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News for 01 August 2020

All the news for Saturday 1 August 2020

A captain recalls: Zimbabwe’s golden moment

When people are asked to recall past winners of the women’s Olympic hockey competitions, there are some nations that just roll off the tongue. Netherlands, Australia, Germany are usually the first teams that spring to mind.

In 1980 however it was a very different team that took to the podium. A moment of hockey history was made when Zimbabwe stepped forward to collect their goal medal after a sweet 4-1 victory over Austria.

The whole story is one of surprises, twists and turns. As a nation Zimbabwe had only existed for a few months after it had been declared an independent nation earlier that year. Prior to 1980, the country had been known as Rhodesia and had been under British colonial rule.

The recognition of Zimbabwe as an independent state meant the National Olympic Committee could ask for recognition by the IOC. This was granted and a very late invite to the Olympic Games in Moscow meant that the Zimbabweans could field a women’s hockey team in the competition.

Six teams lined up for the women’s hockey competition. These were: Austria, Czechoslovakia, India, Poland, the Soviet Union and Zimbabwe. The African team had only learnt they were able to participate three weeks ahead of the opening ceremony.

In preparation, the team played against local men’s teams. On arrival in Moscow, the athletes realised they didn’t have the correct shoes for the surface as they had never played on an artificial turf before. This called for a mad dash to buy new shoes.

The new surface and lack of preparation didn’t seem to hinder the Zimbabwe team. They beat Poland 4-0 in the opening match before grinding out a 2-2 draw with Czechoslovakia. Another 4-0 victory against the home side was followed by a tough match against India. This resulted in a 1-1 draw and so the team entered the final game against Austria.

Zimbabwe took the lead through Sandy Chick but a penalty stroke meant Austria were able to level the score just before half-time. Patricia McKillop, who was the tournament’s top scorer, gave her side the lead again in the 51st minute before both she and Gillian Cowley put the game out of the Austrian’s reach.

Ann Grant was captain of the team and she had the pleasure of leading her team onto the podium. She says the event, and the following weeks, make up a time that still have a wonderful and surreal quality.

“It is quite surreal to think that 40 years have past since my wonderful team’s fairytale story was written into the history books,” she recalls. “We received a huge reception on our return at the airport with drum majorettes, floral bouquets and a large crowd of family and supporters who all showed their jubilation at our victory.  Government officials attended various celebratory functions and we were welcomed all across the country.”

Grant says the newly-formed Zimbabwe National Olympic Committee had to pull out all the stops to ensure things such as foreign currency, team uniforms and new passports were all in place.

The players themselves were training before and after work and at weekends. Grant herself used wooden pegs in the back garden to practice dribbling around, while her husband Clive proved a useful training partner.

Once in Moscow, the coach Anthea Stewart made sure the players were well briefed ahead of each game and even managed to organise a practice match against India – something Grant says gave the team an enormous amount of insight.

When she looks back at the final match, Grant says: “The whole game was a blur for me personally, as I was focused on keeping the team playing right to the end whistle.

“When final time was indicated, words are insufficient to describe that feeling. Your heart wants to explode out of your chest with the feelings of great joy and happiness. We had secured the gold medal, firstly for our team but also for our newborn country of Zimbabwe.  We were supremely proud ladies. The fact that we did not have a national anthem at the medal presentation was not a deterrent for our beaming smiles and waves to the crowds.

“Personally, the medal presentation was very emotional for me as I had none of my family or husband there to witness this auspicious occasion. I was even thinking of my late Dad who had passed away only eight months prior to the Olympics. The small crowd of Zimbabwe supporters in the stadium sang and raised our spirits as we walked around the field then there was huge celebrations with our Organising Committee.

“I think we initially gave hope to all Zimbabweans from all walks of life that even as a new country, facing the best in the world, we succeeded against all odds. Not one of the team had ever played on an artificial surface, never used the multi stud boots that were hastily acquired in Moscow. We then had to adapt to a different style of play compared to the hard baked grass turfs back home.  We were simply excited at this new adventure and played our hearts out.  For many reasons, hockey is struggling in Zimbabwe - our team did put that country on the global map 40 years ago.”

The gold medal winning team continue to meet and communicate and in 2018 they had a reunion at the home of the late vice captain Liz Chase. You sense the emotion in Grant’s voice as she adds: “ For me, it is not just the winning of the first ever women’s hockey Olympic gold medal but all the pieces of that tapestry that are needed to make the whole picture complete – they were life experiences that remain with me forever.”


Olympic hockey through the ages

A look back at over 100 years of hockey at the Olympic Games

• Seoul 1988: As in 1984, Australia men were favourites, but fell to Great Britain in the semi-final. GB then stunned Germany 3-1 in the final, as two goals from Imran Sherwani sealed gold. In the women’s tournament, hosts Korea’s journey to the final sparked intense media interest, but they fell at the final hurdle as Australia grabbed their first Olympic hockey gold medal, triumphing 2-0 with goals from captain Debbie Bowman and Lee Capes (mother of current Australia star Caitlin Nobbs).

Tomorrow: Barcelona 1992


On this day – 31 July: As well as being the opening day of the hockey competition of the London 1948 Olympic Games (won by India men) and the women’s tournament at Los Angeles 1984 (won by the Netherlands), it was also the final day of the first ever Olympic women’s hockey event, which took place at Moscow 1980. The title went to Zimbabwe, who carved their name in hockey’s history books by defeating Austria 4-1 in their final match of the round-robin competition. 

FIH site

Pakistan`s Hockey Families at the Olympics

By Ijaz Chaudhry

Munir Dar with his son Taqueer Dar

For Pakistanis, Olympics virtually mean hockey- all the three golds and as many silvers at world’s biggest sports extravaganza have arrived through this sport.  In addition, hockey has also contributed two of the four bronze won by Pakistan at the Olympics.

Pakistan’s hockey families at the Olympics make fascinating reading.

Father and Son:

Mahmood-ul-Hasan (1948, 1952) and Ayaz Mahmood  (1984
Munir Dar (1956, 1960, 1964) and Tauqir Dar  1984)
hulam Rasool (1956, 1960) and Akhtar Rasool (1972, 1976
K. M. Aslam (1952) and K. M. Junaid (1992)
Saeed Anwar (1968, 1972) and Anjum Saeed (1992)
Col Zafari (1960) and Aamir Zafar (1988)

Brothers who played in the Olympics

Abdul Hameed “Hamidi” (1948, 1952, 1956, 1960) and Abdul Rasheed Junior (1968, 1972, 1976)                                                                                                                                                              Shahzada Khurram (1948) and Shahzada Shahrukh (1948)
Munir Dar (1956, 1960, 1964) and Tanvir Dar (1968, 1972)
Mohammad Amin (1956) and Khurshid Azam (1964)Khurshid Aslam (1960) and Akhtar-ul-Islam (1972)
Manzoor-ul-Hasan (1976) and Rasheed-ul-Hasan (1984)
Samiullah (1976) and Kalimullah (1984)
Mohammad Sarwar (1996, 2000) and Mohammad Zubair (2008)

In some instances, both, and in one case all three, were successful.  Then, only one of the two won some medal. It was either way; elder got decorated but not the younger and vice versa. And sometimes, both returned without a medal.

Father and Son:

Pakistan‘s Olympic debut came at the 1948 Olympics. Though they were many people’s favourites for the title but lost in the semi-final. They also lost the bronze medal match.  At the next Olympics in 1952, Pakistan again ended fourth.

Mahmoodul Hasan was a member of both these unlucky sides. It must have been very disappointing for him to narrowly miss out on an Olympic medal, not once but twice. His son made up for father’s failure, and in a big way. Ayaz Mahmood was the centre half of Pakistan’ gold medal winning side of 1984 Olympics.

K.M.Aslam had also come empty handed (1952 Olympics). His son Khawaja Mohammad Junaid is a bronze medallist from the 1992 edition.

It was other way round for one pair of father and son. Col Zafari is 1960’s gold medallist but Pakistan only finished fifth in 1988 when his son Aamer Zafar was in the team.

Ghulam Rasool won silver at the 1956 Olympics and bettered it with the gold in the next edition (1960). Son Akhtar Rasool was also a silver medallist in his first appearance in 1972 but he was not as lucky as his father in the second outing, only a bronze in 1976.

Like Ghulam Rasool, Saeed Anwar also had a gold (1968) and a silver (1972). His son Anjum Saeed.s bronze in 1992 completed the complete set of the Olympic medals in the family cabinet.

Munir Dar (1960) and Taqueer Dar (1984) are only Pakistani father and son to have Olympic golds. Munir was also decorated with two silvers in 1956 and 1964.

Coming to Brothers:

Brig Abdul Hameed Hameedi was a member of Pakistan’s 4th placed teams at 1948 and 1952 Olympics. When he became the captain, Pakistan first won the silver in 1956 (country’s first ever Olympic medal in any sport) and it was followed by first gold in 1960. Younger brother Abdul Rasheed Jr won gold (1968), silver (1972) and bronze (1976), when he was also the captain. Rasheed is the only Pakistani to have a complete set of Olympic medals. Hameedi and Rasheed are also the only brothers to captain Pakistan at the Olympics.

As in the father/son section, here as well, Dars are among the successful.  Munir has one gold and two silvers while Tanvir figured in one gold (1968) and one silver (1972).

1960 Olympics’ gold medallist Khursheed Aslam’s younger brother Akhtar ul Islam had to contend with silver in 1972.

Raja Amin and Khurshid Aslam both are Olympic silver medallists, 1956 and 1964 respectively.

Two of Pakistan’s all-time greats Samiullah and Manzoorul Hassan, bronze medalllists in 1976, were unfortunate. Pakistan were almost everyone’s favourites for the gold medal at the 1980 Moscow Olympics. But Pakistan, along with several other countries boycotted the 1980 Olympics.  However, Sami and Manzoor’s younger brothers Kalimullah and Rasheedul Hasan won the gold at the 1984 Olympics.

Pakistan hockey’s first pair of siblings at the Olympics, Shahzada Khurram and Shahzada Shahrukh, were members of the fourth placed side in 1948. The last pair of brothers Mohammad Sarwar (1996, 2000) and Mohammad Zubair (2008) was also unsuccessful.

Most Decorated Family:

Dar Family has the unique distinction. They contributed in Pakistan’s all the gold and silver medal winning teams: Three golds and Three silvers.
Golds: Munir (1960), Tanvir, Munir;s brother, (1968) and Taqueer, Munir’s son, (1984).
Silvers: Munir (1956 & 1964), Tanvir (1972).

Ijaz Chaudhry writes on hockey & other sports. For more about him and his work, visit: www.sportscorrespondent.info


Why England were so determined to make the nation proud at 2018 World Cup

England Running Out v USA HWC2018

“I can’t imagine in my career necessarily playing in something like that again. It was huge.”

Giselle Ansley knows how special the 2018 Vitality Hockey Women’s World Cup was.

Across two glorious weeks, more than 100,000 people packed into the Lee Valley Hockey and Tennis Centre to watch 16 of the world’s best teams battle it out for glory.

With a temporary stand doubling the crowd capacity, a dedicated fan village and so much more, England Hockey pulled out all the stops to make it the best possible tournament for fans and players alike.

This was not lost on the English players; if anything, it made them even more determined to go out there and try and lift the World Cup for the first time as a thank you to all those who had made it happen.

Ansley and Ellie Rayer explained just how special a tournament it was in the latest episode of #InsideTheCircle: The Podcast.

The former said: “We were incredibly grateful for the unbelievable work that went into that.  For us as players we got to experience it and play and do what we love and that was all thanks to the many, many people who had worked tirelessly for years to make it work.

“When you’ve got people who put that much time and effort into it for us to play there and to experience it, it makes it even more special. We desperately wanted to try and do everyone proud, make England proud as a nation.

“It’s a tournament that will live long in the memories for all of us.”

Rayer added: “We train for moment and opportunities like that. The amount of work that had gone in behind the scenes to put into the event for us was like ‘wow’.

“We were soaking up every single second and moment and opportunity that we could because they don’t come around very often. It was such a phenomenal event and such a phenomenal job.”

After months of preparing, the big day of England’s opening game finally came around on Saturday 21 July 2018.

Speaking on the podcast, the duo explained exactly how it felt to leave the tunnel and enter the fray for the first time.

“We ran out with the flames and the fire, the noise. And there had been the #SeeRedWearRed campaign too,” Rayer recalled.

“It was mind blowing. I tried to take a bit of a look before we ran out of the tunnel, in the warm up trying to sneakily go down and see it so it wasn’t quite so enormous as I ran out on the pitch, so I could soak it all in.

“The butterflies in my stomach were going mad. It was incredible.”

Ansley added: “We’d spoken about it before, how it was going to be something we hadn’t experienced before. Because we warmed up on the pitch behind you could hear the noise and sort of see it but not very well.

“We said that if you can sneak down the tunnel and have a little look it might not be such a shock. But even doing that, still I was like ‘woah’. It hit you.

“It took you back a little bit but then you realised that this was going to be epic. I was so excited, I was like ‘let’s just play because this is so good’.”

Subscribe to Inside The Circle: The Podcast to hear this episode in full and catch up on any others that you may have missed:

Great Britain Hockey media release

Athlete Spotlight: Leah Crouse

Each athlete that wears the red, white and blue has a unique story to how their careers came to fruition. From the junior level to the senior squad, USA Field Hockey is putting national team athletes under the spotlight to share their journeys.

While field hockey wasn’t the first sport she fell in love with, Leah Crouse’s young career has guided her across the country wearing the iconic shade of the Duke Blue Devils. When she isn’t battling the competition of the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC), she can be competing internationally for the U.S. U-21 Women’s National Team.

Whether it required equipment or not, Crouse grew up playing just about any sport she could, from softball and basketball to soccer or tennis. The list goes on, but what made the Virginia Beach native pick up field hockey was driving by Frank W. Cox High School during the summers. At the age of 10, every time her family passed by the open field of practicing athletes, she could feel the sport calling to her. Sure enough, when it came time to attend herself, Crouse felt right at home as a member of the Falcons’ field hockey team.

“I also ran track on the side in high school, but running in circles was not for me,” said Crouse. “The combination of the team atmosphere, running and hand eye coordination is why field hockey stuck. Also, the game is always changing and no play is ever the same, so for me, it’s impossible to get tired of.”

She was not alone in being a multi-sport athlete, or demonstrating athleticism in general amongst the family. Being exposed to a variety of different types of sports growing up, Crouse credits a significant portion of her sports passion to her older brother, Grayson, who played Division I baseball. Her field hockey, and track and field background, were heavily influenced by her father.

“From a young age, I always wanted to do whatever my brother did,” continued Crouse. “I always joke that my hand-eye coordination developed after having so many balls were thrown at my face, I had to learn how to catch! Also, my dad ran track and cross country at the University of Maryland, and anyone who knows him knows that he’s everyone’s biggest fan. He never pushed sports on me, but his positivity and demonstration of what a serious work ethic looks like continues to inspire me to be the best player I can be.”

Aside from playing for the Falcons, Crouse also was a member of the TCOYO club throughout middle and high school.

“The team atmosphere I experienced gave me friends that I will hopefully have for the rest of my life,” commented Crouse. “From the many team Skit Nights and countless hotel rooms stays with my teammates, I learned just how fun the field hockey team environment could be, and it solidified my passion for the game. Thanks to my club coaches Sandy Szilassy, Nicole Morgan and Mary Werkheiser, I learned to love the game for all it is worth, and I am so grateful for that. When things get tough, I can always call on this foundation of passion for the game to keep moving forward.”

Being the best possible athlete also meant excelling in the classroom to a young Crouse, a trait she values to this day and which played a big role in deciding her collegiate future. One of her proudest moments in high school came her senior year when she was the recipient of the Virginia Sports Hall of Fame Student Achievement Award, which is given to any junior or senior in the state that has excelled academically, athletically and in their local communities. Among her many other honors was also being named Group 6A Player of the Year, Virginia Beach Sports Club Female Athlete of the Year while also receiving the 2018 Emile Tilley Outstanding All-Around Senior Female Athlete Award her senior year. On the field, she became a member of the century club at Frank F. Cox High School by recording at least 100 goals and assists.

When it came time to choose what team colors she would be wearing for the years ahead, Crouse felt Duke University was the perfect fit, again citing the importance of balancing athletics and education. Currently a biology major, she is on course for pre-med major, and although it has proven a worthy challenge and Crouse has no regrets as she has always been open to learning and new experiences.

“From the moment I stepped on campus, I felt the love and support of my teammates and coaches, and although there is definitely an adjustment period for everyone to college, I am grateful to have the opportunity to be able to grow into the player and person I want to be every day at Duke,” said Crouse.

In her two seasons so far for the Blue Devils, she has been named All-ACC Second Team (2019), All-ACC Academic Team (2019), ACC Academic Honor Roll (2018-19, 2019-20) and NFHCA National Academic Squad (2018, 2019). In 2019, she led Duke’s offensive prowess with 11 goals and 4 assists to total 26 points.

Crouse has also been very active in USA Field Hockey’s Olympic Development Pathway and originally started in Futures which provided more playing opportunities and a chance to improve her skills. Last summer, Crouse added another honor to her playing resume by helping USA U-19 to a gold medal in the 2019 Young Women’s National Championship. Through her entire experience in the Pathway, it was an afterthought that the additional playing time would eventually lead to an invitation to play for the Junior U.S. Women’s National Team.

“My first year, I ended up qualifying for the National Futures Championship, but I remember being a deer in the headlights and literally hiding behind players because I was so terrified,” recalled Crouse. “The next year, I became more comfortable on the field and qualified for the AAU Junior Olympic Games and the year after that the U-17 USWNT. Making this team and being able to progress to the U-19 and U-21 squads has been the most rewarding experience.”

Since 2016, Crouse has traveled abroad as a member of the Junior USWNT, including tours to Germany (2016, 2019) and Ireland (2017, 2018). She added that, as cliché as it may be, being able to wear the USA jersey is an experience like no other.

Off the field and outside the classroom, Crouse stays busy as the community service coordinator for the Blue Devils team, most recently connecting with Team Impact and the Ronald McDonald House around the Durham, N.C. area. She constantly keeps an open mind and finds ways to connect in the community, especially the past few months during the ongoing coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

As for training, Crouse has been working on strength and continues to run, although not as enjoyable without her teammates around her. She has also taken this summer easier than normal to put everything in perspective.

“Most people who know me know that I’m a fairly busy person, so besides staying fit, I’ve been using quarantine to slow down a bit, refuel and refocus on what I want to get out of these next few years,” said Crouse. “I’m fortunate to have a local turf open to play and that is basically my second home at this point, and I have also been coaching and trying to give back to the Virginia Beach field hockey community as much as I can before I head back to school. As nice as Zoom calls with Junior High Performance and Duke are, I cannot wait to soon be back on campus and playing with my teammates.”

Crouse, along with the rest of the Duke squad, is hoping to compete this fall with the rest of the ACC, as long as local public health guidance permit. As it stands, the ACC Championship will be held at Duke University from November 5 to 8.

USFHA media release

Junaid says ‘SWOT’ formula key to revive hockey

LAHORE: Pakistan hockey head coach Olympian Khwaja Junaid has said that understanding and implementation of ‘SWOT’ would take the national game back to winning ways.

In an interview to a YouTube channel, he explained that SWOT stands for strength, weakness, opportunity and threats. “If we analysed our golden past all our weaknesses and gaps would come to light,” he added.

“What I believe is that there is a dire need of reviving hockey at school, college, university and club levels if we want to regain our lost glory in hockey,” he said. Junaid stated that there is also need for jobs for sportsmen. “But when the institutions were shutting down hockey teams, unfortunately everyone remained silent,” said Junaid.

“Hockey can only regain its limelight with the collective effort of stalwarts. Everyone has to work for the revival of hockey,” said Junaid The federation is trying to revive hockey and needs government and corporate sector support,” he said.

“With the support of the government and the private sector, hockey will soon be on track,” he added. It is difficult for Pakistan hockey to get on track without holding a professional hockey league, he added.

He further stated that there is a need to identify a pool of young talented hockey players of the age of around 16 and to groomd them in an academy equipped with all the facilities. “Our stalwarts must visit the academy to groom those players. Only then can we get good results but that too in two to three years’ time,” he said.

The News International

Sabah's Razak Cuppers aiming elsewhere

By Jugjet Singh

FILE PIX: Abdul Khaliq Hamirin

AFTER four years watching from the sidelines, Sabah will make their Razak Cup return by fielding their Malaysia Games-bound squad.

The Razak Cup will be used by Sabah to iron out weaknesses in the hope of regaining their gold medal in the boys' event at next year's Malaysia Games in Johor.

The Razak Cup will be held on Sept 18-26 at the National Hockey Stadium in Bukit Jalil.

Coach Hasrul Jideh knows Sabah will face an uphill battle in every match, but he is more focused on exposing his young players against fancied sides in the annual tournament.

"We will be fielding 16 players who are eligible to play in the Malaysia Games together with two national players to hold them together.

"The odds will be stacked against us, but we want to expose these players ahead of the Games," said Hasrul.

The two national players are goalkeeper Adrian Andy Albert and Abdul Khaliq Hamirin.

"Eleven players are still schooling, so it is quite difficult to train right now.

"However, they have been keeping themselves in shape.

"We will plan the tactical aspects when the boys gather for training," Hasrul added.

At the 2018 Perak Malaysia Games, Sabah won the boys' event after 19 years.

The men's competition of the Razak Cup will see 15 teams battling for the title while the women's event will comprise 11 teams.

The tournament will be played in a single division format this season.

The men's teams will be drawn into four groups while the women's into two pool.

Armed Forces, Johor, Kedah, Kelantan, Kuala Lumpur, Melaka, Negri Sembilan, Pahang, Police, Perak, Perlis, Penang, Sabah, Selangor, Terengganu will battle for the men's crown.

Forces, Kedah, KL, Negri, Pahang, Police, Perak, Penang, Sarawak, Selangor, Terengganu make up the women's competition.

New Straits Times

Sardar Singh is part of the National Sports Awards Committee

‘Khel Ratna’ Sardar Singh is among the  selection committee for the National Sports Awards appointed by the Sports Ministry on Saturday.

Supreme Court Justice (Retd) Mukundakam Sharma will be the Chairman of the Committee which will select the National Sports awardees including Khel Ratna, Arjuna and Dronacharya.The Committee will also be selecting awardees for Dhyan Chand Award (Lifetime achievement for former players), Rashtriya Khel Protsahan Puruskar Award (for sports promotors), and Maulana Abul Kalam Azad (MAKA) Trophy for the year 2020.

The members include eminent names from the field of Indian Sports including Virender Sehwag (Cricket), Sardar Singh (Hockey), Monalisa Baruah Mehta (Table Tennis), Deepa Malik (Para-athletics), Venkatesan Devarajan (Boxing) as well as well-known media persons including Sports Commentator Manish Batavia and Sports Journalists Alok Sinha and Neeru Bhatia. Officials from the Sports Ministry on the committee include Director General, SAI, Shri Sandip Pradhan, LS Singh, Joint Secretary (Sports Development), and Commander Rajesh Rajagopalan, CEO Target Olympic Podium Scheme.

Two additional members who have been Dronacharya awardees may be invited by the Chairperson while considering the nomination for Dronacharya Award.


Peter Gillespie steps down as Vice President of Scottish Hockey

Peter Gillespie will stand down from his role of Vice President of Scottish Hockey at the upcoming AGM for personal reasons. The AGM will be held digitally on 3 September 2020 at 6:30pm.

Peter was elected as Vice President at the Scottish Hockey AGM on 1 June 2019, and since being elected has sat on the Scottish Hockey Management Committee; the Premiership Management Group; and attended Scottish Hockey Board meetings.

He also presented the silver medals at Women’s EuroHockey Championship II 2019 in Glasgow; medals at the Indoor Gala Day; awards at the Scottish Hockey Awards, and has enjoyed seeing hockey in Scotland close up over the last year.

Peter will continue to umpire and support Scottish Hockey in any smaller tasks with short term goals.

Peter said, “I have thoroughly enjoyed my short time involved with Management Committee and the Board of Scottish Hockey, alongside working with the staff, and I hope that I will be back and be able to get involved sometime in the not too distant future.

“I would encourage anyone who would like to get involved and help make a difference to hockey in Scotland to stand for election at the upcoming AGM.”

Scottish Hockey Union media release

In Memory and Honor of Warren Dorn, Co-Founder of Windy City Field Hockey

USA Field Hockey and the Illinois-based Windy City Field Hockey club lost a dear friend and valued mentor. Warren Dorn, who co-founded the club with his wife Barb Liles in 1991, passed away on June 26, 2020 after an eight-month battle with lung cancer. Warren was a passionate advocate for field hockey who worked generously to support the growth of the game and its athletes everywhere.

“As I started with USA Field Hockey I had the good fortune of many conversations with Warren,” said Simon Hoskins, USA Field Hockey’s Executive Director. “His passion for our sport and joy in providing great field hockey experiences for athletes was always so clear. It was a privilege to have known Warren, a wonderful man who made such a positive impact on field hockey.
Warren and Barb operated Windy City Field Hockey for 21 years before selling the club to Olympian Katie (Kaufman) Beach and her husband Keith in 2012.

“Illinois field hockey would not be where it is without the passion and committed work that Barb and Warren put in,” said Katie. “He was a mentor and coach to us as well as many athletes and families that have participated in Windy City over the past 29 years. We send our sincere condolences to Barb and their family and thank them for the foundation they built that continues to support the growth of Windy City Field Hockey.”

Warren was keen in sharing his knowledge and Sally Goggin, USA Field Hockey’s National Development Director, especially remembers his kindness, generosity, inspiration and sense of humor when she reached out to start a new club.

“Warren and Barb helped us start a field hockey program in Glen Ellyn, Ill,” said Sally. “I remember calling and introducing myself to them to ask for advice on starting a new club. Within minutes, Warren offered Windy City’s support to help run a camp and get the ball rolling.”

He was key in helping make the important connections for new programs while providing advice and support. He thrived in nurturing programs to help the growth and was there alongside everyone to celebrate the successes.

Warren’s dedication and desire to grow the sport in Illinois didn’t go unnoticed and Kelly Yates, Gateway Field Hockey Club Founder and Coach, in neighboring Missouri fondly remembers him being the most compassionate man and credits his consistent support of his wife in assisting her early days of starting Windy City Field Hockey.

“We started Gateway Field Hockey and Windy City about the same time and became good friends on and off the field,” added Kelly. “Warren helped Barb throughout the process and always did it smiling and with a positive attitude. They were a true team.”

Warren was also an advocate for the sport at the high school level with his wife, Barb, being at the helm of the Oak Park River Forest High School field hockey program for 29 years, before retiring in June 2007.

“On behalf of Oak Park River Forest High School, our deepest sympathy and love go out to Barb Liles and the family of Warren Dorn,” continued Courtney Sakellaris, Oak Park River Forest High School Assistant Athletic Director and Rise Field Hockey Club (Illinois) Founder. “Under her leadership, the field hockey program at OPRF grew to be one of the most successful programs in the state of Illinois.”

There is no doubt that Warren could be spotted in a prime sideline seat during his wife’s tenure and what many other teams will remember most is his unwavering support for all playing.

“I remember Warren not only as our biggest supporter but our biggest fan at games and tournaments, on the field and off,” said Karen Judge, Glenbard West High School’s Varsity Head Coach and former Illinois High School Field Hockey association (IHSFHA) Official. “Every player on the field no matter what team was important to him. He wanted every player to succeed not only on the field but in life.”

Like Sally, Karen too credits Warren for helping her start a new program and said he gave her the support and confidence she needed to get it off the ground.

“His legacy will be played on our fields as we watch the girls playing with the pure joy in their hearts, just as Warren lived his life,” added Karen.

A link to Warren’s obituary can be found by clicking here.

USFHA media release

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