News for 16 October 2013

All the news for Wednesday 16 October 2013


Hockeyroos go down 3-1 to Argentina

Albertarrio double leads Las Leonas to 3-1 win in Luciana Aymar’s 350th match


Despite an Ashleigh Nelson goal that threatened a second half comeback, Australia’s Hockeyroos went down 3-1 to Argentina in the third and final Test in Perth on Tuesday evening. In a match that celebrated the 350th international appearance of seven times World Player of the Year Luciana Aymar, it was her young teammate 20 year old Agustina Albertarrio whose two goals proved critical to securing the series win.

Albertarrio’s first, in the 27th minute, was a stunning strike that gave Rachael Lynch in the Australian goal little chance. And a scrambled goal 22 seconds before half time from Ana Rodriguez put the Hockeyroos on the back foot going into the break 2-0 down.

But the hosts responded in the second half, enjoying better possession and halving the deficit through Ashleigh Nelson’s goal, swept home from close range with just under quarter of an hour remaining.

The goal boosted Australian hopes but just as it looked as if the Hockeyroos might grab a memorable equaliser Argentina counter attacked. Racing with pace towards the Australian goal, Albertarrio was on hand to convert a pulled-back pass from the left baseline to put the result beyond doubt at 3-1.

Hockeyroos Head Coach Adam Commens summed up the series and the match afterwards, saying, “We made good progress from game one to two but this evening we were a metre off on all of our contesting and just a little bit late. I thought that Argentina were sharper again; they really handled the ball beautifully tonight and showed why they’re one of the top teams in the world. I felt in the second half it was more of an even contest without us really threatening the goal too much. We got ourselves into a situation where we could get a result and it was disappointing that we let them out of the back pocket to concede a goal.

“All in all we gained a lot out of the series. We learned plenty about our players and which players are capable of mixing it with top teams. I think it tells us a lot moving towards Oceania Cup and World League selection and ultimately our World Cup squad.”

Both sides now turn their attention to Thursday and the start of the International Super Series, which also includes Malaysia and Canada, plus the men’s teams of Australia, Argentina, Pakistan and Malaysia.

Looking ahead to the innovative 9-a-side competition, Commens said, “The Hockey 9s is going to be a really exciting challenge for this group. To be able to utilise the full width and depth of the field is something all hockey teams strive to do, whether in the 11-a-side or 9-a-side format of the game, and it’s further accentuated in the Super Series format. We’re looking forward to playing such varied international opponents and trying to defend our Super Series crown.”

Acknowledging the contribution of Luciana Aymar, he added, “She’s a wonderful player and someone that can be an inspiration to all hockey players, men and women alike. In her 350th match at 36 years of age she showed she’s still got a few years left in her legs. She was marvellous tonight; she made it very difficult for our team. It was one of the better performances I’ve seen from her.”

Tickets for the International Super Series are on sale starting at just $10 for concessions and $20 for adults. Visit www.hockey9s.hockey.org.au or Ticketmaster to buy.

The tournament will also be shown on ABC 1 and iview in Australia and the Australia Network in the Asia Pacific region.

TEST 3 OF 3

HOCKEYROOS   1 (0)

Ashleigh Nelson 56 (F)

ARGENTINA   3 (2)
Agustina Albertarrio 27, 66 (F, F)
Ana Rodriguez 34 (F)

Hockeyroos squad for Argentina test series
12-15 October 2013, Perth, WA
Alphabetical by surname
Athlete (Hometown) Caps/Goals

Started

Edwina Bone (Evatt, ACT) 12/0
Madonna Blyth (Brisbane, QLD) 258/61
Jade Close (Wagga Wagga, NSW) 75/12
Casey Eastham (Albion Park, NSW) 175/41
Anna Flanagan (Canberra, ACT) 96/15
Kirstin Johnson (Mackay, QLD) 20/2
Rachael Lynch (GK) (Melbourne, VIC) 88/0
Kobie McGurk (Collie, WA) 188/8
Claire Messent (Melbourne, VIC) 64/16
Brooke Peris (Darwin, NT) 5/0
Jodie Schulz (Wamuran, QLD) 79/37

Substitute Used
Jane Claxton (Adelaide, SA) 13/0
Bianca Joyce (Balaklava, SA) 36/1
Ashleigh Nelson (Wagin, WA) 120/47
Georgie Parker (Adelaide, SA) 38/3
Rebecca Reuter (Brisbane, QLD) 3/0
Jayde Taylor (Bunbury, WA) 76/1

Did Not Play
Elizabeth Duguid (GK) (Darwin, NT) 1/0
Audrey Smith (GK) (Wynnum, QLD) 0/0

Hockey Australia media release



Hockeyroos looking to bounce back at International Super Series Hockey 9s after series loss to Argentina

By Natalie Yoannidis



Hockeyroos against South Korea Photo: The Hockeyroos will take on Argentina, Malaysia and Canada in the Hockey 9s tournament in Perth. (Paul Kane, Getty Images)

The Hockeyroos are out to bounce back from a Test series loss to Argentina when they contest the International Super Series Hockey 9s starting in Perth on Thursday.

Australia lost the series 2-1 after suffering a 3-1 loss to the Olympic silver medallists on Tuesday.

It will now turn its attention to the Hockey 9s event where it will play matches against Argentina, Canada and Malaysia.

With the World League Final and World Cup fast approaching, Hockeyroos head coach Adam Commens said the event will be a good test for his side.

"It's really important, for our team's preparation for all of our larger tournaments, to play quality matches," he said.

The brainchild of Hockey Australia and legendary coach Ric Charlesworth, the event is currently in its third year and will be contested at the Perth Hockey Stadium from October 17 -20.

The format sees teams field nine players as opposed to the regulatory 11, halves run for 20 minutes with wider goal nets - a format that is strongly endorsed by Commens.

"I think it's a great concept, very exciting for the spectators. A lot of goals are scored and you can go from one end of the field to the other," he said.

"I think these types of modified games are more attractive to the general public and certainly have a place in our sport."

The idea of decreasing player numbers to increase entertainment value is not a new concept.

Rugby has been played in a seven-a-side format for years, while rugby league is looking to trial a 9s event in New Zealand next year.

Kookaburras face stern Pakistani test


Australia's Jamie Dwyer hits the ball on the fly Photo: Main man ... Jamie Dwyer will again spearhead the Kookaburras' bid for success. (Getty Images Michael Dodge)

Four male teams will also take part in the event with Australia, Argentina, Malaysia and Pakistan competing for the men's title.

The men's roster is very strong but it is hard to see anyone standing between the Kookaburras and their third Super Series title in as many years.

They truly are a class above: Jamie Dwyer will again be leading the attack and will have plenty of support in the likes of Eddie Ockenden and Russell Ford.

The Kookaburras are the second ranked team in the world and took out the Champions Trophy in Melbourne last year.

Their main rivals will be eighth ranked Pakistan, who finished third in the 2012 Champions Trophy, a tournament where it went blow for blow with the Aussies, going down in a thrilling 1-0 encounter during the pool matches.

Argentina favourites for women's tournament

For the women it is hard to go past Argentina. 'Las Leonas' are the second ranked side in the world, reigning world champions, reigning Champions Trophy winners and Olympic silver medallists.

That is an impressive resume by any team's standards and the Hockeyroos will be pressed to counter their attacking prowess.

The Hockeyroos are still a quality side despite slipping down the rankings in recent years.

They currently sit sixth in the world and have a solid mix of youth and experience which will hold them in good stead for this event.

The likes of Madonna Blythe, Casey Eastham and Anna Flanagan will be major draw cards for the event.

ABC



Greenshirts fly out for Super Series in Perth



The Pakistan Hockey Federation has pinned its hopes on its junior players to help revive the sport in the country. PHOTO: AFP

KARACHI: Pakistan hockey team has left for Australia bidding to improve and progress towards a better future following the World Cup debacle.

The team’s head coach Tahir Zaman said he was hoping for a better show from his side, with improvement being his main target.

Pakistan will be up against Argentina and Malaysia besides the hosts at the International Super Series Hockey 9s set to begin tomorrow.

After the event, the greenshirts will take on Australia A on October 21 and will meet Argentina on October 23 before squaring up against Australia on the following day in a one-off Test.

Pakistan grabbed the bronze medal in the last edition of the Super Series but this time around, the target is to give exposure to the youngsters in the squad,” Zaman told The Express Tribune on the eve of the team’s departure.

“These assignments are a test for our youngsters. I want improvement from my team which is my target,” he added.

“We have tried to focus on our structure and the upcoming assignments will tell us what direction we are moving in.”

The team management, given the task of resurrection after the failure to qualify for World Cup 2014, included many new names for the Australia tour that will be followed by the Asian Champions Trophy in Japan.

“These youngsters have shown a lot of energy and skills at the training camp. But their real test will come with international outings. These matches will help us gauge their ability.”

Junior World Cup preparations begin after Eid

Meanwhile, the training camp of the probables for the Junior World Cup will be staged at Naseer Bunda Stadium in Islamabad on October 20. The mega event for the future hockey stars will be hosted in New Delhi from December 6 to 15.

As many as 41 players have been asked to join the training camp that will be supervised by former Olympian Manzoorul Hassan, who has been retained as the head coach and manager of the national junior team.

The Express Tribune



Super 9s test

The Australian Super 9's tournament, to be held in Perth from October 17-20 will be a totally new experience for the Malaysian national hockey team.

But coach Paul Revington is looking towards to improve and build the consistency of Malaysian playing fundamentals in offense and defense, and believes the Super 9's offers a tournament opportunity for the players to prove this performance consistency.

Malaysia will up against Australia, Pakistan and Argentina in the four day tournament. And they will also play a friendly against Argentina on October 15 followed by two matches against Australia A on October 22 and 23.

“It will be a good challenge for the players to combine 11-a-side and 9-a-side hockey in one Tour and especially as we are including players who have not had much hockey since two weeks prior to Asia Cup,” said Revington.

“All players have undergone a challenging initial two weeks having returned from a break. This phase (Sept-Dec 2013) is one where we must use the time to grow the quality of our player base and keep improving our physical base for a busy 2014 schedule.”

On what he is looking for in the three matches played on the sidelines of the Super 9’s, Revington said that it will give him a chance to evaluate the players and decide who will make the trip to Kakamighara for the AHF Champions Trophy that is scheduled from November 2-9.

“When in a training phase it is always good to play matches and get onto the "match pitch", added Revington.

“These matches, (Argentina and Australia A) is terrific for our team as all players get an opportunity to perform and fight for a place in the 2014 squad against high quality opponents.”

Currently there are 28 players in the training squad with 19 travelling to Perth. Two players playing overseas, Faisal Saari (German League) and S. Selvaraju (France) are already penned in for the AHF Champions Trophy where Malaysia will try defend the bronze they won in 2011 (Ordos) and 2012 (Doha),

Malaysian Hockey blogspot



Match schedule announced for Argentina Hockey World League Final 2013

Women’s event will take place in San Miguel de Tucumán from 30 November - 8 December



(Photo: FIH / Frank Uijlenbroek)

The International Hockey Federation (FIH) is pleased to reveal the confirmed match schedule for the Argentina Hockey World League Final, which takes place in San Miguel de Tucamán from 30 November to 8 December 2013.

The tournament will see eight of the world's finest teams and is the culmination of a journey which began back in August 2012 when the first rounds of the competition were played.

The event features two pools of four followed by quarter-finals, semi-finals, classification and medal matches. Pool A will feature reigning Olympic Champions the Netherlands alongside England, Germany and Korea, while current World Champions and host Argentina face New Zealand, Australia and China in Pool B.

The Round-Robin pool phase will take place over three competition days from 30 November until 3 December. Following the Round Robin, the teams will move into the crossover quarter-final phase, with the pool winners meeting the bottom team from the opposite pool. The #2 and #3 finishers will also face-off in the knock out quarter-final. From there, the winners move into semi-finals and the medal games, with the losing teams playing for placement.

The opening day of the tournament (Saturday 30th November) will feature all eight teams taking to the field. The morning session will feature matches from Pool A, with world number 4 England opening their campaign at 0900 (UTC / GMT -3) against Asian giants Korea. That match will be followed by the clash between eternal European rivals The Netherlands and recently crowned European champions Germany at 1130.

The evening session gets underway at 1830, with New Zealand and China going head-to-head before World Champions and home favourites Argentina play in-form Australia at 2100.

To see the complete tournament schedule, please click here.

All of the matches from the tournament in Tucamán will be live streamed on the FIH You Tube channel, which will also feature match highlights and behind the scenes footage. To subscribe to the FIH You Tube channel, click here.

About the Hockey World League

The Hockey World League is an action packed competition giving every hockey-playing nation a chance to go all the way to the Hockey World Cup and the Olympics.

Composed of four rounds and played over two years, the schedule alternately coincides with the build-up to the World Cup and to the Olympics, providing more than half of the entry tickets for both. Beyond a mere qualifier, the Hockey World League shines a spotlight on the sport in all corners of the globe, producing exciting and elite level hockey while also providing a strong commercial opportunity for the sport.

Typified by its “Make Your Mark” slogan, the Hockey World League invites every hockey playing nation to take part, allowing even the smallest ones to dream of writing their own chapter in hockey’s history books. More information about the Hockey World League can be found by clicking here.

FIH Media release



Schedule set for Women's World League Final


Photo: www.photosport.co.nz

The Black Sticks Women will face China, Argentina and Australia in pool play at the World League Final in San Miguel de Tucamán, Argentina.

The FIH (International Hockey Federation) has confirmed the schedule for the event, which runs from 1-9 December 2013.

The Black Sticks open their tournament against China on Sunday 1 December 10.30am (NZ time) and go on to play Argentina at 1.00pm the following day before closing out pool play against Australia at 10.30am on Wednesday 4 December.

The World League Final features eight of the world's best teams and is the culmination of a journey which began back in August 2012 when the first rounds of the competition were played.

The event features two pools of four followed by quarter-finals, semi-finals, classification and medal matches.

The Black Sticks are joined in Pool B by Australia, China and hosts Argentina while Pool A is made up of reigning Olympic champions the Netherlands, England, Germany and Korea.

Following the Round Robin pool phase, the teams move into the crossover quarter-final phase, with the pool winners meeting the bottom team from the opposite pool.

The second and third finishers will also face-off in the knock out quarter-final. From there, the winners move into semi-finals and the medal games, with the losing teams playing for placement.

Black Sticks head coach Mark Hager is set to name his team for the World League Final following the Oceania Cup in Stratford from 30 October - 3 November.

Hockey New Zealand Media release



NZ learns fate for World League

By David Leggat


New Zealand will begin their World League finals women's campaign against seventh-ranked China when the tournament begins in Tucuman, Argentina at the end of next month.

The third-ranked Black Sticks have been placed in pool B for the inaugural event which features the world's eight top-ranked teams and has been finalized after a lengthy qualifying process which began 14 months ago.

After playing the Chinese on November 30, New Zealand face world No 2 and hosts Argentina a day later, followed by Australia on December 3, with the finals on December 8.

New Zealand will get an important look at the Australians when the teams clash at the Oceania tournament in Taranaki at the end of this month.

If matches go as the seedings suggest, the Black Sticks would draw world No 5 Germany in their quarter-final. Win that and most likely the world No 1 Netherlands would be their semifinal opponents.

Pool A comprises the Dutch, No 4-ranked England, Germany (No 5) and Korea (No 8).

Pools:
Pool A: Netherlands (ranked No 1), England (4), Germany (5), Korea (8).
Pool B: Argentina (2), New Zealand (3),Australia (6), China (7).

New Zealand schedule:
Nov 30 v China
Dec 1 v Argentina
Dec 3 v Australia
Dec 5 Quarter-finals
Dec 7 Semifinals
Dec 8 Finals

The New Zealand Herald



Selected Oceania Cup games to be streamed live!


Photo: www.photosport.co.nz

Hockey New Zealand has confirmed that selected games at the Oceania Cup in Stratford will be streamed live through its website (www.hockeynz.co.nz).

Both the TET Black Sticks Men’s and Women’s Round Robin games against Australia will be shown live, along with both the men’s and women’s finals on Sunday 3 November.

The live streaming will feature expert commentary and have no geo-restrictions to ensure anyone from New Zealand or around the world can watch all the action.

Trans-Tasman rivalry will be strong with the Black Sticks Women looking to retain their 2011 Oceania Cup title while the Black Sticks Men will take on world champions Australia for a chance at Oceania Cup victory. Pacific nations Samoa and Papua New Guinea will also take part in the tournament.

While the Black Sticks Men and Women have both qualified for the 2014 World Cup, the Oceania Cup still has valuable world ranking points on the line.

OCEANIA CUP LIVE STREAMING SCHEDULE
Live through the Hockey New Zealand website

Wednesday 30 October
5.30pm - New Zealand v Australia (WOMEN)

Thursday 31 October
7.30pm - New Zealand v Australia (MEN)

Sunday 3 November
2.00pm - Women’s Final
4.30pm - Men’s Final

Hockey New Zealand Media release



Dangerous and Joel to replace Firhan, Azwar

by Aftar Singh



Dangerous Lee (right) is being given a chance to prove his worth and win a spot on the Junior World Cup squad.

KUALA LUMPUR: National forward Mohd Firhan Ashaari and midfielder Mohd Azwar Abdul Rahman have been dropped from the hockey squad going on a playing tour to India.

The 20-year-old Kuala Terengganu-born Firhan, who featured in the Asia Cup in Ipoh two months ago, is down with a knee injury while Azwar, who played in the Sultan of Johor Cup last month, is being rested.

Firhan, who has 33 senior international caps, is replaced by Sarawak-born Dangerous Lee while Joel Samuel van Huizen, the son of former national coach Stephen van Huizen, is selected in place of Azwar.

The national juniors will play three matches against the Indian juniors on Oct 18, 20 and 21 at the Dhyan Chand Hockey Stadium in New Delhi, which is the venue of the Junior World Cup from Dec 6-15.

There are 25 players in the training squad and national juniors coach K. Dharmaraj is expected to name the final squad of 18 players for the Junior World Cup on Nov 18.

Dharmaraj said that the playing tour to India would give him a chance to see how well Joel and Dangerous combine with the other players.

“The three matches against India would be their last matches before featuring in the Junior World Cup.

“The tour will also give us a chance to get used to the turf, official hotel and logistical woes we will face in India,” said Dharmaraj, who will leave with 18 players for New Delhi on Wednesday.

The national juniors played the Indian juniors twice in the Sultan of Johor Cup last month. Malaysia drew 3-3 in the preliminary round match before losing 3-0 in the final.

The squad: Mohd Hazrul Faiz Ahmad Sobri, Mohd Hafizuddin Othman, Mohd Fitri Saari, Mohd Rashid Baharom, G. Kavin Kartik, Mohd Hafiz Zainol, Shazril Irwan Nazli, Meor Mohd Azuan, Mohd Haziq Samsul, Mohd Izad Hakimi Jamaluddin, Mohd Zulhairi Hashim, Faiz Helmi Jali, Mohd Syamim Mohd Yusof, Mohd Azri Hassan, Mohd Shahril Saabah, Joel Samuel van Huizen, Dangerous Lee.

The Star of Malaysia



MHC to meet clubs to discuss 2014 calendar

by S. Ramaguru


KUALA LUMPUR: The Malaysian Hockey Confederation (MHC) competitions committee has called for a meeting on Oct 26 among all the clubs involved in their league competitions to discuss the 2014 calendar.

The coming year will see the national players involved in at least five major international tournaments from March until October.

As such, the competitions committee wants to discuss the calendar proposal with the teams and seek their feedback.

The age group meets will not be unduly affected as the MHC will be starting a new national junior team and will not have any major tournaments to distract them.

MHF competitions committee executive Hashim Mohamed Yusof said that it is the senior level tournaments that they have to worry about.

“Our proposal has been worked in tandem with the national programme. The national coach has given his input and we have incorporated his suggestions. The states have been given a copy of the proposed calendar and we want to know what they think and if there are any possible clashes.

“Otherwise we will implement it,” he added.

Hashim said clubs from both the junior and senior leagues, including the state affiliates, will be called for the meeting.

The MHC competitions will start off with the Malaysia Junior Hockey League on Jan 10. Depending on the number of teams, the competition is expected to last at least two months.

The senior MHL will be run in two instalments. Division One matches will be held in the first half of the year beginning in March. It will be completed by June with the President’s Cup final.

The Premier League will take off in October once the national team have completed their programmes for the year.

The national team’s major assignments are the Sultan Azlan Shah Cup, Champions Challenge I, World Cup, Commonwealth Games and the Asian Games.

Hashim said the committee will also take the opportunity during the meeting with the clubs to discuss the format of the leagues and also the eligibility of players and the ruling on foreign players.

“Teams may have some valid suggestions and if there is favour from all then we can look at introducing it. We just hope that the teams will come prepared and if possible give us their questions early so that we can be prepared with answers,” he added.

Hashim said the committee is mulling the proposal to introduce the 45-second ruling for penalty corners.

“The only setback here is cost, as you has to install a clock at every venue. So that needs to be looked into carefully,” he said.

Another proposal from the committee is to do away with extra time in the knockout phase of the competition. Any matches drawn at that stage will go straight into a penalty shootout.

The Star of Malaysia



Terry Walsh named new coach of India men

Former Australia striker "humbled" by chance to coach eight times Olympic Gold medallists



(Photo: FIH / Grant Treeby)

Legendary Australia attacker Terry Walsh has been named Head Coach of the Indian men’s national team, Hockey India has announced.

The hugely experienced triple Olympian and FIH Master Coach was confirmed in the role on Tuesday (15 October), filling the position vacated by fellow Australian Michael Nobbs. 

“Mr Walsh will provide the adequate guidance and motivation to the team”, said Hockey India Secretary General Dr Narinder Batra on Tuesday. “He not only has the experience but also has a vision to develop the senior men hockey team as a well-knit, professional unit.”

“The opportunity to head the Indian coaching team is extremely humbling,” said Walsh, an Olympic Silver medallist from Montreal 1976 and a world cup winner in 1986. “Coaching India must be regarded as the greatest challenge in the hockey world.”

To read the full story, click here.

Hockey India media release

FIH site



Terry Walsh appointed as chief coach of Indian men's hockey team

NEW DELHI: Hockey India (HI) on Tuesday announced the appointment of Terry Walsh, who has represented Australia in three Olympics, as chief coach of the senior men's national team.

HI secretary general, Narinder Batra said the appointment of Walsh is an important step to ensure that an appropriate programme is in place for our hockey team.

The new season commences with World League Round 4 at Delhi and ends with Champions Trophy. In between, the team will be participating in three prestigious events - FIH Men's World Cup, Commonwealth Games and Asian Games.

"Walsh will provide the adequate guidance and motivation to the team. He not only has the experience but also has a vision to develop senior men's hockey team as a well-knit professional unit," said Batra.

Walsh, who is ready to commence his role with Hockey India, said, "The opportunity to head the Indian team is extremely humbling. Coaching India must be regarded as the greatest challenge in the hockey world."

"The world's richest history in our sport combined with the great passion of Indian hockey sets an incredible platform for excitement, but also expectations in this country. I look forward to working with the players, the coaching staff, Hockey India and the Sports Authority of India in ensuring no stone is left unturned with India's quest to return to the performance pinnacle of world hockey," he added.

Walsh, who worked as Technical Director with USA field Hockey from 2005-2012, pursued his coaching career in 1990 where he worked as head coach of the Malaysian National Hockey team till 1994.

He also worked as head coach of the Australian National team from 1997-2000 and under his coaching the team had won Commonwealth Games in 1998, Champions Trophy in 1999 and a Bronze medal at the Sydney Olympic Games in 2000.

In 2004, Walsh worked as head coach of the Netherlands hockey team that won the silver medal at Athens Olympic same year.

Walsh, an International Hockey Federation (FIH) Master Coach, has 175 international caps and represented Australia in four World Cup campaigns and three Olympic Games including a silver medal at the Montreal Olympics in 1976.

The Times of India



Terry Walsh ready for 'greatest challenge'

NEW DELHI: With India scheduled to play several important events in 2014, former Australian striker Terence "Terry" Walsh was on Tuesday appointed as the chief coach of the national men's hockey team.

A senior Hockey India (HI) official said Walsh's appointment was an important step to ensure that an appropriate programme was in place for the men's team ahead of the next season which will commence with the World League Round 4 in New Delhi and end with the Champions Trophy at home.

In between, the team will be participating in three very important events — the men's World Cup, the Commonwealth Games and the Asian Games.

"Terence will provide adequate guidance and motivation to the team. He not only has the experience but also has a vision to develop senior men's hockey team as a well-knit professional unit," HI secretary general Narinder Batra said in a statement.

Walsh on his part, probably correctly, termed his new job as the "greatest challenge in the hockey world". He said: "I look forward to working with the players, the coaching staff, HI and the Sports Authority of India (SAI) in ensuring no stone is left unturned with India's quest to return to the performance pinnacle of world hockey."

Coaching the men's hockey team has not been a pleasant experience for all the foreigners at the helm so far. Germany's Gerhard Rach, the first foreign coach of the team, Spaniard Jose Brasa and Australian Michael Nobbs all left or were removed from their jobs for different reasons before the end of their contracts.

The Times of India



India bring in new coach to reverse hockey fortunes

NEW DELHI: Former Australian Olympian Terry Walsh was on Tuesday appointed chief coach of India's faltering hockey team, replacing compatriot Michael Nobbs who was sacked in June.

Walsh, a previous national coach of the Malaysian and Australian teams, is charged with turning India around, after the eight-time Olympic gold medallists finished last in the 2012 Games in London.

“I will ensure no stone is left unturned in India's quest to return to the pinnacle of world hockey,” Walsh said in a statement.

Walsh, 59, was until recently the technical director of the United States field hockey association.

Hockey India did not spell out the details of Walsh's appointment, but reports said he was expected to remain in charge till the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro.

Walsh will supervise the national team's campaign at next year's Asian and Commonwealth Games, and also the World Cup, if India qualify.

“Walsh not only has the experience, but also a vision to develop the senior men's hockey team into a well-knit professional unit,” Hockey India secretary-general Narinder Batra said in the same statement.

Walsh was quoted as saying that “coaching India must be regarded as the greatest challenge in the hockey world.”

Walsh will work alongside renowned Dutch coach Roelant Oltmans, who was appointed Hockey India's high performance director in January.

Four foreign coaches -- Spaniard Jose Brasa, Australian Ric Charlesworth, Germany's Gerhard Rach and Nobbs -- served as Indian coaches over the last decade before they were all sacked prematurely.

Dawn



Another Australian takes charge

Rutvick Mehta




It’s official now. Former Australian striker Terry Walsh will take over as chief coach of the Indian senior men’s hockey team almost three months after compatriot Michael Nobbs was sacked by Hockey India (HI).

HI confirmed 59-year-old Walsh’s appointment on Tuesday, and he will be in charge of the team till the 2016 Olympics. dna had reported on September 23 that Walsh was almost certain to be named as chief coach.

Walsh – who has coached The Netherlands, Malaysia and his home country – is the latest foreigner to take over the reigns of the men’s team after his predecessors including Nobbs, Ric Charlesworth, Jose Brasa and Gerhard Rach were shown the door after some inconsistent performances over the years.

“It’s time Indian hockey picked itself up,” HI secretary Narendra Batra told dna on Tuesday. “And this time, the results should be seen, not felt. We will be monitoring Walsh’s performance very closely.”

Walsh’s appointment was on expected lines after HI recommended his name to the Sports Authority of India based on a stronger CV than the others. However, it came as a surprise to some that another foreigner, especially an Australian, was asked to take over after the team went downhill under Nobbs.

“Why have they appointed an Australian again? Is it because HI’s CEO (Elena Norman) is an Australian?” former national coach Joaquim Carvalho asked. “I have not seen Walsh producing results with any of the teams that he has been a part of. I don’t know how far the team will go under him.”

Asked about the need of a foreign coach, Batra said, “Indian coaches are not yet up to that level.
They need to come up. Once they do, we wouldn’t be so insistent on a foreign coach.”

MP Ganesh, former captain and coach, had a different take on the issue. “We should hire foreign coaches to work on specific areas like defence or penalty shootouts, more as consultants who come once in six months or so. But they shouldn’t get into the administration. That should be left to the Indian coach,” he said.

However, backing the notion of having a foreign coach is former India captain Viren Rasquinha, who felt Indian coaches are not yet ready to take the plunge.

“I can count on my fingertips the number of local coaches that can take over the national team. The problem – across all sports – is that very few local coaches are updated with the latest methods and technology that is required in sports nowadays. Till that is changed, we have to reply of foreign coaches,” Viren said.

While the debate can be never-ending, the fact remains that Walsh has some serious work to do. The team has been plagued with some very inconsistent performances, with India barely managing to qualify for next year’s World Cup due to their runners-up finish at the Asia Cup. The 2014 World Cup will, in a way, be a litmus test for Walsh.

Walsh’s resume

As player

Walsh was first selected to play for Western Australia in 1974 and he was so impressive that he was immediately chosen in the national team for the 1975 World Cup in Malaysia

He is a three-time Olympian. He was part of the silver-winning Australian side in the 1976 Montreal Olympics, and the team that finished fourth at the 1984 Los Angeles Games

Went on to play 175 internationals before retiring after Australia’s 1986 World Cup victory in London

As coach
Was in charge of the Australian men’s team from 1997 to 2000, and helped them bag a bronze medal at the 2000 Sydney Games.

He then guided the Dutch men’s team to a silver medal at the 2004 Athens Olympics

 

Was last associated with the American team as their technical director from 2005-2012

Aus$12,500 (Rs7.2 lakh approx)

DNA



Who is India's new hockey coach, Terry Walsh?

Jaspreet Sahni



Who is India's new hockey coach, Terry Walsh? With 175 international caps and the experience of coaching Malaysia, Australia and Netherlands, Walsh has the credentials needed to be a successful coach.

After much deliberation, ranging from shortlisting applicants to across-the-table salary negotiations, Terrence Walsh - popularly known as Terry Walsh - has replaced fellow Australian Michael Nobbs as the new coach of Indian men's hockey team.

Salary was the only hindrance in the appointment of Walsh, who was Hockey India's (HI) unanimous choice among a shortlist of four candidates; and in the end it was mutually agreed at AUD 12,000 (approximately Rs. 7 lakh) per month - a thousand dollars more than what Nobbs drew from the Sports Authority of India (SAI) that takes the final call after HI's recommendation.

As finger slides down Walsh's CV, his credentials as a coach gather conviction. A former Australia, Holland and Malaysia coach, Walsh - a veteran of 175 international caps - is talked about as a great strategist who coached Australia to Commonwealth Games gold in 1998, Champions Trophy win in 1999 and Olympic bronze in 1999. Mentoring the Netherlands for a year in 2000, he won the Dutch a silver medal at the Athens Olympics.

The Aussie - a potent striker of his time and known for scoring one of Australia's two goals in the World Cup final against Germany in 1986 before retiring the same year - also has an Olympic silver in his cabinet that he won in 1976 at Montreal.

Walsh's connection with India is not new - he has two. In 2000, while India sought a foreign coach, Walsh was the first expat to catch the eye of the then governing body Indian Hockey Federation. But nothing materialised for the Aussie, who has remained in contention ever since as the musical chairs of India's hockey coaches continued. His second connection with India is more emotional - he has an Indian grandfather.

What perhaps tilted the scales in Walsh's favour this time is his knowledge of the Dutch system and the presence of Roelant Oltmans, the legendary former Netherlands coach, as India's High Performance Director. Both share a wealth of knowledge that transformed Netherlands into world-beaters, and Oltmans's view that Walsh "is the right man for the job" convinced HI and SAI.

Walsh is expected to take office in about a week's time, and already has a list of the elitist hockey tournaments lined up over the next 12-18 months. The Asia Champions Trophy, FIH Hockey World League finals, FIH World Cup, Commonwealth Games, Asian Games and Champions Trophy are assignments that not only warrant the best talent but also means to harness it. Walsh will have to be that harness, and his immediate predecessor Nobbs believes it's the best time to take over as India coach.

"He should have a successful programme and should get some really great results as he is set up nicely now to get them," Nobbs told IBNLive.com. "It's a perfect time for him to enter as most of the hard work has been done. India have a great junior programme, the WSH [World Series Hockey] players will now be available and a lot of the juniors will shift into the senior programme after the Junior World Cup [in December]. So he will have time to get things working and some time to get some real development started."

But Walsh's last assignment with professional hockey was not as part of the coaching staff. He was the technical director for USA hockey from 2005 to 2012, somewhat similar capacity to Oltmans' current profile with HI. But the Australian says he is ready to take up the challenge. "The opportunity to head the Indian coaching team is extremely humbling. Coaching India must be regarded as the greatest challenge in the hockey world," he said after accepting the offer.

But as Nobbs suggested, Walsh's immediate goal will be to produce results. And it's a foregone conclusion that with Hockey India opting for the luxury of appointing third foreigner - after Oltmans and Gregg Clark - in their prevalent coaching set-up, Walsh's performance is going to be very closely monitored.

IBNLive Sports



Reverse stick: Australia wanted to net Dhyan Chand as hockey coach

K Arumugam



A file photo of India's legendary hockey player Major Dhyan Chand.

Nowadays, India bends over backwards to hire foreign coaches for national hockey teams, offering them better pay packages compared to other disciplines.

Former Australian Olympian Terry Walsh will now be paid Australian $12,000 (Rs 7.4 lakh) per month, $1000 more than what his
predecessor and countryman Michael Nobbs got.

However, about six decades ago when Australia hosted the Olympics, it offered a mere Australian £25 per week to Major Dhyan Chand!

The writer is in possession of a copy of the letter written by JH Powell, then honorary general-secretary of the Australian Hockey Association (AHA), who approached General KM Cariappa to acquire the services of the legendary player for preparing the Australian men’s team for the Melbourne Olympics.

General Cariappa, who was the Indian Ambassador to Australia and New Zealand, was approached by Powell when he visited Melbourne in early 1956.

The General, whose regiment clashed with Dhyan Chand’s Punjab Regiment in the annual Military Hockey Cup, was an admirer, and he took the liberty of discussing the terms and conditions of Dhyan Chand’s appointment as the Australian national team’s first foreign coach.



Travel and costs

According to the letter dated April 14, 1956, AHA was prepared to pay Major Dhyan Chand A£25 per week from the date of his leaving his home until his return, plus “reasonable first-class sea travel to Melbourne”, “accommodation in private homes and/or the Olympic Village during his stay in Melbourne”.

Though they played international hockey in the early 1920s, Australia did not participate in the Olympics till the mega event came home.

They lacked confidence, and to an extent the resources and logistics, to take up competitive hockey till then.

When compelled to participate in the Olympics, Australia turned to the best hockey player the world had produced for help. However, Dhyan Chand did not take up the assignment as the process got halted by bureaucratic red tape.

Australia owe their rise in world hockey to Anglo-Indians who arrived in Western Australia in large numbers after India’s independence. They spotted and motivated local talent and helped them sparkle.

Once the plan to rope in Dhyan Chand did not work out, AHA appointed Fred Browne, a La Martiniere College (Lucknow) alma mater, as Olympic coach. Browne fielded five Anglo-Indians in the team and got Australia their first Olympic hockey bronze.

The writer is a hockey historian

Hindustan Times



Hockey India League to have mini auction next month

NEW DELHI: The Hero Hockey India League will conduct a mini players auction (closed bid) featuring over 150 players from around the world on November 18, nearly two months ahead of the second season of the franchise-based event.

Hockey India secretary general and Hero Hockey India League chairman Dr. Narinder Batra said the auction would give the franchisees a chance to buy new players to replace permanent withdrawals and complete their squads for the coming season.

"The base prices for the players vary from USD 2,600 to USD 25,000. With the inclusion of a new team in HIL 2014, we can expect more spectacular hockey this time," Batra said.

"The second season will be an exciting opportunity for the young and coming talent to leave its mark on this tournament. We are sure Hero HIL 2014 will build on the massive landmark that the inaugural edition was," he added.

Nearly 154 players from India and overseas have made themselves available for the auction.

In the inaugural season, 70 top domestic players including the Indian national side as well as 50 international players, played for the five teams.

Of the 120 players, who played in the inaugural Hero Hockey India League, 60 were Olympians.

The list includes winners of the prestigious FIH Player of the Year Award, including Jamie Dwyer (2004, 2009, 2010, 2011), Teun de Nooijer (2003, 2005, 2006) and Moritz Fuerste (2012).

Seven of the top 10 FIH rated players competed in the HIL. The inaugural season, won by the Ranchi Rhinos, was telecast in 146 countries.

The second edition of the league will be played from January 23, 2014 with the final scheduled for February 23, 2014.

The Times of India



Hockey India asks Oltmans to release players for Mumbai Gold Cup

Mufeed Mahdi Rizvi


It will be for the first in Indian hockey that players attending the national camp have been instructed to play in a domestic tournament.

The tournament, Mumbai Gold Cup, to be held at Mahindra Stadium from October 20 received a major boost when Hockey India wrote a mail to India's High Performance Manager Roelant Oltmans to release players of the teams participating in the tournament.

One of Mumbai's oldest and premier hockey tournament's is likely to revamped this year.

"We wanted to the best players to participate in this tournament. So we approached Hockey India secretary Narendra Batra and requested him help us. He dashed off a mail to the concerned authorities, including Oltmans, to check if this was possible," Mumbai Hockey Association secretary Ram Singh Rathor told Mirror.

With seven-eight outstation teams, and four local, set to take part in the tournament, there are in all 13 players from the national camp that could join their respective teams in the forthcoming tournament.

PARTICIPATING TEAMS

1. Army XI
2. Air India
3. Bharat Petroleum
4. Indian Oil
5. SAIL
6. Punjab & Sind Bank
7. Punjab National Bank

LOCAL TEAMS

1. Western Railway
2. Indian Navy
3. Central Railway
4. Union Bank of India

The Times of India



Pakistan girls fight back

Rachna Khaira


Jalandhar - Putting up a tough fight against the roaring Punjab XI (India), Punjab XI (Pakistan), on Tuesday, twice came from behind to draw the second match of the three match series in the ongoing 30th Servo Indian Oil Surjit Hockey Tournament at the Olympian Surjit Hockey Stadium.

After a terrible performance in the first match, which they lost 7-2, the women from across the border improved their game today, especially in defence, and stifled the Indian girls for a tight 2-2 draw.

In the 23th minute, wonder girl Sukhjit Kaur, who scored four goals in the previous match, opened the account for the home team.

But the lead didn’t last and in the next minute the visitors equalised through Asma Ashraf.

Two minutes into the second half, Navjit kaur again put the Indian women ahead, but the visitors struck within five minutes through Asma Ashraf to take the series into the decider, which will be played on 17th October.

The Tribune



Scottish Hockey’s 'Awesome October' live online


Glasgow National Hockey Centre

Scottish Hockey is delighted to announce today that all eight matches of the National League Big Weekend event taking place at the Glasgow National Hockey Centre on 19 & 20 October will be broadcast exclusively live online by QuipuTV.

‘Awesome October’ will feature the top clubs from both Aberdeen Asset Management Men’s and Women’s National League Division 1 and there will be top of the table clashes, local derbies and basement battles aplenty over the course of the two days.

The matches will be webcast on Scottish Hockey website and QuipuTV's YouTube channel.

Stuart Moffatt, Scottish Hockey Communications Manager, said, “The live online broadcast provided by QuipuTV will be a fantastic opportunity for Scottish Hockey to showcase the ‘Awesome October’ event to hockey supporters both in Scotland and in other nations around the globe.

“QuipuTV have an excellent track record in delivering excellent coverage of sporting events and we are excited by the prospect of profiling high quality matches from the Aberdeen Asset Management National League at this weekend’s event here at the Glasgow National Hockey Centre.”

Jack McGill, Managing Director of QuipuTV, added, “Hockey is one of the biggest participation sports in the country and it deserves more coverage than it gets. The new Glasgow National Hockey Centre will be one of the popular attractions of next year’s Commonwealth Games.

“We are privileged to be the first television company to broadcast matches from this brilliant venue, with commentary from Rhona Simpson and Graham Dunlop, two of Scotland’s past Olympians.”

To watch the matches live online, please visit www.youtube.com/user/QUIPUTV

LIVE Schedule:

Saturday 19 October


11.30 [MEN] PSLTeamSports Clydesdale V Dundee Wanderers
13.00 [MEN] Glynhill Kelburne V AAM Gordonians
15.00 [WOMEN] Milne Craig Clydesdale Western V Grove Menzieshill
16.30 [WOMEN] GHK V Glynhill Kelburne

Sunday 20 October

11.30 [MEN] Western Wildcats V PSL Team Sports Clydesdale
13.00 [MEN] Hillhead V Inverleith
15.00 [WOMEN] Western Wildcats V GHK
16.30 [WOMEN] Glynhill Kelburne V Milne Craig Clydesdale Western

Scottish Hockey Union media release



PAHF President visits site of the hockey competition for the 2015 Pan American Games

2019 Pan American Games awarded to Lima, Peru

While attending the meeting of the General Assembly of PASO (Pan American Sports Organization) in Toronto, newly elected President of the PAHF, Coco Budeisky, took advantage of the opportunity to make a visit to the site of the hockey competition for the 2015 Pan American Games at the University of Toronto.

He also met with members of the Organizing Committee and provided comments on the competition schedule and the venue itself. The President stated that he was pleased with progress on the facility and that hockey would benefit from the central location and the unique setting of the University of Toronto.

Also attending the PASO meeting from hockey were Tony von Ondarza, Executive Member of the Association of Pan American Sport Federations, Sue Neill, representing the FIH, and Annette Knott, Secretary General of the Trinidad & Tobago Olympic Committee.

During the meetings, PASO awarded the 2019 Pan American Games to Lima, Peru (see article). These Games are due to take place between July 26 and August 11 in 2019, and will feature 10,000 athletes competing in 36 sports.

Pan American Hockey Federation