All the news for Tuesday 23 July 2019
Prepared for action! Peru’s Pan Am adventure is about to begin
Fabrizio Corno, Gianni Delucchi, Marianella Alvarez (Peru)
There are just a few weeks before the 18th Pan American Games gets underway. The bright, colourful celebration of sport sees athletes from 41 nations participate across 39 sports and disciplines, with, for many of the winners, the additional prize of qualification to the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.
This year’s event will take place in the Peru capital, Lima, and eight men’s and eight women’s teams will be participating. In the men’s event the teams taking part are reigning champions Argentina (World Ranking:4), Canada (WR:10), USA (WR:24), Chile (WR:28), Mexico (WR:32), Trinidad and Tobago (WR:37), Peru (WR:55) and Cuba (WR:69).The women’s event sees defending champions USA (WR:13) face Argentina (WR:3), Chile (WR:15), Canada (WR:18), Uruguay (WR:25), Mexico (WR:30), Peru (WR:38) and Cuba (WR:63).
In readiness for the event, but also with an eye to the future of hockey in Peru, two brand new water-based pitches have been laid. Gianni Delucchi, President of the Peru Hockey Federation is one delighted man as he reflects upon what the Olympic-standard pitches means for hockey development in Peru.
“I don’t know whether to say it is a dream come true or a task accomplished, but now we are looking forward to making much more progress,” says Delucchi. “We are going to rekindle and develop the passion for hockey that we have always had in South America and look to shorten the gaps between us [Peru] and the other, higher-ranked countries in the Pan American zone.”
The two new pitches are part of the Andrés Avelino Cáceres sports complex, where a number of different sports will be played during the Pan American Games. For the Peru Hockey Federation, the installation of the pitches is the result of a long process and a lot of hard work, and Delucchi and his team will be the proudest people at the stadium when the opening match starts proceedings at this blue riband event.
But for Delucchi, the Pan American Games is just the starting point. This project is about the long-term development of hockey in Peru, at both grass roots and elite level.
“The greatest challenge was to choose a location within Lima to build the venue,” says Delucchi. “This is the first one built from the ground up and has to serve as a vehicle for more people to engage in field hockey. The district of Villa Maria de Triunfo has a large young population, and we share the complex with other sports, so we can offer diverse opportunities to practice sports.
“The main legacy we want to create is to have a new home for field hockey not only for Peru, but for the Pan Am region. We will take up the challenge to grow the sport locally and to host events, taking advantage of the quality of these new facilities and its location. Lima has a mild weather all year long, and teams could come for training camps during their off seasons. We have plans to develop hockey for new players, but also to prepare the next generations of national team players.”
For now though, it is all about the spectacle of the Pan American Games. Delucchi is understandably nervous because hosting such a major event is a huge undertaking but, he says, when people arrive at the new stadium, they will be immediately blown away by the sheer quality of the facility.
While Delucchi has been working with the International Hockey Federation, the local organising committee and Lima 2019 to ensure the venue is ready, the national men’s and women’s team have been training hard to give the best account of themselves in front of the home crowd.
Fabrizio Corno is a seasoned member of the men’s national team. He says the team has been training five or six times a week at the new venue for the past few months. The ability to familiarise themselves with the new pitch is a big advantage to the team.
“We need to take advantage of the fact that we have two brand new pitches. It is important to get as many hours on the pitch as we possible. We are already seeing the team grow in performance and confidence. And it is not just about the techniques, we are also training hard physically because high levels of fitness are as much part of the modern hockey game as technical and tactical skills.”
Corno is realistic about his side’s chances against some world-class opposition. Peru’s opening game is against the much-improved USA and they also have top-10 team Canada in their pool.
“We know that we are going to face stronger and more experienced teams than us but we are not scared of the fact that the other teams have a higher ranking, or that they have more experience,” says Corno. "We will enter every single game full of energy, and full of will to demonstrate our style of hockey. We will show everyone that the Peruvian team is getting better with every experience. It is the first time that we are going to play in a competition of this importance, but the nerves are not getting to us.
“We are aiming to play the best hockey we can and to demonstrate to the other nations that Peru is a team that can surprise the hockey world in the future. We want to keep growing, to keep getting better, and I think that this competition will allow us to learn an incredible amount of things from the other teams. We are aiming to get out of this experience, the most positive feelings that we can.”
Equally determined to put on a great hockey show is Peru women’s team player Marianella Alvarez.
“We have spent a lot of time analysing the opponents we will face at the Pan Am Games. We’ve also increased our amount of training in recent days to fine-tune the final details of our game. We are not neglecting the mental and emotional preparation either. I would say the team is ready to face this tough tournament. Of course, there is still a gap between us and the other, higher-ranked teams, which will take years to reduce but we are making a huge breakthrough with this event.”
In preparation for the challenge ahead, the Peru women’s team has just returned from a two-week training camp in Buenos Aires where they faced a range of different teams with different playing styles.
For Alvarez, hosting the Pan American Games and the advent of the new facilities represents a watershed moment for hockey in Peru. “It marks a milestone for us. A before and after. Hockey in Peru will be different after the Pan American games.
“It is also the first time that family, friends, Peruvians in general, have been able to see us represent our national team in our city. This tournament will leave a legacy that is very important for our sport.”
This is a point that Corno also highlights: “We have had some hockey events in the past, but not of this magnitude, and not in the capital. Being part of the Pan American Games will showcase hockey to the whole country. The impact that this event is going to have is massive, it will allow us to show Peru what hockey is about.
“People in Peru will get the opportunity to learn about a different sport, and I think that this is going to be very important because it would allow us to attract more children to the sport. If we can increase the number of people that play the game, then the standard inevitably gets higher. This event is key for us to change hockey in Peru; it is the opportunity to take it to a whole new level.
And, leaving no doubt as to how important she sees this event in her sport’s history, Alvarez adds: “We will leave everything on the court. What we still lack, we will compensate with guts and passion. Doing our best is our responsibility, leaving with our head held high knowing that we gave it all, nothing to repent. We will run and play hockey on the court until we can no more, looking for the best possible result.”
Pan American Hockey Federation media release
Kwan looks to leave on a high
Image courtesy: Yan Hckendubler/PAHF
Kwan Browne is a legend on two continents. In Europe, he is well known as both a player and coach. He currently coaches one of the top teams in England, Hampstead and Westminster, and is also part of the England and Great Britain men’s coaching staff.
But it is in his home nation of Trinidad and Tobago that Browne takes on ‘legend’ status, where he has played for the national team since he was 15 years old.
The 18th Pan American Games in Lima, Peru, will be Browne’s swan song as an international player. He has more than 318 caps to his name currently and, barring injury, he will add to them at this event.
While Trinidad and Tobago have a FIH World ranking of 37 and can not be seen as a potential medal winner in Lima, this has not always been the case. Browne himself has been to the Indoor Hockey World Cup with Trinidad and Tobago and at one point – in the 2007/8 season – the Caribbean island side was ranked 19th in the world.
Much of the hockey development in Trinidad and Tobago in the past few years has sprung from an informal relationship between London Metropolitan University (LMU) and hockey-playing students from Trinidad and Tobago.
Photo: Yan Huckendubler
It began with Browne, who was accepted as a law student at the university after he was talent-spotted by an English hockey coach and persuaded to come to England to study and play hockey. Browne was selected for the England training roster as one of 30 players receiving National Lottery funding.
It was at this point that Kwan’s sense of loyalty and integrity made its first noteworthy appearance. He was on the England roster, in receipt of Lottery funding and with a clear opportunity to press for selection with the national team.
But Browne had a different motivation. “I decided that I could do a lot more for the game by playing for Trinidad and bringing players over to the UK. I asked myself: ‘How can I make sure my time in the UK has an impact on hockey in Trinidad and Tobago?”
The next few years provided him with the answer. The university, with Browne on a scholarship and acting as player coach, won the sixth division of BUSA, the annual competition involving all universities and colleges in Great Britain.
The team was promoted and the university was delighted. The reward was to offer two more members of the Trinidad and Tobago squad scholarship places. They then won their league the following year, winning three more scholarship places as a result. When Browne left LMU, 17 places had been taken by Trinidad and Tobago players.
Photo: Yan Huckendubler
The legacy that this created was a plethora of coaches and players taking all they had learnt in England, both at university and in the club league, back to Trinidad and Tobago. The impact was immediate. Trinidad and Tobago moved to an all-time high of 19th in the world rankings. They also qualified for the 2007 Indoor World Cup.
Unfortunately that momentum has slowed and when he considers the state of hockey in Trinidad and Tobago 12 years on, he says he feels hugely frustrated.
“I can’t tell you how sad it makes me feel that we can’t get a break. Every time a moment comes where we can cash in and qualify for ether the Olympic Games or the World Cup, something happens that stops us achieving our potential. In Trinidad a lot of the players have to work, so we are never in a position where we can take our strongest team to a qualifying tournament.
“For 25 years, we have been trying to qualify for the Olympics and we can never get our best team together for a block of training and competition. We have to find a way that players can get that time. We have a few players in the military who can train when they want. But there are so many other players who have to go to work and can’t make these tournaments.”
The frustration is borne of the fact that, with a little bit of good fortune, Browne knows his team can cut it with the best. One of his own great moments came when the team beat Belgium – currently the world number two team – on a tour of Europe.
As Browne approaches his final international appearance, neutral hockey spectators must surely hope that Trinidad and Tobago can enjoy another moment in the sun.
Trinidad and Tobago men's team will be competing in Pool B against Argentina, Chile and Cuba at the Pan American Games in Lima. The action starts on 29 July
David Forsyth retires from international hockey
David Forsyth has announced his retirement from international hockey. The Scot played in two Commonwealth Games as well as in the momentous Men’s EuroHockey Championship II gold medal winning team in 2017.
With Scotland men’s team’s return to A-Division only a few weeks away it was a tough decision for Forsyth to call time on his Scotland career. He said, “I was planning on retiring after the Euros but picked up an ankle injury a few weeks back. I was waiting to see if I could recover in time for the Euros but I spoke to the Physios and management to discuss my options, and talked it over with my family, and took the decision to retire now.
“I might have been back training for one weekend before the Euros but A Division is a big ask for that. It wouldn’t be right to try and play at that level on one training weekend after an injury. There’s no way I’d have been fit enough to compete at that level after so much time out.”
“I was emotional, it wasn’t the ending I wanted, but I’ve accepted it now.”
Forsyth made his debut in 2010 against USA in Stirling, but got injured soon after and needed a knee operation and didn’t play again until 2013. Regardless, it was a welcoming time in the squad for Forsyth with many of his Kelburne teammates in the team at that time – he really felt like he was amongst friends.
David only scored one goal for Scotland but it was a goal that was a bit special. It came last year in an FIH Hockey Series match in Lousada. Recalling the strike, he joked, “I think it’s the best goal Scotland has ever scored! It’s funny because Cammy Golden said to me that morning that I would score, and we had a good laugh about it. Then when it happened everyone celebrated like mad, the boys were really chuffed for me.”
There’s a lot of experiences that Forsyth looks back fondly on but his favourite memories of playing for Scotland include winning Men’s EuroHockey Championship II in Glasgow; the Glasgow 2014 and Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games; and winning the U21 Europeans in Vienna in 2010.
He explained, “Glasgow 2014 was the best one. Playing a Commonwealth Games in your home town is unbelievable and not many people get to experience that. The day of the opening ceremony was amazing; a bunch of us went to George Square and it was just mayhem. Everyone wishing us good luck and wanting photographs.
“It was great that all our families and friends could be there, and be involved. Everyone was there, it was amazing. Playing Australia at Gold Coast 2018 was another incredible experience, but Glasgow was the best.”
Next month Scotland men will play at the EuroHockey Championships in Antwerp. It is the reward after a long effort to finally gain promotion to the top division of European hockey. Winning EuroHockey Championship II in Glasgow in 2017 got the team there and it’s a huge achievement that Forsyth remembers fondly.
“We missed out on promotion in the previous Euros in Prague on shootouts and it was a really emotional one for the players, but losing made us hungrier. We were so hungry to win in Glasgow. Having a big home crowd was amazing and really helped. It was such a good team for that tournament, one of the best we’ve had. It’s not often we get to win things in Scotland so it was an incredible experience – a great time.”
The Forsyth family is synonymous with hockey, particularly the Scotland men’s squad. David’s brother Alan is in the squad and the squad’s Head Coach is their father Derek Forsyth.
He added, “Being with family for so much of my Scotland career is probably a bit unusual compared to most people, but it’s a really unique experience. We’ve been lucky to experience it together as a family – it’s really nice. My dad has pretty much been my coach at Scotland for the last ten years, first at U21s and then the seniors. I’d never have changed it. Plus my best mate Kenny Bain has been in the team that whole time too.”
After so many years in the international setup Forsyth is looking forward to having time to see family, friends and take some holidays. He said, “I’m getting married, and I can go on holidays now, so I’m looking forward to that. I’ve always used all my holidays for hockey so it will be nice to go on a long holiday somewhere. I’ll start to do some of the things I’ve missed out on. I’ve missed mates, weddings, and all sorts, so I’m looking forward to catching up and having more freedom to do things.”
Scotland Men’s Head Coach Derek Forsyth said, “David’s been a great servant to Scotland over the years. He’s represented his country at two Commonwealth Games and was part of the Gold medal winning Euros team in 2017 – fantastic achievements.
“He’s had a lot of injuries but to come back from them, and achieve what he has, says a lot about his character. It’s not the way he wanted to end his international career but scoring his wonder goal in Lousada is not a bad way to finish.”
Scottish Hockey Union media release
‘Lack of goalkeeping depth hurting India’, says Devesh Chauhan
There is no competition at the moment for Sreejesh, says Chauhan
P.R. Sreejesh has held the Indian hockey team goalkeeper spot for nearly a decade without facing much competition, a fact that worries Devesh Chauhan. The lack of quality goalkeeping depth in the squad hurts India’s long-term plans, Chauhan explained.
“There is no competition for Sreejesh; he is all alone with no one behind him. Suraj Karkera and Krishan Pathak are good, but they are not on the same level to challenge Sreejesh.
“In this scenario, it is only natural for Sreejesh to feel complacent. If there are a couple of guys gunning for your spot, Sreejesh will be pushed to do even better,” Chauhan, who stood between the sticks in the 2000 Sydney and 2004 Athens Olympics, told The Hindu here on Monday.
“When I was playing, we had several fantastic goalkeepers like Kamaldeep Singh, Adrian D’Souza, Bharat Chettri and Baljit Singh. We could not take it easy even for a minute, because if you slipped, you would be out of the side. There was a healthy fight between us, which was great for the team,” Chauhan, the IOCL team manager at the Bengaluru Hockey Association Super Division championship here, said.
There is, however, no dearth of talented goalkeepers in the country, he said. “You can find several good goalkeepers on the domestic circuit. It will be good if the national team setup can pick 8-10 goalkeepers and have regular specialised camps. That way, you can increase the talent pool,” he said.
There are some basic qualities that every goalkeeper must possess, Chauhan said. “Height and reflexes are key. You need to be at least six-feet to be a good ’keeper. If you are around 5’ 8”, your reflexes will be great, but your reach will be less. For tall guys, the opposite occurs.
“Sreejesh is the best combination of height and reflexes, which is why he has been so successful. We need to find someone in his mould,” Chauhan said.
Success aplenty as Home Nations prosper at 2019 Junior EuroHockey Championships
England’s U21 men secured an impressive silver medal in the top tier - also booking their place at the 2021 Junior FIH World Cup - while both Scotland and Wales celebrated double promotion for their men’s and women’s teams.
Led by Jon Bleby, England reached their first men’s Junior EuroHockey final since 1998 as they beat Poland 6-2 and drew with Belgium (1-1) and Spain (1-1) to finish second in their pool and reach the semi-finals and guarantee themselves a place at the 2021 Junior World Cup.
They then produced a sensational performance to beat nine-time champions The Netherlands 4-3 in a pulsating semi-final and cement their best finish in 21 years.
However Germany were on a different level in the final and prevailed 5-3 winners after another exciting game.
There was more good news to come though as Tim Nurse was named as Player of the Tournament, while Eddie Way finished as England’s top goalscorer with four to his name.
Junior World Cup qualification hangs in the balance for England’s U21 women though as they finished sixth in the women’s Junior EuroHockey Championships.
With only six teams to qualify from Europe, England could still make the event but it will depend on who is selected to host the tournament.
Having finished third in their group, Paul Revington’s side looked in a strong position to win the 5/6 play-off against Russia as they led 2-1 with six minutes to play courtesy of goals from Lily Walker and Jen Park.
But Dayana Yushkova equalised shortly before the final whistle to take it to a shootout and, despite the best efforts of Miriam Pritchard, it was Russia who prevailed 3-2 winners.
Both of those teams will be joined in the top tier at the next event by Scotland’s men and women as they secured double gold in their respective Junior EuroHockey Championship II events.
The U21 Blue Sticks started the tournament in blistering form, beating Portugal and Russia 6-1 and 5-2 respectively before falling 3-2 to Italy in another exciting game to finish second in Pool B.
A single goal from Hamish Roberts was enough to then overcome Ireland in a tight semi-final before they blew Russia away once again in the final, securing the gold with a 9-0 victory with Jamie Golden bagging a hat-trick.
U21s Scotland men
There was plenty to celebrate for Scotland’s U21 women too as they also secured a gold and promotion to the top flight.
Having gone through their group stage unbeaten - recording victories over Czech Republic (2-0) and Austria (1-0) as well as drawing 0-0 with Wales - they then thrashed Ukraine 4-1 in the semi-final, with Katie MacCallum scoring twice.
Lunjika Nyirenda then bagged two for herself as they matched that score to beat Italy in the final and ensure it was a perfect week for Scotland.
Wales’ U21 women also achieved promotion to the top tier after securing an impressive bronze in the same tournament.
They actually finished ahead of Scotland in Pool B on goal difference before being cruelly denied a place in the final by Italy, who beat them 2-1 in a shootout after a cracking game ended 4-4.
But they quickly put any heartache to bed in the bronze medal play-off as Megan Bowen, Jess Roe and Cari Davies all scored in a 3-1 win, while Lauren Roberts was named Goalkeeper of the Tournament.
U21s Wales women
There was plenty of individual and team success for Wales U21 men too as they stormed to gold in the EuroHockey Junior Championship III, subsequently earning themselves promotion too.
They stormed past Lithuania in their opening game, with six different players finding the net in a 6-1 victory, before thumping Ukraine 5-2 in their next game.
The gold medal match then saw them overcome the same opponents 4-3, with Ioan Wall scoring twice in a minute to finish as the tournament’s top goalscorer while Jacob Draper was named as Player of the Tournament.
Great Britain Hockey media release
EHL KO16 schedule confirmed as Barcelona beckons in October
The EHL Men KO16 match schedule has been confirmed as the new era of the world’s best club hockey competition gets under way at the Pau Negre Stadium from October 4-6, 2019.
The actions begins on Friday, October 4 at 11.15 (CET) with last year’s bronze medalists Mannheimer HC taking on French runners-up CA Montrouge.
At 13.30 (CET), Russia’s Dinamo Kazan will appear for a 13th successive season in the EHL when they come up against French champions Saint Germain.
Next to hit the turf are 2011 EHL winners HGC in their first game in the competition in eight years. Hampstead & Westminster are their opponents at 15.45 (CET).
The day closes with hometown side Real Club de Polo make the short trip to Montjuic to take on English regular season winners Surbiton at 18.00 (CET).
Saturday, October 5 has six games on the agenda. The next four KO16 games take place on the main pitch, starting with Scotland’s Grange meeting Ireland’s Three Rock Rovers at 9.45 (CET).
Game two is a potential barnstormer with EHL runners-up Rot-Weiss Koln coming up against Royal Beerschot in their first game on this stage at 12.00 (CET).
The other Belgian side in Barcelona are Herakles and they will meet Austria’s SV Arminen at 14.15 (CET) before the KO16 closes with 2016 winners SV Kampong taking on Belarus side HC Minsk at 16.30 (CET).
On pitch two, the first of the classification matches for the sides eliminated on day one will be played with a further two classification matches taking place on Sunday, October 6.
The weekend builds to the crescendo of the KO8 on Sunday, October 6 with the four places in the EHL FINAL8 set to be decided.
Online tickets for adults on Friday, October 4 will be €12.50 and €5 for youths. This rises to €15 and €7.50, respectively, when purchased at the venue entrance.
For Saturday, October 5 and Sunday, October 6, online prices are €15 for adults and €7.50 for youths while venue entrance tickets are €20 and €10, respectively. All prices include VAT and booking fee.
EHL 2019-2020 Match schedule KO16
4-6 October 2019 at Pau Negre Stadium, Barcelona (ESP)
Friday 4 October 2019
M1 11.15h pitch 1 KO16 Mannheimer HC – CA Montrouge
M2 13.30h pitch 1 KO16 Dinamo Kazan – Saint Germain HC
M3 15.45h pitch 1 KO16 HGC – Hampstead & Westminster
M4 18.00h pitch 1 KO16 Surbiton HC – Real Club de Polo
Saturday 5 October 2019
M5 09.45h pitch 1 KO16 Grange HC – Three Rock Rovers
M6 12.00h pitch 1 KO16 Rot-Weiss Koln – Royal Beerschot HC
M7 14.00h pitch 2 Ranking match Loser M1 – Loser M3
M8 14.15h pitch 1 KO16 Royal Herakles HC – SV Arminen
M9 16.15h pitch 2 Ranking match Loser M2 – Loser M4
M10 16.30h pitch 1 KO16 SV Kampong – HC Minsk
Sunday 6 October 2019
M11 09.45h pitch 1 KO8 Winner M1 – Winner M3
M12 11.45h pitch 2 Ranking match Loser M5 – Loser M6
M13 12.00h pitch 1 KO8 Winner M5 – Winner M6
M14 14.15h pitch 1 KO8 Winner M10 – Winner M8
M15 16.15h pitch 2 Ranking match Loser M10 – Loser M8
M16 16.30h pitch 1 KO8 Winner M2 – Winner M4
Note: Match times and schedule subject to change due to the requirements of television or other factors as determined by EHL.
Euro Hockey League media release
Our Watch Your 1s campaign gathers momentum for new hockey season
By The Hockey Paper
Hampstead & Westminster celebrate Premier Division promotion. PIC: Simon Parker
The Hockey Paper‘s Watch Your 1s campaign, launched in our last print edition and online, received great feedback from clubs eager to get on board and be part of the initiative.
We now want clubs to be part of the #watchyour1s campaign in September and across the league structure, elite down to grass roots.
This is an important campaign for us at the paper and our desire for more people to watch hockey is at the heart of it – more so after seeing 12,000 people attend the Stoop and the disparity in domestic club attendances.
Entry to our competition and campaign, run in conjunction with England Hockey’s HockeyFest, couldn’t be easier and is free.
All we want for clubs to do is nominate a home club match in September and to draw in as many people to watch the 1s as possible. Our campaign calls for attendance images, any media cuttings in print or radio you can generate, as well as on the day activities and stalls to make the atmosphere as vibrant as possible.
We will be announcing prize and further campaign details in our next issue, our early August EuroHockey special!
Our campaign is also calling upon clubs to be more proactive, too. With many clubs not having a communications contact in place due to the volunteer nature of our sport, our manifesto is also geared towards more club officials getting in touch with us directly.
We know there are great club and individual stories out there – and we want to hear about them.
With the domestic restructure for the 2019/20 season, there will be plenty of changes inflicted upon some clubs and our aim is for clubs to think about possible media stories we can share in future editions
– How is your club dealing with extra travel plans? We want to hear about how your team is entertaining itself!
– If there is a big local derby or rivalry, we want to know about it
– If there is a player marking their 20th season, or about to score a 400th goal for the club, we want to hear about it
You can also sign your club up for HockeyFest and don’t forget to tag #watchyour1s on social media.
Don’t miss our EuroHockey preview! Subscribe by Aug 4 to receive your copy!
The Hockey Paper
Caruth swaps Annadale for player-coach role at Corinthian
Peter Caruth in his Annadale player-coach role. Pic: Adrian Boehm
Peter Caruth has quit Annadale to take up the role of assistant player-coach at their EY Irish Hockey League rivals Corinthian in the new season, representing a major blow for the Belfast club, writes John Flack.
Caruth played for Ireland at the 2016 Rio Olympic Games and has been recalled to the national squad which is currently preparing for next month’s European Championship in Antwerp and the Tokyo qualifiers.
The 32-year-old striker, who has 137 caps, would have been close to the double-century mark, had it not been for a series of injuries in recent years, having last represented his country in June 2018.
But he is now back to full fitness following knee surgery which ruled him out of the playing arena for the second-half of the last IHL season.
It’s probably more than coincidence that Annadale struggled somewhat after losing their talismanic striker as he concentrated solely on coaching after Christmas.
Caruth says he is looking forward to combining playing and coaching with his new club, who secured promotion to Irish hockey’s top-flight last season.
It will be his second spell in Dublin, having played for Monkstown for three years before rejoining Annadale, where he learned his hockey as a youngster.
Caruth said: “While it’s a wrench to be leaving Annadale, I am looking forward to the new season with Corinthian and I reckon they can do quite well in what will be their first IHL campaign.
“I enjoyed my time at Dale and was glad to be able to do my bit in helping them get into the IHL in my first season as player-coach and, equally important, see them stay there.
“I wish them well but there will be no room for sentiment when I play against them and I don’t think they would want there to be.”
Caruth hopes to add to his international caps tally sooner rather than later, as preparations continue for the Euros and the last phase of Olympic qualifying for Tokyo 2020.
He could come back into a match-day 18 as early as the weekend as Ireland continue their build-up with two games against Scotland in Glasgow.
The next Irish men’s panel could also feature former Australian international Tim Cross. He played six times for the Kookaburras but has an Irish passport and has completed a three-year hiatus from international action that clears him to declare for Ireland. Last season, Cross played in Tilburg in the Netherlands.
Elsewhere, Sam O’Connor is another Irish international on the move to Belgium where he will play with EHL-bound Beerschot while acting as the “T1” head coach with the women’s side. Glenanne’s Sarah-Jane Kelly will also join the Belgian club.
UCD’s men have announced Michael Styles as their new coach for their return to the EYHL. He takes over the reins from Rudi Wortmann who stood down following their promotion in the spring following spells as Monkstown head coach and working with Joe Brennan at the Glens.
Styles’ younger brother Iain has played with the students for the past few seasons.
Pakistan National hockey championship begins today
KARACHI: The 65th Air Marshal (R) Muhammad Nur Khan National Hockey Championship 2019 will commence at Abdul Sattar Edhi Hockey Stadium here on Tuesday (today).
As many as 20 teams, divided into four groups, will compete for the title.
The opening ceremony will be held from 4:30 PM. Air Vice Marshal Noor Abbas, Adviser to Chairman PIA, will inaugurate the championship.
Olympian Abdul Hanif Khan is the tournament director. Five matches will be played daily. The quarter-finals will be played on August 1, the semi-finals on 3 and the final on 4 (Sunday).
Pool A: NBP (defending champions), Army, Police, KP, Gilgit
Pool B: WAPDA, Army (W), Punjab, MPCL, FATA,
Pool C: SSGC, PIA, PAF, Sindh, Islamabad
Pool D: Navy, Railways, WAPDA (W), PQA, Baluchistan
Meanwhile, the PHF congress meeting will be held at Abdul Sattar Edhi hockey stadium on Tuesday (today) at 1 PM.
It is expected that more than 100 congress members will participate in the meeting.
PHF secretary Olympian Asif Bajwa needs to get vote of confidence in the meeting, which will also decide the names of national hockey team’s selection committee members, sources said.
The News International
Kenya Police arrest Gladiators to leap to second place
By Elizabeth Mburugu
Strathmore University’s Lameck Kibet (left) and Abraham Mumo of Greensharks in action at City Park. [Jonah Onyango, Standard]
The 2019 Kenya Hockey Union season began to take shape at the weekend after top guns Kenya Police bagged crucial points against Strathmore University Gladiators at City Park.
Titus Kimutai’s 50th-minute goal was enough to lift the 2017 holders to second place with 14 points, one less than champions Butali Sugar Warriors after seven rounds of matches.
On Saturday, Greensharks had slowed down Butali’s title defence campaign after forcing a barren draw.
The sugar millers have so far dropped six points in three draws while Police have drawn two and lost one.
Wazalendo Western Jaguars and Greensharks are third, fourth and fifth respectively.
The three are tied on 13 points but are separated by goal difference.
Former champions Gladiators and Nairobi Sikh Union are battling relegation and occupy the bottom two spots.
Gladiators, who lifted the trophy in 2016, have won one out of their seven matches while 2012 winners Sikh Union are yet to test victory this season.
They both have four points out of a possible 21.
United States International University of Africa (USIU-A), Sailors and Parklands are sixth, seventh and eighth respectively.
USIU-A and Sailors have seven points each while Parklands have five.
In the men’s Super League title chase, Parkroad Badgers stepped up their return to Premier League campaign after opening a 12-point gap between them and second-placed Kenya College of Accountancy University (KCAU).
Badgers and KCAU were both demoted last season and are battling their way up the top tier. Badgers remain unbeaten as the first leg enters the homestretch.
KCAU are tied on 18 points with the Technical University of Kenya, who were promoted to the Premier League after winning the 2016 lower-division title.
They, however, found the going tough and were relegated after a one-season stint at the top.
The Standard Digital
Thunderbolts scaring other teams away
By Jugjet Singh
THE moment a team can score eight goals in one match to lift their eighth title, it underlined their dominance in the last decade in the Malaysian Junior Hockey League (JHL).
Tunku Mahkota Ismail Sports School (SSTMI) Thunderbolts crushed KL Wipers 8-0 on Sunday, and defended their league title with a match in hand.
And going into the knock-out stage, SSTMI have no rivals this season to deny them of their Overall title as well.
Coach Wan Roslan Wan Rahman has been the mastermind to turn around the fortunes of what used to be former Bandar Penawar Sports School, from bridesmaid to Bukit Jalil Sports School (BJSS), to champions for a decade.
“In part we have to thank our sponsor Tenaga Nasional for helping us maintain our record by providing us with the best available coaches as well as equipemnt and other support.
“Tenaga sponsors four Thunderbolts teams and it looks like we are going to monopolise the top-four this season,” said Wan Roslan.
Monopolise is the keyword here. With Thunderbolts’ entry into the JHL by sponsoring SSTMI, Anderson School of Ipoh, Pahang Hockey Academy and Bukit Jalil SS, the other teams have had no chance to even coming close to silverware.
“It's good for the four Tenaga-sponsored teams, but it is bad for the other 10 teams in the JHL.
“Many club officials and teachers that I met, have lamented they don't have the coaches as well as cash to play catch-up with the Thunderbolts.
“And in the long run, some of the clubs might just die off just like what happened to the Malaysia Hockey League (MHL).
“Those days the MHL even had Armed Forces playing, but when teams with money like Kuala Lumpur Hockey Club, Sapura, Universiti Kuala Lumpur (UniKL), Terengganu Hockey Team and others started buying the best local and overseas players, many poorer clubs in the MHL died together with Armed Forces.
“This might happen in the JHL if the four Thunderbolts keep dominating,” lamented Wan Roslan.
So what is the solution?
“UniKL is currently helping Datuk Bentara and Perlis Young Lions, and if help can be extended to Petaling Jaya City Council and other teams in the JHL, there will be more strong teams to challenge for the titles.
“But until such a time arrives, some teams might just give up and fade away, which defeats the purpose of development,” said Wan Roslan.
With Thunderbolts dominating and no avenue for players from other clubs to shine, the national selectors will also have a tough time selecting from a shrinking pool.
Last season there were 30 teams, 10 in Division One and 20 in Division Two, and the Malaysian Hockey Confederation (MHC) trimmed it down to 14 teams to have better quality.
However, it looks like the MHC might as well as host six teams next season, as the other eight turned out to be whipping boys.
New Straits Times
Keshav, Prasun to get Mohun Bagan Ratna
The Best Footballer for the 2018-19 will be given to Arijit Bagui.
Two-time Olympic gold-medal winning hockey player Keshav Dutt and former India football captain Prasun Banerjee will get this year’s Mohun Bagan Ratna Award, the club said in a press release on Monday.
Dutt, 93, who played as a half-back, was part of the team that won gold in the 1948 (London) and 1952 (Helsinki) Olympics.
This is the first time that the club is conferring the award on a sportsperson from a discipline other than football.
Prasun, 64, younger brother of iconic footballer P.K. Banerjee, was a prominent midfielder of his times. He played in three Asian Games in 1974, 1978 and 1982 and was part of an Asian All Star XI team.
The Best Footballer for the 2018-19 will be given to Arijit Bagui.
Mohammed Shami would also be felicitated for his noteworthy performance during the recently concluded ICC World Cup.
Footballer Ashok Chatterjee will get the Lifetime Achievement Award.
The awards will be given away on Mohun Bagan Day on July 29. The club will give life membership to distinguished personalities such as Chuni Goswami, Dr. Vece Paes, Sourav Ganguly, Prasenjit Chatterjee and Deb Shankar Halder.