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News for 19 February 2019

All the news for Tuesday 19 February 2019

Defeat for Scotland women in Rome against Italy

Scotland women were defeated 5-1 in their first match of three against Italy in Rome. Charlotte Watson won her 50th Scotland cap in the match which also saw debuts for Kerry Anne Hastings and McKenzie Bell. The Scots take on Italy again tomorrow to try and level the series before the final match on Thursday.

Scotland got off to a great start and played some neat hockey from the outset. A swift attack down the left won Scotland an early penalty corner. It gave a chance for Emily Dark to strike at goal but her shot, driven low towards the right corner, prompted an excellent double save by the Italian keeper to keep the score goalless.

Italy had a good chance to open the scoring through Elisabetta Pacella but she was denied by some strong goalkeeping at the near post to get Scotland on level terms.

It was Scotland who eventually got the opening goal and it came through a Bex Condie penalty corner. The injection was set up nicely for Condie who slammed it low and hard against the backboard to make it a well-deserved 1-0 lead.

Italy equalised ten minutes later through Federica Carta. Carta wriggled her way into the Scottish D and after an exchange with a team mate, she turned and smashed the ball low into the bottom left corner to make it 1-1.

Into the second half and the game was even with action at both ends of the pitch.

Charlotte Watson came agonisingly close to giving Scotland the lead when her deflected effort zipped just wide of the mark.

Instead it was Italy who took the lead when a brisk counter attack was converted on the reverse by Elisabetta Pacella to make it 2-1 to the hosts.

It soon went to 3-1 when Sofia Vercelli struck in the 53rd minute. The ball bounced around inside the Scots D and Vercelli was on hand to bundle it over the line and advance the Italian lead.

Dark again came close for Scotland as the Tartan Hearts tried to retaliate; her penalty corner was swept low towards the left but a diving save batted the ball clear.

Italy then rubbed salt in Scottish wounds when Carta won the ball in the centre of the pitch and burst forward to eventually slip the ball home for 4-1.

Chiara Tiddi finished off the scoring with a penalty corner at the death to make it 5-1 in Rome and a home victory in the opening match of the series.

Scotland women’s Head Coach Jen Wilson said, “Although 5-1 is a disappointing score line it doesn’t really tell the full story of the match. We had the better of the contest for three of the four quarters but there was a seven or eight minute spell where they really capitalised on mistakes and punished us.

“That said, we had some exceptional play and I can see the players starting to put new things into action, which is very pleasing. We had debuts for Kerry Anne Hastings and McKenzie Bell and both did very well. Charlotte Watson won her 50th cap and was very busy throughout the match – you could tell she was hungry for a goal.

“There’s a few things we’ll need to tighten up on for tomorrow, and it’s still learning time for the players, but there’s a lot of bright sparks of what will come in the future.”

Scottish Hockey Union media release

Hockeyroos Switch Focus To Sydney Double-Header

Ben Somerford

Returning Hockeyroos co-captain Georgina Morgan says the side will utilise their upcoming weekend off to fine tune ahead of the Saturday 2 March FIH Pro League double-header in Sydney.

The Hockeyroos will play USA from 5pm AEDT at the Sydney Olympic Park, providing the headline act after the Kookaburras take on Spain from 3pm AEDT.

Australia have played three consecutive weekend fixtures in Melbourne, Hobart and Perth – in front of great crowds – but will enjoy a weekend without matches, before the Sydney double-header.

Armidale product Morgan returned from injury against Great Britain on Saturday after missing the first two weekends of action to lead the Hockeyroos for the first time since being appointed co-captain.

The Hockeyroos knocked off the 2016 Rio Olympics gold medallists 3-0 to sit second on the FIH Pro League standings ahead of the Spanish encounter.

“I think we’re going to focus on debriefing it,” Morgan said.

“We’ll take the positives and train hard for the next two weeks.

“There’s definitely things we can tidy up. We’ll do that this week.”

Tickets are selling fast for the Sydney matches via www.ticketbooth.com.au, with the challenge set for the NSW public after almost 5,000 fans attended double-headers in both Perth and Melbourne, including a sell-out.

“I love the format,” Morgan said.

“It’s awesome to be getting regular games in Australia. We don’t often get to promote the sport in Australia.

“To get the crowds we’ve been getting and the quality opponents as well, to have the top teams in the world come and showcase our sport is awesome.”

Hockeyroos coach Paul Gaudoin added that the importance of each one-off match had created a fantastic entertainment product of fans.

“It’s amazing, it’s enormous,” Gaudoin said.

“It’s a great feeling having these one-off matches. A lot is on the line every time you play.

“I think that’s adding to the importance of each match. It’s been great as a spectacle, plus with the number of goals scored by some many teams.”

The Sydney matches are made possible thanks to the support of Destination NSW.

Saturday 2 March 2019 – Sydney Olympic Park Hockey Centre
Kookaburras v Spain – 3pm, Hockeyroos v USA - 5pm
Gates open - 2pm

Hockey Australia media release

Sweden’s Partille become European indoor hockey kings

Swedish side Partille rose to the top of indoor elite PIC: EHF

Germany’s indoor stranglehold is over – at least for one year – but few would have predicted Sweden’s Partille SC making history.

Partille partied after becoming Sweden’s first EuroHockey Indoor Club Cup champions as they stunned hosts SV Arminen in the final in Vienna.

The Gothenburg-based side had edged through the group stages on goal difference after their 6-6 draw with AH&BC Amsterdam and 8-2 win over Rot-Weiss Wettingen, coupled with a high-scoring 8-6 loss to UHC Hamburg.

And the Swedes rose to the occasion in the semi-finals with a 4-3 win over Dinamo Stroitel to set up a final against Arminen, who eliminated German favourites UHC in a shoot-out.

In the final, Partille played a brilliant set-piece game and prevailed 3-1 in the final to get the party started in Vienna.

Arminen’s defeat of UHC in the semi-finals meant that it was only the third time in European history that there was no German team in the final.

In the women’s European finale in Hamburg, Dutch side LMHC Laren beat Russian champions Dinamo Elektrostal 3-1.

The Hockey Paper

Bowdon Win Impressive EuroHockey Club Indoor Trophy Silver

Doubles from Sally Walton and Kayleigh Maw clinched an impressive silver medal for Bowdon Hightown at the EuroHockey Club Indoor Trophy at the weekend.

Both players struck twice in their side’s final game against Slavia Prague to secure a 4-2 win and ensure an English side will be in the competition’s top tier next season.

Having qualified for the event as 2018 Jaffa Super 6s champions, Bowdon’s tournament didn’t get off to the best start as they lost 4-2 to Austrian side SV Arminen.

But they hit back against Partille SC in their next game – holding off a late comeback from their Swedish opponents – before a gritty 2-1 win over Lithuania’s Gintra Stretke.

That meant they finished second in Pool A and qualified for Pool D, in which a finish in the top two would mean promotion for next season.

With SV Arminen already having qualified, Bowdon’s loss against them was brought over to Pool D, meaning they started the final stages on one point and had just two games in which to try and win promotion.

They started in fine style though, with five different scorers finding the target in a 5-2 win over HAHK Mladost of Croatia after trailing at half-time.

Their victory over SK Slavia Prague left them on the cusp of promotion but they still had to hope Arminen beat Mladost to be sure of the second placed finish, which the Austrians duly did.

That result means that East Grinstead are now likely to represent England in the 2020 EuroHockey Indoor Club Cup having won this year’s Jaffa Super 6s crown.

Bowdon Hightown squad: Kirsty Mackay (GK), Kayleigh Maw (C), Alex Shaw, Lucy Tennant, Michelle Liptrot, Tina Cullen, Sam Mairs, Sian French, Charlene Mason, Megan Batchelor, Sally Walton, Amanda Ferebee (GK)

England Hockey Board Media release

Bowdon Hightown in tune at EuroHockey women’s indoor

Bowdon were promoted to European top tier PIC: Twitter/BowdonHightown

Bowdon Hightown, the 2018 English national champions, earned promotion to the top tier of European indoor hockey after a successful weekend in Vienna.

At the end of their three-day sojourn in Austria, Samsam‘s highly experienced side beat SK Slavia Prague 4-2 at the EHF EuroHockey Women’s Indoor Club Trophy.

Their win came nearly 10 years after they ended a 14-year wait for the national indoor title.

And five players all stood tall a decade on in Vienna: goalkeeper Kirsty Mackay, Michelle Liptrot, Cullen, Sam Quek and Sally Walton.

Their win meant that East Grinstead also benefited and will now represent England in next year’s tournament after lifting the Super 6s indoor title.

Bowdon only needed a draw against the Czech Republic outfit, but set out their stall early when Kayleigh Maw struck in the seventh minute.

Two Sally Walton penalty strokes before half-time kept Bowdon ahead, either side of a Natalie Novakova goal.

Walton nearly notched her hat-trick from open play with a lively run from deep before pushing just wide.

Maw then tucked into an unguarded net before a late Adela Lehovcova goal gave Prague some respite.

Their weekend resilience was underpinned on Saturday when they came from 2-0 down to beat Croatian side HAHK Mladost 5-2 as the English side finished second in their pool.

The Hockey Paper

South African Indoor IPT 2019

New Timeslot gives Indoor IPT added spice

The Indoor Hockey IPT has been moved from October to February from 2019. The move makes sense as the IPT now takes place at a time when indoor is played across the country and importantly the globe, meaning the tournament taking place will bring an added element of form that is possibly lacking. The move also offers an added incentive to coaching teams who would have seen their opponents just a couple of months ago.

With the superb success of SPAR South Africa Women’s Indoor Hockey team in Europe and the continued growth of Psi, interest in indoor hockey is at an all time high and is echoed through the entries to the tournament. There are 14 Women’s teams, incredibly up from 8 just 16 months ago, while the men see a full 12 teams invited.

Starting off with the women’s section, the number of teams sees the tournament split into A and B Sections. The A Section features the top 8 sides from the IPT in October 2018, while the B Section features the remaining four sides along with the African Champions Namibia and 2017 IPT finalists North West.

The SPAR KZN Raiders will once again wear the favourites tag as they feature 7 of the players that were part of the SPAR South Africa European Tour including national skipper Cindy Hack, the exciting Jess Lardant and the superb Cheree Greyvenstein. They are likely to face a tough challenge from the hosts who will be led by Amy Greaves, fresh from her 50th SA Indoor cap and Edith Molikoe, one of the standout players of 2018.

Southern Gauteng will once again prove to be a to a tough opponent mixing the experience of Robyn Johnson, Petro Stoffberg and Kara Botes with the youthful brilliance of Cloe de Souza and Lethabo Nkoe. Western Province have also selected one of their most exciting squads in the past few years with the likes of Ammaarah Hendricks, Kayla de Waal and Angela Welhelm selected alongside national stars Jamie Southgate and Andrea Leader.  

There will also be an element of intrigue within the Northern Blues featuring hockey icon Kim Hubach and the return from injury of Celia Evans. It promises to be a superb tournament.

The B section will see an extremely young Namibian side led by Jerrica Cormack try to develop the next group of players, and North West looking to get themselves back into the A Section after not competing in the 2018 Indoor IPT.

In the mens tournament the KZN Raiders will be looking to complete yet another defence of the trophy and their aims will be helped by the return of Keagan Robinson and Jethro Eustice, as well as Ryan Hack in the coaching team. Namibia will be a tough opponent as the well-coached side of Trevor Cormack play with a high intensity that is difficult to match. Keep an eye out for Cody van der Merwe, Liam Hermanus and Dakota Hansen.

The hosts have secured the services of indoor hockey legends Chris McCathie and Justin Domleo which will likely lead them to be more competitive, while any side coached by David Joshua like the Northern Blues are going to be difficult side to beat.

Southern Gauteng will be looking to overcome their run of successive silver medals and will look to the flamboyant style of the likes of Delpiaro Langford, Marvin Simons and Rusten Abrahams.

The action takes place at Pietermaritzburg Girls High School and St. Johns in Pietermaritzburg. The tournament starts on Wednesday and the finals will take place on Saturday night. You can view the fixtures below with daily updates posted here.

SA Hockey Association media release

Male Rising Star of the Year 2018: Arthur De Sloover

Arthur de Sloover first picked up a hockey stick at the age of four and he hasn’t looked back since. A relatively new member of a Belgium team that has been on an upwards trajectory for the past four years, de Sloover already has a 2017 European Championship silver medal and was Belgium’s youngest player when the team won its first World Cup gold medal, earned in the heat of Bhubaneswar in December.

Add to that Belgium’s rise to the top of the world rankings for the first time in the team’s history and it is clear that de Sloover is an integral part of a very talented squad of players.

"I am really proud to be a “Red Lion” and to be able to represent my country on the biggest stage is the most beautiful thing there is."
 - Arthur De Sloover
The medal haul began for de Sloover in 2016 when he was part of the Belgium junior side that won silver at the 2016 Junior World Championships in Lucknow, India. Belgium lost to hosts India in a thrilling 2-1 match that was played out in front of huge crowds.

Since he joined the senior squad, de Sloover has played almost 60 matches for the Red Lions and has been on the winning or drawing side in all bar 10 games. To be crowned FIH Young Player of the Year is a perfect way to top an outstanding year.

“First of all, I want to thank all my teammates,” said the 21-year-old after receiving the award. “We are all really good friends and without them it would not be possible to stand where I am today.

“Also a big thanks to everyone who voted for me. Of course 2018 was a great year for me personally, and this prize is really the cherry on the cake. I also want to take this opportunity to thank my parents and my sister, because they always supported me and brought me to all my training sessions and games.

“To finish off I want to say that I am really proud to be a “Red Lion” and to be able to represent my country on the biggest stage is the most beautiful thing there is.”


FIH site

Female Rising Star of the Year 2018: Lucina Von Der Heyde

Argentina has a habit of producing gifted youngsters who burst onto the scene at major tournaments. Lucina von der Heyde did just that at the Vitality Hockey Women’s World Cup London, as she was voted Young Player of the tournament. Although her team were knocked out in the quarter-finals by Australia, von der Heyde had already done enough in the pool games to secure the vote.

Not that the young midfielder is any stranger to success or the big stage. She was part of the winning Junior World Cup team in 2015, where Argentina beat the Netherlands 4-2 in the final. She was then selected for the Leonas' squad that finished seventh in the 2016 Rio Olympics.

"Luchi is a great player with lovely skills. She is intelligent in the way she plays and she reads the game really well."
- Delfina Merino, Captain, Argentina

Since her performance at the World Cup in London, von der Heyde has widened her experience by accepting a contract to play for top German club side Mannheimer. Her commitments to European club hockey, combined with the demands of the inaugural FIH Pro League will provide the talented youngster with plenty of opportunity to become a full-blown Las Leonas legend.

Talking about her young compatriot’s award, Argentina’s captain and the 2017 FIH Female Best Player Delfina Merino said: “Luchi is a great player with lovely skills. She is intelligent in the way she plays and she reads the game really well. I enjoy being on the pitch alongside her, for me that is a real pleasure. I am sure she has an extraordinary future ahead of her.”


FIH site

Maddie Hinch: there were better hockey goalkeepers than me in 2018

By The Hockey Paper

Maddie Hinch has been voted world’s best stopper for three years

Maddie Hinch has admitted to mixed emotions after picking up the women’s goalkeeper of the year award last week.

Hinch, 30, pipped Ireland’s Ayeisha McFerran to the award, which was put to a public vote, as the English goalkeeper won for the third year in a row.

“I’m struggling to express how I feel about being awarded this again for the third consecutive year. I have very mixed feelings,” she wrote on social media.

Hinch won with 39.9% of the vote, just shading McFerran with 37.7% into second and ahead of Australia’s Rachel Lynch in third.

“Of course, I’m honoured to receive the award and I’m genuinely humbled to win FIH Goalkeeper of the Year for 2018 but there were some great goalkeepers in this category who put in huge stand out performances last year and I felt were more worthy of the award,” said Hinch.

“I’m grateful for every single vote. That means the world to me. To win it amidst a break from the International stage, knowing that so many people remember and recognise my contribution to the game is something that has been emotionally overwhelming.”

Hinch has been noted for lifting the goalkeeper position as one many aspiring athletes now want to make their own.

As Hinch said, “‘The Goalkeeper’ is now seen as one of the coolest positions on the pitch with people young and old all over the world eagerly donning the equipment …. this is a brilliant legacy and one that I am very proud to be part of creating.”

The England and Great Britain stopper admitted to 2018 being a “tough year”.

“I am forever grateful to everyone who has stuck by me and continues to believe in me,” she added.

The Hockey Paper

RSPB women keep title

Railway Sports Promotion Board (RSPB) defeated Madhya Pradesh 5-0 to retain the Hockey India senior women’s National championship (Division A) title for a record sixth consecutive time here on Monday.

The results: Final: RSPB 5 (Neha 12, 16, Navneet Kaur 25, 28, Vandana Katariya 10) bt MP 0. Third place: Haryana 3 (Sonika 6, Rani Rampal 39, Deepika 49) bt Maharashtra 2 (Lalruatfeli 13, 42).

The Hindu

PHF chief vows to bring international hockey events to Pakistan

Mohsin Ali

ISLAMABAD-Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF) President Brig (R) Khalid Sajjad Khokhar has said that he is keen to bring international hockey tournaments to Pakistan.

Talking to The Nation before leaving for Japan to attend Asian Hockey Federation (AHF) meeting, Khohar said: “I am going to attend two-day AHF meeting to get an international tournament for Pakistan, whether it is 5-nation or more, as hosting international tournaments is very important for us to flourish Pakistan hockey.”

 “I am also hopeful that the FIH will not impose any ban on Pakistan because we fail to send our national team for pro-league. For taking part in the pro-hockey league, we requested former IPC Secretary Abu Akif for Rs 200 million and he promised to help the PHF. But when he retired, new IPC secretary Jameel Ahmed mishandled PHF case and brought disgrace to the country in shape of FIH ban on Pakistan hockey. Now new IPC Secretary Akbar Durrnai has promised to provide funds to the federation for hockey revival,” he added.

The PHF chief said he is hopeful that Prime Minister Imran Khan will support the national game and will invite the PHF officials for a briefing. “I am sure all the propaganda will die its natural death when we will meet the PM, as the meeting is very important for the revival of hockey in the country.”

He said that neither former nor current government has released funds to the federations. “The FIH can not only impose ban on Pakistan hockey team for not taking part in pro-league, but also in international events for two years. But we have written a letter to the FIH and I am hopeful that the things will be better. Shahbaz will attend the FIH executive board meeting next month and hopefully, our case will be considered on humanitarian grounds.”

Khokhar said that he recently met with Deputy Chief of Naval Staff Rear Admiral, Zahid Ilyas at Navy Headquarters. “In our meeting, we have detailed conversations regarding ways to take all possible initiatives for revival of hockey. I am also thankful to Chief of Naval Staff Admiral Z M Abbasi for taking personal interest in promoting sports especially hockey in the country. Rear Admiral Zahid Ilyas has promised to support the PHF especially in grooming the young players and conducting the national championships.”

He said Rear Admiral Zahid Ilyas has also accepted the request of inducting young talented players in Pakistan Navy upon recommendation of PHF. “Besides mounting first mini astroturf at Abdul Sattar Hockey Ground, Karachi, Pakistan Navy is also in the process to establish hockey ground at Karsaz Area, Karachi, which will be available for the PHF for training the national team and other purposes.”

The PHF president said he would soon meet the Naval Chief and request him to conduct a national hockey championship by Pakistan Navy and other matters related to hockey uplift.

He said that he is very satisfied with the meeting with Rear Admiral Zahid Ilyas and looking forward to have more meeting in near future.

“I am sure the government will release the PHF grant soon as it will help the federation focus on their plans and work on them to achieve the set goals. The Olympians must unite for the sake of hockey. It is my promise that we will take every possible step to revive Pakistan hockey,” Khokhar concluded.

The Nation

OLY recognition

You may have heard of PhD and MD, but did you know that Olympians qualify to use the post-nominal letters “OLY”? Launched by the World Olympians Association, OLY recognises Olympians’ years of hard work, dedication and promotion of the @olympics values. Who will be recognised as #OLY after #Tokyo2020?

Tokyo2020 Instagram account

Olympians can sign up here

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