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News for 30 January 2020

All the news for Thursday 230 January 2020

2020 FIH Pro League (Men) - This weekend

31 Jan 2020 11:00 (GMT +1)     ESP v NED (RR)     Estadio Betero, Valencia
1 Feb 2020 13:00 (GMT +1)      ESP v NED (RR)     Estadio Betero, Valencia
1 Feb 2020 16:00 (GMT +11)      AUS v GBR (RR)     Sydney Olympic Park, Sydney
1 Feb 2020 19:30 (GMT +13)      NZL v BEL (RR)     North Harbour Hockey Stadium, Auckland

2 Feb 2020 15:00 (GMT +11)      AUS v GBR (RR)     Sydney Olympic Park, Sydney
2 Feb 2020 17:30 (GMT +13)      NZL v BEL (RR)     North Harbour Hockey Stadium, Auckland

Live streaming and full game replay on https://fih.live (May be Geo blocked if there is TV coverage)

FIH Match Centre

2020 Test matches IRL v GER (W)
Stellenbosch (RSA)

25 Jan 2020     IRL v GER     0 - 4
29 Jan 2020     GER v IRL     4 - 1

FIH Match Centre

Women’s hockey tour of South Africa ends with loss to Germany

Dancer’s side go down 4-1 to suffer second defeat of the week at hands of world number four side

Stephen Findlater

Ireland’s Ellen Curran: she got a goal back with seven minutes to go. Photograph: Laszlo Geczo/Inpho

Ireland’s tour to Stellenbosch in South Africa ended with a 4-1 loss to world number four side Germany, their second defeat of the week at the hands of the world number four side.

On a day when Ayeisha McFerran earned her 100th Irish cap, Sean Dancer tried an aggressive press for much of the tie, but the razor-sharp Germans were able to cut through to add to their 4-0 win last Saturday.

They hit the front in the 14th minute when Nike Lorenz dragged in a low corner flick, and Lena Micheel thundered in a reverse-stick shot after a long ball bounced over the Irish defence.

The third owed everything to Pauline Heinz’s tenacity as she powered her way through from the left wing, and laid off a pass for a simple Ann Schröder tip-in.

Ellen Curran got one back with seven minutes to go, gambling at the back post to slide on to Katie Mullan’s fantastic ball from the right after a top move involving Anna O’Flanagan and Emily Beatty,

Germany, though, finished off the tie with a fourth goal from Kira Horn to close out the result.

It gives Dancer plenty of food for thought after three wins over South Africa and one against the Dutch under-21s as the Olympic Games preparations continue to ramp up.

Ireland 1
Germany 4

IRELAND: A McFerran, R Upton, S Barr, N Evans, K Mullan, S McCay, C Watkins, L Colvin, H Matthews, S Hawkshaw, A O’Flanagan. Subs: L Tice, E Beatty, G Pinder, S Torrans, D Duke, E Curran, E Buckley.

The Irish Times

2020 Test matches ARG v CAN (M)
Santiago (CHI)

26 Jan 2020      ARG v CAN     4 - 2
29 Jan 2020     ARG v CAN     4 - 1

FIH Match Centre

Team Canada’s Road to Tokyo starts in Santiago

Successful test series in Chile kick-starts 2020 Olympic campaign for Men’s National Team

Photo: Oscar Muñoz Badilla

Every athlete wants to win every game. But right now, it’s the process that counts for the Canadian Men’s National Team.

With their sights set on peaking in July for the Olympic Games, every piece of the Men’s National Team schedule is meticulously planned. Today, they wrapped up their first competition element of the season; a 10-day training and test-series tour in Santiago, Chile.

Canada is currently ranked 10th in the men’s world rankings. The tour roster featured 20 players and was primarily centred around warm-weather training. The event included two capped test-matches against the host Chile (28) and the reigning Olympic champions, Argentina (4).

Team Canada qualified for the Olympic Games in October in dramatic fashion against Ireland. Since then, they haven’t faced any international competition. According to head coach, Paul Bundy, after a break, he expects some rustiness, especially on set plays. Overall, he said he was pleased how the team improved throughout the matches.

“The emphasis of this tour is not necessarily winning every game,” Bundy said. “It’s about making sure a broader group of guys get into the games and it’s about working on our technical and tactical skills.”

With a few injured players rehabbing at home, the roster opened up for some younger players to get their chance to show on the international stage. UBC’s Sam Cabral and Brendan Guraliuk made their first tour appearances and goalkeeper David Vandenbossche played his first international senior cap to close out the tour. Pleasantly surprised, Bundy said the young athletes fit into the senior game well.

“I thought they managed the pace of the game well,” he said. “Of course, they still have lots to learn and pick up on but overall I was really pleased. They are fit and strong and only getting better and better.”

Brendan Guraliuk (left), Sam Cabral and David Vandenbossche (right), compete on their first senior international tour with Team Canada. Photo: Oscar Muñoz Badilla

Statistically, Gordon Johnston and Matt Sarmento led the team in goal-scoring, with Johnston knocking in three penalty corner goals and Sarmento adding two goals during the series. For Argentina, Jose Tolini peppered the Canadian net with five penalty corner goals.

Johnston, who turns 27 this week, has been a member of the senior national team since his debut in 2011. He reflected on the team’s production and overall performance this week in Chile.

“By no means were we firing on all cylinders,” he said. “But it was good to get some PC goals and show that our work in the last year is paying off. More than anything it’s just important to get games against good teams at this point in the year.”

Johnston has been through an Olympic cycle before (2016 Rio) and he knows that with only 16 spaces available on the Olympic roster in July, the competition for spots is already heating up. According to Johnston, the added pressure of it being an Olympic year only ups the level of play on tours and in daily training.

“Of course, when we are training and competing, we’re a team,” he said. “But knowing that there are only so many spots on the team; it makes the intensity higher. Everyone wants to play well, everyone wants to earn a spot.”

Bundy and Johnston both agree that despite some rustiness and a few missed opportunities, the tour was a success and both are looking forward to the next training block.

“I thought we didn’t capitalize on some chances, and at some points, we were our own worst enemy,” Bundy said. “Despite that, we definitely played our best overall game today [Jan 29 vs Arg]. We’ll take what we learned from this week and continue to grow and improve.”

Team Canada returns to the domestic training environment next week and sets their sights on the prestigious Sultan Azlan Shah Cup in April.

Photo: Oscar Muñoz Badilla

Field Hockey Canada media release

2020 Test matches ARG v ESP (W)
Mar del Plata (ARG)

25 Jan 2020     ARG v ESP     2 - 1
26 Jan 2020     ARG v ESP     0 - 3
28 Jan 2020     ARG v ESP     3 - 1
29 Jan 2020     ARG v ESP     5 - 3

FIH Match Centre

2020 Test matches CHI v JPN (W) - 3rd Test
Santiago (CHI)

29 Jan 2020     CHI v JPN     1 - 1

FIH Match Centre

Pakistan to face Malaysia in Azlan Shah Cup opener on April 11

KARACHI: Pakistan will play their opening match of the 29th Sultan Azlan Shah Cup hockey tournament against hosts Malaysia on April 11.

The prestigious tournament will be played in Ipoh, Malaysia, between April 11-18. Six teams will be competing on single-round league format with the top two teams to progress into the final. Apart from Pakistan, and hosts Malaysia, Australia, Canada, Japan and Korea will be vying for the title.

Green-shirts will play their second game against Canada on April 12, before locking horns with Korea on April 14 and then facing Japan on April 15. They will play Australia in their final league match on April 17. The training camp of the Pakistan team is expected to be held at the end of February in Lahore.

The News International

EuroHockey Indoor Championship II - Women's round-up
This weekend saw the Welsh women compete in the EuroHockey Championships II in Croatia.

The team were to face some tough competition in the 2nd Division of this highly contested Championship, not least in their opening game against the country 6th in the World rankings, Poland.

Wales competed well, but the Polish side had a point to prove, having recently been relegated from Division 1, and opened their campaign with a 6-0 win, making their intentions clear early on with a goal from a penalty corner in the opening three minutes.

Later that day the young Welsh team met another top-level team in Russia. It was an incredibly tough game which saw the eventual group champions put 22 goals passed Wales.

After a recovery session on the Saturday morning, the team had two matches, the first against Lithuania which saw them concede 6 goals, and a third game without a point.

The second match of the day saw the squad face Scotland, who were sitting towards the top end of the table and competing well in the championship.

The game started with two quick goals from the opposition, but Wales came back with a goal from Jodie Beddow towards the end of the first quarter. After another goal from the Scots in the opening minute of the second quarter, Beddow struck again to make the score 2-3 to keep Wales in the game.

The goal count went quiet for 20 minutes after a penalty stroke for Scotland in the 18' saw them pull further ahead, but a goal by Livvy Hoskins in the dying minutes saw the final score 3-4.

Their first match of the final day of play saw Wales face hosts Croatia. An early penalty corner, followed by 3 goals to the home side put Wales behind, but Jodie Beddow got one back in the 32', before a final goal from Croatia to make the score 5-1.

After conceding 13 goals to a strong Turkish team in the final game for Wales, Gareth Terrett, Head Coach explained that this tournament was a real learning curve for the young side.

“We went into this championship knowing we would be up against some of the best indoor international competition.

“This was a real opportunity to challenge and compete at this level, and to expose our players to this will serve them well moving forward.

“They had a great learning experience and, as we hoped, enjoyed the opportunity and bonded as a group.”

Hockey Wales media release

Wales Women take a series win in France.

Last week saw the Wales Senior Women’s squad travel to France for their first test match of 2020.

Having won three and lost three to their close rivals in 2019, this would be a great opportunity to try new players to the squad against healthy competition leading into the busy year ahead.

The week started well with a 2-0 victory to Wales in the first of the two practice matches with goals from Eloise Laity and Xenna Hughes.

Following a recovery session, the squad prepared for their first official test match of the year, which saw 18-year-old Nell Butler named in the starting line-up to win her first cap.

The opening stages of the match saw France take a 2-0 lead, but the Welsh squad showed true strength of character to come back with a goal in the 39’ from Eloise Laity, followed by an equaliser and a debut goal from Nell Butler in the final minutes of the game.

The final score in normal time was a 2-2 draw, resulting in a shoot-out to decide the outcome which saw Wales win 2-1, with Phoebe Richards and Beth Bingham converting.

Wales Head Coach, Kevin Johnson, reflected on the determination of the squad to achieve the come-back and eventual win.

“Whilst slightly disappointing not to win the official test match in normal time, the strength of character this group had to demonstrate under pressure, to come back from two goals down to achieve a draw and win the shoot-out, will ensure that this experience will hopefully have long lasting value.”

Following the test match, the squad gathered themselves for a final practice game which saw them concede a goal in the closing stages resulting in a narrow 2-3 defeat, with Welsh goals from Hannah Cozens and Jess Roe.

Johnson was satisfied with the progress of the squad during the week in France.

“This was a positive way to start our activity in 2020. There were clear signs of progress evident from several areas of team development that we have been working on during our last training phase at the back end of 2019.

“As a wider group, we have been able to expose more of our younger players to senior international hockey, allowing us to grow our depth and experience base, with all the squad contributing well, resulting in healthy competition for places.”

Hockey Wales media release

Harry Martin: GB Hockey ready for Tokyo heat after testing

By The Hockey Paper

Harry Martin told THP about the aftermath of Sam Ward’s injury in the latest issue

Harry Martin believes the the GB players’ heat tolerance testing before Christmas will be crucial ahead of Tokyo 2020.

“I’m not going to lie, I can’t say I enjoyed a second of it! But there will be some tough conditions in Tokyo and everyone saw an improvement,” joked Martin.

But the testing has been a key indicator as to what the players will expect this year, after coach Danny Kerry raised concerns over player safety due to the timings of some of the games.

Martin and Co are currently Down Under preparing for their Pro League opener this weekend against the Kookaburras and he believes that he is ready to take on the world after being the youngest player, aged 17, at London 2012.

He said: “Ten years is pretty mad. I’ve been lucky enough to play across the world. I’ve played in Australia, Malaysia and India and I’d like to think I’ve had exposure in different countries and confident enough to play anywhere now.”

Under coach Kerry, Martin says the change of play patterns, coupled with the new players, have helped broaden the squad as they aim to break the top of the world rankings.

He said: “There is still a lot of hard work to do to break into the top three. We have finished fourth in the last couple of world level tournaments.

“You want to have depth and competing for the places and with all the stuff that has gone on, I think we are in a really good place.”

Meanwhile, GB defender Laura Unsworth says that Alex Danson-Bennett’s return to the central programme has given added impetus to the squad.

The GB and England captain has been missing in action from Bisham Abbey since September 2018 after her mild brain injury trauma and concussion.

In a hugely welcome statement earlier this month, Danson-Bennett revealed that she was rejoining the programme after being able to train for the first time.

“She has still got a few more tests to pass but she is just delighted to be surrounded by her team-mates again,” Unsworth said before GB’s departure to Brisbane. “It’s great to have her back in our environment with the experience she brings to our squad.

“I saw a stick in her hand the other day, hitting balls like she had never been away so it will be fantastic to have her back in the squad.”

GB’s trip to Brisbane turned out to be a lengthy one, lasting nearly two days after plane trouble and missed connections.

There was a bright moment on arrival for Giselle Ansley, however, after she was photographed with Australia’s cricket run machine Steve Smith. The GB squad will visit coach Mark Hager’s house on their trip and New Zealand. February will mark one year since Hager first met his players.

This article has been adapted from our January print edition. To read Harry Martin’s full interview on how he struggled to cope with Sam Ward’s injury subscribe to our digital edition for the bigger picture in 2020.

Discounts with our partners and major savings on our digital product for global readers. Find out which print or subscription suits you best. Sign up now!

It’s a huge year for the sport – and our mission is for all juniors, grass roots, masters and general hockey lovers to read the game.

The Hockey Paper

UniKL tame Tigers to top standings

By K.M. Boopathy

Universiti Kuala Lumpur (UniKL) hammered Maybank 4-2 to move to the top of the Malaysia Hockey League (MHL) standings yesterday. Pic Courtesy of MHC

UNIVERSITI Kuala Lumpur (UniKL) hammered Maybank 4-2 to move to the top of the Malaysia Hockey League (MHL) standings yesterday.

Early pace-setters Tenaga Nasional Berhad (TNB), who had occupied the top spot since the beginning of the league, were held to a surprise 1-1 draw by Universiti Teknologi Mara (UiTM).

TNB’s slip-up allowed defending champions UniKL to remain as the only team to win all six matches thus far.

They lead the standings on 18 points while TNB, with five wins and a draw, are second with 16 points.

Experienced national player Tengku Ahmad Tajuddin Tengku Abdul Jalil, who suffered a cracked jaw just two weeks ago, made quick return from surgery and opened the scoring for UniKL with a field goal in the 12th minute.

Faridzul Afiq made it 2-0 with another field goal but Maybank reduced the deficit through a Meor Azuan Hasan penalty corner goal in the 38th minute.

Razie Rahim’s penalty stroke in the 47th minute and Dutch import Roel Bovendeert’s 60th-minute field goal completed UniKL’s domination.

Maybank got their second goal through a penalty corner setpiece by Nur Asyraf Ishak in the 59th minute.

Although unbeaten, UniKL coach A. Arul Selvaraj has warned his men not to take it easy.

“Maybank played very well and stepped up in the third quarter to trouble us. We’re not taking any teams for granted as the league still has a long way to go,” said Arul.

“We play TNB next (tomorrow). They have a very strong team and are performing very well.

“TNB may have drawn with UiTM but are capable of bouncing back. We have to be prepared.

“We want to take it one match at a time. We have eight matches left to play, so it’s too early to celebrate.”

In another match yesterday, Nurinsafi drew 3-3 with TNB Thunderbolts in Alor Star.

New Straits Times

Former champions powerless against back-to-the-field indoor goalkeeper


Battle royal: TNB’s Mohd Amirul Hanif (third from right) and UiTM’s Mohd Haikal Abdul Mutalib (right) battle for the ball yesterday. Inset: Mohd Khairul Afendy Kamaruzaman.

KUALA LUMPUR: Indoor goalkeeper Mohd Khairul Afendy Kamaruzaman, making his return to field hockey after a lapse of six years, turned hero for Universiti Teknologi Mara (UiTM) as the minnows stunned favourites Tenaga Nasional by holding them to a 1-1 draw at the National Hockey Stadium in Bukit Jalil yesterday.

UiTM, who only have one win in five Malaysia Hockey League matches, shocked the fancied Tenaga – powered by 13 national players – by taking the lead through Mohd Luqman Hakim Mohd Asri in the 19th minute off a penalty corner.

Tenaga send their forwards surging upfront in search for goals and managed to equalise in the 39th off a penalty corner converted by Mohd Aminuddin Mohd Zain.

Former champions Tenaga went all out to get the winning goal but Navy corporal Khairul was in top form, making some fine saves to deny the Tenaga strikers and give his team a well-deserved point.

The draw was slap for Tenaga who hardly looked like the all-conquering team that had won their earlier five matches. Against UiTM, who don’t even have a single national player, they were struggling.

Tenaga’s hopes of winning the league title also took a jolt as dropped to second place in the league with 16 points.

Universiti Kuala Lumpur (UniKL) continued their winning ways beating Maybank 4-2 to register their sixth consecutive win at the Tengku Abdullah Hockey Stadium in Bangi to top the standings with 18 points. UniKL will face Tenaga tomorrow in Bangi in a top-of-the-table clash.

The 32-year-old Khairul, who helped Malaysia win the indoor hockey gold in the Philippines SEA Games last month, was thrilled to bits over his heroics.

“I knew before the match that I would face a daunting task to keep the scoreline down against Tenaga, who have so many national players.

“It was more difficult for me as I am an indoor keeper and have not played field hockey since 2014 when I represented Armed Forces in the MHL.

“But I kept telling myself I could do it and my confidence grew in the match. I saved about eight of the nine penalty corners and a number of field attempts.

“The draw feels like a win for us, ” said Khairul, who is with the Defence Ministry in Kuala Lumpur.

UiTM coach Meor Mohd Shahril Saarani praised Khairul for playing his best game of the league.

“The draw is a morale booster for us. I am confident my men will play much better against winless TNB Thunderbolt, ” said Meor.

The Star of Malaysia

MHC move in to check on violent play in ongoing league


Tengku Abdul Jalil

PETALING JAYA: After criticism by several players of unchecked violent play in the Malaysia Hockey League, the Malaysia Hockey Confederation (MHC) are now looking seriously into ensuring that they are well-protected.

Competitions committee deputy chairman I. Vikneswaran said they had spoken to some of the players about the matter and will look to improve the fairplay aspect of the league.

“MHC takes these incidents extremely seriously. Coincidentally, these incidents were mostly caused by Pakistani players, ” he said.

“We want players to play clean hockey and not adopt yesteryear tactics. Hurting another player is a no-no now.

“At the end of the day, we want players to know they can play in a healthy environment.”

Recently, UniKL’s Australian imports Timothy Deavin and Kieran Govers have asked the league to look into injuries being caused by deliberate hits and off-the-ball incidents.

On Jan 12, national forward Tengku Ahmad Tajuddin Tengku Abdul Jalil (pic) suffered a broken jaw off a ball hit by Pakistan’s Ali Rizwan of KL Hockey Academy (Hockademy). Ten days later, Dutch striker Roel Bovendeert was hurt in their 3-0 win against Nur Insafi, suffering a chipped tooth in an off-the-ball incident with another Pakistani player.

Vikneswaran MHC president Datuk Seri Subahan Kamal and competitions committee chairman Datuk Seri Anil Jeet were aware of what was happening although it was tough to monitor every incident.

Vikneswaran said they had to trust the judgement of umpires and technical delegates.

“Sometimes, we cannot ascertain if it is done intentionally or unintentionally. We will have the technical guys to look at them.

“Dangerous play is not part of our culture. We will not condone it.”

The Star of Malaysia

Van der Weerden the next big signing for Rot Weiss

Dutch international Mink van der Weerden will play for Rot-Weiss Köln next season, switching from Oranje-Rood where he spent 12 hugely successful years in the Hoofdklasse.

He was part of the Dutch team that won the silver medal at the 2012 OIympic Games, top scoring in the tournament and he also won silver at the 2018 World Cup while taking gold at the European Championships in 2015 and 2017.

With Oranje-Rood, the 31-year-old corner expert won the Dutch club title three times in a row between 2014 and 2016 and also landed the Euro Hockey League in 2015 – under the guise of Oranje Zwart. He currently has 169 caps for the national team, scoring 110 goals.

“I am very excited to take on this adventure with Rot-Weiss,” van der Weerden said. “I always wanted to play in the Bundesliga one day and now I get the chance to do so for Rot-Weiss, one of Germany’s most famous clubs with a successful history.

“I hope I can contribute to this in the next couple of years. The opportunity to work with Andre [Henning] as a coach and play with some of the world’s and Germany’s best players and great talents is something I am very excited about and will inspire me to get the very best out of myself.

“I’m looking forward to get familiar with the club, the team and their culture and together aim for Bundesliga and EHL success. ”

Henning added: “It is something very special for the whole club to be able to inspire a world-class player and world-class guy like Mink. Without question, he will help us with his quality as a defender and corner shooter.

“I had a lot of really exciting conversations with him. His overwhelming enthusiasm, his eagerness, his enthusiasm to do big things together with the team have swept us away. I am sure that he will have a huge, extremely positive impact on the team.

“With Mink and also Vincent Vanasch, we have great personalities from Holland and Belgium, who will provide new ideas and will boost our culture. They know how titles are won so they will also help our many young talents in the squad, he will play a major role as a role model. We are extremely proud to have Mink with us soon. ”

Euro Hockey League media release

England Hockey Jaffa Super 6s Team Insight: Holcombe

Find out more about Holcombe in our club by club preview of each of the teams competing in this year’s Jaffa Super 6s Finals.

How did Holcombe get to the Finals?

Holcombe began well in the group stage with consecutive victories over Canterbury (7-2) and Sevenoaks (4-3) before suffering one of only two defeats in their qualification campaign when they fell to a 5-1 loss to East Grinstead.

Bouncing back with an impressive 11-0 thumping over Bowdon, Holcombe ended the campaign how they started it, with two consecutive victories, this time triumphing over Wimbledon (5-3) and Reading (6-4) to finish third in the group.

Who will they play in the semi-finals?

Holcombe will tackle 2019 champions East Grinstead in the semi-finals and will look to improve on their defeat to EG during the group stages.

Qualification goalscorers:

Nick Bandurak (14), Robert Field (12), Harry Trusler (6), Tom O’Keefe (3), Barry Middleton and Anton Parente (both 2), Louis Duprez, Alex Moen and Craig Morton (all 1).

Players to watch:

Nick Bandurak and Robert Field were lethal in front of goal through the group stage, scoring 26 of the team’s 42 goals, they’ll both be key if Holcombe are to progress to the final.

Did you know?

Barry Middleton, the most capped player in England and GB Hockey history, will be taking to the field for Holcombe over the weekend. With 432 caps and 119 goals for his country, Middleton will be a prized asset for Holcombe at Finals day.

England Hockey Board Media release

England Hockey Jaffa Super 6s Team Insight: Sutton Coldfield

Find out more about Sutton Coldfield in our club by club preview of each of the teams competing in this year’s Jaffa Super 6s Finals.

How did Sutton Coldfield get to the Finals?

Finishing third in the group stage, Sutton went unbeaten in their opening matches (winning five and drawing one) as they looked to quickly guarantee their place at the Copper Box Arena.

Though they started in electrifying form, two big defeats in their final matches to East Grinstead (8-1) and Bowdon Hightown (4-0) saw the team end their qualifying campaign in disappointing style.

Who will they play in the semi-finals?

Sutton will take on Bowdon Hightown at 11:45am in their semi-final clash and will be looking to make an impact at the competition with this being their first Finals appearance since 2017.

Qualification goalscorers:

Beth Peers (6), Emma McCabe and Vicky Woolford (both 4), Clare Florida-James (3), Jane Sixsmith (2), Laura Groves and Emily Peers (both 1).

Players to watch:

Beth Peers topped the team’s goalscoring charts in the group stage and will be hoping to lift the trophy with her sister, Emily Peers, who will also line up for Sutton over the weekend.

Did you know?

Sutton’s Jane Sixsmith, who notched two goals from her four matches in the qualifying rounds, is the oldest player competing in the weekend’s action at 52 years.

England Hockey Board Media release

New broadcast platform coming soon for Olympic sports

Chris Griffiths celebrates for Great Britain's men in the FIH Pro League

England and Great Britain Hockey are delighted to be at the centre of the development of a new broadcast platform for Britain's Olympic and Paralympic Sports.

The Over-The-Top (OTT) platform has today been announced by a group of leading sports’ National Governing Bodies, UK Sport, the British Olympic Association and British Paralympic Association.

The collaboration across the Olympic and Paralympic sector has been in development for nearly two years, with over 2,600 hours of content across 26 sports having already been secured.

The platform will include both domestic and international hockey; with agreements in motion with both the FIH and EuroHockey. In addition, it will host behind-the-scenes content and features from across the sport.

Jon Cockcroft, GB and England Hockey Commercial Director and GB Sport Media Board Member said, "As the consumption of sports content changes, this collaboration is a game-changing opportunity to grow the audiences of Olympic and Paralympic Sport outside Games time.

"Through GB Sport Media, we’re looking forward to showcasing the skills and spirit of international and domestic hockey, better connecting fans with the stars of our sport and inspiring more young people to pick up a stick.”

Fans of wider Olympic and Paralympic sports will be able to watch the best  content from around the world focused on British and Northern Irish athletes and teams.

The concept has been developed in conjunction with advertising network Omnicom Group, led by their sports consultancy, Fuse, with the ambition of launching the platform after the Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games.

In their first move, the collective of British sports’ bodies have appointed Dominic Coles as the Chair of the newly incorporated GB Sport Media. Coles will be responsible for driving negotiations with broadcast and media platforms and publishers as the opportunity to partner with GB Sport Media to deliver the platform is taken to a competitive market tender.

GB Sport Media seeks to appoint a media organisation to co-create the platform with, and to build a long-term relationship with an organisation that understands the strategic and commercial potential inherent in Olympic and Paralympic sports in the UK.

UK Sport CEO, Sally Munday, said: “We are hugely excited about the opportunity that GB Sport Media presents for sports fans to watch their favourite Olympic and Paralympic sports more often. This collaboration of over 20 sports is a great example of the collective power of the UK high performance system to work together to drive increased exposure and financial sustainability for sport.”

Andy Anson, CEO of the British Olympic Association, said: "This venture is a great demonstration of the strength of relationships across the British Olympic and Paralympic network and the importance of different sports bodies coming together to pool rights to create meaningful scale. The BOA will support this excellent initiative to the fullest extent possible."

Great Britain Hockey media release

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