sure you score Mummy!’ followed upon realisation that they are all mums and dads on the pitch!

The revamp of the England Hockey Championships have helped make the knockout competition more inclusive so more than just your first or second eleven can enter, giving more opportunity for teams to play on the big stage.

England Hockey Board Media release

HA Statement On Matthew Bird

Ben Somerford

Hockey Australia (HA) advises Matthew Bird has withdrawn from the National Senior Men’s Squad following an incident concerning the Police in Perth on Thursday afternoon.

Bird subsequently offered his resignation from the National Senior Men’s Squad which has been accepted by HA until the matter is resolved.

As this is now a Police matter, HA will not be providing any further details at this stage.

Hockey Australia media release

Punjab, Sindh, Balochistan bodies denounce PHF tactics

Anwar Zuberi

KARACHI: Representatives of legitimate hockey associations from Punjab, Sindh and Balochistan have vowed to resist mala fide intentions of the Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF) to bring their blue-eyed people in through bogus elections.

“It’s just a beginning and we’ll knock at every door from Karachi to Peshawar to seek justice,” they told a hurriedly called press conference at the Karachi Hockey Association (KHA) Sports Complex in Gulshan Iqbal on Thursday.

Former Olympian and the 1994 Sydney World Cup gold medallist Danish Kaleem and secretary of Balochistan Hockey Asso­ciation Abdul Raheem Durrani specially arrived from Sahiwal and Quetta to join the disgruntled KHA office-bearers at one platform and expose the unfair modus operandi of the PHF’s inter-club scrutiny, districts and provincial elections across the country.

The former Pakistan fullback provided copies of signed statements of the District Sports Officer Sahiwal dated May 7, 2018 addressed to the PHF secretary that the elections of disrict hockey association there was conducted without any intimation to him. No representative from District Sports Office Sahiwal attended the election proceedings.

The letter further said: “It may be mentioned here that as per notification No SRO1249 (1)/ 2005 dated 5.12. 2005 issued by Ministry of Culture, Sports and Youth Affairs vide clause C (2)-C that elections will be held under the supervision of District Sports Officer concerned.”

He alleged that names of the clubs and office-bearers are being changed overnight in drawing rooms.

Danish Kaleem alleged that the Punjab Hockey Association President Col Asif is the brother of the PHF President while few other relatives were also involved. “It is the Family Hockey Federation and not the PHF,” he remarked.

Lauding the efforts of the KHA for turning the premises into a proper facility during the last two years, the former Olympian said instead of appreciating their efforts the PHF is pushing them towards the wall which will be sheer injustice.

Durrani also disclosed that bogus elections took place in Balochistan.

At the outset, KHA chairman Gulfraz Khan said the PHF President, retired Brig Khokhar had termed the KHA Sports Complex a role model after visiting the facility sometimes back. “It remained a dirty place for long and nobody liked to come under the previous set up,” he added.

He said when the national game has come on the right track in Karachi, the sudden change of stance of the PHF hierarchy shows foul-play. He said there was abundance of talent in the country but alleged that the game has suffered due to vested interest in the last two decades.

The KHA secretary Haider Hussain also spoke on the occasion besides Dr Majid.

The representatives appealed to the PHF patron-in-chief, Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, and the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court Honorable Mian Saqib Nisar to intervene in the matter and save hockey from further damage.


Passing away of Olympic Gold Medalist Liz Chase: One of Wits University’s special daughters

It is with great sadness that Wits University conveys the passing of Elizabeth Muriel Chase to our Wits family and the extended hockey community. Liz passed away on 09 May 2018. Liz was a Witsie staff member from 1983 until her retirement in July of 2015.

Every now and then one crosses paths with someone special, someone who makes you a better person- someone who when they leave your life, you know you are going to miss terribly. Liz Chase was one such person. From the moment we were introduced to Liz a few years ago - she was only helpful, kind, passionate, professional and respectful. Liz was a rock for firstly JCE and later Wits Sport. To organize and pull off a brilliantly hosted squash USSA tournament in 2015 in her then condition spoke volumes of her resilience as a human being. We always knew when Liz arrived at the office, as invariably a trail of laughter and energy was left in her wake.

Wits University was privileged to have had Liz as part of our team and was most inspired by the way she tackled her biggest challenge, namely cancer.

To quote Jonty Winch in our Wits Sports history book speaking about Liz’s arrival at Wits in 1983, he mentions the following:
“At that point, the services of Liz Chase were secured and the university’s hockey section benefitted enormously. A former national vice-captain and a recipient of the Moscow Olympic Gold Medal - she was a key member of Zimbabwe’s history - making 1980 side, Liz became the backbone of the Wits team. She provided the necessary experience, the stability and the continuity, in addition to her vast skills as a player. She literally nursed her young team mates into the uncompromising world of Premier League hockey and they were better exponents of the game as a result of playing alongside her.”

This extract is particularly apt, as in Liz’s heart, she was a teacher and ensconced the values of what JCE stood for by mentoring and guiding many students both in the lecture hall and on the hockey field.

In the same way that Liz made history in 1980, we know that one of her legacies namely the Wits Astro turf (opened in 2014) will be fondly remembered and synonymous with the name of Liz Chase. Liz fought incredibly hard for this facility, which has undoubtedly heralded a new dawn for Wits Sport and more specifically Wits Hockey.

We will always treasure our time together and know that as we shed tears of sadness, the Man upstairs is smiling as one of his best has returned home.

As a token of respect, our Wits men’s hockey team currently playing in the Varsity Hockey Tournament, will wear black armbands and recognize a minute’s silence before the game against North West University in Pretoria on 11 May at 13:30.

Kindly note that memorial arrangements will be communicated once finalized.

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