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News for 31 August 2019

All the news for Saturday 31 August 2019

South African 2019 Senior IPT - Men - Day 6

Results, and Fixtures from the South African IPT Men's A and B sections. Live streaming via https://www.facebook.com/ShoOTTSA

2019 Senior IPT - Men's A-Section


30 Aug 2019    SGW v EP (Play-Off 5-8)     1 - 4
30 Aug 2019    KZNC v WPP (Play-Off 5-8)     8 - 2
30 Aug 2019      NG v WP (Semi Final)         0 - 4
30 Aug 2019     SAU21 v SG (Semi Final)     1 - 4

Fixtures (GMT +2)

31 Aug 2019 08:30     SGW v WPP (Pos 7/8
31 Aug 2019 12:00     EP v KZNC (Pos 5/6)
31 Aug 2019 15:30     NG v SAU21 (Pos 3/4)
31 Aug 2019 19:00     WP v SG (Pos 1/2)

2019 Senior IPT - Men's B-Section


30 Aug 2019     KZNI v NC (Position 5 - 8)         4 - 3
30 Aug 2019     NW v MPU (Position 5 - 8)         7 - 1
30 Aug 2019      SACD v KZNM (Position 1 - 4)     2 - 1
30 Aug 2019     SGN v FS (Position 1 - 4)         1 - 5

Fixtures (GMT +2)

31 Aug 2019 10:15     NC v MPU (Position 7 & 8)
31 Aug 2019 13:45     KZNI v NW (Position 5&6)
31 Aug 2019 14:15     KZNM v SGN (Position 3&4)
31 Aug 2019 17:45     SACD v FS (Position 1&2)

SA Hockey Match Centre

South African 2019 Senior IPT - Women - Day 6

Results, and Fixtures from the South African IPT Women's A and B sections. Live streaming via https://www.facebook.com/ShoOTTSA

2019 Senior IPT - Women's A Section


30 Aug 2019     KZNC v SAU21     1 - 0
30 Aug 2019    EP v NW             1 - 1 (3 - 1 SO)
30 Aug 2019     SG v WP             4 - 0
30 Aug 2019      FSA v NG         1 - 3

Fixtures (GMT +2)

31 Aug 2019 09:00     SAU21 v NW (7 & 8
31 Aug 2019 10:15     KZNC v EP (5 & 6)
31 Aug 2019 13:45     WP v FSA (3 & 4
31 Aug 2019 17:15     SG v NG (1 & 2)

2019 Senior IPT - Women's B-Section


30 Aug 2019    BORDER v SGN     2 - 5
30 Aug 2019     NGD v NWB         2 - 0
30 Aug 2019     FSB v SACD         1 - 8
30 Aug 2019     MPUM v WPP         0 - 2
30 Aug 2019     SGW v KZN MYN     1 - 0

Fixtures (GMT +2)

31 Aug 2019 10:45     SACD v NGD (5 & 6)
31 Aug 2019 12:00     FSB v NWB (7 & 8)
31 Aug 2019 12:30     MPUM v KZN MYN (3 & 4)
31 Aug 2019 16:00     WPP v SGW (1 & 2)

SA Hockey Match Centre 

SA Men’s Hockey IPT – Road to the Final

Another year of IPT action is coming to an end. After starting with 8 teams in the A Section we are down to just two who will fight it out live on Shoott SA for the title of South African Hockey Champions for 2019. The final is between the Southern Gauteng and Western Province. How did both teams progress this far.

Southern Gauteng

In an almost copy and paste from the women’s tournament, the Lions have been in imperious form throughout the tournament and showed a powerful display from day one. They opened their tournament with a swashbuckling 7-4 win against Eastern Province. Goals came from all over with Richard Pautz particularly impressive. They then won the derby game against Witsies 4-2 with Thabang Modise, Richard Pautz, Chad Futcher and Gareth Heynes netting.

They then secured top spot in a superbly tight encounter with Neville Rothman’s SA U21 side winning 1-0 thanks to Chad Futcher.

In the quarter finals the Lions showed their intent to go one further than the silver medal of 2018 with a 6-1 dismantling of WP Pens. Two more goals for Richard Pautz were supported by Chad Futcher, Gareth Heynes, Nic Spooner and Reza Ronzenberg. The opening quarter blitz was something special.

In the semi-final it was another encounter with SA U21 and although it was a tough test, the Lions were always in control with Heynes, Brynn Cleak, Nic Spooner and Pautz netting in a 4-1 win.

In the final they will be playing…

Western Province

The 2019 Indoor Hockey champions have a chance to make it the double by making the final. After a tough group stage where they lost to the Northern Blues and drew to the KZN Raiders they have come into their own.

They thumped Eastern Province in the Quarter Final with a brilliant 8-1 victory with Connor Beauchamp leading the attack with four goals. Reece Arendse, Musthapha Cassiem, Charlie Bowren and Dayaan Cassiem all got goals as Province sealed a semi-final spot.

This is where they produced their performance of the tournament as they stunned the Northern Blues, who had been looking sensational. Andrew Hobson opened the scoring in the 25th minute and despite the best efforts of the Blues it remained 1-0 into the final quarter. As Guy Elliots side looked for the equalizer Denzil Dolleys side gave the perfect response by landing three counter attacking punches. Mustapha Cassiem, Dayaan Cassiem and Keenan Horne landed the punches that would ultimately seal their place in the final and knock the Blues out.

Southerns will be favoured but WP have the x-factor players that can turn a game on its head. Its going to be a humdinger!

The B Section final will be between SA Country Districts and Free State.

SA Hockey Association media release

SA Women’s Hockey IPT – Road to the Final

Another year of IPT action is coming to an end. After starting with 8 teams in the A Section we are down to just two who will fight it out live on Shoott SA for the title of South African Hockey Champions for 2019. The final is between the Northern Blues and Southern Gauteng. How did both teams progress this far.

Southern Gauteng

The Lions have been in imperious form throughout the tournament and showed a powerful display from day one. They opened their tournament with a swashbuckling 10-1 win against Eastern Province. Nompilo Thenjwayo got a hat-trick to her name while Lilian du Plessis and Sylvia van Jaarsveldt netted two. It was a much tighter affair in their second game as they came up against the defensively resolute Northern Blues but two very early strikes by Du Plessis and van Jaarsveldt proved enough for a 2-0 win.

The Southern Gauteng Lions then secured top spot with a professional 4-1 win over the SA U21. Sylvia van Jaarsveldt got another brace while the countries greatest celebrator Nomnikelo Veto got herself on the score sheet too.

In the quarter finals the Lions were too strong for the KZN Raiders running out 4-1 winners against the 2016 champions. Kristen Paton, two from Lisa Deetlefs and one from Veto made it 4-0 before the Raiders score a late consolation goal through Tegan Fourie.

It was a repeat of the 2018 final when Sandile Bosman’s team took on Western Province in the Semi-Final. That game was a tentative evenly matched affair that saw Southerns win on a shootout, but that was not repeated this year. Thenjwayo, van Jaarsveldt, Du Plessis and Deetlefs made it a comfortable 4-0 win and progress to the final secured.

Where they will be taking on…

Northern Blues

At the end of this tournament there will be one thing that is in no doubt, they will be the social media champions with a superbly constructed campaign and graphics. But of course, they would like to be champions on the field too.

They opened their tournament with a good 3-1 win over the SA U21 side. Kim Hubach, Celia Evans and the impressive Marguerite van Wyk the scorers for the Pretoria side. After the defeat to Southerns, Celia Evans was the star again with a brace while van Wyk added her own two in a 4-0 win over Eastern Province.

Having finished second the Blues faced a tough encounter with North West. It was an IPT classic that went all the way to a shootout after Nicole Walraven, in her debut for the Blues, scored first, but conceded through Elmien Marais. The Blues took the lead again through Megan Anderson, but Stephanie Baxter brought Shaun Hulley’s side level. In the shootout Phumi Mbande denied two North West strikers as her team took their place in the semi-final.

Where they took on the hosts Free State. A fast and dynamic team that had done incredibly well so far in the tournament. Celia Evans, obviously, got the first goal and the hosts were shell shocked when the Blues got a second with Maikemisetso Marokoane the scorer. Antonet Louw gave the home side hope but van Wyk extinguished that with her 51st minute goal and a place in the final for Warren Sangsters team.

The B Section final will be between Western Province Peninsula and Southern Gauteng Witsies.

SA Hockey Association media release

Murugappa Gold Cup: Railways, Air Force record narrow wins on second day

Tamil Nadu suffered a second consecutive defeat in the 2019 Murugappa Gold Cup hockey tournament after a 3-2 loss to Railways, while a last-minute goal helped Indian Air Force beat Bengaluru Hockey Association 1-0 in a rain-hit encounter on Friday.

Samarnath Soory

RSPB's forward Harsahib Singh (centre, Orange Jersey) scored the winning goal against Hockey Unit of Tamil Nadu in the 2019 Murugappa Gold Cup on Friday.   -  SPECIAL ARRANGEMENT

Contrasting weather conditions played a part in deciding two closely-contested matches at the Mayor Radhakrishnan Stadium on Friday as Railways Sports Promotion Board (RSPB) and Indian Air Force (IAF) recorded wins in the 2019 Murugappa Gold Cup hockey tournament.

Hockey Unit of Tamil Nadu, looking for its first win, took on RSPB in the first match as the afternoon sun created dry patches on the turf restricting the ball movement.

S. Mareeswaran opened the scoring for TN in the 15th minute after Joshva unlocked the RSPB defence with a mazy dribble. However, RSPB equalised in the 17th minute through a dragflick from Parmeet as P.R. Aiyappa’s field goal in the 18th minute gave the visitor a 2-1 lead.

TN found the equaliser in the 24th minute as Joshva finished off a counter attack with a tap-in at the near post. Harsahib Singh’s 33rd minute goal settled the game for Railways as TN lost steam in the fourth quarter.

The host managed to get loud cheers from the local fans, but it was only because TN goalkeeper M. Arun Prasad pulled off a series of acrobatic saves to keep out a fourth goal.

The second match between IAF and Bengaluru Hockey Association (BHA) was interrupted by heavy showers with two minutes to go in the first quarter.

Play resumed after thirty minutes following official inspection, but the sluggish pace after the restart kept the deadlock intact until the final minute of the fourth quarter.

With 50 seconds left on the clock, Sukhdev Singh nodded home from close range after latching on to a rebound from a penalty corner to snatch a 1-0 win for IAF.

In the third match, goals from Ajinkya Jadhav (8’) and Aakib Rahim (34’) put Indian Navy 2-0 ahead before Dharambir Yadav (40’) pulled one back for Central Secretariat.

With just seven seconds remaining, Govind Singh Rawat found the bottom left corner with his dragflick as Central Secretariat secured a 2-2 draw.


Group-A: Indian Air Force 1 (Sukhdev Singh 59') bt Bengaluru Hockey Association 0.  Group-B: RSPB 3 (Parmeet 17', P. R. Aiyappa 20', Harsahib Singh 33') bt Tamil Nadu 2 (S. Mareeswaran 15', Joshua 24'); Indian Navy 2 (Ajinkya Jadhav 8', Aakib Rahim 34') drew with Central Secretariat 2 (Dharmambir Yadav 40', Govind Singh Rawat 60')


Great Britain hockey teams’ Olympic ticket set for November date

By The Hockey Paper

GB women have yet to secure Tokyo ticket PICS: World Sport Pics

The final path to a ticket to Tokyo will be unveiled on September  9 when the draw for the Olympic play-offs take place in Lausanne.

With Argentina men, the defending Olympic champions, having already qualified, Great Britain women will go into the hat in Lausanne for the nervy two-legged play-off matches as they set about qualifying to defend their title in Japan.

GB has requested the second of the play-off dates, November 1-3, and are expected to be played at Lee Valley in London.

As it stands, GB women could play Italy, Chile or Russia over the weekend. Meanwhile GB men could be drawn against Malaysia, France, Ireland or South Korea.

Ireland men could also play Spain, Canada or New Zealand away from home, while the Green Army, with home advantage, might be pitted against Belgium, Korea or USA.

Fourteen men’s and women’s teams will be involved in the draw. The final rankings will be known after the Oceania qualifiers featuring Australia and New Zealand.

The list of qualified teams for the FIH Hockey Olympic qualifiers:


Host teams:
(1) Australia (2) Netherlands (3) India (4) Germany (5) Great Britain (6) Spain (7) New Zealand (8) Canada

Away teams:
(9) Malaysia (10) France (11) Ireland (12) Korea (13) Pakistan (14) Austria (15)Egypt


Host teams:
(1) Australia (2) Germany (3) Great Britain (4) Spain (5) New Zealand (6) Ireland (7) India (8) China

Away teams:
(9) Korea (10) Belgium (11) USA (12) Canada (13) Italy (14) Chile (15) Russia

The group of host teams will be reduced to seven on September 8 when either Australia or New Zealand will qualify directly, while the ranking order may change depending on the results. On form, both Hockeyroos and Kookaburras will be favourites to qualify.

The draw will be done as follows:

  • The teams ranked 1st, 2nd and 3rd will be drawn at random to play at home against one of the teams ranked 12th, 13th or 14th. For example, the team ranked 1st will play at home one of the teams ranked 12th, 13th or 14th, as determined by the draw
  • The teams ranked 4th, 5th, 6th and 7th will be drawn at random to play at home against one of the teams ranked 8th, 9th, 10th or 11th

The FIH Hockey Olympic qualifiers are scheduled for October 25-27 and November 1-3. The exact match schedule and venues will be confirmed after the draw in September.

The following teams have already qualified for the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 as winners of their respective Continental Championship: Argentina (Men and Women), South Africa (Men and Women), Belgium (Men) and Netherlands (Women). Japan (Men and Women) won their Continental Championship in 2018 and were already qualified as hosts.

As far as South Africa is concerned, it is not known at this stage whether their Olympic committee has given the men’s side the green light for Tokyo.

Twelve men’s and women’s teams will contest the Olympics from July 25 to August 7 , 2020.

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The Hockey Paper

In quest to regain lost glory, Indian hockey can take lessons from Belgium's rise

Sundeep Misra

Belgium won the silver medal at the 2016 Rio Olympic Games. Reuters/Vasily Fedosenko

It's a new culling phase in field hockey. Belgium's win at the European Championships, without a doubt, the toughest of the continental championships, has shown that they are neither going to rest on their laurels (winning the 2018 World Cup) nor slow down. It was Belgium's first win, coming at the 17th European Championships. Germany have eight titles; the Dutch have five, Spain have two and England have won once. To break into this group has taken Belgium almost 16 years of perseverance, patience and a will that almost seems frightening.

It was in August 2017 that the President of the Royal Belgian Hockey Association and a former player with 358 international appearances, Marc Coudron, told Belgium's Le Soir newspaper: "By 2024, we will be, at least once, Champions of Europe, the World Champions and Olympic Champions." It wasn't a flippant statement. Coudron was elected in 2005 and for a man who has scripted Belgium's rise through the ranks step by step, he knew exactly what he was saying. If Belgium win gold at Tokyo, Coudron wouldn't at all be unhappy that his prediction came true four years ahead of schedule.

"I said that after we lost the European final in Holland," says Coudron. "We were 2-0 up at half time but Holland won 4-2 at the end. It was more of a conviction than a prediction. I knew and I still know that the Red Lions are very good. I also have enormous confidence in them, in the staff members, in their quality and their involvement. So yes, I was pretty sure that the Red Lions will finally get the gold medals in big tournaments. Now we already have the World Cup and the European Championships, we go now for the treble with the Olympic Games."

Belgium's rise has been phenomenal. They had never entered the last four of a World Championship. In fact, they had only played five of the 13 World Cups. In the 14th edition, they were World Champions.

In the Olympic Games, their record is slightly better. They won a bronze in 1920, finished fourth in '28 and ended up fifth in '48. After Montreal 1976, they failed to qualify for seven consecutive Olympic Games, resurfacing in 2008 where they finished ninth. In London, the Red Lions showed glimpses of a team that was restructuring itself by finishing fifth. And then in Rio, they won a silver.

The turning point was 2007 and it came from the stick of the man who would be captain in 2016 when Belgium would pick up an Olympic silver. Jerome Truyens scored the most important goal in Belgian hockey at Manchester during the European Championships. He deflected in a Maxime Luycx centre, with seven seconds remaining on the clock against Germany. It was Belgium's first victory over Germany in an official tournament. Truyen's goal ended Belgium's 32-year absence from the Olympic Games.

Unknown to many in the hockey world, who probably thought this was a one-off win, it paved the way for Belgium to wake up and build the structure that we see today. Truyens in an interview to Lalbire.be after Belgium won the European Championships said, "This stage (Euro 2007) was a turning point. I announced to the team that I would score such a goal. It was a very special moment. Adam Commens had just changed the way we see a match, he wanted us to attack a lot more, and our presence at the London Olympics four years later confirmed our ascent, and at the Rio Games, Shane McLeod revived the dynamic because we were in a hollow."

Can India draw insights or utilise the same blueprint from Belgium's extraordinary run to become World Champions, Olympic silver medallists and European Champions? Out of the top four since 1980 Moscow Olympic Games and the 1975 World Cup, both which India won, the road map to the top has been shown by a nation of 1.14 crore people. But might has little do with volume or size of the populace. What matters is the structuring, the vision behind Belgium’s rise as a hockey power. India aspires to be a power, once again. But without significant steps or a vision plan that creates a long-term strategy.

When Graham Reid came back after winning the Olympic Test event in Tokyo, he said, "As a coach, I'm always looking to improve the team and finding areas which need improvement, so we will be spending the next couple of weeks analysing all the footage we have from the Test event to work out what are the areas. But, the feeling at the moment is that we are working on our goal shooting, at defensive work, one-on-one tackling. I can see it is getting better. And corners always remain a focus for us."

India need to go beyond the immediate. The present group would always look into what is required to get results at the tournaments but those working behind the scenes need to focus on the decade ahead. India have lost enough time since the 2000 Sydney Olympics —where they did well — and the 2001 Junior World Cup which India won. It has often been seen that when things start coming together as a team and results start flowing, there is a sudden dip in form and it's back to the drawing board. Just before the World Cup, the team did well at the 2018 Champions Trophy reaching the final but errors at the Asian Games semi-final and then some contentious selections for the World Cup, and the chance was blown away. Too much hard work is frittered away by decisions that go beyond hockey.

V Bhaskaran, former Indian coach and captain of the side that last won an Olympic gold says, "It's not surprising that Belgium is the best team in the world at the moment. And the way they are going, they would consolidate and be in the top two for the next decade. The simple answer is to strengthen your domestic hockey for your team do well. Belgium has a fantastic league and they will keep producing players. I think even playing against their second team could be a big challenge."

Coudron credits the clubs, saying: "The clubs in Belgium are the basis of the success of Belgium hockey. It's a long tradition of cooperation between the clubs and the federation. The clubs create the best environment to help the development of those young boys and girls by providing good trainers and coaches. At a certain level, the best ones come into our regional selections at the age of 13 and 14 years old. And then this same pyramid goes on to the top of the Red Lions and the Red Panthers. The national players also play in the club competitions, improving the quality of the championships."

There was a time in the early eighties and even in the late 90s that Indian hockey stars played in the domestic league for their employers. Dhanraj Pillay played for Indian Airlines along with Ashish Ballal and AB Subbiah, who were India's two top goalkeepers. In fact, watching Airlines was like literally seeing the Indian national team and fans came in droves to the Nehru Cup semis and final to watch stars from Punjab Police, Railways and Air India.

"Do you realise that a decade or two decades ago, an Indian team would take time out to play teams like Punjab Police, Indian Airlines and the rest," says Bhaskaran. "Thousands came for those matches. The fans also got a close look at the players. They rooted for the club against the national team. That was the fun of hockey."

Now the stands are empty. Indian hockey stars live in the Sports Authority of India campus like some secret training camp and the fans who drive this sport watch them only on TV. Those lakhs of fans across Jalandhar, New Delhi, Lucknow, Kolkata, Bhopal, Mumbai, Bangalore haven't seen any of the present players in the domestic tournaments and one doesn't have a clue whether the Hockey India League will make a comeback or not.

Belgium's players celebrate with the world cup trophy after defeating Netherlands in the field hockey final match between Belgium and Netherlands at the 2018 Hockey World Cup in Bhubaneswar on December 16, 2018. - The full time of play ended goalless and Belgium won The Netherlands in the shootout penalty by 3-2. (Photo by Dibyangshu SARKAR / AFP)

It was hard for Coudron to take over the administration of the Belgian hockey association when nothing seemed to be going right. "My first goal was to 'close the gap' with the top 10 of the world, in other words, to qualify for each World Cup and Olympic Games. We missed the 2006 and 2010 World Cups, but we did qualify for the 2008 Olympics. We also wanted to improve our level, not by developing one team for a specific target, but to develop a long-term strategy for hockey, for men and women's team across different age groups. The number of players in clubs has increased from 16,000 in 2005 to 50,000 this year, with more than 40 percent of that number being girls and women (that figure was less than 20 percent in 2005!)"

Belgian captain, Thomas Briels, knows what it takes to reach the top. "I think a lot of factors played a role in the climb of Belgian hockey," says Briels. "We had a lot of different coaches and the federation worked more professionally with coaches by giving them full-time employment. Shane McLeod was very important for our group. He made a team of stars into a star team. Getting all individuals working for each other as a unit, a family."

Jean Francois Jourdain, Sports Editor of the Lalibre.be has been following the Belgium team for almost two decades. He does admit that this is a golden generation of Belgium hockey players but also says that they are mentally indestructible.

"We can't deny that we have a golden generation with exceptional talents such as Vincent Vanasch, Arthur Van Doren, John-John Dohmen, Tom Boon and now Alexander Hendrickx," says Jourdain. "They learned from the past. They have a perfect balance between old and new, nobody too old nor too new. They are mentally indestructible. Remember how they concentrated back in Bhubaneswar when De Sloover was denied the winning shoot-out? If I can quote Manu Stockbroekx: 'We are all ready to give our life for this team.'"

Can India learn from the success of the Belgians? The man credited for the recent spate of success, coach Shane McLeod says, "I am not sure if we want India to learn anything or we will be in trouble next time we play them! India is a team that is improving. They have played very well against the Red Lions in the times that we have played. Where they sometimes have trouble is that the expectation for them to win tournaments is so high that it puts a lot of pressure on players and staff."

McLeod believes that India has the ability to play at high speed and most teams cannot match that. "Where they can still improve is to play a structure that allows them to play with the Indian attacking flair as well as being strong in their defensive structures."

India walking away from the first season of the FIH Pro-League raised eyebrows since Narinder Batra is the FIH President. There has been a mixed response with Japanese coach Siegfried Aikman saying it was a mistake on India's part to pull out of the tournament. Even Coudron agrees.

"I've spoken to many players and they consider the Pro-League as a big success, as they always play in front of full (or nearly full) and loud stands. This first experience was, from my part, a positive one. I'm sure it will become a big success, certainly with the entrance of India from 2020. And to be honest, I still do not understand why India withdrew from the first edition. It was an error, and I'm happy India is back."

With the air getting increasingly rarefied as more and more national teams try and break into the top four and six, India need to harness their potential by reaching a podium. It's a requirement at the moment. Coudron believes India may learn from Belgium like Belgium learnt from India.

"It's essential to keep improving, to analyse and learn new techniques and tactics being played by other countries. I'm not sure at all India has gone wrong. On the contrary, India is better and better for a few years now and is a real competitor at the top. And with the incredible fans in India, India will get other trophies in the future."

McLeod, in fact, makes a bold prediction for India. "Our team and coaching staff certainly do not underestimate India. I think they are not far away from a big result. If we play India in the final of the Olympics next year, it would not surprise me."


HI names 33 probables for senior men’s national coaching camp

Following the team’s recent victory in the Olympic Test event final against New Zealand, led by defender Harmanpreet Singh, the campers will focus on consistency. (File Picture)   -  pti

Hockey India on Saturday named a 33-member probables list for the senior men’s national coaching camp, beginning September 2 at the Sports Authority of India, Bengaluru, to prepare for the Belgium Tour and the Olympic qualifiers.

The three-week camp will be conducted by coach Graham Reid.

Following the team’s recent victory in the Olympic Test event final against New Zealand, led by defender Harmanpreet Singh, the campers will focus on consistency.

“We have built some good momentum over the last few months. The athletes will come to this camp keen and ready to improve on all aspects of team performance. Creating more quality opportunities, improving our defensive capabilities and working together to make each other better are the key aspects of this camp,” Reid said.

He added that the tour of Belgium in September will be a great platform for the team to prepare for the FIH Olympic qualifiers.

“At the end of September, we will travel to Europe to play and train with some of the best competition in the world. We need to be prepared for that, which will provide a great platform for the qualifiers in October/November.”

List of Campers:

Goalkeepers: P R Sreejesh, Suraj Karkera and Krishan Bahadur Pathak.

Defenders: Harmanpreet Singh, Birendra Lakra, Surender Kumar, Amit Rohidas, Varun Kumar, Rupinder Pal Singh, Gurinder Singh, Kothajit Singh Khadangbam, Nilam Sanjeep Xess, Jarmanpreet Singh and Dispan Tirkey.

Midfielders: Manpreet Singh, Sumit, Nilakanta Sharma, Jaskaran Singh, Hardik Singh, Vivek Sagar Prasad, Ashish Kumar Topno, Sayyad Niyaz Rahim and Raj Kumar Pal.

Forwards: Mandeep Singh, Akashdeep Singh, Shilanand Lakra, Gursahibjit Singh, Simranjeet Singh, SV Sunil, Gurjant Singh, Ramandeep Singh, Shamsher Singh and Lalit Kumar Upadhyay.


PR Sreejesh confident of India securing spot in 2020 Tokyo Olympics

PR Sreejesh

The Indian men's hockey team goalkeeper PR Sreejesh, who was rested for the Olympic Test Event, believes that the Indian team has the right balance for the upcoming FIH Olympic Qualifiers.

The Indian men's and women's hockey teams have won their respective FIH Series Finals in June before triumphing in the Olympic Test Events in August.

"It's been amazing to see the way our team has performed in the last couple of months. Our victory in the Olympic Test Event showed that we have an excellent bench strength since most of the senior players were rested for the tournament.

The team has the right balance at the moment and we are confident of booking a place in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics," said Sreejesh.

The goalkeeper added that the world number five Indian team is looking forward to the tour of Belgium in September as the side will be able to fine-tune a few more aspects of their game ahead of the FIH Olympic Qualifiers in November.

"The tour of Belgium is a massive series for us. They are the world number two side in the world and if we perform well against them then it will be a big confidence boost for us ahead of the FIH Olympic Qualifiers. Hopefully, we will win the series at their home turf," said Seejesh.

The Indian women's hockey team's goalkeeper Savita expressed that the members of the side are communicating well on the field.

"We were extremely pleased with our performance at the Olympic Test Event. Being unbeaten was a very heartening performance and especially playing toe-to-toe with World No. 2 Australia gave us a lot of confidence. The players are communicating very well on the field and therefore we have been able to win tournaments," Savita said.

Savita added that the Indian side is excited to take on England in September ahead of the FIH Olympic Qualifiers in November.

"We have gained momentum at the right time with victories in the FIH Women's Series Finals Hiroshima 2019 and Olympic Test Event. However, we cannot get carried away with the results and need to continue to focus on improving our game.

Playing the World No. 4 England side will be a tough challenge in a five-match series, but if we continue to communicate well on the field then we will surely produce great results," Savita said.

Daily News & Analysis

Sreejesh, Savita confident ahead of India hockey European tour

By Naveen Peter

Savita will be hoping to make the most the tour ahead of their Olympic qualification

With the FIH draw for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic qualifiers scheduled for September 9, the Indian hockey teams are primed for their next big challenge.

In order to ensure they are well conditioned for their tilt towards Tokyo, the Indian men's team will be travelling to Belgium for a three-match Test series that will see them take on the world champions between September 23 and October 4.

Having won the Olympic Test Event in Tokyo recently, Indian goalkeeper PR Sreejesh believes they are firmly on track for next year's Olympics:

"It's been amazing to see the way our team has performed in the last couple of months," enthused the stopper.

"Our victory in the Olympic Test Event showed that we have an excellent bench strength since most of the senior players were rested for the tournament. The team has the right balance at the moment and we are confident of booking a place in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics," Sreejesh said in a media release by Hockey India.

The goalie recognises that their upcoming opponents will provide the toughest of tests.

"The tour of Belgium is a massive series for us," said the 31-year-old.

"They are the No. 2 side in the world and if we perform well against them then it will be a big confidence boost for us ahead of the FIH Olympic Qualifiers."

The British test

While the men travel to Antwerp, the Indian women’s team will head to England to face Great Britain in a five-match Test series ahead of the Olympic qualification.

Speaking about the upcoming tour, the women’s team ’keeper Savita said it would be a great opportunity for the side to test themselves against the reigning Olympic champions.

"Playing the World No. 4 England side will be a tough challenge in a five-match series, but if we continue to communicate well on the field then we will surely produce great results," said Savita

Results have been going India's way of late but Savita believes that, although they maybe peaking at the right time, there is no room for complacency.

"We have gained momentum at the right time with victories in the FIH Women's Series Finals Hiroshima 2019 and the Olympic Test Event," she said.

"However, we cannot get carried away with the results and need to continue to focus on improving our game."

The Olympic Channel

Msian hockey team face hurdle in Olympic Qualifiers

By Jugjet Singh

Roelant Oltmans’ squad may will face either Germany, Britain, Spain or New Zealand in the final round of the Olympic Qualifiers. -NSTP/Eizairi Shamsudin.

BASED on the provisional list of teams for the final round of the Olympic Qualifiers, Malaysia are expected to face a tough task in making it to Tokyo next year.

The World No 12 will play either former world champions Germany, Britain, Spain or New Zealand depending on the luck of the draw.

Being a lower-ranked team, Malaysia will have to play away from home in the qualifiers in October.

But there might be slight changes to the list depending on the outcome of next month’s Oceania Cup between Australia and New Zealand.

The FIH said: “The draw to determine the matches of the Olympic qualifiers will be held on Sept 9 in Lausanne, Switzerland.”

The top eight teams on the list are Australia, Netherlands, India, Germany, Britain, Spain, New Zealand and Canada.

Malaysia, France, Ireland, South Korea, Pakistan, Austria and Egypt are the bottom-ranked teams.

“We knew from the start that it will not be easy. We will have to beat one of the top 10 teams in the world to play in Tokyo.

“And to make sure, we have to win the first leg convincingly and not wait for the next 60 minutes to make a move,” said Malaysian Hockey Confederation (MHC) president Datuk Seri Subahan Kamal yesterday.

Subahan believes the national team are prepared for the challenge. The team were sent to Europe and Japan for friendly matches recently.

Their best result was beating World No 7 Germany 4-2.

As for the women’s team, they lost a direct play-off spot by eight points to Russia and will have to wait for South Africa to announce whether they will go to Tokyo or withdraw.

The South African women’s team may not go due to the country’s strict guidelines for the Olympic Games.

New Straits Times

Midlands take on Bay of Plenty-Tauranga ahead of national tournament

By Adyn Ogle

Denym Clarke is looking forward to representing Midlands on his home turf. Photo / Kim Wihare Pics

Denym Clarke has found his way back to top-level hockey and is pumped about representing Midlands on his home turf.

The 22-year-old is part of the Midlands men's team who will compete in the Ford National Hockey League, starting September 14, at the Tauranga Hockey Centre. It is the concrete walls at that venue that have taken a beating during Clarke's practice sessions.

After treading the typical pathway to top representative hockey, including age group Midlands teams, Clarke was not in the Midlands set up last year.

"I was out of shape the last year, but then I trained all though the summer. I spent a lot of time focusing on my basics – trapping every ball that comes to you and passing it as soon as you get it. I was hitting those walls at the Tauranga turf," Clarke says.

Both the men's and women's Midlands teams will play against Bay of Plenty-Tauranga combined sides tomorrow, as the latter prepare for the Ford National Association Tournaments the same week as the NHL tournaments. The Midlands women's team includes a host of current Black Sticks along with former national rep Gemma McCaw.

Clarke says the regime of Midlands coach Mark Borgers has been influential in helping him.

"It is about proving to myself that I can play at that higher level and one thing that has helped is the coach Mark Borgers. He has brought a new dynamic and we have created a pretty good culture. We have a good mix of those older heads and some young fresh faces."

Clarke is a defender for the Midlands team and says he enjoys coming forward from the back.

"It is naturally where I have played during the years and my biggest strength is my distribution. I enjoy it, when you are young you never want to play defence, but as you get older you realise it is pretty important."

Clarke also expects international guest players, Dutchmen Gaetan van Vloten and Frithjof de Jong to add some X-factor to the squad.

"We have been working on different concepts and trying new things. Playing the Bay is a good opportunity for us to try new stuff and it is more or less whether we are doing the right things. We can trust each other to know if I go forward someone will cover me. We are confident going forward, and we are feeling pretty good within ourselves.

"It is pretty cool playing in Tauranga. We were talking about whether [being at home] it is more pressure or more comfortable. For me it is more comfortable, I have played most of my hockey there so it is pretty awesome."

This weekend will also include a northern under-13 tri series as part of the Midlands-run Orange event.

Tauranga Hockey Association general manager Clinton Butler is excited about a busy time ahead at the centre, which also includes next month's Aims Games fixtures.

"Midlands have been running these Orange events and it is a good hit out for the teams ahead of the NHL and association tournaments. It is also a good taster for the community to what is to come."

The teams

Midlands men: Reuben Andrews, Craig Armstrong, Calum Grassick, Chad Whitehead, Denym Clarke, Garrick Du Toit, Zac Woods, Matt Rees-Gibbs, Tim Neild, Gaetan van Vloten, Ben Tanner, Glenn Eyers, Ricky Hayward, Soo Choon, Zach Litchfield, Daniel Scanlon, Frithjof de Jong, Maks Wyndham-Smith.

Midlands women: Natasha Brill, Melissa Caird, Samantha Charlton, Tarryn Davey, Frances Davies, Julia Ebert, Shiloh Gloyn, Alia Jaques, Rose Keddell, Alexandra Lukin, Gemma McCaw, Agui Moroni, Georgia Morton, Imogen Neil, Kendra Peart-Anderson, Amy Robinson, Sally Rutherford, Kim Tanner, Sharnae Taylor.

The New Zealand Herald

No. 2 Maryland field hockey opens season with 5-1 win over Richmond

David Suggs

Forwards Bibi Donraadt and Jen Bleakney embrace midfielder Kyler Greenwalt after her goal during Maryland field hockey’s 5-1 win over Richmond on Aug. 30, 2019. (Gabby Baniqued/The Diamondback)

As the dust settled on Maryland field hockey’s 5-1 win over Richmond on Friday, coach Missy Meharg pulled captains Bodil Keus and Jen Bleakney to the side.

Coming into the Terps’ season opener against the Spiders, the team had emphasized its hope for an opening day clean sheet. However, those hopes were dashed within five minutes, as Richmond’s Addie Nash capitalized off sloppy play from Maryland’s backline to cancel out defender Riley Donnelly’s opener.

And while No. 2 Maryland impressed throughout the remainder of the game, Meharg felt the Terps had some room for improvement, especially with matchups against ACC powerhouses Duke and Boston College on the horizon after a contest with New Hampshire on Sunday.

“Do I think that’s a team that we should not give up a shot to? I do,” Meharg said. “That’s what we’re going to work on as we prepare for Sunday.”

Heading into the game, the Terps were without Keus, who started the game from the bench after suffering an injury on Thursday. However, Donnelly filled in admirably for the reigning Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year, taking up Keus’ position on the point during penalty corners.

Two minutes into the game, the sophomore rifled a shot into the cage from Bibi Donraadt’s corner delivery, putting the Terps up 1-0.

“It’s definitely a big confidence boost for me,” Donnelly said.

The Terps kept the pressure on, forcing a series of impressive saves from Richmond goalkeeper Frankie Conklin. However, Richmond found its way back into the game, upping the pressure on Maryland’s backline before eventually equalizing through Nash’s effort.

“We really focused on the two minutes after … their goal,” midfielder Kyler Greenwalt said. “[We were] focusing on how we could get another point on the board.”

And the Terps responded quickly, with Syracuse transfer Jen Bleakney opening her Maryland scoring account with a long-range effort just inside the shooting circle.

Meharg’s squad looked much more composed in the second quarter, with midfielder Emma Deberdine’s pace and skillful stickhandling helping the Terps stretch Richmond’s midfield and defense. Deberdine’s rapid development over the course of preseason has impressed her teammates, and her performance Friday served as yet another reminder of the freshman’s ability.

“Emma Deberdine was a spark up front,” Meharg said, “in the way that she can get past defenders and get on the baseline.”

Maryland’s attack continued to overwhelm the Richmond defense, with the Terrapins outshooting the Spiders 7-4 in the second period. Keus fired a shot past Conklin from just inside the circle, pushing Maryland’s lead to 3-1.

Kyler Greenwalt was threatening the Richmond backline all game, and marked her return from last season’s torn ACL with a clever far post finish to push the Terps’ lead to 4-1.

“I was playing left mid, so I just thought … ‘I gotta get in the circle for support,’” Greenwalt said. “It was just like memory, I mean I just swung my stick and it happened to go in.”

Maryland was unable to show off its attacking talent in the third quarter, mustering one shot in the period. However, the Terps’ defense continued to exhibit its solidity, holding Richmond to three shots.

With a 4-1 lead heading into the fourth quarter, Meharg’s squad was in command. And the game was officially sealed when Greenwalt put away a rebound from a Madison Maguire backhand.

While the Terps were unable to keep a clean sheet on Friday, the team enters into Sunday’s matchup against New Hampshire aware of its mistakes and looking to correct them.

“What we can take from this game — in the second quarter — is to possess the ball,” Meharg said. “And to not be too impatient … so there’s a lot to take from the game.”

The Diamondback

No. 9 Penn State field hockey falls to No. 3 Duke in season opener

Ryan DePhillips

Anna Simon (17) defends Jane Donio-Enscoe (16) during the Penn State-Princeton field hockey game at the Penn State Field Hockey Complex on Tuesday, September 4, 2018. The no. 6 Tigers defeated the no. 5 Nittany Lions 2-1 in double overtime. Jonah Rosen

Penn State took an early lead over No. 3 Duke, but that score would not hold up, resulting in an opening-day loss for the Nittany Lions.

Coach Char Morett-Curtiss’ No. 9 young squad fell 4-1 to the more experienced No. 3 Duke Blue Devils on the road.

The quick start was fueled by sophomore midfielder Anna Simon.

Simon carried the ball up field around the cage. In a series of fortunate events for Penn State, a deflection in front of the cage allowed Simon to find junior forward Alexis Horst, who gave the squad a 1-0 advantage.

The Nittany Lions' freshman goalkeeper Brie Barraco made her debut with seven saves as the offense struggled to get things going with three total shots on goal.

In the first period, Barraco led the defense and shut down the Blue Devils.

On both sides of the field, the teams were quiet on offense. However, the pace of the game started to threateningly pick up in the second period.

Since the opposition had plenty of depth on offense, they forced the Nittany Lions to scramble later on. According to Morett-Curtiss, the preseason emphasis on possessing the ball was not executed as well as she would have liked.

“We showed good signs today and we played together throughout the game but have to do better taking care of the ball,” Morett-Curtiss told GoPSUSports. “Turnovers and lack of possession really got us in trouble today and against a good team like Duke, it will be costly.”

By halftime, Duke outshot Penn State 8-1. Barraco was faced with a stiff test as the Blue Devils took their first and final lead with two additional goals.

However, Morett-Curtiss’ team would not go down quietly.

Baracco kept the Blue Devils’ offense at bay as the Nittany Lions still struggled to get things going on offense, until the last period.

Led by junior midfielder Madison Moreno and Simon, the offense had several threatening scoring opportunities but failed to convert. In the change of possession, Baracco could not save two talented backhand shots from the Blue Devils.

Despite the outcome, Morett-Curtiss was pleased in the direction the squad is going, dating back before the season began.

"Our players gave 100 percent for the entire 60 minutes,” Morett-Curtis said. “That is definitely something we will build on as the season progresses.”

Daily Collegian

Field hockey drops season opener after double overtime, shootout

By Nandini Naidu

Senior Kelsey Bing (above) accumulated a career-high 14 saves in Stanford's season opening loss to Northwestern on Friday. (JOHN P. LOZANO/isiphotos.com)

No. 23 Stanford Field Hockey (0-1) opened the season at home Friday morning for the first time since 2016 with a faceoff with No.15 Northwestern (1-0). Both the Cardinal and the Wildcats put in strong performances, but Northwestern eked out the win 4-3 in a shootout.

The match served as the debut for freshmen midfielder Megan Frost and defender Rose Winter. Three fouls were called early against Stanford in quick succession, and Northwestern made several substitutions to find the right combination of players.

At the 5:40 mark, junior attacker Corinne Zanolli scored the first goal of the game for the Cardinal, and the season, on an assist from Frost and redshirt sophomore defender Sarah Johnson. In an effort to respond, a shot was fired off by Northwestern’s forward Bente Baekers but flew wide. Another Wildcat shot effort by midfielder Sabrina Solomen was blocked by Stanford goalkeeper senior Kelsey Bing. Stanford held the lead to end the first half on top.

The second half began with energy, and Zanolli capitalized with two shot attempts, but both went high. At the twenty minute mark, Zanolli tried her luck again, but the Northwestern goalkeeper denied the efforts. The Cardinal offense kept Northwestern on its toes as the entire Wildcats defense put in strong defensive play to limit further Stanford advances. Northwestern’s defense turned into offense, and Baekers carried out a solo run and with a shot from the left side tied up the score 1-1 in the 27th minute.

With no change in score, the game was sent to extra minutes. The first overtime period saw even more action with both teams making advances to break the deadlock. After a Wildcat penalty corner and a shot launched off by Northwestern’s forward/midfielder Lakin Barry, possession switched in Stanford’s favor and the Cardinal put another goal on the board. Zanolli scored her second of the game and surpassed the 100-point mark for her career.

In her debut, Frost got a good look at a goal in the 39th minute but the shot was blocked. At the 40th minute possession returned to Northwestern and the Wildcats capitalized. In rapid succession a shot attempt, penalty corner and score by Maren Seidel knotted the game at 2-2. On a run, Northwestern added a goal by Baekers to take a 3-2 lead at the end of the first overtime period.

Northwestern flipped the script on the first half so that it was now Stanford’s keeper Kelsey Bing working to deny Northwestern attempts. Bing finished with a career high 14 saves in the cage. Against the run of play, Stanford tied the score at 3-3 with an impressive shot from Winter, marking her first career score. Neither team could break through before the final whistle of overtime, sending the game to a shootout.

Stanford made the first attempt, but missed three of the next four. Northwestern squandered the first, but buried the next three in succession to claim the shootout 3-2, and open the season with a win.

Stanford will next play No. 4 Connecticut on Sunday at 11 a.m. PT.

Stanford Daily

Northwestern readies for the season with more questions than answers

Greg Svirnovskiy

Kirsten Mansfield surveys the field. The senior will need to have a strong season for NU to qualify for the NCAA Tournament. Daily file photo by Katie Pach

Before last season, recent history had been kind to Northwestern, a program that won at least 13 games every season since 2012, reliably finishing at least .500 in Big Ten play during that stretch. Great coaching, elite offensive players, and a solid point differential helped put NU in elite territory, where long trips through Big Ten Tournaments and NCAA Tournament appearances seemed a formality.

And then, as inexplicably as it was abrupt, the success stopped. Last year, returning much of the same team that won 15 games the year before, including leading scorer Puck Pentenga and assist machine Kirsten Mansfield, the Cats finished below .500 for the first time since 2008, winning just three of eight conference matchups in the process.

Why the losing spell? On the surface, that answer is simple, yet confounding. NU stopped scoring goals. Having found the back of the net at least 60 times from 2014 to 2017, including a 2016 season which saw them hit paydirt a whopping 75 times, the Cats scored just 42 goals last year.

In both 2017 and 2018, NU was led by Pentenga, who found the back of the net 11 times in each season. In both years, Mansfield’s passing prowess yielded 13 assists, pacing the team and facilitating the offense. In both years, the team carried playmakers like Eva Van Agt and Mackenzie Keegan.

This year, it’ll get even tougher. With Pentenga graduated, the Cats will be counting on different players for offense this season. Expect big seasons from senior back Mansfield, and senior midfielders Saar de Breij and Lily Gandhi, the trio named to the Big Ten preseason Honors list. To get where NU wants to be, those three will need to be at their best.

The Daily Northwestern

T&T's Roach is University assist hockey coach

T&T's Tamia Roach, a for­mer stand­out play­er with the Lock Haven Uni­ver­si­ty field hock­ey team and a 2019 LHU grad­u­ate has been added to the school's coach­ing staff as an as­sis­tant coach.

Roach grad­u­at­ed from LHU in May with a de­gree in ear­ly child­hood ed­u­ca­tion af­ter a tremen­dous play­ing ca­reer at The Haven.

The four-year starter played in 70 games amass­ing 31 ca­reer goals, 17 ca­reer as­sists, and 79 ca­reer points and capped her ca­reer with a bril­liant se­nior sea­son last year.

Fol­low­ing the 2018 cam­paign, she has named an All-At­lantic 10 Con­fer­ence (A-10) se­lec­tion, earn­ing First Team ho­n­ours. Roach, a pre­sea­son all-con­fer­ence pick, earned First Team ho­n­ours af­ter reg­is­ter­ing a 20-point sea­son. She had eight goals and four as­sists in 16 games.

Roach al­so earned 2018 Na­tion­al Field Hock­ey Coach­es' As­so­ci­a­tion (NFH­CA) All-Re­gion ho­n­ours af­ter earn­ing a spot on the All-Mideast Sec­ond Team.

In all, the stand­out schol­ar-ath­lete was a two-time All-Con­fer­ence se­lec­tion, and fol­low­ing her rook­ie sea­son in 2016, she was al­so named to the A-10's All-Rook­ie Team.

Dur­ing all four years of her play­ing ca­reer, Roach earned NFH­CA All-Aca­d­e­m­ic Na­tion­al ho­n­ours. She was al­so a two-sea­son cap­tain and twice, was vot­ed LHU's Team MVP.

She al­so had the high­est GPA among all LHU women se­nior stu­dent-ath­letes dur­ing the 2018-19 aca­d­e­m­ic year.

In more Lock Haven Uni­ver­si­ty field hock­ey news, na­tion­al play­er and ris­ing-ju­nior stand­out, Arou­ca-born Kay­la Brath­waite was named to the pre­sea­son All-Con­fer­ence Team. Both the pre­sea­son poll and pre­sea­son all-con­fer­ence team were vot­ed on by the league's head coach­es.

Brath­waite, a speedy-mid­field­er, is a big-time dif­fer­ence-mak­er for the Bald Ea­gles.

Last sea­son, she scored two goals and dished out eight as­sists (12 pts.), while pro­vid­ing tremen­dous end-to-end play for head coach Pat Rudy's side.

Fol­low­ing her rook­ie sea­son in 2017, Brath­waite earned a spot on both the A-10 Sec­ond Team and the All-Rook­ie Team. As a true-fresh­man back in 2017, she start­ed all 18 games and record­ed one goal, five as­sists and a de­fen­sive save.

Lock Haven's 2019 A-10 open­er is set for Sun­day, Sep­tem­ber 22 when the Bald Ea­gles play host to David­son. Last sea­son, LHU beat David­son 2-0.

The Trinidad Guardian

Obituary: John W Neill

England Hockey was saddened to hear of the passing of former Great Britain captain John W Neill (15 May 1934 - 21 August 2019).

John received a total of 89 caps (56 GB, 33 England) between 1958-1968 and represented GB at the 1960, 1964 and 1968 Olympic Games, captaining the side at the latter. At the time he retired, he held the record for the most number of games played for GB.

He was also a member of Bowdon HC for many years and also represented The North on ten occasions and Cheshire 43 times.

As well as hockey, John was also an avid member of the tennis club at Bowdon and won numerous titles at the club. He also worked locally as a Director of the family brewery Greenall Whitley & Co. Ltd in Warrington.

England Hockey Board Media release

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