News for 24 July 2013

All the news for Wednesday 24 July 2013


Ghana Hockey team off for World Cup without money


Hockey U21 Women at Randburg, South Africa where they qualified for the Junior World Cup

The Under-21 national female hockey team departed the shores of Ghana to Germany yesterday to participate in the 7th Female Hockey Junior World Cup without receiving a dime from the Ministry of Youth and Sports, the Daily Graphic can confirm.

The team needed GH¢138,000 to embark on this national assignment and had earlier presented a budget to the ministry for support, but did not receive the needed support as of departure time.

The sad thing was that all efforts by the Hockey Association to get a guarantee from the ministry to go for a loan, as was done for the Satellites prior to the Turkey tournament, had proved futile.

During an interaction with the players and technical handlers at the National Hockey Stadium last Wednesday, the Youth and Sports Minister, Elvis Afriyie Ankrah, while admitting that there was no money in the national kitty, gave a firm assurance that the government would provide the necessary support to enable the team to participate in the tournament.

Mr Afriyie Ankrah, however, failed to honour his promise, confirming speculations that the government would not be able to provide the needed funds for the competition.

Reports indicated that the team was frustrated and that adversely affected morale in camp. Though a chunk of the Ghanaian contingent left yesterday, most of the officials were left behind to chase for funds to pay for the bills in Germany.

This is Ghana’s maiden appearance at the World Cup after qualifying early this year in South Africa and are in Group A with The Netherlands, USA and Korea.

The team will play its opening group match against The Netherlands on Saturday.

GhanaWeb



Sandison double sinks France

A Fergus Sandison winning goal two minutes from time gave Scotland U18 Boys a 4-3 win over France in the second match of the EuroHockey U18 Championship in Vienna this afternoon.

The Dundee Wanderers and Glenalmond youngster scored twice for Graham Dunlop's side, while Jack McKenzie and Aedan McCrossan were also on the scoresheet for the Scots. France's goals came from Miguel Pereira Pacheco, Edouard Delobelle and Christoforo Peters-Deutz.

Following the match, Scotland U18 Boys Manager Elanor Cormack said, "This is a good result and it is something for the boys to build upon. The players pulled together and demonstrated team spirit in what was a really tight game. Today was an important game and the win may become significant later in the tournament. The players have a rest day tomorrow and then we focus on playing Spain in the final pool game on Thursday."

Scotland went behind in the fourth minute of the match when Pacheco opened the scoring for France. But the Scots bounced back a minute later when Ed Greaves picked up the ball on the right and found Aedan McCrossan inside the circle, whose cross-come-shot was turned in a yard out by Jack McKenzie to level the scores at 1-1.

In the 16th minute, Lee Morton picked out McCrossan, who again was lurking with intent inside the opposition's circle. The Edinburgh University midfielder's close control and strike past Alexy Megnegneau in the France goal gave Scotland a 2-1 advantage and the lead for the first time in the contest.

However, France were back on parity shortly before the interval when Edouard Delobelle equalised in the 25th minute.

Scotland responded early in the second half when Fergus Sandison slipped the ball past Megnegneau from a tight angle for a 3-2 lead.

The French were reluctant to give up though and a draw looked likely when Christoforo Peters-Deutz's penalty corner squared up the scoreline at 3-3.

Nevertheless, Scotland continued to press for the winning goal and their efforts were rewarded in the 68th minute when Sandison set off on the counter-attack, playing a great one-two with Angus Robb to wrongfoot Megnegneau and leave the Scottish youngster with the easy task of slipping the ball into the net and giving his side a 4-3 win.

Scotland U18 Boys: Grant Scott, Ross Morrison, Fraser Henderson, Angus Robb, Fergus Sandison, Jack McKenzie , Ed Greaves, John McCluskey, Jamie Wong, Patrick Christie, Lee Morton, Aedan McCrossan, Robbie Shepherdson, Joe McConnell, Gordon Amour, Jack McAllister, Murray Collins, Danny Cain.

Please visit the EuroHockey website for more information about fixtures, match schedule and pools.

Scottish Hockey Union media release



Juniors off to flying start on Euro tour

By Jugjet Singh


THE Malaysian Junior World Cup trainees whipped a Poland Under-23 side 7-0 a day after landing in Warsaw on their tour of Europe.

Coach K. Dharmaraj's boys will next play the Polish senior squad today.

Next on their itinerary in preparation for the Junior World Cup in New Delhi in December is another match against the Polish Under-23 side, and then to Belgium for three more matches against their Under-21s. After that, it is three more matches against England's Under-21 side.

In the first match, Zulhairi Hashim top-scored with four penalty corner goals in the 12th, 23rd, 32nd and 43rd minutes. The other goals were scored by Rashid Baharom (17th), Dangerous Lee (25th) and Nor Aqmal Ghaffar (30th).

Malaysia had a total of 10 penalty corners, while Poland had three.

Team manager Mirnawan Nawawi said: "We tested two different strategies in both halves, and the 50 per cent penalty corner rate made all the difference. Overall, it was a satisfying match, as barely 24 hours after arriving, we took to the pitch for the match."

The early casualty was Redzhwan Jaafar who twisted his ankle and will be out for the next two matches in Poland.

New Straits Times



A flying start for Project 2013 squad

By AFTAR SINGH


KUALA LUMPUR: The Project 2013 squad got off to a flying start in their playing tour of Europe when they trounced Poland’s Under-23 side 7-0 in a Test match at the Warsaw Hockey Stadium on Monday.

The national Under-21 squad will play nine Test matches in Europe in preparation for the Junior World Cup in Chandigarh, India, from Dec 6-15.

On Monday, defender Zulhairi Hashim scored four penalty corners – in the 12th, 23rd, 32nd and 43rd minutes.

Mohd Rashid Baharom (17th), Dangerous Lee (25th) and Nor Aqmal Abdul Ghaffar (30th) chipped in with a goal apiece.

Team manager Mirnawan Nawawi was satisfied with their overall performance since they only arrived in Poland 24 hours before the match.

“It was our first match and we did well to hammer the Poland Under-23 squad,” said the former international.

Mirnawan was glad that the two different strategies they adopted in each half paid off.

“Our penalty corner conversions made the difference as we scored from five of the 10 we earned,” he said, adding that midfielder Mohd Redzhwan Jaafar twisted his ankle and would miss the next two matches against Poland.

“I hope he can recover in time for the match against Belgium on Saturday (when the Project squad play their second Test match against Poland’s senior team).

The Star of Malaysia



Fuentes the right man to improve Malaysia’s penalty corner flickers

By S. RAMAGURU


KUALA LUMPUR: Drag flick coach Adel Fuentes of Argentina is the man hired to transform Malaysia’s penalty corner flickers into world beaters.

Fuentes, who played a big role in the team’s campaign in the recent FIH World Hockey semi-final in Johor Baru, will be with the national team for the Asia Cup in Ipoh next month.

The Asia Cup is a qualifier for the 2014 World Cup and only the winners get an automatic berth to the Finals.

National coach Paul Revington said that Fuentes debuted with the team during their South African tour in June and is convinced that he (Fuentes) had a major impact on the team during the Johor Baru campaign.

“His impact was big in the World League in Johor Baru as far as the penalty corner success rate is concerned. We actually wanted him to start work in January or February but various problems delayed this process.

“In Johor Baru he also acted as an extra assistant coach with the team with his job as an opposition analysis and additional strategic voice,” said Revington.

Fuentes, is also a well-known coach, having worked with the Argentina women’s team as assistant coach from 2009 to 2012 and before that as assistant coach with the men’s team from 2006 to 2008. He was coach of the SCHC and Laren (Dutch) Premier League sides from 2006 to 2012 and also runs a marketing and advertising business in Holland.

Revington said that they hoped to have him here early to help prepare the team.

“We hope to have him in Malaysia again from Aug 11-15 during our training camp in Ipoh and then for the Asia Cup from Aug 24,” he said.

Revington said that he knows the quality of Fuentes’ work as he had worked with the Ireland team and coached the Irish players who were in the SCHC team.

“I think it could be seen in Johor Baru that Mohamed Razie Rahim and Faizal Saari had benefited from his training as they scored quite a number of penalty corner goals,” he said

The Star of Malaysia



Oilmen drill Malvern to claim fourth straight title

Five different players found the mark as Petrotrin clinched its fourth straight T&T Hockey Board Men’s Championship Division League crown with a convincing 5-2 come-from-behind thumping of Malvern at the National Hockey Centre, Tacarigua on Friday night.

Going into Friday’s double-header, Paragon, second on the table and six points behind with three matches left to play, needed to defeat slumping Defence Force to keep the title race alive. However it only mustered a 2-2 draw with the “Teteron Boys” to hand the Oilmen a chance of retaining their title with victory in the night’s second encounter.

With three matches left to play, the star-studded Petrotrin line-up featuring no fewer than seven present or past national players pushed its points tally to 31 from 11 matches, six ahead of main challenger Paragon, which has also played 11 matches followed by Queen’s Park with 20 points from 11 matches, one ahead of Defence Force.

It looked as though the Oilmen were already celebrating another league triumph before their match had got into stride as Malvern took advantage of its sluggish start for a 1-0 lead as early as the first minute through Darryl Duncan-Hume which it held until the end of the 35-minute first half.

On the resumption, Malvern’s resilience was finally broken when Wayne Legerton drew the Oilmen level in the 50th minute after which it was all one way traffic with Graeme Gomez (56th), Atiba Whittington (58th), Evan Farrell (60th) and Dwain Quan Chan (61st) all scoring inside an 11-minute period to flip the match on its head and their team minutes away from another successful league campaign.

With three minutes left Jason Clarke got a second item for Malvern, but by then Petrotrin players were already assured of retaining their crown.

Then on Sunday, Legerton converted from the penalty spot to hand Defence Force a 1-0 win over Defence Force, and pushed its lead to an unattainable 37 points and one left to play versus Paragon on Sunday.

In other matches on the weekend, Queen’s Park crushed Paradise 6-2 also with six different players on target; Notre Dame blanked Paradise 5-0 and Paragon, second on the table with 29 points and one match left to complete its 14-match schedule clobbered Queen’s Park 10-1 led by a treble from national forward Cogie Butler and two each from his fellow national team-mates Christopher Scipio, Akim Toussaint and Kiel Murray while Syl Sinnette got one.

Dames take charge of women’s race

Notre Dame all but wrapped up a successful defence of its Women’s Championship Division title after back-to-back wins against Harvard Maritime Checkers and Paradise in contrasting fashion.

Firstly, the Dames slammed Checkers 5-2 led by a treble from national youth team player Dana-Lee De Gannes on Saturday.

De Gannes got her goals in the 11th, 63rd and 67th minutes for the Dames who led 3-1 at the half-time interval while Tamara De Nobriga (22nd) and Patricia Brathwaite (25th) added one each.

Brittany Hingh, also a national senior and Under-20 player and Kwylan Jaggassar, a senior T&T team defender got Checkers goals in the 24th and 66th minutes respectively.

It seemed as though the Dames performance scared off Paradise as they failed to show for their clash on Sunday to hand the league front-runners three easy points, pushing its points tally to 25 points from nine matches, six clear of Paragon.

Third is Shandy Carib Magnolias with 17 points from 12 matches while Malvern is fourth with 13 and Checkers, fifth with ten.

However, with Ventures pulling out of the league the Dames are expected to be awarded the six points which will make them champions ahead of their remaining league fixture with Magnolias.

All the other clubs are also expected to be award three points each for their match with Ventures, but it has to be confirmed by the T&THB executive.

Results

Friday:

Men’s Championship Division:


Defence Force 2 (Marcus James 25th, Kirth Davis 53rd) vs Paragon 2 (Barry Clarke 46th, Dillet Gilkes 48th)
Petrotrin 5 (Wayne Legerton 50th, Graeme Gomez 56th, Atiba Whittington 58th, Evan Farrell 60th, Dwain Quan 61st) vs Malvern 2 (Darryl Duncan-Hume 1st, Jason Clarke 67th)

Saturday:

Under-19 Girls:


Magnolias 2 (Shaniah De Freitas, Savannah De Freitas 66th) vs Paragon 2 (Zene Henry 23rd, Therese Sobers 49th)

Trinity Women:

Paragon 1 (Keima Gardiner 40th) vs Magnolias 0

Women’s Championship:

Notre Dame 5 (Dana-Lee De Gannes 11th, 63rd, 67th, Tamara De Nobriga 22nd, Patricia Brathwaite 25th) vs HM Checkers 2 (Brittney Hingh 24th, Kwylan Jaggassar 66th)

Men’s Championship:

QPCC 6 (J. Clarke 3rd, Gary Chin 9th, Shawn Lee Quay 23rd, Jordan Reynos 48th, Kadeem Fortune 58th, Jerezano Bell 61st) vs Paradise 2 (Vernell Rivers 18th, Theron Stoute 63rd)

Sunday:

Men’s Championship:


Notre Dame 5 (Shaquille Daniel 5th, Chad Pedro 33rd, Tobias Ottley 52nd, Dillon Campbell 58th, Joshua Olton 65th) vs Paradise 0
Petrotrin 1 (Wayne Legerton 67th pen) vs Defence Force 0
Paragon 10 (Cogie Butler 3rd, 31st, 56th, Christopher Scipio 15th, 34th, Akim Toussaint 23rd 63rd, Kiel Murray 39th, 62nd, Syl Sinnette 42nd) vs QPCC 1 (Shawn Lee Quay 13th)

Women’s Championship:

Notre Dame 3 vs Paradise 0 - By Default

Under-19 Boys:

Fatima 3 vs QPCC 0 – By Default

Current standings

Men’s Championship:


Teams P W D L F A Pts
Petrotrin 13 12 1 0 54 19 37
Paragon 13 9 2 2 53 26 29
QPCC 14 7 2 5 40 40 23
Notre Dame 13 7 1 5 32 19 22
D/Force 13 6 2 5 35 19 20
Fatima 12 2 2 8 21 55 8
Malvern 13 2 1 11 19 40 7
Paradise 13 1 1 11 28 65 4

Women’s Championship:

Notre Dame 9 8 1 0 37 10 25
Paragon 9 5 4 0 36 8 19
Magnolias 10 5 2 3 27 16 17
Malvern 11 4 1 6 15 29 13
Checkers 8 2 4 2 12 13 10
Paradise 11 2 1 8 9 30 7
Ventures 8 0 1 7 5 35 1

Trinity Women:

Magnolias 8 6 1 1 28 4 19
Notre Dame 7 5 0 2 22 15 15
D/Force 7 4 1 2 28 12 13
Checkers 7 4 1 2 11 6 13
Malvern 8 4 1 3 16 11 13
Paragon 7 3 2 2 11 12 11
Ventures 6 2 1 3 9 16 7
Police 8 1 1 6 6 22 4
Petrotrin 7 0 0 7 0 30 0

Trinity Men:

QPCC 10 8 1 1 51 17 25
Malvern 10 7 1 2 35 10 22
Paragon 10 6 4 0 37 14 22
Paradise 9 6 1 2 32 19 19
Notre Dame 9 4 1 4 17 14 13
Police 7 2 1 4 9 23 7
Fatima 9 2 1 6 15 36 7
Petrotrin 7 2 0 5 23 32 6
Shape 8 2 0 6 22 51 6
D/Force 9 0 4 5 20 30 4
Carib 7 1 2 4 9 20 5

Mixed Veterans:

Malvern 8 7 1 0 29 9 22
QPCC 8 6 0 2 37 13 18
Carib 8 4 1 3 25 15 13
Police 6 3 1 2 10 12 10
Fatima 6 3 1 2 29 25 10
D/Force 6 2 2 2 30 16 8
Notre Dame 5 1 0 4 13 17 3
Petrotrin 7 1 0 6 8 50 3
Paragon 5 0 0 5 2 23 0

Under-19 Boys:

Notre Dame 6 5 0 1 37 8 15
Malvern 6 4 1 1 50 6 13
Fatima 6 4 1 1 28 12 13
Paradise 6 2 3 3 14 7 9
QPCC 6 2 1 3 15 14 7
Shape 5 0 0 5 1 47 0
Carib 5 0 0 5 0 53 0

Under-19 Girls:

Magnolias 6 5 1 0 37 2 16
Paragon 6 4 1 1 20 10 13
Notre Dame 6 4 0 2 34 8 12
Malvern 6 3 1 2 15 16 10
Paradise 6 1 1 4 4 5 4
Checkers 6 1 1 4 4 50 4
Ventures 6 0 1 5 3 18 1

The Trinidad Guardian



Tamil Nadu beat Mumbai 4-3 in IHF Federation Cup

NEW DELHI: Tamil Nadu edged past Mumbai 4-3 while Punjab and Uttar Pradesh played out a three-all draw on the opening day of the IHF Federation Cup hockey, here today.

In the first match of the day, Mumbai got off to a good start as they took a 2-0 lead after 16 minutes but were unable to sustain the momentum as Tamil Nadu made a strong comeback.

The two teams were tied at 2-2 at half time but the Tamil Nadu side displayed greater discipline and prevailed over their opponents at the Shivaji Stadium here.

For Mumbai Sandeep Singh, Rajat Sharma and K Jayanta score a goal a piece, while Stalin David, Adam Sinclair, Sathya and Vinod Rayer scored a goal each for Tamil Nadu.

In the other game, Punjab came from two goals behind to manage a 3-3 tie against Uttar Pradesh.

Till 45 minutes into the match, UP were leading 3-1. The equaliser from Punjab came at the very last minute of the game through a penalty corner.

For Punjab Varun Kumar, Parvinder Singh and Ajit Pandit scored a goal each while Diwakar Ram scored a couple and Sunny Sonkar netted one for UP.

The Times of India



Punjab holds UP

Principal Correspondent


Punjab rallied to hold Uttar Pradesh 3-3 in a Pool ‘B’ match on the opening day of the Alchemist IHF Federation Cup hockey tournament here on Tuesday.

Tamil Nadu wiped out a two-goal deficit to pip Mumbai 4-3 in a Pool ‘A’ match.

The scores: Pool A: Tamil Nadu 4 (Stalin David, Adam Sinclair, Sathya, Vinod Rayer) bt Mumbai 3 (Sandeep Singh, Rajat Sharma, K. Jayanta); Pool B: Uttar Pradsh 3 (Diwakar Ram 2, Sunny Sonkar) drew with Punjab 3 (Varun Kumar, Parvinder Singh, Ajit Pandit).

The Hindu

 



England men begin build up to EuroHockey Championships

England Head Coach Bobby Crutchley has named his squad of 18 athletes to contest the 2013 ERGO Hamburg Masters which starts this Thursday, 25 July. England will play the four nations tournament alongside London Olympic gold and silver medallists Germany and the Netherlands respectively, and Ireland. The teams will all play each other once in a round robin format.

The line-up includes several changes to the squad that secured a bronze medal and World Cup qualification at the recent World League Semi Final in Malaysia. With five places available, a key addition to the squad is London Olympian Iain Lewers who is back to full time training after spending nearly a year on the sidelines with a knee injury. After suffering niggling injuries since the 2012 Champions Trophy, Alastair Brogdon is also named in the 18 alongside relative newcomers David Condon and Phil Roper. The final spot is filled by Cannock’s Patrick Smith who will be hoping to make his debut in England’s goal.

The athletes who will not make the trip include East Grinstead duo Ashley Jackson and Mark Gleghorne who have both been ruled out for the rest of the summer with injuries. Jackson flew back from Malaysia early to have a planned operation on his ankle, while Gleghorne suffered a foot injury against Argentina in the semi-final match. Goalkeeper James Bailey and Beeston’s Ollie Willars and Ben Arnold will also sit this trip out as Crutchley offers opportunities to other players ahead of the NOW: Pensions Nations Cup and the TriFinance EuroHockey Championships in August.

The team fly out to Hamburg tomorrow with their first game against the Netherlands on Thursday at 11:30am (UK time). Friday is a rest day, followed by games against Germany and Ireland on Saturday and Sunday respectively.

England’s first game against the Netherlands will be watched with particular interest ahead of the NOW: Pensions Nations Cup which will see the FIH world number three and four sides face each other in a three-match test series at Wakefield Hockey Club from 1-4 August.

Tickets for the NOW: Pensions Nations Cup are available to buy now, visit englandhockey.co.uk/nationscup for more information.

England Men’s Squad for ERGO Hamburg Masters 2013

Name (Position)


Alastair Brogdon (Forward)
Tom Carson (Forward)
Nick Catlin (Midfielder/Forward)
Darren Cheesman (Forward)
David Condon (Midfielder)
Adam Dixon (Midfielder/Defender)
Dan Fox (Defender)
Michael Hoare (Defender)
Iain Lewers (Defender)
Simon Mantell (Forward)
Harry Martin (Midfielder)
Barry Middleton (Midfielder/Forward)
George Pinner (Goalkeeper)
Phil Roper (Forward)
Dan Shingles (Midfielder)
Patrick Smith (Goalkeeper)
Richard Smith (Defender)
Henry Weir (Midfielder/Defender)

ERGO Hamburg Masters 2013 fixtures

Date       Fixture                                

25 July 2013


12:00      Netherlands - England     
15:00      Germany - Ireland             

27 July 2013

14:00      Netherlands - Ireland        
16:30      England - Germany           

28 July 2013

11:30      Ireland - England
14:00      Germany - Netherlands   

England Hockey Board Media release



Top teams win

Emoni Narawa



Cathedral Secondary School's player Terenga Tomoniko in action against Saint Joseph's Secondary School at the National Hockey Turf in Suva. Picture: IVAMERE ROKOVESA

TOP secondary school teams in the Suva District Hockey playoffs are in top flight prior to the Fiji national finals next month.

Saint Joseph's Secondary School, Adi Cakobau School and Marist Brothers High School won their respective matches over the weekend at the National Hockey Turf in Suva.

The SJSS under-16 team is unbeaten from two matches, while MBHS dominated Gospel High School in the U16 and U19 boy's division.

ACS U16 is in good form winning two matches and drew 1-all with Ballentine Memorial School. The SJSS U16 side drew 2-2 with BMS and thumped newcomer Ratu Latianara College 4-0, while their U19 defeated GHS 5-0 and Lelean Memorial School 2-1.

LMS surprised ACS 2-1 in the U19 clash. The Sawani girls bounced back to beat BMS 3-0.

Fiji Secondary School Hockey Association president Immanuel Prasad said they were pleased with the performance of the students.

"The competition was good," he said.

The national finals will be held in Levuka next month.

Results

Girls:- U16: BMS 2 SJSS 2, GHS 0 CSS 2, ACS 1 BMS 1, LMS 1 RLC 0, SJSS 4 RLC 0, ACS 2 LMS 0, BMS 1 CSS 1, ACS 5 RLC 0, LMS 1 GHS 0; U19: SJSS 5 GHS 0, LMS 0 ACS 1, SJSS 1 BMS 0, SJSS 2 LMS 1, BMS 0 GHS 4, BMS 0 ACS 3.

Boys:- U16: MBHS 2 GHS 0; U19: MBHS 3 GHS 0

The Fiji Times



We will use blue hockey pitches at Rio 2016, says FIH chief executive

By Emily Goddard



Blue is set to be the colour of the pitch for hockey at Rio 2016 after the success of London 2012, International Hockey Federation Kelly Fairweather has revealed

Blue hockey pitches, as seen at the London 2012 Olympics, will also be a feature of the sport's tournament at Rio 2016, according to the International Hockey Federation chief executive Kelly Fairweather.

The Games marked the first time that a blue hockey pitch with pink surrounds and a yellow ball, had been used on the international stage.

Traditionally, the sport has been played on a green pitch, harking back to its roots as a natural grass sport before it made the move to a synthetic turf pitches in the 1970s.

"We decided going forward that blue will be our Olympic colour," Fairweather told insidethegames.

"For Rio it will be a blue pitch and a yellow ball.

"The surrounding colours will be decided with Rio 2016 as this depends on the colour palette they use for the look of the Games."

The move to blue pitches provided high levels of contrast with the ball for players, officials, spectators, photographers and broadcasters alike to bring the game into the 21st century.

England Hockey chief executive Sally Munday claimed that the innovative pitch was well received at London 2012.

"The aim going into the Olympics was twofold," she told insidethegames.

"Firstly to improve the spec experience.

"And secondly was to demonstrate the dynamism of the sport.

"It is evolving the whole time to keep up to date and the innovation worked.

"We had feedback from thousands of people who had a really positive experience during the Olympic Games.

"Feedback from television audiences also indicated that the bright yellow ball on the blue pitch helped to enhance the viewer experience.

"The same also said of the Investec World League semi-final in Chiswick where the blue Ds from the London 2012 pitch were used.

"It went down really well and audiences found the contrast made it much easier to follow the games."

Inside the Games



IHA welcome Dublin Airport Authority on board



The Irish Hockey Association is delighted to welcome Dublin Airport Authority on board as a commercial sponsor of the Electric Ireland U18 Women's EuroHockey Championships which will take place at UCD, Dublin from 29th July to 4th August 2013.

The tournament, running as part of The Gathering, will feature the cream of European Women's Hockey including Germany, Netherlands, Belgium, England, Russia, France and Wales as well as an Ireland team who will be keen to impress on home turf. These potential future Olympians will grace the National Hockey Stadium at UCD for 6 days of exhilarating hockey action.

The Electric Ireland U18 Irish Women's team have been drawn in Pool A along with hockey superpower Netherlands, France and our close neighbours Wales. The Irish Girls will kick off their campaign vs. Wales on Monday 29th July 2013 at 5pm and then face The Netherlands at 5pm the following day before wrapping up their Pool games vs. France at 1pm on Thursday 1st August 2013.

Based on their final Pool positions all 8 teams will feature in a crossover day on Saturday 3rd August with the top two teams from each pool game playing off in two exciting semi-finals for a place in the showpiece Electric Ireland U18 Women's EuroHockey Championships Final on Sunday 4th August 2013.

Irish U18 players Sarah Hawkshaw, Ruth Maguire & Emma Duncan took time out from their busy training programme and were on hand at Dublin Airport on Friday to launch the exciting new partnership with DAA.

Speaking at the launch, Irish Hockey CEO, Mike Heskin said "We are delighted to have Dublin Airport Authority in as a commercial sponsor with us as we bring the very best of European U18 Women's Hockey to this prestigious competition in UCD. DAA's support allows us to further showcase all that our wonderful country has to offer as part of The Gathering initiative and ensures we can put on a tournament to remember for the visiting teams, many of which will have their first experiences of Ireland when they touchdown in Dublin Airport later this week."

More photos from the launch with DAA are available on the Irish Hockey Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/irishhockeyassociation

Irish Hockey Association media release