News for 18 July 2013

All the news for Thursday 18 July 2013

FIH announces changes to Indoor game

Indoor Hockey set to become even more dynamic & entertaining ahead of 2015 World Cup

(Photo: FIH / Frank Uijlenbroek)

The International Hockey Federation (FIH) Executive Board decided at its recent meeting in Lausanne a number of pioneering changes to Indoor Hockey that will come into force on 1 September 2013.

The most significant of the forthcoming modifications to the Rules of Indoor Hockey is a move which will reduce the number of players on the field of play from six to five per team.  The decision to decrease the number of players is another bold step forward by the FIH, and is in line with the FIH’s strategic vision of enhancing and evolving rules and formats to maintain hockey’s position as one of the most progressive sports on the Olympic Programme. The move is certain to create more space on the field of play, ensuring even more exciting action for the spectators and television audiences around the world. 

A critical factor in the decision-making process of the FIH Executive Board was the desire to align Indoor Hockey to a future standardized complementary format of the game: Hockey 5s. This new version of Hockey is already proving to be something of a hit, and will be showcased globally for the first time at the Youth Olympic Games in 2014 in Nanjing.  The FIH will be promoting the game worldwide in the build up to the YOG, encouraging more nations to take up this format.

An FIH Task Force containing representatives from all five continents has been given the responsibility of developing the concept to include Hockey 5s, ParaHockey and BeachHockey. Their objective will be to find one overarching Hockey 5s product which will continue to grow the game on a truly global level.

FIH site

High-octane international hockey warms the heart

JONATHAN COOK at Hartleyvale

AS if the beautiful winter’s day in the Mother City wasn’t enough to warm the cockles of the heart, day one of the Cape Town Under-18 International Schools/Clubs Hockey Festival had it all on the pitch as well.

Big scores, an avalanche of 142 goals in the 25 wins and just five draws, the tightest of matches and everything in between took place between the white lines in the massive 30 matches played on Wednesday - and the experience opens the door to two more fantastic days of Group matches in the boys’ and girls’ competitions.

No less than 38 teams – 20 girls and 18 boys – from six countries (South Africa, The Netherlands, England, Australia, Zimbabwe and Namibia) are taking part in four Groups in each competition and Thursday and Friday will see the remaining, incredible number of 60 Group matches played, all in a bid to reach the title playoff matches headquartered at Hartleyvale in the Cape Town suburb of Observatory on Sunday.

The Group match venues – Hartleyvale Stadium, Hartleyvale B pitch, WPCC (Western Province Cricket Club) A and B pitches, University of Cape Town and Stellenberg High School - will continue to be chock-a-block of all that good in Under-18 girls’ and boys’ hockey.

For the schools’ hockey fan, taking pot luck at which of the six matches taking place simultaneously was the best one to watch proved to be a wonderfully frustrating experience as no sooner had one’s chosen venue borne fruit with a thrilling encounter, word came from Festival Director Chris Brothers, the TEAM Sports MD, of a wonderfully exciting, high-quality clash having just played out at one or more of the other venues.

With entrance free over the four days, the indications are that the impressive crowd on day one will multiply as the festival builds to its climax on Sunday.

Dipping in to some of the matches in the boys’ competition, there was a big winning margin for Cape Town and South Africa’s top-rated Wynberg Boys’ High School, who beat a plucky Windhoek Gim 7-0. But Group B also features Paarl Gim - and Wynberg know that they will have to work on a few points that were missing, despite the scoreline against their gallant opponents. Paarl Gim had two wins from two starts and that must send warning signals to head coach Anton Grobler’s Wynberg lads. Thursday’s 10.15 am crossing of sticks between these two worthy sides takes place at WPCC.

Boys’ Group C, the “Group of Death”, one might say, looks to be particularly blessed with evenly-matched, quality sides. Kennemer Lyceum of The Netherlands could well be on course to qualify for Sunday’s gold medal match. The Dutch lads beat Paarl Boys 4-2 after trailing at half-time and drew 2-2 with Pinelands.

Head coach Neville Rothman’s impressive Paul Roos side are looking good in Boys’ Group D after two emphatic victories on day one, while Como Secondary of Perth, Australia are also ones to watch as the festival continues.

The New South Wales Bushrangers boys had a tough day in Group A against the fancied Rondebosch line-up and will reflect on a host of penalty corners that went awry at a point where the score was only 1-0 to the Cape Town lads.

Meanwhile, few could stop talking about the formidable performance of Somerset College in Girls’ Group D where the Western Cape lasses overran North London’s Bancroft school 13-0 in their second match of the day, this after defeating Windhoek Gym 8-0 in the earlier clash. Thursday’s 12.45 pm Somerset clash with the impressive Paarl Gim squad at Stellenberg is a must-see.

Much was also made of the remarkable performance of Windhoek High in Girls’ Group C, where the lasses from Namibia picked up two wins on the trot – from a school and a country that does not have a single synthetic turf pitch!                   

The inexperienced young Pretoria Girls’ High squad, under the learned eye of the legendary former national keeper David Reid-Ross, picked up a morale-boosting win to open their festival in Group B, but another school to get the tongues wagging in the group was Chisipite of Zimbabwe who earned back-to-back victories on day one.                             

In Group A, Stellenberg finished the day without a blemish and are clearly relishing home-turf advantage on their school’s Astro.  

There are a host of fascinating tussles on day two of the Group stage and all the fixtures can be found at

Day one results at the Cape Town Under-18 International Schools/Club Hockey Festival Wednesday:



Group A:
New South Wales Bushrangers 1 Stellenberg 0; NSW Bushrangers 0 Rondebosch 3; Potchefstroom Gim 4 Stellenberg 3; 

Group B: Wynberg 7 Windhoek Gim 0; Paarl Gim 5 DF Malan 1; Windhoek Gim 1 Paarl Gim 4;

Group C: Kennemer Lyceum 2 Pinelands 2; Paarl Boys 5 Somerset College 0; Outeniqua 1 Somerset College 1; Kennemer Lyceum 4 Paarl Boys 2.

Group D: Paul Roos 3 Parel Vallei 0; Como Secondary 7 Huguenot 2; Parel Vallei 2 Pearson 0; Paul Roos 9 Huguenot 0


Group A:
Stellenberg 6 Outeniqua 1; Stellenberg 3 New South Wales Bushrangers 2; Potchefstroom Gimnasium 0 Pinelands 0; NSW Bushrangers 4 Outeniqua 0.

Group B: Pretoria Girls’ High 3 Parel Vallei 1; Pates Grammar 2 Rhenish 2; Chisipite 2 Parel Vallei 0; Rhenish 1 Chisipite 2.

Group C: Windhoek High 2 Pearson 1; Bloemhof 1 Pearson 1; Como Secondary 1 St Cyprians 3; Windhoek High 5 St Cyprians 1.

Group D: Bancroft 2 Windhoek Gim 0; Paarl Gim 5 Bellville 1; Somerset College 8 Windhoek Gim 0; Bancroft 0 Somerset College 13.

Cape Town Under-18 International Schools/Club Hockey Festival Media release

Paumen named Dutch league's best player

Fans & media put magic Maartje top of the pile

Maartje Paumen (Photo: Frank Uijlenbroek)

It has been another great week for Maartje Paumen, the captain of The Netherlands and double FIH Player of the Year (2011 & 2012).

The iconic Dutch drag-flicker – who represents Den Bosch, a club that has been crowned champions of Europe an incredible 13 times in 14 seasons – has been named as the best player in the women's Rabo Hoofdklasse, the elite division of Hockey in The Netherlands.

Paumen was an inspirational figure for her team, being a true leader on the field and her usual prolific self in front of goal. She finished the season as top scorer, netting a hugely impressive grand total of 39 goals, 20 more than nearest rival Eva de Goede of Amsterdam H&BC, who scored 19. 32 of Paumen's goals came from penalty corners, with six penalty strokes and one strike from open play.

Paumen saw off competition from De Goede, Miek van Geenhuizen, Naomi van As and Carlien Dirkse to win the Player of the Season award, with votes from the fans and the media giving Maartje the prize.

Paumen first claimed the Player of the Season award in 2011, with Laren goalie Joyce Sombroek claiming the title last year.

Den Bosch were the dominant team in last season's Rabo Hoofdklasse, winning the regular season by ten points. However, they fell to defeat in the final of the Play-Offs, with Amsterdam claiming the overall title thanks to a 3-1 victory.

Rally round the coach

SOUND ADVICE: Tengku Abdullah hopes all will support Revington ahead of Asian Cup


MALAYSIAN Hockey Confederation (MHC) president Tengku Abdullah Sultan Ahmad Shah has reminded those in the hockey fraternity to give their undivided support to national coach Paul Revington ahead of next month's Asian Cup, which is a World Cup Qualifier.

The South African decided to serve out his two-year contract after having a heart-to-heart talk with Tengku Abdullah in Ampang on Tuesday.

Revington had threatened to quit before the recent World League Semi-Finals in Johor Baru after claiming that "outside interference," and a threatening email had made his stay in Malaysia uncomfortable for the past six months.

He had received the email from 1Mas project director Lim Chiow Chuan on March 23, while he claimed that Juniors coach K. Dharmaraj had been interfering with his job scope.

However, Revington relented and continued to coach the team for the World League but refused to commit his future until the meeting on Tuesday.

"I hope everyone will cooperate with Revington as he is determined to see Malaysia qualify for the World Cup," said Tengku Abdulllah after a FA of Malaysia executive council meeting in Kuala Lumpur yesterday.

"Revington did not state conditions. He will continue with no added clause. It proves he is totally committed to his job."

Tengku Abdullah hopes everyone will forget about the issue and focus on the future.

"What is important is that Revington has decided to stay on and is focused on his job. Everyone is happy including the national trainees," he said.

Under Revington, Malaysia have made progress in the game and may not even have to win the Asian Cup to qualify for next year's World Cup in the Netherlands if those who have qualified through the World League win their continental competitions.

His service is crucial as the team are likely to make their first appearance in the World Cup since 2002. Malaysia last played in the Olympics in the 2000 Sydney edition.

"Revington is confident with his team. He felt, if he had left, it would be tough for the team to prepare for the Asian Cup," Tengku Abdullah added.

New Straits Times

South African calls on hockey fraternity to help him take Malaysia to the next level


KUALA LUMPUR: National coach Paul Revington believes that the issues which led to him tendering his resignation have been resolved, thus his decision to stay on and fulfil his contract.

The South African, who took over as national coach last October, revealed that it was a breakdown in the relationship with various coaching and hockey officials that made him want to leave the team.

But, he said, recent meetings with individuals had seen the issues resolved and “things are back to normal”.

Revington is now looking forward to making a fresh start and working with everyone concerned to take Malaysian hockey to the next level.

“I got great clarity over the past four to five days. Several things ‘fell into place’ when I was able to talk calmly with various people,” he said.

“I came to Malaysia to work with the likes of George (Koshy), Arulselvaraj, Dharmaraj, Lim (Chiow Chuan), Gobinathan, Nor Azlan Bakar, Mirnawan (Nawawi), Nadarajah and others.

“The period prior to the Champions Challenge I proved to be the most outstanding ‘coaching environment’ I have ever experienced ... having worked so well with all these individuals.”

The Star of Malaysia

Pakistan Hockey Federation ridiculed my services: Hanif

By Fawad Hussain

Under Hanif Khan, the greenshirts won three medals following the London Olympics debacle. PHOTO: AFP

KARACHI: Hanif Khan rued his unceremonious exit as coach of the national team at a press conference in Karachi yesterday, calling his sacking by the Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF) insulting and uncalled for.

Pakistan’s poor show at the Hockey World League (HWL) in Malaysia cost the Olympian his post, with the side finishing seventh to waste an opportunity to qualify for next year’s World Cup.

While Hanif was removed, the team’s manager and head coach Akhtar Rasool retained his position as it was deemed a positive for the squad. Tahir Zaman, who served as coaching consultant during the event, was promoted as coach in place of Hanif for the upcoming Asia Cup.

Hanif had initially replaced Khwaja Junaid following the London Olympics debacle last year. Under the Olympian, Pakistan won three medals — bronze at the nine-a-side hockey event and the FIH Champions Trophy in Australia, and a gold medal at the Asian Champions Trophy.

Bearing his achievements in mind, Hanif was dejected as he addressed the press conference in regards to his axing.

“This PHF is not a place for an honourable person to work,” said the Olympian, who also worked as chief selector under the current set-up.

“The PHF has insulted and ridiculed my services for hockey by sacking me this way,” added Hanif, who has two Olympic medals under his belt including a gold medal at the 1984 Games.

“They should have informed me about their decision and I would have accepted it with an open heart. The way the PHF announced it without hearing my version is disrespectful to me.”

‘Not the only one to blame’

The sacked coach claimed he was not given a freehand during the HWL.

“Tahir took charge right from the start of the Abbottabad camp. I protested but Akhtar favoured him after which I maintained my silence.

“Tahir continued to strategise during the HWL games, and now they’re blaming me for the team’s failure.

“I already made up my mind to quit as coach by looking at the attitude of top PHF officials and informed my family about it. Interference caused problems during my work, but otherwise, I had a good run as the team won three consecutive medals.”

Hanif also alleged that Tahir had close links with a World Hockey Federation official, which was the reason for his promotion.

“I don’t have a personal vendetta against Tahir. He is a hardworking [man], but I feel he should have been confined to the junior team at this stage. However, I still wish him luck in his endeavour.”

Meanwhile, going against expectations, Hanif showed no signs of joining the Olympians’ campaign to remove the current PHF set-up.

“I am not the sort to do so and neither do I feel that the officials’ removal will boost hockey.

“My support will remain with the body, but I will never accept any managerial role in this set-up again.”

The Express Tribune

Hockey India hires Dave Staniforth as goalkeeping coach and strategic analyst

Hockey India Secretary General Narinder Batra said Staniforth's appointment will benefit all the goalkeepers in the core probables immensely.

New Delhi:  Former South Africa player Dave Staniforth has been appointed as goalkeeping coach and strategic analyst of the Indian senior and junior men's teams, Hockey India announced on Thursday.

The 37-year-old Staniforth, who represented his country in 65 internationals, has worked as goalkeeping coach with the South African national side for three years.

Staniforth was also goalkeeping coach and video analyst of Ranchi Rhinos, the inaugural champions of the Hockey India League (HIL).

Hockey India Secretary General Narinder Batra said Staniforth's appointment will benefit all the goalkeepers in the core probables immensely.

"Hockey as a sport is about precise strategy and execution, so I believe that Dave's appointment will be significant ahead of the major events including FIH Hockey Junior Men World Cup 2013 and FIH Hockey Senior Men World Cup 2014," Batra said in a release.

Staniforth exuded confidence of preparing Indian goal keepers well for the tough assignments ahead.

"I am very happy with my new role with the Indian men teams and really look forward to preparing the goalkeepers for the busy hockey schedule ahead. Having spent a lot of time following the Indian team during the last two years, I have a good understanding of the goalkeepers' strengths and weaknesses," he said.

"I think that having a quality goalkeeper backing up an attacking hockey style is crucial to any teams success and I will be doing my best to make sure that the Indian men teams have this luxury," added Staniforth.

Staniforth represented South Africa in the 2004 Athens Olympic Games, 2002 Commonwealth Games in Manchester, 10th FIH Hockey World Cup in Kuala Lumpur in 2002 and 8th All Africa Games in Nigeria 2003.

NDTV Sports


Nobbs to train coaches at NIS

Coaching the coaches has been an area of concern in Indian hockey.

The sport has suffered due to the lack of good coaches in the country, prompting the federation to hire foreign coaches.

Hiring foreign coaches may not have yielded the desired results, but the Sports Authority of India (SAI) has taken note of this aspect and wants to make the best use of outgoing coach Michael Nobbs.

During his meeting with SAI director-general Jiji Thomson here on Wednesday, the Australian, who is serving a one-month notice period, was asked to share his knowledge with hockey coaches at NIS Patiala during the remaining period of his tenure.

“We want to make the best use of Nobbs’ knowledge. He will teach our coaches who are doing diploma courses at NIS.

Besides, he will conduct some coaching workshops for them. It will be a good experience for those coaches,” said Thomson.

Nobbs, who decided to call it quits due to health issues, hoped to wind up his job on a positive note and looked forward to a future association with Indian hockey.

“I have a coaching programme to attend at Patiala. I will also have a look at the Hockey India programmes to have a synergy,” said Nobbs, who would be in the country until the first week of August.

“I would like to come back here for some coaching job. I have great love for this place.”


Nobbs hoped that Indian hockey would improve under the guidance of High Performance Director Roelant Oltmans.

“He (Oltmans) has worked with soccer clubs and the Dutch association and done a very good job. He is a fantastic man and will succeed here.”

The Hindu

We have to look beyond Sandeep: Michael Nobbs

Chander Shekhar Luthra

Michael Nobbs

Michael Nobbs, who recently bid adieu to the Indian hockey team, takes time out to talk to Chander Shekhar Luthra. In the second and concluding part of the interview, the former India coach shares his bitter-sweet memories of his exacting two-year stint.


India failed to qualify for the FIH World League’s next phase in The Netherlands. How confident are you that we can win the Asia Cup to qualify?

It would be a tough call. I’m saying this because without the likes of Danish Mujtaba, who has suddenly decided to undergo surgery without even informing the team management, it would be difficult to find his replacement. He did not discuss it with me at all.

Were you angry?
This is a problem in India that you trust your personal physician more than the sports medicine experts. Danish is out for six months. This means India will go into Asia Cup without this key player. This has upset our plans. I was upset, but I knew he took that decision to be fit for the next Hockey League.

What was your discussion with Hockey India top brass?
I had a strange meeting with Dr NK Batra after we returned from Holland World League Round II. We  discussed about Round III but not the way I thought it should be. I was asked if I was fine with the future course of action (which HI and Roelant Oltmans have prepared) and I said ‘please go ahead but I feel there are still problems in it’.

Was it about the playing style?
No. There isn’t much difference between the European and Australian style. Our team has improved about 70 to 80 per cent since I took over two years back. But the problem is that other top teams have also improved that much.
That means we’re still at a ranking where we were two years back. The recent results show we’ve been losing by just a goal or so. We’re not being thrashed by any top team, we’ve improved immensely.

When can we expect our team to beat top teams?
Our programmes have been designed in such a way that we’re banking a lot on juniors. The results will start coming by next Olympics for sure. We’ll have at least 15 new faces after the Junior World Cup later this year. They are the future of Indian hockey and should be given exposure at the top level with a lot of careful planning.

What about seniors like Sardar Singh?

Oh, they have great future. Apart from Sardar, Rupinder, Danish, Dharamvir and Chandi have a lot to offer. We did mix juniors well with seniors in the Champions Trophy and Azlan Shah, and we did pretty well.

Can you say the same about Sandeep Singh?
Sandeep has given nine to 10 years to his side. I still feel he is the best drag-flicker in world hockey. Though we failed to force too many penalty corners, still, Sandeep’s conversion rate has been nearly 30 per cent, which is at par with any other in the world. But, we’ve to look beyond Sandeep.

Where do India lack?
I think it’s in the area of sports science and infrastructure in coaching. But, with academies coming up, we have a chance to help our juniors with scientific methods.


India need a separate defence coach: Dilip Tirkey

NEW DELHI: Former captain Dilip Tirkey, who was also one of the best defenders of his time, reckons that demands of modern hockey are such that Indian hockey team requires a separate defence coach who need not be a foreigner.

Hockey India have initiated a process to find a goalkeeping coach for the side for the Asia Cup.

Tirkey said it will benefit Indian hockey if services of a defence coach are also sought for the preparations.

"Defence is very important in modern hockey and I have seen lapses in past few tournaments. Defenders and mid-fielders should work hard on it. Defending is not as easy as it appears," said Tirkey.

"I think India need a defence coach. Chief coach can not handle everything. Modern hockey is very different as tackling is not easy now. There is an offside rule. A defence expert can teach them technical things like positioning, tackling, re-tackling, footwork, marking in a better way," the veteran, who was called 'the wall of Indian hockey', said.

He also said that an Indian can be chosen for the job as there are many former players who were great defenders.

"I don't think that we need a foreign coach for this. We have former players like Pargat Singh who had great defending skills," he said.

Tirkey, who had a short stint with Indian team prior to Olympic qualifiers last year, said that 'all rounder' concept in hockey is good but it is tough to apply this in Indian hockey.

Former coach Micheal Nobbs was keen on developing players as all rounders who could play at any positions.

"It's a good concept but I think it is very tough in Indian context. Teams who have 7-8 world class players can afford it but not India as we have 2 or 3 world class players at a time in our team," said the ace full back who has played a record 412 games.

When asked about suggestions for drag flickers who were flop in World Hockey League semifinals in Rotterdam, he said that they should work hard on their strengths.

"We must play more and more matches against top teams. Indian drag flickers are talented and I have seen unbelievable flicks from them. They should keep working hard on their strengths," said the Rajya Sabha member from Odisha.

The Times of India

Todd Faulds appointed as HIL's Director Competitions

NEW DELHI: Hockey India League (HIL) on Wednesday appointed Todd Faulds as its Director Competitions for the second edition of the League, which is scheduled to be held from January 23 to February 23 next year.

Faulds worked as a Competitions Manager for the FIH Champions Trophy Men 2012 in Melbourne, International Super Series 2012 in Perth and was also involved in Australian Youth Olympic Festival this year as Competitions Director.

"I am delighted to welcome Todd Faulds to the Hero Hockey India League team," HI secretary general Narinder Batra said.

"We are looking forward to working with Todd and utilising his experience as Hockey Australia's Competitions Manager to bring additional expertise to Hero HIL and make season-2 more successful event," added Batra, who is also the Chairman of HIL.

Faulds said he was excited at his appointment and looking to forward contribute to HIL's success.

"I am extremely excited about the opportunity to join Hero Hockey India League and positively contribute to an organisation that is such a key figure in world hockey.

"The hosting of two world level FIH events in the Men's Junior World Cup and World League Round 4 will be a great opportunity for India to showcase its passion for hockey. And in addition to this, the second season of the HIL provides us with the opportunity to welcome the world's best players to India for one month of world class hockey played in various regions in India and promoted globally," he said.

"I certainly look forward to working with everyone to ensure these events are a fantastic representation for Hockey India and for all involved," Faulds added.

Currently representing Hockey Australia on Continental Federation Committees, Faulds has been the Project Administrator at Sports Technology International in 2010 and Business Developer at Grassports Australia in 2009.

He has also worked as a coach of the numerous club teams in Australia for more than nine years and during this period he worked with the likes of Mentone Club, Hawthorn Club, Old Aquinians Club. As a player, Faulds represented Western Australia (U-21), Victoria (U-21) and Camberwell.

The Times of India

GB Hockey now recruiting

After winning its first Olympic medal in 20 years at London 2012, hockey is now well and truly on the Road to Rio.

With operations for Rio already in full swing, plans for ensuring success in 2020 and beyond are now being made and hockey is evolving its performance department to reflect this.

Hockey is looking for inspirational, ambitious individuals with a real passion for success to contribute to the leadership of hockey’s coach development and talent identification programmes. The re-organisation includes three GB-specific roles to help develop the talent pool across GB and maximise the opportunities for future Olympic success.

To this end Hockey is now recruiting for the following positions:

GB Head of Coach Development

GB Head of Talent Development

GB Performance Coach Developer

To find out more about these jobs, read their descriptions and download application forms, please click here

Great Britain Hockey media release