News for 17 June 2013

All the news for Monday 17 June 2013


Netherlands tops Group A, Korea's comeback seals second

Quarterfinals set for showdown in Rotterdam on Tuesday


(Photo: Grant Treeby)


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Quarterfinal Games:
New Zealand vs. Japan - 12:30
Germany vs. Chile - 14:30
Korea vs. Belgium - 17:00
Netherlands vs. India - 20:00

GROUP A

The Netherlands – Chile 10-0 (7-0 Halftime)


The Netherlands women have emerged as the winners of Pool A at the Rabobank Hockey World League Semi Final thanks to an emphatic 10-0 victory over Chile. The double Olympic champions were in sparkling form, with Maartje Paumen (3), Sabine Mol (2), Ellen Hoog (2), Kelly Jonker (2) and Eva de Goede getting the goals in the first ever meeting between the two sides.

The result completed the Pool phase of the women’s competition, meaning that the Quarter Final line-up is now confirmed. New Zealand (2nd Pool B) face Japan (3rdPool A), Germany (1st Pool B) play Chile (4th Pool A), Korea (2nd Pool A) battle Belgium (3rd Pool B), and Netherlands (1st Pool A) meet India (4th Pool B). These matches take place on Tuesday June 18th.

The Netherlands started the match on the front foot, pushing their South American opponents deep into their own half and creating a host of good goal-scoring opportunities before the inevitable opener arrived. Sabine Mol was the scorer of the goal, firing home from close range in the tenth minute following a high quality attacking move. That strike opened the floodgates, with the home favourites moving the score from 1-0 to 6-0 in an electrifying 13 minute spell. Eva de Goede sent a rocket of a penalty corner high into the net before Maartje Paumen got in on the act from the penalty spot. Sabine Mol made it 4-0 with a truly sensational reverse stick shot with Paumen completing a first half hat-trick with two terrific penalty corner drag flicks.

The London 2012 Olympic Gold medallists and current world number 1 ranked team were in mesmerising form, delighting the home fans with wave after wave of devastating attacking hockey. They managed to add a seventh ahead of half time thanks to Ellen Hoog, who passed the ball into an open net after Kelly Jonker stole possession from a Chilean defender.

Despite trailing by a large margin, the Chilean team came out for the second half with their heads held high and won their first penalty corner of the match in the 45thminute. However, Netherlands replacement keeper Larissa Meijer produced a smart save to deny Chile a goal against the best team in the world. At the other end, Chile goalkeeper Claudia Schuler produced a number of outstanding saves to deny the Dutch dazzlers, the most memorable of which came from a terrific block from a Paumen penalty corner. Eventually though, more goals arrived when Ellen Hoog thumped home a blistering finish before Kelly Jonker added a quick-fire brace to complete the 10-0 score-line.

Japan – Korea 3-4 (3-1 halftime)

Korea staged a monumental comeback, scoring four unanswered goals to earn a 4-3 win against Japan.

Early on, Japan absolutely owned the game. They scored three goals in a 10 minute span to claim the commanding 3-0 lead. MiYuku Nakagawa deflected in the 1-0 goal in the 15th minute and Japan continued to swarm the Korean net after the marker. A penalty corner goal by captain Rika Komazawa doubled the lead eight minutes later and before the Korean’s had a chance to regroup, Japan marched right back down the field and put in the 3-0 goal.

But like Charles Dickens wrote in A Tale of Two Cities ‘it was the best of times, it was the worse of times,’ and the best of times quickly came to end for Japan as Korea sparked to life.Sun Su Oh sparked the comeback with five minutes left in the first half when a perfectly executed penalty corner deflection left her with a wide open net to make it 3-1 at the break.

The second half belonged to Korea as they continued to patiently chip away at the Japan lead. Mi Hyun Park put in her team’s second penalty corner goal five minutes into the half to pull Korea to within one. Goalkeeper interference led to a penalty stroke chance for Korea 12 minutes later which Young Ran Kim easily fired into the net to knot the game at three.

Japan was clearly tense and rattled by the Korean comeback and played very tentatively after the equalizer and it seemed merely to be a matter of time before Korea would strike again. And sure enough, with just over two minutes left on the clock, Korea was awarded a penalty corner. Hyo Ju An did the honors for Korea, giving them their first lead of the game with 1:30 remaining in the game, finishing the amazing comeback and giving Korea the key three points on the last day of round robin action.

FIH site



Germany wins Preliminary Round Group B

New Zealand seals second place with 4-2 win vs. Belgium



Germany is the numero uno team out of Pool B (Photo: Grant Treeby)

Follow us live on the FIH You Tube Page or on Twitter @FIH_Hockey.

Quarterfinal Games:
New Zealand vs. Japan - 12:30
Germany vs. Chile - 14:30
Korea vs. Belgium - 17:00
Netherlands vs. India - 20:00

GROUP B

India – Germany 1-7 (0-3 halftime)


Germany sealed first place in Group B at the Rabobank Hockey World League Semi-Finals after earning their third straight win of the event. The Germans had little difficulty with India, netting the 7-1 victory.

Germany will play Chile in Tuesday’s quarterfinal game – one that could have major implications in the 2014 World Cup Qualification. The top three teams from this Semi-Final tournament will be automatically qualified for the World Cup in The Hague. Additional teams may also make the cut later in the season, depending on how the Continental Championships pan out. But making the top four in this event is a major step towards going to the World Cup.

The Germans owned a 3-0 lead by the end of the first half on the strength of goals from Maike Stöckel Müller and Janne Müller-Wieland and Marie Mavers. Mavers goal was an amazing last-second knock in and was truly a knock-out blow for the Indians with one second remaining in the half.

Germany continued to roll in the second half, pouring in another three goals in a 10-minute span. Stöckel scored her second of the game in the 44th minute. Jennifer Plass and Lydia Haase followed suite giving the Germans a solid 6-1 lead. The bonus goal came three minutes before the end of the game as Hannah Krüger put in a penalty corner goal to bring the final to a lopsided 7-1.

Germany has tomorrow off before the key quarterfinal game against Chile. Meanwhile, India will likely finish in last place in the group and will have a tough test against either Korea or the Netherlands in Tuesday’s quarterfinal.

New Zealand – Belgium 4-2 (3-0 halftime)

New Zealand sealed up second place in Group B after a clear 4-2 win over Belgium. The win means that the Black Sticks will meet Japan in Tuesday’s quarterfinal. The loss gives Belgium third place in the group.

New Zealand was clearly the better team in the meeting, but it took them awhile to find their scoring touch. But once they broke the silence, the floodgates opened as they poured in three goals in an eight minute span.

The goals came in wide array of forms. Krystal Forgesson scored the key first goal in the 21st minutes with a deflection effort. Captain Kayla Sharland doubled the lead when New Zealand was awarded a penalty stroke after the ball went into the goal off of a player’s foot. Rounding out the eight-minute flurry was Gemma Flynn with a penalty corner deflection. The 3-0 lead stood at the break.

New Zealand picked up right where they left off in the second half, scoring the 4-0 goal just three minutes into the half with a Katie Glynn penalty corner flick. After the goal, New Zealand eased up a bit assured in the knowledge that they had most likely clinched second place in the group.

Belgium snuck into the game a bit with 18 minutes left when Louise Versavel scored a point blank goal to pull Belgium to within three. A second goal came on a nice fake with three minutes left in the game to cut the lead in half. The goals served mostly window dressing in the final scoreline as New Zealand was far too strong for Belgium to consider a comeback.

FIH site



Stella Bartlema joins elite Golden Whistle Club

Dutch official hits the 100 mark for international games



Stella Bartlema accepts her Golden Whistle from Tournament Director Sheila Brown (Photo: Frank Uijlenbroek)

The FIH’s Golden Whistle club added a new member today when Dutch umpire Stella Bartlema was honoured for umpiring her 100th international match.

Bartlema was presented with her golden whistle before the start of the New Zealand vs. Belgium game by tournament Tournament Director Shelia Brown.

Bartlema started her international umpiring career on January 14th, 2003. She was named an International Grade 1 umpire in June 2006 and moved up to the World Panel on November of 2010. In total, she has officiated 120 international games, with 20 junior games also to her credit.

Her career highlights include umpiring at two Olympics Games (Beijing and London), one World Cup in Roasrio, Argentina in 2010 and one Champions Trophy in Amstelveen, Netherlands in 2011.

Bartlema becomes the 32nd women’s umpire to receive a Golden Whistle and the fourth Dutch female umpire to earn the honor. She joins Loekie Rogge (1984), Mirjam van Gemert (2000) and Renee Coehn (2003).

Congratulations to Stella on this outstanding achievement !

FIH site



Black Sticks Women win 4-2 and face Japan



Photo courtesy of photosport.co.nz

The Black Sticks Women have continued their strong form at the World League Semi Final in Rotterdam, winning 4-2 against Belgium in their final pool game this morning (NZ time).

The Kiwis made their mark early on thanks to first half goals from Krystal Forgesson, Kayla Sharland and Gemma Flynn followed by a goal from Katie Glynn shortly after the break. Today’s result means the Black Sticks will now play Japan (who finished third in Pool A) in the do-or-die cross over match at 12.30am this Wednesday morning.

“I thought we played a very good 55 minutes, but the last part of the game was a bit scrappy. Compared to the game against Germany, we were probably a bit more aggressive, we took the game to them, whereas against Germany we were on the back foot and more hesitant,’ says head coach Mark Hager.

Late in the second half Hager made two changes in defence, Sharland came off with 15 minutes to go and Sally Rutherford replaced Bianca Russell in goal.

“We didn’t cope so well when Kayla came off, it is important the players learn from that and cope better.  And we wanted to give Sally some game time in goal, it is important that our second keeper is prepared and ready,” says Hager.

The Black Sticks are already looking ahead to their must win quarter-final game against Japan.

“We will do our homework tonight and tomorrow, we have some time to prepare. We actually had a practice game against Japan pre-tournament. They play a slightly different type of defence to what we are used to, so we will have a strategy to counter that,” says Hager.

In the first half of tonight’s game, the statistics told the story with the Kiwis having 11 shots on goal compared to the Belgians who didn’t fire a strike.

New Zealand were composed on attack with Anita Punt showing her speed and working seamlessly with the strikers up front.  Defensively the Black Sticks were uncompromising, with co-captain Sharland leading the way and denying the Europeans any chance to score in the first 35 minutes.

The first goal came when Flynn picked up the ball from a goalmouth scramble and passed to Forgesson who was perfectly positioned to find the back of the net.  New Zealand kept the pressure on and in the 25th minute they received a penalty stroke which Sharland belted home. The fourth penalty corner for New Zealand went the Kiwis way when Glynn dragflicked to Flynn who was waiting on the post and calmly deflected it in.

A comfortable 3-0 lead stretched one further three minutes into the second half when Glynn, who had assisted with the first half goals, got one of her own when she converted a penalty corner with a precise and powerful dragflick.

To the delight of the crowd, the Belgians were stronger in the final quarter with Louise Versavel getting the first and Erica Coppey finding space in the circle to knock home the second.

Although New Zealand weren’t as disciplined in the second half, it was too little too late for the Europeans and the Kiwis first half success secured them the three points.

In the other game, Germany finished top of Pool B beating India 7-1 yesterday (NZ time) and will face Chile. Earlier in the week, the Black Sticks Women won 7-0 against India in the opener and lost 3-2 to Germany.

Next up, the Black Sticks Men play their third and final pool game against India at 3am Tuesday morning (NZ time) before heading into a do-or-die cross-over playoff.

The top three teams from the World League Semi-Final automatically qualify for the 2014 Hockey World Cup, although it is possible to earn qualification at the tournament with a lower ranking.  New Zealand will also have a chance to qualify at the Oceania Cup in Taranaki this October.

RESULTS
New Zealand 4 (Krystal Forgesson, Kayla Sharland, Gemma Flynn, Katie Glynn), Belgium 2 (Louise Versavel, Erica Coppey) HT: 3-0.

Hockey New Zealand Media release



Black Sticks beat Belgium


Gemma Flynn scored as the Black Sticks beat Belgium 4-2. Photo / Bay of Plenty Times

New Zealand finished second in their pool group at the World League semifinal tournament with a 4-2 win over Belgium in Rotterdam today.

First half goals from Krystal Forgesson, Kayla Sharland, with a penalty stroke, and Gemma Flynn put the Black Sticks in charge in a period in which New Zealand had 11 shots on goal to none from the Belgians.

Katie Glynn made it four early in the second half before Belgium picked up two goals in the final quarter from Louise Versavel and Erica Coppey as the Black Sticks lost their shape.

The result leaves world No 3 New Zealand to play Japan, who finished third in Pool A early on Wednesday morning in their must-win crossover game to keep alive their ambition of progressing to the finals in Argentina in December.

"I thought we played a very good 55 minutes, but the last part of the game was a bit scrappy," coach Mark Hager said.

''Compared to the game against Germany, we were probably a bit more aggressive, we took the game to them, whereas against Germany we were on the back foot and more hesitant,"

Germany topped pool B after beating India 7-1 and play Chile.

In the other games on Wednesday, Korea play Belgium and the Netherlands meet India.

The top three teams are guaranteed to progress to the final tournament.

The men's Black Sticks play India in their final group game early tomorrow.

The New Zealand Herald



Black Sticks to face Japan

The New Zealand women's hockey team will play Japan in the quarterfinals of the World League tournament in Rotterdam after finishing second in their pool.

The Blacks Sticks beat Belgium 4-2 today (NZT), completing their second win from three pool matches. They opened with a 7-0 win over India but lost 3-2 to Germany, who topped pool B.

Today's result means the Black Sticks will play Japan, who finished third in pool A, in the sudden death cross-over match on Wednesday morning (12.30am NZT).

The Kiwis made their mark early against Belgium thanks to first half goals from Krystal Forgesson, Kayla Sharland and Gemma Flynn followed by a goal from Katie Glynn shortly after the break. Belgium finished strongly with two goals but the result was never in doubt.

"I thought we played a very good 55 minutes, but the last part of the game was a bit scrappy. Compared to the game against Germany, we were probably a bit more aggressive, we took the game to them, whereas against Germany we were on the back foot and more hesitant,'' said coach Mark Hager, who has already started his homework on Japan.

''We have some time to prepare. We actually had a practice game against Japan pre-tournament. They play a slightly different type of defence to what we are used to, so we will have a strategy to counter that.''

Germany finished top of pool B after beating India 7-1 and will face Chile in the quarterfinals. The top three teams from the World League semifinal in Rotterdam automatically qualify for the next year's World Cup, though it is possible to earn qualification at the tournament with a lower ranking.

New Zealand will also have a chance to qualify at the Oceania Cup in Taranaki in October.

The men's Black Sticks play their third and final pool game against India tomorrow morning (NZT) before heading into a cross-over playoff.

Result: New Zealand 4 (Krystal Forgesson, Kayla Sharland, Gemma Flynn, Katie Glynn), Belgium 2 (Louise Versavel, Erica Coppey) HT: 3-0.

Stuff



Indian women thrashed 1-7 by Germany


ROTTERDAM: India suffered a humiliating 1-7 thrashing at the hands of Germany to end their pool engagements on a disappointing note in the women's competition of the FIH World League Round 3 on Sunday.

The fitter and faster Germans completely dominated the match with the Indians left to defend their citadel in their own half for most part of their last Pool B match.

The Indian backline had a busy day in office as they had to defend the rampaging Germans who combined well and changed flanks in great pace to unsettle their opponents.

Janne Muller-Wieland (14th), Maike Stockel (22nd and 44th), Marie Mavers (35th), Jennifer Plass (49th), Lydia Haase (54th) and Hannah Kruger (67th) scored for Germany.

Vandana Katariya scored the lone goal for India in the 43rd minute.

Fifth-ranked Germany got five penalty corners from which they converted two. India, ranked 12th, got two penalty corners which they could not convert to any goal.

With today's loss, their second in the group stage, India ended the pool phase with one point which they earned from their 1-1 draw against Belgium. Germany topped Pool B with nine points with an all-win record.

The Ritu Rani-led side are likely to play against Pool A topper or runners-up in the knock-out phase which begins on Tuesday. All the eight teams -- four each in the two pools -- will still play in the quarterfinal phase as the preliminary matches are only meant to decide who plays whom in the knock-out stage.

The last-place team of one pool plays the topper of the other pool and so on.

As early as the sixth minute, Germany sounded the Indian board but the goal was disallowed after India asked for a review on the ground of dangerous play.

Germany got the first penalty corner in the 10th minute and Indian goalkeeper Savita made a brilliant save diving to her right.

Four minutes later, Germany surged ahead from the second penalty corner with Janne Muller-Wieland finding the target from an angular shot.

Germany doubled the lead in the 22nd minute with Maike Stockel slamming home by connecting a low cross from the left.

India got a chance to score in the 20th minute but Mayengbam Lily Chanu's angular shot was saved by the German goalkeeper.

Germany made it 3-0 at the stroke of half-time, with Marie Mavers, who was a constant threat to Indian defence, tapping the ball into an empty Indian goal after being nicely set up by Kristina Hillmann.

India pulled one back with a fine goal in the 43rd minute from their first penalty corner. Vandana Katariya made a fine deflection off a penalty corner variation.

Germany replied immediately with a goal in the next minute with Maike Stockel scoring his second goal after she was left to take the strike inside the circle.

Germany made it 5-1 in the 49th minute from their fourth penalty corner with Jennifer Plass slamming the ball home with a reverse flick after Indian goalkeeper was left stranded.

Lydia Haase made it 6-1 with a perfect finish off a spadework from Teschke Jana before Hannah Kruger found the target off her drag-flick from the fifth penalty corner of the Germans.

The Times of India



New Zealand test awaits mediocre India

ROTTERDAM: A mediocre India will have to plug in the loopholes in defence as well as improve their finishing as they take on New Zealand in their last FIH World League Round 3 group match against New Zealand on Monday.

After missing out on a point against Ireland in their tournament-opener, followed by yesterday's 0-2 reverse to the Netherlands, the Indians have already jeopardised their chance of sealing one of the three berths up for grabs in next year's World Cup.

But a win against New Zealand will no doubt be a confidence booster for Michael Nobbs' boys ahead of the quarterfinals.

Before the Netherlands test, India were held to a 4-4 draw by lower-ranked Ireland.

Considered a perennial problem, the defence hurt India against the Irish. They looked a shade better against world number 3, the Netherlands, but the strikers let them down against the current Olympic silver medallists.

In their first match, there was clear lack of co-ordination between Indian mid-fielders and the forwardline and they were also guilty of giving away the ball easily to their opponents.

Against the Netherlands, they struggled to come to terms with the speed of the Dutch players. The Indians did grow in confidence as the match progressed, but luck did not smile on them. To add to that, the strikers' lack of discretion upfront also did not help India's cause.

New Zealand, on the other hand, overcame a stern challenge to emerge victorious against Ireland in their last match.

One India player who just about managed to stand tall amid the mediocrity during the Netherlands match, was PR Sreejesh, who effected a couple of good saves.

Drag-flicker Rupinderpal Singh would look to convert the penalty corners while skipper Sardar Singh will again be the fulcrum in the mid-field. It will serve India much better if Sardar gets support from the other players.

Akashdeep Singh and the experienced Shivendra Singh will need to be more opportunistic upfront.

With his threatening long runs, SV Sunil will look to deliver the crosses from the flanks.

A good news for India is that goalkeeper Sreejesh, who was carried off the field following a collision with Ireland striker Andrew McConnell in the last six minutes of their first match, looked in good health against the Dutch.

The Times of India



Jamie Dwyer challenges youngsters: do your best to take my place

JAMIE Dwyer does not intend to go quietly.

by Nicole Jeffery


At 34, he is two games away from becoming only the third Australian to play 300 Tests for his country. The milestone should come in the Kookaburras' sudden-death World League quarter-final in Rotterdam on Wednesday, which has forced Dwyer to reflect on his career, if only for interviews like this.

But when asked if he would have been tempted to retire if the Kookaburras had won the gold medal in London last year, he responds with a firm: "No."

Dwyer, who was devastated after watching his team's chance of a second gold medal slip away in 20 devastating minutes against Germany in the Olympic semi-final, wasn't thinking about retirement then, and he isn't now.

The five-times world player of the year is content to wait for a tap on the shoulder to tell him he's no longer good enough for international hockey, but until that moment he intends to fight to his last tomahawk pass for his place in the national team.

The bad news for the next generation is that they will have to wrestle his place from him.

"I want them to pass me," he said. "If they are good enough to kick me out, I will stand aside."

Given his sublime stick skills, that will not be an easy task. Dwyer has accumulated every honour in the sport since making his Test debut in May 2001.

He has won Olympic, World Cup and Commonwealth Games gold medals and scored 186 goals for his country, including the one that ended a half-century of Olympic heartbreak for the Kookaburras in Athens in 2004, still his favourite moment.

With his eye already set on next year's World Cup, he should sail past Jay Stacy's record of 321 appearances for Australia. Even the 2016 Rio Games is "not impossible".

"I think if you are good enough to get in the team, you should be there," Dwyer said.

He can see no drop-off in his performance level so far.

"At 33, I thought I played just as well at the last Olympic Games and World Cup as I did at the others and I want the same thing for next year's World Cup," he said.

The concessions he has made to his ageing legs are in the areas of preparation and recovery.

"I know I can't play consistently all year at that level but I want to be able to perform at the major tournaments," he said.

"I manage my workload through the training week and I take a couple of weeks off when I need it. We train three heavy sessions a week and I sit out one of those sessions and jump on the bike. It's hard because I like being out there but I did that last year and it didn't affect my play."

He believes his 68kg physique is helping to extend his longevity, but admits he is working harder than ever to keep his body in shape. "The work on the field, that's the same. It's stuff like diet that's changed.

"I hardly touch alcohol these days. I do yoga, pilates, stretching, I do that religiously so when I am on the pitch I can play 100 per cent with no loss of speed or fitness. I wish I had have known this stuff when I was 21-22, not to go out and have a big night and not to eat junk food."

This year he joined fellow Perth identities Eamon Sullivan and Steve Hooker in opening a restaurant, Bib N Tucker, and launched a line of hockey sticks -- JDH (Jamie Dwyer Hockey), taking ideas from both golf and tennis technology in the design.

But aside from his family, his country remains his priority. "I just want to keep playing for Australia, I want success in major tournaments," he said.

The Australian



Aussies unimpressed with anthem mix-up

STACEY KIRK


Never has the New Zealand national anthem sounded so good.

When it's backed by a number of Australian faces with expressions of outrage, it's truly a sweet moment for the record books.

And when the Australian men's hockey team was forced to listen to most of our anthem ahead of  their opening Hockey World League match with Belgium in the Netherlands last week, they were unimpressed.

They were even less impressed when they lost 3-1 in a shock upset.

Commentators were quick to pick up on the gaffe by organisers, but it wasn't until the Maori verse had all but finished that organisers realised their mistake.

The stadium announcer then apologised and the correct anthem was played.

"Our apologies on behalf of this organisation, this was the New Zealand anthem," the announcer said.

Stuff



SA hockey women beat Scotland

Goals from Pietie Coetzee (2), Kelly Madsen, Tarryn Bright and Lilian du Plessis ensured a 5-2 win for the Investec South Africa women's hockey team in the third of four internationals against Scotland in Edinburgh Sunday.

Scotland scored through Nikki Kidd and Holly Cram.

SA led 4-1 at half-time.

SA now lead the series 2-1.

The fourth international is on Tuesday.

SA Hockey Association media release



South Africa set-back for Scotland Women

Scotland Women went 2-1 down in the four match international series against South Africa following a 5-2 defeat at Peffermill earlier today.

A dominant first half display from the South Africans, including goals for Kelly Madsen, Tarryn Bright, and a double for Pietie Coetzee, was the difference between the two sides. There was a beacon of hope when Nikki Kidd and Holly Cram pulled the score back to 4-2, but Bright’s second goal of the game ensured the visitors closed out the contest.

It was the home side who engineered the first opportunity when Ali Bell found herself in a one-on-one situation with South African goalkeeper Sanani Mangisa. The shot-stopper was alert to the Grove Menzieshill striker’s intentions though and thrust out a strong stop with her stick to clear the ball as Bell tried to round her.

The visitors responded to Scotland’s early overtures with the opening goal in the fourth minute. Clever play by Kelly Madsen enabled the midfielder to create space inside the circle, where she dispatched a low shot into the corner past Scotland goalkeeper Amy Gibson for a 1-0 lead.

South Africa continued to pile pressure on the Scottish defence in the opening exchanges and create chances; a great save from Gibson with an outstretched stick denied Shelley Russell, a crucial interception was made by Cat Ralph as Pietie Coetzee lurked at the back post ready to take advantage of a dangerous cross from the right, and Gibson was called upon again to make a good stop from Jade Mayne's hit.

However, they were not to be denied a second goal for much longer and in the 14th minute, South Africa were awarded a penalty corner for a foul on Madsen. Coetzee stepped up to rattle home another drag-flick from the set-piece and double the advantage to 2-0.

A minute later, a fantastic save from Gibson denied Coetzee from another penalty corner and the Milne Craig Clydesdale Western goalie followed up with a fine block from Madsen to keep the scoreline at 2-0.

Scotland responded by creating two opportunities; in the 19th minute there was a great attempt by Holly Cram to deflect Susan McGilveray's pass on target but Mangisa produced a fine save to deny the Scots, while in the 22nd minute good play from debutant Kirsten McIntosh and Nicola Skrastin found Ailsa Wyllie in the circle but again Mangisa was off her line early to close the shot down.

In the 24th minute, the game was effectively put beyond Scotland when Tarryn Bright extended the lead to 3-0 with a low drive into the right hand corner of the goal from a penalty corner.

With the first half coming to a close, there were two goals from penalty corners. In the 34th minute, Coetzee demonstrated her class once again with a fine drag-flick that found the left hand corner of the goal, before Nikki Kidd pulled one back for Gordon Shepherd's side right on the half-time hooter with an excellent strike to give the Scots some hope as the teams went into half-time with South Africa 4-1 up.

Following the re-start, Mayne had an early second half opportunity for the visiting side but her snap-shot was blocked by Gibson. Chances also fell for Dirkie Chamberlain and Quanita Bobbs before Gibson denied Mayne again with a brilliant save to stop her reverse-stick flick finding the top corner of the goal.

Amy Brodie then had two chances in the space of four minutes to find a second Scotland goal; the first, a great ball from Vikki Bunce to play in the CALA Edinburgh midfielder inside the right of the circle but the subsequent shot was off-target, the second was the result of Kidd and Bunce working an excellent exchange of passes to Brodie but her stick deflection was easily saved by Mangisa.

Nevertheless, the national side continued to pressure their opponents and were rewarded when Ali Howie was fouled to present a penalty corner chance in the 56th minute.

An excellent Scottish set-play saw Cram inject the ball to find Bunce, who returned the pass to her team-mate and she reduced the deficit to two goals with a smart finish past Mangisa.

Despite a much improved second half performance, hopes of a great Scottish comeback were dashed in the 63rd minute when Bright got her second goal of the game with a deft flick past Gibson to give the South Africans a 5-2 win and put them 2-1 up in the series.

The two sides will play the final match of the series on Tuesday (2pm) at Peffermill.

FT: Scotland (Kidd 35', Cram 56') 2-5 South Africa (Madsen 4', Coetzee 15', 34', Bright 24', 63')

Scotland Women: Amy Gibson, Nicki Cochrane, Vikki Bunce, Ali Bell, Cat Ralph, Sam Judge, Holly Cram, Ailsa Wyllie, Kareena Marshall, Becky Merchant, Nikki Kidd, Susan McGilveray, Ali Howie, Nicola Skrastin, Amy Brodie, Sarah Robertson, Morag McLellan, Kirsten McIntosh.

Scottish Hockey Union media release



Scotland cruise to win over Wales

Scotland Men made it two wins from two matches against Wales this weekend with a comprehensive 4-1 win at Peffermill today.

Debutant Paul Martin, Grove Menzieshill club team-mate Gavin Byers, Derek Salmond and Ian Moodie were the goalscorers for Derek Forsyth’s side. Gareth Furlong got the solitary Welsh goal.

It was Wales who had the early chances in the contest; Joe Naughalty found space inside the circle in the opening minute but his shot did not have enough power to trouble Scotland goalkeeper David Forrester, and Lewis Prosser flashed a dangerous pass across the face of goal only for his team-mates to be found wanting in support.

Scotland striker Kenny Bain, winning his 100th international cap today, then had a chance in the seventh minute but his attempt to round Wales’ goalkeeper Iwan Williams was foiled by the shot-stopper.

However, the Scots were not to be denied four minutes later when Paul Martin deflected Gavin Byers’ ferocious cross past Williams to break the deadlock and give his side a 1-0 advantage in the 11th minute.

Wales hit back in the 18th minute when they were awarded a penalty corner and Gareth Furlong made no mistake from the set-play, lashing the ball past Forrester to put the visitors back on level terms at 1-1.

Bain then saw his penalty corner attempt deflected over the crossbar in the 19th minute before an almighty stramash ensued in the Wales’ circle as Scotland’s attackers desperately tried to force home a second goal, only for the Welsh defence to stand resolute and clear the ball.

Nevertheless, the Scots went back in front when Martin stole a loose ball in midfield and advanced to shoot inside the circle. His shot was mis-read by Williams, the Welsh ‘keeper allowing the ball to bypass him and Byers was on hand to ensure the ball crossed the line for a 2-1 lead in the 29th minute.

Scotland took the narrow advantage into the half-time break and it was Wales displayed their intent to seek another equaliser shortly after the interval when Luke Hawker saw his shot from a narrow angle fire across the face of Forrester’s goal.

Chris Grassick earned Scotland a penalty corner in the 41st minute and Williams made a great save high to his right to palm away Bain's drag-flick.

However, the Wales number one could do nothing to prevent the third Scottish goal shortly afterwards when great play from Byers to beat two defenders and find Bain in space on the right of the circle led to the THC Hurley striker measuring an inch-perfect pass to the incoming Derek Salmond, who coolly slotted the ball home to put his side 3-1 up in the 44th minute.

Williams then made two fantastic blocks from Bain and Martin before the home side put the game out of sight in the 53rd minute when Ian Moodie turned home a cross at the back post to make it 4-1.

Chances fell to Wales’ Brignull and Hawker, and Scotland’s Salmond was denied a second goal, as the match entered the closing stages.

Right at the death, Forrester made an unbelievable double save to deny Wales a second goal and ensure Scotland were left celebrating a 4-1 win at full-time.

Scotland (Martin 11', Byers 29', Salmond 44', Moodie.I 53' ) 4-1 Wales (Furlong 18')

Scotland Men: David Forrester, Gavin Sommerville, Graham Moodie, Chris Duncan, Paul Martin, Russell Anderson, Ian Moodie, Kenny Bain, Ian Scholefield (C), Wei Adams, Callum Duke, Ross Stott, Chris Grassick, Gavin Byers, Nick Parkes, Derek Salmond, Callum Duke, Gordon McIntyre.

Scottish Hockey Union media release



Mixed results for Scotland at Peffermill

Mixed fortunes for Scotland`s sides in the early stages of their preparation for the European Nations Championships later this summer, the men beat Wales 2-1 but the women were on the wrong end of a 4-1 reversal at the hands of world number 11 South Africa at Peffermill.

Scotland 1-4 South Africa

Pietie Coetzee, the world`s leading goal scorer, was the hammer of the Scots as her first half-hat trick was the catalyst in South Africa`s 4-1 victory over Scotland in the second test match

Coetzee struck in the opening five minutes, the Scottish defence were caught napping and the South African had little trouble in finding the net from close range.  The game almost looked over as a contest when Coetzee made it 2-0 with a direct strike at a penalty corner.

The Scots finally got their way back into the contest, Catriona Ralph`s strike at a set piece rebounded to Nicola Skrastin who poked the ball past the goalkeeper to pull one back.

However Coetzee made it 3-1 from another penalty corner flick that flew past Nicki Cochrane.

Towards the end of the half the Scots had chances to get back into the contest, Nikki Lloyd ran into the circle but then shot wide of the target, then at a penalty corner Nikki Kidd`s drag flick was blocked by the goalkeeper.

At the start of the second half Kareena Marshall had a role to play at both ends, at a Scotland penalty corner the ball was switched to the Giffnock player but her shot was saved by the South African goalkeeper.

Then, at the other end, Marshall kept the Scotland goal in tact with two brilliant goal-line saves to prevent South African increasing their lead.

Kidd had another chance to bring the Scots back into the contest but her flick was deflected to safety by a South African defender.

But with ten minutes remaining South Africa added their fourth, Lilian du Plessis was given too much room and found the target with a fierce reverse stick shot.  Coetzee had a chance to add another goal to her tally at a late penalty corner but her effort was well saved by Cochrane in the Scotland goal.

Scotland 2-1 Wales

In a tentative first 15 minutes against Wales  a Kenny Bain flashing shot that went wide of the target was the only excitement.

The Scots then took full advantage of uncertainty in the Welsh defence, the loose ball fell to Ian Moodie who found the net to put the Scots ahead.

In the 25th minute, the Scots doubled their tally, Bain's rocket shot cannoned off the bar, the ball fortunately fell to Gordon McIntyre who promptly stroked the ball home.   With Derek Forsyth`s charges in control, the Welsh sneaked a goal back with a set piece strike by Gareth Furlong.

Wales took the initiative after the interval with four penalty corners, but the Scots survived and could have increased their lead, a Gavin Byers shot came back off the post while a Wei Adams set piece was blocked by the goalkeeper.

There was no further scoring, but Bain and Moodie did create scoring chances while at the other end Gavin Sommerville produced a few crucial saves to prevent a Welsh equaliser.

Scottish Hockey Union media release



England record victory over Olympic Champions


Mark Gleghorne in action for England NOW Pensions

As England men continue their preparation for their World League Semi Final in Malaysia at the end of the month they have been action against Germany this week. The mini-series, which saw two fixtures played in Manheim, ended in a tie with both sides recording victories.

Newcomers to the squad Loughborough Students’ Henry Weir and Reading’s Tom Carson recorded their first senior international goals, whilst East Grinstead’s Mark Gleghorne was on target twice today to help England record a noteworthy 3-2 victory over the 2012 Olympic Champions.

The squad had a number of changes from the one who faced Belgium last week. East Grinstead’s Ashley Jackson stayed at home as he continues to recover from an ankle injury and Beeston’s Ben Arnold was rested after being unwell. Racing Club Brussels’ (BEL) Richard Smith has recovered from a fractured thumb and replaced ex club teammate Loughborough Students’ Andy Bull in defence. Reading’s Nick Catlin did not play in the second game as a precaution following an infection to a knee wound.

Match one, Saturday 15 June, 10:30 UK time, Manheim

GERMANY 5 (2)

Stralkowski 17, 51 (FG, PC)
Miltkau 34 (FG)
C Zeller 41 (PS)
Korn 49 (PC)                                                               

ENGLAND 2 (1)
Carson 16, 40 (PC, FG)

Despite losing the opening match 5-2 to the number one side in the world (FIH rankings), England Head Coach Bobby Crutchley is pleased with the progress his side is making, “This was a much improved performance after our trip to Belgium and I’m pleased with many aspects of our play. We showed a lot more fight and tenacity in the important areas of the pitch.”

Carson found the target twice to record his first senior international goals. A strong drag flick in the 16th minute found its way past Jacobi, despite the German goalkeeper initially getting a glove to it.  The Reading forward doubled his tally in the second half with a great finish off a cross from the right from club teammate Simon Mantell. Carson managed to get into the circle ahead of Max Muller and deflected the ball past Jacobi at the near post.

Match two, Sunday 16 June, 11:00 UK time, Manheim

GERMANY 2 (2)

C Zeller 19, 34 (PC, PC)

ENGLAND 3 (2)
Gleghorne 1, 15 (FG, PS)                                                         
Weir 61 (PC)                                                                

England regrouped following the 5-2 loss and couldn’t have wished for a better start to the second game as they found the target inside the first minute. A good move down the right saw a pinpoint cross from Mantell hit behind the defenders which Gleghorne, at full dive, managed to slot home on the reverse from about 2 yards out.

15 minutes later Gleghorne was back on target again to make it 2-0. This time his effort was a penalty stroke following a stick tackle on Weir inside the circle. As you would expect from the number one side in the world Germany did hit back and put England under pressure in the lead up to half time. Christopher Zeller found a way past Beeston’s George Pinner in goal twice, despite the Beeston keeper’s best efforts to keep the ball out.

England continued to look bright in the second half with a much improved defensive and attacking set-up. Although Germany enjoyed the majority of possession they were not able to break through the visitors back line and England continued to look threatening on the attack.

With nine minutes remaining, England’s second penalty corner of the game saw Smith’s effort initially saved, but in the ensuing scramble the ball looped up and Weir made contact to put the ball into the back of net to take the 3-2 victory.

Speaking after the game Head Coach Bobby Crutchley said, “Although I felt we played better yesterday we stuck to the task well today, showed more solidity at the back and made good use of our possession in the attacking third. The win here is just reward for a good squad effort and is an ideal boost ahead of the World League Semi Final in Malaysia at the end of this month.”

Speaking after the weekend’s results, goal scorer and newcomer to the squad Tom Carson said, “We played well across both matches this weekend and we were just unlucky to concede at the wrong times yesterday. We regrouped last night and we knew exactly what we needed to change today and I think the result shows that we did that well. It’s a great confidence boost to get a victory over a side like Germany before we head out to Malaysia. I was really pleased to register my first couple of goals and it’s always extra special to get one from a drag [flick].”

England fly out to Malaysia on Wednesday to continue their preparation for the World League Semi Final which runs from 29 June – 7 July. All England’s matches will be streamed live through the FIH’s You Tube channel. Click here to find out more.

Follow England on Twitter  #NOWhockey.

Germany v England Squad
George Pinner – Beeston – Goalkeeper
Oliver Willars – Beeston – Defender
Michael Hoare – Beeston – Defender
Adam Dixon – Beeston – Midfielder/Defender
Dan Fox – Hampstead & Westminster – Defender
Simon Mantell – Reading – Forward
Harry Martin – Beeston – Midfielder
Nick Catlin – Reading – Midfielder/Forward
Tom Carson – Reading – Forward
Barry Middleton – Holcombe – Midfielder
Darren Cheesman – Reading – Forward
Mark Gleghorne – East Grinstead – Forward
Henry Weir – Loughborough Students – Defender
David Condon – Loughborough Students – Midfielder
Phil Roper – Sheffield Hallam – Forward
Dan Shingles – Southgate – Midfielder
Richard Smith – Racing Club Brussels (BEL) - Defender

Did not play
James Bailey – Reading – Goalkeeper

England Hockey Board Media release



Canadian Senior Nationals Day Four

The finals are set after another day of world class hockey!




Game 13: Canada U21 vs. Alberta 10-0 (6-0)

The Canadian juniors cruised past the Alberta side, scoring in the 3rd, 4th, 5th and 6th minute of play. Forward Stephanie Norlander notched a hat trick within the first 24 minutes of play, while Holly Stewart picked up one of her own by the end of 70 minutes. The Canadian juniors dominated in possession and found ease entering the circle.

Despite the scoreline, Alberta's Burgundy Biletski was an anchor for defence line that had some solid play from centre defender Brittany Seidler. In the second half, Canada continued to move the ball around well and found the back of the net four times on two field goals, a penalty stroke by Jess Buttinger and a low drag flick from Sophia Walia. The final score of 10-0 put the Canadian side at the top of the pool-play standings and automatically into the gold-medal game.

Game 14: British Columbia vs. Ontario 5-1 (1-1)

Team BC was regrouping after suffering their first loss just a day prior to the Canadian junior team. BC set the pace of the game immediately, entering the circle and earning their first short corner in the opening minute of play. BC was unable to capitalize but continued to dominate in possession. Ontario's Kaelan Watson and Angela Lancaster were defensive thwarts to most of the BC attack, while Brienne Stairs did most of the damage up front.

Despite the flow of the game, Ontario were the first to get on the board after a ball was mistrapped in front of the BC net, allowing Katelynn Roganowicz to smash home the loose ball. The 1-0 Ontario lead remained for nearly 10 minutes of play, as BC struggled to capitalize in the other end.

Finally, following a long series of sustained possession, BC was able to earn a penalty corner. Dani Hennig's low flick through the middle of the circle was effortlessly deflected into the net by Poonam Sandhu to tie the game. The 1-1 scoreline remained through half, as both teams struggled to score. BC continued to dominate in midfield play and it wasn't until the 60th minute that Katie Jameson knocked home a rebound on a penalty corner to give BC the go-ahead goal.

Only two minutes later, Emma Mackie finished a loose ball after a series of BC rushes, lifting BC up 3-1, and forcing Ontario to pull their goalkeeper for the extra attacker. Despite their efforts, Nat Sourisseau and Poonam Sandhu were able to provide some insurance, giving BC the 5-1 victory after a very close 60 minutes of play.

The three points guarantees BC a spot in the finals, where they will face the Canadian juniors for a highly anticipated rematch.

Field Hockey Canada media release



Wynne strike keeps Dames alive

National forward Blair Wynne scored a lone first-half goal as Notre Dame rebounded from a 4-1 drubbing to Paragon for a 1-0 win over Harvard Maritime Checkers to keep their faint hopes of retaining the T&T Hockey Board Women’s Championship Division “Big-Four” crown alive at the National Hockey Centre in Tacarigua, yesterday.

Following the loss to Paragon on Saturday night, the Dames were in a must-win situation against Checkers wo also had three points, and Wynne’s 28th minute field goal proved enough for three points.

The win saw the Dames end their three match series with six points, the same as Paragon which needed only to avoid defeat in regulation time against winless Malvern last night to be crowned the new champions.

Checkers, meanwhile remained third with three points from three matches, after beating Malvern 3-1 on Saturday night.

On Saturday, Paragon got goals from four different players to whip Notre Dame 4-1 to improve to maximum six points and within one of claiming the “Big-Four” crown.

The trio of Kristin Thompson (4th), Zene Henry (9th) and Danielle Thompson (28th), Kristin’s older sister all scored in the first-half for a comfortable 3-0 lead.

Two minutes after the re-start national forward Blair Wynne pulled a goal back for the Dames, the defending league champions, but that was as close as they got before Keima Gardiner added a fourth item for Paragon two minutes from full-time.

Earlier on Saturday, Charnice Cato scored a goal on either side of the half to lead Harvard Maritime Checkers past Malvern 3-1 to keep their chances of lifting the title alive.

Losers of their first match to Paragon, 3-2 on Thursday night, Checkers was desperate to get in winners over Malvern, beaten 5-4 by Notre Dame on Wednesday.

Mindy Charles got Checkers off to a flyer with the opening goal after only three minutes while Cato got her first in the 28th for a 2-0 half-time advantage.

With its chances of securing the Big-Four crown fading with every passing second, Malvern threw everything at Checkers and pulled a goal back via national defender, Teresa Lezama in the 65th but within a minute Cato got her second and Checkers’ third to seal a 3-1 win and three points, the same as Notre Dame.

Petrotrin beaten, but still grabs men’s title

Paragon men came up one goal short in their bid to repeat as champions of their Big-Four competition after a 2-0 win over defending league champions, Petrotrin in their top-of-the-table clash last night.

The Oilmen entered the match, winners of their previous two matches and six points and needed only a draw to dethrone their opponents.

However, Barry Clarke fired Paragon into an eight minute lead while Petrotrin conceded a 16th minute own goal for a 0-2 deficit from which they never recovered.

The result meant, both Paragon and Petrotrin ended with six points and goal-difference of plus-two, but due to the Petrotrin’s two outright wins, compared to one by Paragon, the Oilmen were declared champions.

On Saturday night, Wayne Legerton helped himself to a beaver-trick as Petrotrin drilled Defence Force 5-2 for its second straight win in the men’s competition.

The Oilmen 2-1 winners over Queen’s Park in their opener found themselves trailing to a sixth minute Brian Burrows item for Defence Force before out-of-favour national forward Legerton banged in three un-answered goals, in the 12th, 22nd and 34th for his team to lead 3-1 at the half.

Four minutes into the second-half, Legerton whose younger brother Shane Legerton plays for Defence Force, added another while Triston Grant, extended the advantage to 5-1 in the 45th.

With three minutes left in the contest, Defence Force captain and national forward Mickel Pierre got a second item for his team, but it was all in vain as Petrotrin ran out 5-2 winners and improved to maximum six points, three ahead of its Paragon while Defence Force has two and Queen’s Park, none.

In Saturday’s first men’s encounter, Paragon also stayed in the hunt for top honours after beating Queen’s Park 4-2 on penalty-flicks following a 1-1 draw.

National forward Akim Toussaint had given Paragon, the defending champions a 19th minute lead which last until Keegan Dos Santos’ 66th minute equalizer for the Parkites to send the match into penalty-flicks where his team faltered miserably, missing their first two attempts.

The guilty culprits for the Parkites were captain Shawn Lee Quay and Damien Bright while Kadeem Fortune and Nicholas Camacho converted.

However, Paragon’s national trio of Kiel Murray, Toussaint and Toussaint scored their team’s first three attempt while fellow national player Christopher Scipio missed before Cogie Butler, another national player sealed the two points.

Yesterday’s early T&THB Big-Four results:

Women:


Notre Dame 1 (Blair Wynne 28th) vs HM Checkers 0

Men:

Paragon 2 (Barry Clarke 8th, own goal 16th) vs Petrotrin 0

Saturday:

Women’s Championship:


Checkers 3 (Charnice Cato 28th, 66th, Mindy Charles 3rd) vs Malvern 1 (Teresa Lezama 65th pen)

Paragon 4 (Kristin Thompson 4th, Zene Henry 9th, Danielle Thompson 28th, Keima Gardiner 68th) vs Notre Dame 1 (Blair Wynne 37th)

Men’s Championship

Paragon 1 (Akim Toussaint 19th) vs QPCC 1 (Keegan Dos Santos 66th) – Paragon won 4-2 on penalty-flicks.

Petrotrin 5 (Wayne Legerton 12th, 22nd, 34th, 38th, Triston Grant 45th) vs Defence Force 2 (Brian Burrows 6th, Mickel Pierre 67t)

The Trinidad Guardian



Revington may stay on for World Hockey League semi-final

KUALA LUMPUR: South African Paul Revington is adamant about wanting to quit the national hockey team. But he will consider staying on with the team for the World Hockey League semi-final in Johor Baru from June 29-July 7.

Revington said yesterday that he doubted that he would reconsider staying on as the Malaysian coach on a long-term basis.

“At present I am emotionally burned out. It is not just a matter of resigning based on principles. I’m drained emotionally and physically. It has been a challenging few months,” added Revington.

Revington had on Saturday quit as the national coach, citing outside interference as the main reason. But the Malaysian Hockey Confederation (MHC) coaching committee, which met later in the day, rejected his resignation letter and have appealed to him to change his mind.

The Star of Malaysia



Revs to stay, till World League

Breaking News


Paul Revington will coach Malaysia for the World League after having held a heart to heart talk with Sports Minister Khairy Jamaluddin at his office in Putrajaya this afternoon.

The position of Revington post World League will be determined later.

This announcement was made by Khairy just moments ago to the media.

Now that was not to difficult to do right and some dragged their feet for well over three months to resolve a simple issue.

Well done KJ.

Malaysian Hockey blogspot



Revs saga - the plot thickens

The national team resumes training at the National Hockey Stadium on Monday morning and one face will be missing, that of the Chief Coach Paul Revington.

Much has been said, written and speculated by interested parties with regards to the shock resignation of the South African, some 14 days before Malaysia opens it campaign in the World League Round 3 Semi Finals in Johor Baru.

One thing is certain though, Revington will not be on the pitch on Monday to coach the team who will hold their first training session after their four match Test series in South africa in early June.

From the time the decision on Revington's impending resignation ( because he has yet to submit his letter to the National Sports Council - his employers contractually) was made public, until this post is written, efforts are continuing to get Revington to change his mind, at least until the World League matches are over.

A meeting has been scheduled this Tuesday, supposedly to solve the issue between the three parties that first surfaced in March this year. But isn't this a little too late as those who were entrusted to do damage control should have done this much earlier.

The bottom line is Revington has resigned, so any effort to get him to change his mind through punitive action on Juniors Coach k. Dharmaraj will not appease Revington for he made it clear that it is not what he is looking for.

Revington had met Tengku Abdullah Sultan Ahmad Shah on May 27 and submitted his resignation letter and a whole three weeks has passed and nothing was done to salvage the situation. let us not even cross the bridge about deciding who was right or wrong as some narrow minded people rather see our hockey diminish then offer suggestions on resolving the issue.

It is people like these who are responsible for the whole scenario as they think that they are gods gift to Malaysian Hockey whilst they are just destroying what has taken much sacrifice to build over the years.

Many officials have shied away from commenting on the current situation facing hockey and from SMS sent out to the likes of NSC Director General Dato Seri Zolkples Embong, National Team Manager George Koshy, National Juniors Team Manager Mirnawan Nawawi, Juniors Coach Dharmaraj, MHC Senior Vice Presidents S. Shamala and Dato Nur Azmi Ahmad.

Those who replied and gave their comments were as follows:

" It is very sad to hear that he wants to resign. MHC needs to discuss the matter with all, Paul, Arul and all relevent parties to ensure we put all efforts to resolve the matter and for Paul to continue as Coach. The country must be placed ahead of everthing else and all responsible must ensure that the goals set for Round 3 are achieved." - S. Shamala MHC Senior Vice President.

"Revs was hired for a purpose, we have seen the benefits, the boys want him, he has unfinished business, he has to see it through," - George Koshy National Team Manager.

"I am surprised that it has come to this. I am told not to issue any statements and will continue to train my team as usual. I hope this issue can be resolved quickly for the sake of Malaysian Hockey," K. Dharmaraj National Juniors Coach.

Several senior players were also contacted to get their views and many of them echoed similiar sentiments and in a nutshell had this to say.

"We want Revington to stay and see us through for the World league. We are prepared to appeal to the MHC President to ensure Revs stays and want to remain focussed on the task at hand, which is to make it for the World cup. A quick decision and solution will help." - summary of what senior players said.

Revington and his wife had a brieft meeting with HRH Tengku Abdullah this morning and are expected to meet the MHC President again after the NSC pow wow on Tuesday which will see many officials and aggrieved parties sit together to come out with a solution.

Hence there has been no U-Turn by Revington, not until this article has been written and all the 39 year old South African would offer was a statement via SMS that read:

"I am trying to methodically and calmly work ( and think) through everything here.Yes I did meet briefly with HRH Prince abdullah today and we agreed to meet formallyduring the week. Yes, there is a meeting scheduled with Dato Seri Zolkples on Tuesday." - Paul Revington National Coach.

Now coming back to the decision made by the MHC Coaching Committee. It is obvious that the decision to take punitive action against Dharma was drived by personal agenda of some of the members without taking a serious look at the whole situation.

Dharma is a victim of circumstances and if he has any fault then it has to be that he reacts to situations differently from others in his position might do. He has a short fuse and says things that really he does not mean.

To remove him as Juniors Coach is anarchy as he has worked hard over the past three years and even Revington is not agreeable to any action against Dharma. Rightfully the Coaching committee should have formed a three man panel to look at the charges against Dharma and advise him accordingly instead of just looking to remove him, thus fulfilling a personal vendetta dating back to 2009.

To his credit, Dharma did not lose his cool when contacted by this blogger and had a 45 minute chat to clarify his position, most of it off record, something that I intend to honour. Not once did he hold Revington at fault for what transpired.

Hockey in Malaysia needs personalities who can think outside the box and not react to some insane personalities that are just out to demolish what good that has been been built through sheer hard work and effort by a group of talented individuals.

And I shall leave the readers of this blog with a quote from a senior MHF ( read MHF) official who had this to say about the whoile sage.

"This is a hockey problem and should be solved by the hockey officials. Giving it to NSC mkeans that they cannot run their own sport effectively and thus are nbot capable of making firm and tough decisions for the sake of hockey in th country. It is best that these officials vacate their positions and leave the running of hockey to NSC." - A former top MHF official.

Malaysian Hockey blogspot



Dharmaraj is hurt

NO REASON: Juniors coach also shocked for being implicated in Revington's resignation

By Jugjet Singh


NATIONAL Juniors coach K. Dharmaraj is hurt after he was dragged into the Paul Revington resignation saga.

South African Revington sent in a shocking email to the Malaysian Hockey Confederation (MHC) coaching committee on Saturday informing them that he was quitting his post as the national team's coach thus leaving Malaysia's preparations for the World League Semi-finals in jeopardy.

The World League, a qualifier for the World Cup, will be played in Johor Baru on June 29-July 7.

Revington said: "My resignation has come after five to six months of rumour spreading, finger-pointing, accusations and potential programme sabotage by various people who have targeted and affected the national team, members of my management team and me personally.

"I have kept my head down and tried to focus just on coaching but it has affected me emotionally.

"It is close to impossible to continue coaching the national team in this environment as I have lost trust."

After Revington sent in his resignation, the MHC coaching committee met and decided not to accept his resignation and will try to talk him out of it. The coaching committee also decided to propose that Dharmaraj and 1Mas project director Lim Chiow Chuan be removed from their positions.

"I have been told to refrain from making any statements to the Press as a meeting has been arranged for Tuesday (tomorrow) by the National Sports Council to get to the root of the matter.

"So I would just like to say that I was shocked, confused and very hurt when I was implicated in the reason as to why Revington quit the national team," said Dharmaraj.

Dharmaraj, for the record, coached his charges to win the inaugural Sultan of Johor Cup and the Junior Asia Cup which took Malaysia into the New Delhi Junior World Cup in December.

However, he has been accused of meddling with the senior squad and this subsequently caused Revington to lose control of some of his charges thus making his work difficult.

As for Chiow Chuan, it has been alleged that he sent a 'threatening' e-mail to Revington.

The South African coach is on the payroll of the NSC, and its director general Datuk Seri Zolkeples Embong was shocked and angry on hearing the news.

"I thought the issue (Chiow Chuan's email) had been resolved after I met with some of those involved to get their side of the story.

"Chiow Chuan has also apologised for his actions and I thought that was that.

"I would not like to say more. Suffice to say that a meeting has been arranged for Tuesday (tomorrow) to get to the root of the matter," said Zolkeples.

New Straits Times



Why blame me, MHC?

By S. RAMAGURU



Disappointed: NSC director general Datuk Zolkples Embong said the MHC coaching committee chairman Manjit Majid Abdullah (inset) should have consulted them about the resignation of Paul Revington. — Bernama

KUALA LUMPUR: 1MAS director Lim Chiow Chuan is surprised to hear his name being mentioned following the resignation of national hockey coach Paul Revington.

The former international, however, refused to comment on the furore.

“There is nothing to say. Of course, I am surprised by it all. Let’s leave it as it is. I will wait for my superiors to call me on the matter,” said Chiow Chuan yesterday.

On Saturday, the Malaysian Hockey Confederation (MHC) coaching committee recommended that Chiow Chuan and National Juniors coach K. Dharmaraj be removed from the post by the management committee.

In stating the reason for their removal, coaching committee chairman Manjit Majid Abdullah said both officials had interfered with national team matters.

The coaching committee, however, may have overstepped their boundary in making the recommendation.

Dharmaraj, as the National Juniors coach, comes under their jurisdiction but not Chiow Chuan.

The 1MAS programme is under the MHC development committee and the funding comes from the National Sports Council (NSC).

Chiow Chuan is also an NSC employee and NSC director general Datuk Zolkples Embong is the overall head of the 1MAS programme.

Meanwhile, the Kuala Lumpur Hockey Association (KHA) denied that the decision to sack Chiow Chuan and Dharmaraj was unanimous.

KLHA secretary V. Rajamanickam said four of the 16 members who attended the coaching committee meeting called for the matter to be referred to the MHC executive board for a decision.

“It was certainly not a unanimous decision.

“The chairman (Manjit) had got it all wrong. I want to clarify this as it was stated in the press that all agreed to the move to sack Chiow Chuan and Dharmaraj.

“The right forum to decide is the MHC council and not the coaching committee,” said Rajamanickam.

Besides KL, the other representatives who objected were Kedah, Negri Sembilan and the MSSM.

The Star of Malaysia



Zolkples slams coaching committee over Revington issue

By S. RAMAGURU


KUALA LUMPUR: The National Sports Council (NSC) have launched a scathing attack on the Malaysian Hockey Confederation (MHC) coaching committee for the way they handled the resignation of national hockey coach Paul Revington.

NSC director general Datuk Zolkples Embong said yesterday that the MHC coaching committee chairman Manjit Majid Abdullah should have consulted them as they are a stakeholder in the national team.

“It is all right with me if Manjit thinks he can run hockey on his own. I checked with MHC president Tengku Abdullah (Sultan Ahmad Shah) and he did not know of the actions taken by the coaching committee. How did they come up with such a decision on Saturday?” asked Zolkples.

Zolkples added that the issue between IMAS director Lim Chiow Chuan and Revington had been dealt with following Chiow Chuan’s apology to Revington.

“The matter was actually resolved and I had told the coaches to carry out their duties and not get in each other’s way. I don’t know why the matter cropped up again,” he said.

Zolkples said the decision taken by the coaching committee was disappointing and felt that this matter could have been handled in a better manner.

He added that he had done more for the hockey team than Manjit and questioned why the MHC vice-president did not try and resolve the matter first by meeting all the parties.

“We went to a lot of trouble to get Revington to be our national coach. I meet the players regularly. In my recent conversation with skipper Mohamed Shahrun Nabil, he told me the players were happy with the coach.

“So what is the problem? If my employees are wrong, then I will take action against them. But this is not the case.

“We are prepared to step aside if Manjit and his committee think they have what it takes to run Malaysian hockey and the national team,” said Zolkples. He added that the MHC should call for a meeting to resolve the matter.

“But it is clear to me that Malaysian hockey will lose a capable coach. I don’t really see Revington staying on now. I can understand if the coaching committee want to appoint people like Lim (Chiow Chuan) or Dharmaraj as the national coach. I have no issue with giving locals the chance to helm the national team.

“But are we prepared to lose out on a good coach for the sake of changes?”

The Star of Malaysia



Punish the ‘outside interference’, MHC

By R. MANOGARAN


THE news about national hockey coach Paul Revington quitting the team is disturbing indeed.

Here is a coach of repute and distinction. One who brooks no nonsense and is bent on doing things professionally and systematically.

He is also the type of coach who demands 100% from the players and who gives back equally, if not more.

So, when others tried to undermine his authority, he did the right thing by taking the matter up with the management team.

And what did the management team do? Sit on it. Probably hoping for the problem to just vanish into thin air and they don’t have to dirty their hands by tackling the problem head-on.

Left with no choice, Revington did the next logical thing – tender his resignation.

Doesn’t that sound familiar about Malaysian sports? How we tend to sweep things under the carpet and hope for the problem to either go away or sort itself out somehow.

The Malaysian Hockey Confederation (MHC) can still set things right by getting to the bottom of the problem and punishing the “outside interference” that Revington was talking about.

For the sake of Malaysian hockey, let’s hope the MHC can sweet talk Revington into making a U-turn and rescind his resignation.

A quick look at the problems caused by the “outside interference” reflects the clear immaturity on their part. These “coaches” should start putting the country first – not their pride.

To be honest, this problem – of one side trying to undermine the other and the authorities turning a blind eye to it – exists in all associations.

What happened to Revington is just the tip of the iceberg, shall we say?

There are many more problems faced by all the associations – and even the Youth and Sports Ministry. The list is long. But let’s start with a simple problem that, if continued to be left unchecked, will have long-term repercussions.

Yes, I am talking about the lack of fields in the country.

Many schools are erecting buildings on their school fields to meet the rising student population.

School fields are either shrinking or have vanished completely.

Public fields too are fast disappearing as developers cash in on the rising demand for housing.

The authorities concerned seem to have no qualms approving these public fields to be used for building houses and high-rise apartments or condominiums. And whatever few fields there are still available, are poorly maintained.

Perhaps Sports Minister Khairy Jamaluddin can look into tackling this issue so that children will not run out of playing space.

Then there’s the issue of favouritism in the selection of athletes. Tons have been said about this problem but it still exists. If you can’t get into the team on merit, then just pull some strings.

Just call up some big shots and before you can even say “Hey presto!”, you’d be in the team at the expense of a qualified athlete.

Some associations even hold “selection trials” when they already know who are the athletes they want to pick. What’s the point of holding the trials then?

Unfortunately, that’s how sports work in Malaysia.

Favouritism has long existed in Malaysian sports and long will it continue to exist if nothing is done to tackle this menace.

There are many more problems besetting Malaysian sports. Unfortunately, there isn’t enough space to list them all.

There’s the issue of wasteful junkets for sports officials, irrelevant training-cum-playing tours overseas, over-sized Games (Sukma, for one), sports officials hanging on to power for far too long, in-fighting for power in associations … the list goes on.

If only the powers-that-be have the guts to stand up and do the RIGHT thing, then many of these problems can be resolved.

In the best interests of Malaysian sports, let’s hope Revington revises his decision.

The writer may not be out on the field, but he gets plenty of feedback from his colleagues on the antics of our sports officials and athletes. And after 30 years in the business, nothing surprises him any more.

The Star of Malaysia



MHC clueless over resignation saga

by Haresh Deol



FLASHBACK: Mailsport report on May 21

PETALING JAYA - IF one thing is evident in the latest episode involving the national hockey team, it would be a serious lack of communication among Malaysian Hockey Confederation (MHC) officials.

With the fraternity shocked over national coach Paul Revington’s decision to quit, even more alarming is the fact that senior MHC officials were kept in the dark over the incident.

It is widely believed the main reason the South African turned his back on the national squad was due to a clash involving him and 1Mas development programme coach Lim Chiow Chuan, as revealed by a Mailsport report, “Hockey coaches clash”, on May 21.

On Saturday, the MHC coaching committee announced they would remove Chiow Chuan and junior World Cup coach K. Dharmaraj, who the committee claims had a hand in Revington’s decision to quit.

Mailsport learnt Sports Minister Khairy Jamaluddin will meet Revington, Chiow Chuan and Dharmaraj as the trio are employed by the National Sports Council.

MHC senior vice-president Shamala Subramaniam was clueless over efforts to get Revington to stay with the team ahead of the World League tournament from June 29 to July 7 in Johor Baru.

“I was not aware of Revington’s resignation until I read it in the newspapers (yesterday). I’ve not been made aware to any talks or discussions that were held between him and top MHC officials today (yesterday) to persuade him to stay,” said Shamala.

Unprofessional decision to quit

Shamala is aware of the spat involving Revington and Chiow Chuan which stemmed from a “threatening” email by Chiow Chuan. Revington sebsequently issued a lawyer’s letter demanding an apology.

Chiow Chuan had since apologised and many assumed the matter was “settled”.

“But it looks like the matter has not been resolved. I’m sure there are certain officials trying to help both parties come to an amicable solution but at the same time I would appreciate if there was proper dissemination of information between MHC officials so that we know what is going on.”

For the record, Shamala is also deputy chairman of the team management committee.

“I believe the stakeholders, MHC and the National Sports Council, have supported Revington, (assistant national coach) Arul Selvaraj and the team in every way possible.

So to leave the team before a major tournament is not acceptable.

“It is not very professional as the interest of the country comes first. I hope we can solve this problem soon”

Malay Mail