News for 25 June 2013

All the news for Tuesday 25 June 2013

SA hockey women want good showing against Oz


South Africa captain Marsha Cox in possession as Spain’s Maria Guajard challenges during the Investec World League Semi-Final tournament Pool B match in London on Sunday. The match was drawn 2-2. Photo: STANISLAS BROCHIER

The Investec South Africa women’s hockey team will be looking for a solid all-round performance when they tackle world number six Australia at the University of Westminster in Chiswick, London Tuesday evening.

South Africa, third in Pool B, and Pool B leaders Australia meet in the final round of Investec World League Pool B matches in a match to be screened live on SuperSport 7 from 6.30 pm SA time.

In their earlier Pool B matches, world number 11 SA had more than double the number of goal shots against world number 15 Spain Sunday but the match ended 2-2 while numerous goal shots, particularly early in the game, were also left on the table in the 4-1 defeat by world number four England on Saturday.

A number of observers have pointed out that had the South African girls in green and gold converted those early opportunities and gone 1-0 or 2-0 up against England and Spain they could well have earned three points each time.

That said, the Australian Hockeyroos are an organised, efficient side that had excellent results against quality opposition in the build-up to the Investec World League Semi-Final tournament and look like one of the form teams in beating Spain 5-0 and drawing 1-1 with England.

This tournament format gives every team a second crack at getting amongst the medals and if the early results are a form guide, the SA girls in green and gold are likely to meet world number seven China in the third of the four quarter-finals on Thursday.

However, should South Africa be in the third quarter-final Thursday, as appears likely, the match will only be televised live on SuperSport HD3 from 6.30 pm SA time. No other SuperSport channels will screen the match live, although the match can be viewed on Friday at 9.25 am SA time on SS HD2 but no other SS channels.

Pool A: Argentina GD +2 pts 6; China GD 0, pts 3; Italy GD 0 3 pts; USA GD -2, pts 0.
Pool B log: Australia goal difference +5, points 4; England GD +3, pts 4; South Africa GD -3, pts 1; Spain GD -5, pts 1.

Sanani Mangisa (Southern Gauteng), Phume Mbande (Northern Blues), Lenise Marais (KZN Coastal Raiders), Marcelle Keet (Border), Nicolene Terblanche (NB), Illse Davids (Western Province), Shelley Russell (WP), Tarryn Bright (WP), Pietie Coetzee (SG), Quanita Bobbs (WP), Sulette Damons (North West), Dirkie Chamberlain (NB), Jade Mayne (WP), Tanya Britz (Free State), Lilian du Plessis (NB), Izelle Lategan (FS), Kelly Madsen (KCR), Marsha Marescia (SG).

* The SA/Australia match is live on SuperSport 7 from 6.30 pm SA time Tuesday.

SA Hockey Association media release

Jason Lee hails Maddie Hinch

By Graham Wilson

Maddie Hinch put in a world-class performance against South Africa

JASON LEE is looking to go on the attack – but it is his new goalkeeper Maddie Hinch who is taking the plaudits at the World League semi-finals at Chiswick.

Lee got off to a flying start as England women’s coach with a well-constructed 4-1 win over South Africa and a 1-1 draw against Australia.

In Hinch, formerly of Leicester and now of Kent club Holcombe, they may also have a world-class goalkeeper in the making to replace retired Beth Storry.

Hinch pulled off some great saves against South Africa’s world-record scorer Pietie Coetzee, who finally beat her just seconds before half-time to make it 2-1. But England took their chances, with Susie Gilbert, Sophie Bray, Alex Danson and Giselle Ansley hitting the goals.

Against the Hockeyroos, Beeston defender Hollie Webb scored her first international goal in the 25th minute. They then fought a rearguard action, with Hinch in great form and it took Australia until the hour mark to respond through a Jodie Schulz corner.

Lee said: “Although it’s not the style of play I want, we defended defiantly.”

Hinch added: “That made my job a lot easier.”

England play their final group game today against Spain at 8pm.

Daily Express

Pollution and Air Quality Situation in Johor Bahru

FIH & MHC closely monitoring situation

As has widely been reported, smoke from large-scale forest fires in Indonesia has been drifting east and negatively affecting the air quality in Malaysia and Singapore.

With a view to the Hockey World League Semi-Final event starting in Johor Bahru on Saturday, the International Hockey Federation is closely monitoring the situation and developments in co-operation with the Malaysian Hockey Confederation, Malaysian government agencies and FIH Tournament Director Björn Isberg who has already been on the ground in Singapore for several days.

At this stage, our information is that the situation has been improving over the last two days, with the PSI (Pollutant Standards Index) dropping below 100 in Johor Bahru after peaking over 300. The forecast for the coming days is positive with an expectation for north-west winds and precipitation, which will contribute to further alleviate the situation but the possibility of sudden changes in wind direction remains, affecting the predictability of the development of the situation.

FIH is receiving updates on pollution and air quality data every four hours and is evaluating the situation and developments on an ongoing basis. Per the recommendation of the FIH Medical Committee, FIH's policy indicates that a match may be started or proceed if the PSI does not significantly exceed 100 for a prolonged period of time, but no match may be started or proceed at readings of 150 or above.

This policy is in line with the recommendations of the Malaysia Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment as well as the widespread consensus amongst government agencies worldwide which consider


  • PSI values below 100 to indicate no to moderate pollution levels with few or no health effects for the general population,
  • PSI values of 101-150 to have harmful impacts on sensitive groups of the population, and
  • PSI values of 151-200 to have harmful impacts on sensitive groups of the population and cause transient symptoms of irritation e.g. eye irritation, sneezing or coughing in some of the healthy population.

FIH President Leandro Negre said, “The FIH is firmly committed to taking all measures necessary to protect the health and safety of athletes and officials participating in the upcoming Hockey World League Semi-Final event in Johor Bahru and to ensure a suitable high performance environment for a fair competition. Contingency plans are in place for the case that pollution in Johor Bahru returns to unhealthy to hazardous levels, including the possibility of relocating the event to a different city.”

FIH will continue to monitor the situation and will keep participating teams informed of all developments in due course.

FIH site

FIH confident haze situation will improve in next few days

Reports by S. RAMAGURU

KUALA LUMPUR: The FIH World Hockey League semi-finals, which is scheduled to begin in Johor Baru on Saturday, will go ahead as planned.

Bjorn Isberg, the tournament director of the International Hockey Federation (FIH), said yesterday he was confident the haze situation in the country would improve in the next few days.

“At this point in time, I can say that the tournament will go ahead as scheduled. There are contingency plans in place in case the pollution in Johor Baru returns to unhealthy or hazardous levels, including the possibility of relocating the event to a different city,” added Isberg in a telephone interview from Singapore.

He said the FIH would monitor the API (Air Pollutant Index) reading every day during the tournament.

“If the reading on the match day is too high, we will postpone the matches. We have several options in place and we are ready for any eventualities.”

In a statement yesterday, the FIH said they would be monitoring the situation closely and work together with the Malaysian Hockey Confederation (MHC).

“At this stage, our information is that the situation has been improving over the last two days with the API reading dropping below 100 in Johor Baru. The forecast for the coming days is positive. We are receiving updates on the pollution and air quality data every four hours,” said the FIH, adding that no match would proceed if the API reading is above 150.

The Star of Malaysia

Air clears for World League semis

BACK ON TRACK: Organisers relieved after haze thins out enough for teams to train


THE Hockey World League Semi-finals looks set to stay in Johor Baru as the thick haze, which had shrouded a major part of the state for several days, thinned out after rain fell at the Taman Daya Stadium, bringing some relief yesterday.

The Malaysian juniors, South Korea and Argentina teams trained at the tournament venue yesterday. According to juniors coach K. Dharmaraj, conditions were playable.

"While travelling from Kuala Lumpur to Johor Baru, the conditions along the highway were bad a few days back but when we reached Taman Daya, there was hardly any haze and we got a chance to play a friendly against the Argentina side (on Sunday)," said Dharmaraj, who is preparing his team for the Junior World Cup in India in December.

The Malaysian juniors are getting the chance of a lifetime as many teams will be using them for sparring matches in the run-up to the World League.

"Even though we lost 3-1 to Argentina, they did not look too impressive but maybe it was because of jet-lag and acclimatisation.

"We will play a friendly against South Korea next and then Japan which is a fantastic opportunity for my charges to toughen themselves ahead of New Delhi," said Dharmaraj.

Organising secretary Manjit Majid Abdullah said there was heavy rain in Pasir Gudang, and a drizzle in Taman Daya and the forecast for the next few days looks good.

"I spoke to the tournament director (Bjorn Isberg of Sweden) and we have a contingency plan in place. If the haze disrupts any match, we have three rest days and can utilise them.

"The conditions in Kuala Lumpur and Kuantan are worse than in Johor Baru, so moving the tournament is not feasible at the moment," said Manjit.

Yesterday, a total of RM640,000 was handed over by the sponsors to the Johor Hockey Association in a simple ceremony that marked the countdown of an event where three more teams will qualify for the 2014 World Cup in the Netherlands.

Present to receive the sponsorship was Johor state executive councillor for youth and sports Datuk Zulkarnain Kamisan. Also present were JHA president Jais Sardy and Malaysian Hockey Confederation vice president M. Gobinathan.

Eight teams will compete in Johor Baru on June 29-July 7.

Group A comprises Germany, South Korea, Argentina and Japan while Group B has England, Pakistan, South Africa and Malaysia.

A total of 12 teams will play in the 2014 World Cup where hosts Netherlands are automatic qualifiers while Belgium and Australia qualified after finishing one-two respectively in another World League Semi-finals which ended at the The Hague on Sunday.

New Straits Times

No title sponsor but organisers manage to raise RM740,000

One for the album: Johor state executive councillor for Youth and Sports Datuk Zulkifli Kamisan (fifth from right) and MHC vice-president M. Gobinathan (fourth from right) posing for a photograph with sponsors at the cheque presentation ceremony yesterday.

JOHOR BARU: The FIH World Hockey League semi-finals, which starts in Johor Baru on Saturday, will not have a title sponsor.

But it will not be short of sponsors as the organisers have already managed to raise over RM740,000.

At the mock cheque presentation ceremony yesterday, the Johor government started the ball rolling with a RM200,000 contribution while Tenaga Nasional and the National Sports Council (NSC) have chipped in with RM100,000 each.

Gabungan AQRS Sdn Bhd, Wazlian Group, Lembaga Tabung Angkatan Tentera and Ahmad Zaki Resources Bhd have sponsored RM50,000 each as well.

Nestle Products have pledged RM40,000 while F&N Beverages have sponsored RM100,000 worth of drinks.

Datuk Zulkifli Kamisan, the state executive councillor for Youth and Sports, received the cheques on behalf of the organising committee.

The organising committee have lined up several more sponsors and hope to hit the RM1mil mark by Saturday.

The World League will see eight teams in action. The tournament ends on July 7.

World No. 1 Germany lead the cast with hosts Malaysia, England, Argentina, Pakistan, South Korea, Japan and South Africa in the fray.

The top three finishers will gain an automatic berth to the 2014 World Cup in Holland.

The Star of Malaysia

Waseem out of Pakistan squad due to shoulder injury

KUALA LUMPUR: Veteran Waseem Ahmed was a major omission from the Pakistan team for the FIH World Hockey League semi-finals which begin in Johor Baru on Saturday.

Waseem, who played for Kuala Lumpur Hockey Club in the Malaysia Hockey League (MHL) earlier this year, was left out of the final 18-man squad after failing to recover from a shoulder injury.

Pakistan, however, will have ample knowledge of the Malaysian team as eight other players who featured in the MHL made it to the final squad.

They are skipper Mohamed Imran, Shakeel Abbasi, Fareed Ahmed, Mohamed Irfan, Mohamed Zubair, Mohamed Atiq and Mohamed Umar Bhutta.

Pakistan’s opening Group B match is against Malaysia on Saturday. The others in the group are South Africa and England. Group A has Germany, Argentina, South Korea and Japan.

Pakistan chief coach Akhtar Rasool said they would sorely miss Waseem’s presence in the tournament.

“We will miss him as he is the live wire of the team,” said Akhtar, who arrived with the team in Johor Baru yesterday.

Akhtar, however, is optimistic of a good show from his team as they have a good blend of youth and experience.

“We also have a good penalty corner battery. I’m confident that we will strike it right in Malaysia,” he said.

For Akhtar, he hopes to see Pakistan put up a good show following their dismal showing at the London Olympic last year. They finished last out of 12 teams.

Nine of the players in the current squad were part of the London team. They are Imran, Fareed, Irfan, Rashid Mahmood, Shakeel Abbasi, Zubair, Haseem Khan, Umar Bhutta and Rizwan Senior.

The Star of Malaysia

Scope narrows down for India to make it to Hockey World Cup

Principal Correspondent

A series of below par performances earned India a sixth place in the Hockey World League (HWL) in Rotterdam and shrunk its scope of making it to next year’s World Cup.

Considering the fact that World Cup’s host, the Netherlands has finished among the top-three (which automatically qualify) and Australia and New Zealand (one of which is likely to qualify as the Oceania champion) are within the best four finishers, a top-five slot would have made India a potential candidate to make the cut for the showpiece event. Now, India has to take the tough road to win the Asia Cup, to be held in Ipoh (Malaysia) in August, and book a berth in the mega event.

The performance of the team in the HWL was a big let down and some former players were disappointed with the effort.

Moscow Olympics gold medallist M.K. Kaushik pointed out a few areas of concern. “Our performance should have been better and we should have qualified. We conceded easy goals. In counterattacks, we were caught on the wrong foot.

“Penalty corner defence was not good. We also lacked in the shifting of the forward line.” Kaushik said the team needed to improve on these areas in order to win the Asia Cup.

Another Olympic gold medallist, Harbinder Singh, too did not find India’s performance up to the mark. “There were a lot of loopholes in the defence. The opposition players in our circle were left unmarked. The reason behind this was we took more time to recover after pushing for an attack.”

The Indian women’s team, consisting of a lot of youngsters, finished seventh and would also have to win the Asia Cup, in Kuala Lumpur in September, to make it to the World Cup.

The Hindu

Black Sticks focus now off the field

By David Leggat

Both New Zealand teams are through to the World League finals in Tucuman, Argentina (women, December) and Delhi (men, February). Photo / Getty Images

The focus will be more off field than on playing time for the New Zealand men's squad in the next couple of months.

The Black Sticks are heading home after finishing fourth at the World League tournament in Rotterdam - mirroring the finish of the women's team - and coach Colin Batch, while disappointed with the 4-1 loss to hosts the Netherlands in the third-fourth playoff, saw positives out of the event.

New Zealand now play beaten finalists and world No 2 Australia in the Oceania qualifiers in Stratford in October-November to try to progress to next year's World Cup in The Hague.

They showed plenty of doughty defensive qualities in Rotterdam but Batch is concerned with aspects off the park rather than on it.

"We need to get our strength and conditioning programme nailed down and the players have got good blocks to focus on that," he said. "There's no doubt that because we are a young team developing, our bodies aren't as strong as some other countries so we need to be stronger physically. We've got good young players, they're smart, they're competing well from a technical point of view.

But physically we can still make some improvements."

World No 6 New Zealand had drawn 3-3 with the Dutch in pool play, which added to Batch's disappointment at the outcome of Sunday night's decider. A win would have got them to The Hague.

That said, he saw good signs out of the tournament, particularly a resolute defensive operation.

"We've shown that resilience a number of times in matches; it's becoming something of a trademark for us and that's a very good sign," Batch said. "Overall I'm pleased with the progress we've made.

"The players have developed well. The number of field goals we've scored was very pleasing."

World No 9 Belgium caused a boilover in the final.

Having beaten New Zealand in the semifinal, they defeated Australia 7-6 in a penalty shootout after the scores were locked 2-2. It is Belgium's first win at a top-level international tournament.

Both New Zealand teams are through to the World League finals in Tucuman, Argentina (women, December) and Delhi (men, February). The World Cup is where they want to be, which puts the heat on in Stratford in October, where the continental champion will be assured of a spot.

The New Zealand Herald

FHC proudly announces the team for the 2013 Junior World Cup

FHC is proud to announce the tournament roster to compete for Canada at the upcoming 2013 Junior World Cup to be held in Monchengladbach, Germany from July 27th to 4th August.

The Final 18 has been finalized following an intense preparation period, including the National Identification and Development Camp in April, the U21 Argentinean Training Camp & Test Series in May and the recently completed Senior Nationals.

The team contains no fewer then 12 players that have already gained senior caps of which 10 are currently touring Ireland with the Women's Senior Team. The average age of the team is 19.6 years of age which is still particularly young for a JWC Team. The team contains no few then eight players 19 year of age or younger.

Commenting on the selection, Senior National Head Coach, Ian Rutledge stated "The Junior World Cup marks a critical development event for any program and I am excited by the opportunity for our next generation athletes to be benchmarked against their age-group peers internationally. I am quietly confident of our prospects and extremely optimistic of the health of our National program."

"Due to the large cross over of our athletes, the integration of both the JWC and Senior group has been extremely effective for both groups and we have been able to efficiently manage the development and enhancement of the entire squad as such", Rutledge continued.

Rutledge's confidence in his young charges is well founded and the players should be very optimistic about their chances, exhibited by their very recent form, especially against the highly fancied Argentinean U21 Team. All four matches were hard fought, close battles, with three of the games being decided by only one goal. Adding the teams recent success at the Senior Nationals, defeating a classy BC team in the Final, should have the team buoyed for the tournament.

Ironically the young Canadian team will play Argentina in the first match of the tournament at 9.00am on 27th July. Along with Argentina, Canada find themselves in Pool B with China (28th July) and South Africa (30th July).

Commenting on the depth of the squad, Rutledge added, "You know you have a good team on your hand when you are leaving deserving players out". As such, Rutledge has named the following three players as Shadow Squad members: Alyssa Bull (ONT); Sarah Keglowitsch (BC) and Sophia Walia (BC).

Field Hockey Canada would also like to acknowledge the support of Own the Podium and Sport Canada respectively. Fifteen players in the JWC team receive carding support from Sport Canada. "Without the finical support from OTP and SC, we would not be able develop or provide a quality daily training environment for our WNT program, which is the single biggest factor in fast tracking and accelerating our development towards Rio." said Rutledge.

Besides the current senior tour of Ireland, the team will re-commence training from 1st July ahead of departure on 21st July. The team will the train in Germany as well as playing England in a practice match prior to their first match.

Again, congratulations to the following 18 athletes athletes that have been chosen to represent Canada at the 2013 JWC in Monchengladbach, Germany from 21st July to 5th August:

1. Jessica Buttinger ON
2. Rachel Donohoe BC
3. Bea Francisco BC
4. Hannah Haughn BC
5. Karli Johansen BC
6. Caashia Karringten BC
7. Ashley Kristen BC
8. Kathleen Leahy BC
9. Lauren Logush ON
10. Sara McManus BC
11. Stephanie Norlander BC
12. Priya Randhawa BC
13. Carolina Romeo AB
14. Maddie Secco BC
15. Natalie Sourisseau BC
16. Holly Stewart BC
17. Sydney Veljacic BC
18. Amanda Woodcroft ON


Field Hockey Canada media release

Inter-academy hockey enters semis stage

LAHORE, June 24: Lahore, Faisalabad, Sialkot and Peshawar entered the semi-finals of the 3rd Prof Syed Fida Hussain Shah PHF Inter-academy hockey championship, as two more matches were played at the Iqbal Khan Hockey Stadium, Abbottabad on Monday.

While Lahore will take on Faisalabad in the first semi-final, Peshawar will be facing Sialkot in the second semi-final on Tuesday.

Meanwhile, Faisalabad and Abbottabad played a 2-2 draw. For Faisalabad, Amir (13th) and Saqlain (42nd) were the scorers. For Abbottabad, Faizan (40th) and Azan (44th) struck one goal each.

Bahawalpur and Karachi-II also played a 1-1 draw. Absar Khan (13th) put Bahawalpur ahead before Abdullah struck the equaliser in the 25th minute.


Barbados 7-a-side League

The Barbados Hockey Federation continues its series of tournaments for its 2013 calendar with the 7 a side league which kicked off on May 28th at the Wildey and UWI Astroturfs.

12 men’s and 12 ladies clubs have been locking horns as this league replaces the traditional league/season due to the continued unavailability of a full sizes astro-turf pitch which is critical to the survival of the sport in Barbados. The league continues until July 25th.

The mere presence of 12 of the 13 member clubs underlines the continued desire that exists to play the sport despite the limitations in facilities and thanks must go to the management of the University of the West Indies for its support.

To date the leaders in the men’s division, Deacons have a 100% record behind some impressive performances against rivals Combermere Old Scholars, All Stars and Empire.

In the ladies division, Combermere Old Scholars and Empire have continued their perennial rivalry as they tussle to see who will occupy the top spots prior to the playoffs. Please see below for the results and standings

BHF media release