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News for 31 May 2021

All the news for Monday 31 May 2021

2020-21 FIH Pro League (M) - 31 May
Sportcentrum Wilrijkse Plein-Antwerp

30 May 2021     BEL v NED (RR)    0 - 4

Live streaming, live radio commentary and full game replay on the Watch Hockey App (Visuals may be Geo blocked if there is TV coverage)

Pool Standings

Rank Team Played Wins SO Win SO Loss Losses Goals For Goals Against Goal Difference Points Percent
1 Belgium 14 9 2 1 2 40 26 22 32 76.2
2 Germany 10 5 2 0 3 26 23 3 19 63.3
3 India 8 3 3 0 2 22 17 5 15 62.5
4 Netherlands 12 5 2 2 3 32 29 3 21 58.3
5 Australia 8 3 1 3 1 27 20 7 14 58.3
6 Great Britain 12 4 0 3 5 25 25 0 15 41.7
7 New Zealand 8 2 1 0 5 15 25 -10 8 33.3
8 Argentina 12 2 1 3 6 26 35 -9 11 30.6
9 Spain 12 2 1 1 8 23 36 -13 9 25.0

FIH Match Centre

2020-21 FIH Pro League (W) - 31 May
Sportcentrum Wilrijkse Plein-Antwerp

30 May 2021     BEL v NED (RR)   0 - 3

Live streaming, live radio commentary and full game replay on the Watch Hockey App (Visuals may be Geo blocked if there is TV coverage)

Pool Standings

Rank Team Played Wins SO Win SO Loss Losses Goals For Goals Against Goal Difference Points Percent
1 Netherlands 12 9 1 0 1 35 7 28 32 88.9
2 Argentina 10 5 2 0 3 24 15 9 19 63.3
3 New Zealand 8 4 0 2 2 19 14 5 14 58.3
4 Great Britain 12 5 2 1 3 24 14 10 20 55.6
5 Germany 8 4 0 1 3 12 11 1 13 54.2
6 Australia 6 1 1 1 2 6 9 -3 9 50.0
7 Belgium 12 3 1 2 6 19 25 -6 13 36.1
8 China 2 0 0 0 2 2 7 -5 0 0.0
9 United States 10 0 0 0 9 7 46 -39 0 0.0

USA v NED (26.01.2020) worth double points because of the match cancelled on 24.01.2020
AUS v GBR (01.02.2020) worth double points because of the match cancelled on 02.02.2020

FIH Match Centre

Dazzling Dutch double up against Belgium in Antwerp

Image copyright: PHDPH.

The national teams of the Netherlands enjoyed a sensational FIH Hockey Pro League away day in Antwerp, with both the women and the men taking victories over hosts Belgium at the Sportcentrum Wilrijkse Plein on Sunday, the day when the Dutch women and Belgium men were officially crowned League champions.

The Netherlands women marked their second successive FIH Hockey Pro League title by securing a 3-0 triumph over a Red Panthers side that gave a very good account of itself against the top ranked team in world hockey.

The Dutch took a 1-0 lead into half time thanks to a 9th minute goal from Marloes Keetels after excellent build-up play from Frederique Matla, but the Belgians – now coached by Raoul Ehren, the Dutchman who guided Den Bosch women to incredible success both in the Netherlands and Europe – were very much in the contest throughout the opening two quarters. However, the reigning World and European champions were utterly dominant in the third quarter, with Matla’s penalty stroke and a fierce half-volley from Caia van Maasakker putting the result beyond all doubt.

"I think the first quarter was actually quite good and the second quarter a bit less, but the second half was really good", said Netherlands' Malou Pheninckx, who was named Player of the Match. "I think we improved during the game and played really well."

When asked about if she feels her team are ready for the upcoming European Championships on home soil in Amstelveen, Pheninckx said: "I think there is still some steps to make, but I think we are in good shape already. We are really looking forward to it."

Belgium captain Michelle Struijk said: "We are a little bit disappointed, but I think we still did some good things. We can learn a lot from this game, so it is disappointment but also, it's okay. We started really well, had some chances and played some good hockey, so those things are for sure good."

More information can be found by clicking here.

In the men’s match, the Netherlands produced a high-quality display to overpower the reigning World, European and FIH Hockey Pro League champions on their own patch, with Dutch attacker Thierry Brinkman being at the heart of the action. The result gives the Netherlands a huge boost in confidence ahead of the European championships, which the country will host in Amstelveen from 4-12 June.

Brinkman provided assists for the opening two goals, creating a tap-in for Roel Bovendeert in the 18th minute before a wonderful exchange between Brinkman and Mirco Pruijser allowed the latter to put the Dutch int a 2-0 lead at half time. Three minutes after Seve van Ass had scored the Netherlands’ third goal through a penalty corner, Brinkman put the result beyond all doubt when he fired home from close range after fine work from Jeroen Hertzberger.

"I think we had a good day”, said Player of the Match Brinkman. “It is just one game, so it was a good day for us and maybe they did not play their best game. But we are happy with the win, of course. This was our first game after a long period playing with our clubs, so it’s good that we scored four goals against maybe the best team in the world."

Reflecting on the defeat, Belgium captain Thomas Briels said: "It was our first really big game so we were really excited, and it didn't go the way we wanted it to go. For us, its feet on the ground and we learned a lot of lessons today. We have a lot of work to do. We can analyse this game, but I think we need to be sharper and play at 100 percent or else we will lose every game. It was not sharp enough today."

More information can be found by clicking here.

The last remaining games of this season’s FIH Hockey Pro League will be the already confirmed double confrontation between Australia and New Zealand on 26-27 June, in Perth, Australia.

Keep up to date with all the latest news on the FIH Hockey Pro League via the Watch.Hockey app, event website and through FIH social media channels - Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

FIH Hockey Pro League
Sunday 30 May 2021 – Antwerp (BEL)

Belgium 0, Netherlands 3
Player of the Match: Malou Pheninckx (NED)
Umpires: Laurine Delforge (BEL), Celine Martin-Schmets (BEL) and Coen van Bunge (NED - video)

Belgium 0, Netherlands 4
Player of the Match: Thierry Brinkman (NED)
Umpires: Coen van Bunge (NED), Jonas van ‘t Hek (NED) and Laurine Delforge (BEL - video)


Official FIH Pro League Site

Dutch claim two wins as Hockey Pro League champions end season in contrasting fashion

By Liam Morgan

The Netherlands beat Belgium in their final Hockey Pro League match of the season ©Getty Images

Women's Hockey Pro League champions The Netherlands signed off their campaign in style as they beat Belgium in their final game of the season in Antwerp.

The visiting Dutch side, who had secured the Pro League title prior to the game against Belgium, ran out comfortable 3-0 winners at the Sportcentrum Wilrijkse.

The reigning European and world champions took the lead after nine minutes through Marloes Keetels.

Two goals within the space of a minute confirmed the win for the Dutch as Frederique Matla doubled their lead before Caia Van Maasakker converted a penalty corner.

The Netherlands finished a coronavirus-affected season with nine victories from 12 matches.

They have an unassailable lead at the summit of the standings, which are determined by points percentage.

Men's champions Belgium were unable to follow suit as they were comfortably beaten 4-0 by their Dutch opponents in the day's later game.

Roel Bovendeert put the Dutch team in front after 18 minutes before Mirco Pruijser made it 2-0 shortly after.

Seve van Ass all-but ensured maximum points for the visitors with their third early in the second half, before Thierry Brinkman added a fourth three minutes later to condemn Belgium to only their second defeat in regulation time.

The loss marked a disappointing end to a solid campaign from Belgium, the top-ranked men's team in the world and favourites for the gold medal at the delayed Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.

The Netherlands are fourth but could be overtaken by Australia, who have two matches against New Zealand left to play.

Inside the Games

Trans-Tasman series 2021 - 31 May
2021 Test Matches NZL vs AUS (M)
Palmerston North (NZL)

27 May 2021     NZL v AUS   1 - 3
28 May 2021     NZL v AUS   0 - 3
30 May 2021     NZL v AUS   2 - 4
01 Jun 2021 19:30 (GMT +12)     NZL v AUS

2021 Test Matches NZL vs AUS (W)
Palmerston North (NZL)

27 May 2021     NZL v AUS   1 - 1
28 May 2021     NZL v AUS   2 - 2
30 May 2021     NZL v AUS   2 - 2
01 Jun 2021 17:30 (GMT +12)     NZL v AUS

FIH Match Centre

2021 Test Matches BLR v UKR (W)
Brest (BLR)

27 May 2021     BLR v UKR     2 - 0
29 May 2021     BLR v UKR     3 - 2
30 May 2021     BLR v UKR     4 - 3

FIH Match Centre

King Philippe of the Belgians kickstarts Olympic field hockey training

By Maddalena Mastrostefano   

Photo credit: Lars Koopmans CC BY-SA 3.0

On Friday, May 28, King Philippe took part in the kickstarting of the field hockey summer season in preparation for the Tokyo Olympic Games, due to start towards the end of July.

His Majesty gave the symbolic “first bat” on the hockey field to start an intensive training session for the Belgian field hockey teams, called the Red Lions (male team) and the Red Panthers (female team), who entered their final stages of preparation for the European Championships (4-12th of June 2021 in The Netherlands). The European Championships serve as qualification events for the Olympic games in many sports, and field hockey is no exception – depending on how the European Championships go, the Belgian teams will be able to access qualifications for competing in the Tokyo Olympic games the following month.

After watching the training for some time, King Philippe moved to the “Center of Excellence”, a new structure built to serve as headquarters for both national field hockey teams, the Red Lions and the Red Panthers. Before entering the structure itself for a short tour, His Majesty met with a delegation of players from both teams and expressed his best wishes and his admiration for their determination in preparing for such an important competition in such difficult circumstances. King Philippe was seen sporting a business suit and tie, as well as a surgical face mask – a grim reminder of the reason why all these sporting events had to be rescheduled.

The Belgian monarchy has long been vocal in their support of Belgian sport, especially during international competitions, with frequent social media posts praising athletes for participating in major events and winning medals. The institution has also been focused on sports as a way of combatting isolation, bullying and marginalisation, and, thought the years, has launched or sponsored numerous initiatives promoting physical activity in all levels of schools all across Belgium.

Royal Central 

Voting Rights or Wrongs?

On the 18th of May 1860 the United States Republicans voted after a third ballot for Abraham Lincoln to be their Presidential candidate; he would go on to become the United States 16thPresident.

Malaysian Women's team staying safe in the 'kampung'

By Jugjet Singh

National women’s coach Nasihin Nubli. -Bernama Pix

National women's coach Nasihin Nubli is glad his players are still in their hometowns as the country goes under full lockdown tomorrow.

Nasihin had released his charges for Hari Raya, but they have not reported to camp since following the announcement of the Movement Control Order.

"I am glad that my players are at their hometowns. They are with their families," said Nasihin.

Nasihin is preparing his charges for the Junior Asia Cup (JAC) in Japan on Aug 16-22.

The top-three teams will qualify for the Junior World Cup.

"We have a good chance of qualifying for our first-ever Junior World Cup. I believe we can deny one of the traditional teams with this batch of players."

India, China, Malaysia, Japan and South Korea will likely battle for the three World Cup slots in Kakamigahara.

"We initially wanted to play between 15 and 20 matches before the JAC, but it is now impossible due to the pandemic.

"However, the Malaysian Hockey Confederation plan to send us abroad or invite teams here for friendlies when the Covid-19 situation improves.

"The players are now keeping themselves fit via online training," he added.

New Straits Times

Kenya Olympians remember their fallen teammates

Some of the participants in the Olympian memorial, there were several others not inshot when this image was captured

INITIATED by one of the doyens of Kenyan Hockey Olympians, Hilary Fernandes and brought to fruition by Raphael Fernandes and others, a quite remarkable memorial online was held on May 30. I will have a full list of participants when I can get it from the organisers.

There was Reynold D'Souza (UK), Edgar Fernandes (Melbourne), Avtar Singh Sohail (Kenya), Surjit Rihal, Amar Singh, Norman da Costa, Hilary Fernandes, Sylvester (Silu) Fernandes, Raphael Fernandes and others all from Canada, Harvinder Sibio, Jagmel Singh, Manjeet Singh, Jeevan. There was also Ajmal Malik who I remember the old Sir Ali Muslim Club in Nairobi Kenya.

The event was showcased by Dil Bahra who has something of a qualitative Kenya hockey and Sikh hockey historian. Dil presented the complete history of Kenya at the Olympics and captured every dramatic moment with precision. I hope to get a copy and I will share it with you all when I do. You will be amazed how many times Kenya missed out on getting in on a chance for medals by the proverbial hair's breadth. Dil's presentation is in itself the stuff of history and nostalgia. There were lots of contributions of nostalgia from the players who were in the team and even part of a particular moment in hockey history and nostalgia.

It was fitting that Kenya's record-breaking captain and perhaps one of the most respected who played the game, Avtar Singh Sohal, read out the names of his former Olympic colleagues who are no longer with us. However, as each name was read, vivid pictures of each player flashed through our minds. There are many, the familiar, who are with us every day. It was  good to remember those who we were not familiar with but became familiar when their name was read out.

I was humbled to be part of this Zoom effort and play a very minor part in the proceedings.

More soon I hope.

Cyprian Fernandes: Headlines of my life!

Kenya’s double Olympian, Parminder (Kake) Saini passes away - a Covid-19 victim

by Dil Bahra

Parminder Saini in action during Seoul 1988 Olympic Games

Parminder Singh (Kake) Saini who represented Kenya the Los Angeles 1984 and Seoul Olympic Games died in Kisumu yesterday evening (30th May) – a Covid- 19 victim, aged 63.

It died on the same day he was due to join other Kenyan Olympic players at a Zoom get-together. He had confirmed his attendance and was looking towards this event. The sad news of his passing away came four hours after the Zoom conference, attended by some 20 Kenyan Olympians ended.

Randiek Nashon, Chairman,Kenya Hockey Union  said  on hearing the sad news  "Parminder Singh Saini was a great hockey player who represented this country for a long time. On my own behalf and family, Kenya Hockey Union Council, the hockey fraternity, the Olympic family and friends. We extend our sincere condolences to the family and friends”.

Avtar Singh Sohal (Tari), Kenya’s legendary player and coach said on hearing the news “I played and  coached Kaka. He was one of the  Greatest  players of Kenya. He had smile all the time, humble  down to earth and adorable person. We all will miss him especially the hockey fraternity .We have lost great sports personality. May the Almighty rest his soul in eternal peace Heartfelt condolences to the family and friends”

Parminder Singh Saini

Parminder was born on 19 September 1957 in Kisumu, Kenya. He studied at Miwani Primary School, Kisumu and Kisumu Boys High School. He played hockey for Kisumu Boys High School up to 1976.

In 1976 he went to UK for further studies and studied at Langley College, Slough, Berkshire. He joined Slough Hockey Club, one of the top hockey clubs in the country at the time and played for the club’s 1st team until 1979.

Parminder Saini (standing 3rd from right) with Slough Hockey Club team in 1978

He returned to Kenya in 1979 and joined Kisumu Simba Union Club.

He represented Kenya at the six nations tournament in Loisano, Italy where he earned his first international cap when he was selected to play against India on 5 September 1981.

He captained Kenya at the East African Championship in Tanga, Tanzania in 1983.

He played in the test series against India in Kenya and captained the team in the 4th test match in June 1983.

He was selected to represent Kenya at Los Angeles 1984 Olympic Games. He scored two goals against Canada and one goal against U S A at these Olympic Games.

He represented Kenya at the All African Games in Nairobi in August 1987.

He played at the Lada Classic Tournament in Luton, England in August 1988.

He was selected to represent Kenya at Seoul 1988 Olympic Games and played at the Indira Gandhi Memorial Tournaments in India.

He played for Africa in the inaugural Inter-Continent Tournament played in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia in December 1990.

He played his last international match against Zimbabwe in Nairobi on 13 February 1993.
After retiring from playing, he coached Kisumu Simba Union.

He was Manager of Kenya team at the All Africa Games in South Africa in 1999.

He was the vice chairman of Kenya Hockey Union from 2014 to 2015 and was also a technical advisor.

Parminder Singh Saini was born in Kisumu, Kenya and died in Kisumu, Kenya.

Sikhs in Hockey

Kenyan hockey legend 'Kake' dies

Hockey legend Parminder “Kake” Saini at City Park Stadium. He died on May 30, 2021 at a Kisumu hosptial.

Legendary former Kenya hockey international and Olympian, Parminder “Kake” Saini is dead.

Confirming the news, Kenya Hockey Union (KHU) chairman Nahashon Randiek said the 66-year-old took his final bow at a Kisumu hospital after a short illness at 10pm on Sunday.

Randiek said that according to a family member, Kake, who represented Kenya at the 1984 Los Angeles and 1998 Seoul Olympic Games, fell sick on Saturday and his condition worsened on Sunday.

“I have learnt with a heavy heart and sadness the death of Parminder Singh Saini, a great hockey player who represented this country for a long time,” said Randiek.

“On my own behalf, Kenya Hockey Union, the hockey fraternity, and the Olympic family, I do extend our sincere condolences to the family and friends,” explained Randiek.

Kake, who was a KHU technical advisor, is survived by a widow and two children.

Kake, born on September 19, 1957 in Kisumu, studied at Miwani Primary School and later Kisumu Boys High School where he played hockey for the school until 1976.

He moved to the United Kingdom for further studies at Langley College, Slough, Berkshire where he enrolled at Slough Hockey Club, one of the top hockey clubs in the country.
First international cap

He returned to Kenya in 1979 where he joined the defunct Kisumu Simba Union Club.

He was called up to the national team for the Six Nations tournament in Loisano, Italy where he earned his first international cap when he was selected to play against India on September 5, 1981.

Kake captained Kenya at the East African Championship in Tanga, Tanzania in 1983 as well as test series against India

He was selected to represent Kenya at the Los Angeles 1984 Olympic Games, where the team finished eighth overall.

Kake was in the winning team at the All African Games in Nairobi in August 1987 as they qualified for the 1988 Seoul Olympic Games where they settled 12th, the last time Kenya took part at the Games.

Kake also played at the Indira Gandhi Memorial tournaments in India and was in the African team for the inaugural Inter-Continent tournament played in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia in December 1990.

Kake played his last international match against Zimbabwe in Nairobi on February 13, 1993, and would venture into coaching upon retiring. He coached Kisumu Simba Union before been appointed Team Kenya manager at African Games in South Africa in 1999.

He served as KHU vice chairman from 2014 to 2015 and was the Union’s technical advisor until his demise.

Daily Nation

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