News for 23 November 2013

All the news for Saturday 23 November 2013


Good news in SA hockey camps ahead of finals

JONATHAN COOK in Nairobi


THERE was heartening news in the SA men’s and Investec South African women’s hockey camps Friday as the teams made final preparations for the Africa Cup of Nations finals at City Park Stadium in Nairobi Saturday afternoon.

Tim Drummond, the quality SA midfielder who is also world-class in penalty corner attack and defence, was named as a new signing for Delhi Waveriders in the Hockey India League while SA women’s forward Jade Mayne was declared fit to play.

With the final tickets to the 2014 Hockey World Cup the prize, both the SA men’s and women’s sides are aware of what is at stake. The men face old enemies Egypt at 2.30 pm SA time while the women’s gold medal match see the girls in green and gold tackle Ghana at 12 noon SA time.

SA men’s High Performance advisor Bartel Berkhout said Friday’s one-on-one sessions with the players at the Nairobi Club had been productive. “We spent 20 minutes with each player looking at technical and tactical elements of their play and then how connect that to the overall strategy.

“Egypt will do everything to disrupt our focus and we must beware of falling into that trap, emotional frustration that could see us give away yellow cards.”

Indeed, whatever the feisty Egyptians throw at the SA players they must be able to get back on track are re-start the process with the minimum delay.

SA head coach Charlie Pereira said he didn’t want to change too much. “Why fix what isn't broken? We have improved game by game; our penalty corners have been very good. One strong area of focus is for defenders not to overcommit in the tackle, rather just hold the ball up and force them to make the first move.”

The mental and physical cost of a fourth game in six days in the strength-sapping heat and altitude could be a curveball for both sides and the last 20 minutes might be crucial to the outcome.

SA assistant women’s coach Kurt Cerfontyne said Mayne brings energy to the team as well as providing spark to the forward line.

Cerfontyne said Ghana’s direct line to getting the ball to their pacy frontrunners was a focus area. “How we combat this was one aspect of today’s training session. Our counter-cover defence will be very important and we are hopefully prepped for any scenario.

“What has been pleasing is how players new to a senior Africa Cup tournament are becoming more aware of what to expect and the errors are starting to disappear.”

It’s crunch time for SA hockey and there can be no greater incentive than to win gold and book a berth at the World Cup next May.

Meanwhile, Berkhout was delighted that Drummond will be joining him and national striker Lloyd Norris-Jones at last year’s finalists the Delhi Waveriders for Hockey India League II in January and February, “It will be a great experience for Tim and add value for South Africa.”

SA now have four players in the popular HIL, which is run on the same lines as cricket’s IPL. National captain Austin Smith and former SA star Justin Reid-Ross, who is unavailable for international duty, play for HIL defending champs Ranchi Rhinos, who have former SA head coach Gregg Clark at the helm.

Go to https://twitter.com/HockeyKenya or www.facebook.com/HockeyKenya to follow the Africa Cup final action live.

SA TEAMS

Men: Rassie Pieterse (Southern Gauteng), Jacque le Roux (Western Province), Rhett Halkett (vice-capt, WP), Francois Pretorius (Northern Blues), Greg Last (KZN Coastal Raiders), Jethro Eustice (SG), Dylan Swanepoel (WP), Mohamed Mea (KCR), Austin Smith (capt, WP), Jonty Robinson (NB), Clint Panther (SG), Wade Paton (KCR), Taine Paton (KCR), Tim Drummond (KCR), Julian Hykes (SG), Geoff Abbott (KCR), Pierre de Voux (WP), Lloyd Norris-Jones (WP).

Women: Hanli Hattingh (WP), Phume Mbande (NB), Marcelle Keet (capt, Border), Lisa Deetlefs (SG), Nicolene Terblanche (NB), Illse Davids (WP), Celia Evans (North West), Shelley Russell (WP), Kaila Flemming (SG), Quanita Bobbs (WP), Sulette Damons (vice-capt, NW), Christine Roos (SG), Jade Mayne (WP), Bernie Coston (SG), Tanya Britz (Free State), Lilian du Plessis (NB), Izelle Lategan (FS), Kelly Madsen (KCR).

SA Hockey Association media release



HIL: Ramandeep is the highest paid


Young forward Ramandeep Singh became the highest paid Indian player in the Hockey India League (HIL) on Friday when he was snapped up for a whopping $81,000 in the players’ closed bid.

With a base price of only $2,600, Ramandeep, who only recently broke into the Indian squad and is still part of the junior national side, got $3000 more than skipper and marquee player Sardar Singh. Sardar was bought by the Delhi franchise last year for $78,000.

The next best bid for the day was for New Zealand’s Ryan Archibald, who was bought for $71,000 by Kalinga Lancers, the sixth franchise to join HIL in its second edition.

The closed bid for 95 Indian and 54 foreign players was held by Hockey India (HI), allowing franchises to buy new players for permanent withdrawals and for the Lancers to build a completely new set-up.

Announcing this, HIL chairman Narinder Batra said Lancers would be based at the newly inaugurated Kalinga Stadium in Bhubaneswar. The team will have national coach Terry Walsh and Dilip Tirkey as its mentor.

The Lancers is a joint venture of the Industrial Development Corporation of Odisha (IDCO) and Mahanadi Coalfields Limited, the first public sector franchise in any sport in the country.

In all, 49 players were bought by the six franchises. While defending champion Ranchi Rhinos needed only one foreign player to complete its squad of 24 — it bought former England captain Barry Middleton for $53,000 — Mumbai Magicians bought 11, mostly to replace the Pakistani players it lost last season.

Dutch players doubtful


Meanwhile, Batra also said that the presence of Dutch players in the second edition of HIL, starting on January 25, 2014 in Mohali, was doubtful.

“There was a problem with the Dutch federation refusing NOCs to its players but I think that has now been sorted out after the players threatened to quit the national team. But I cannot comment on their presence. In case any player fails to turn up, the respective franchise will be allowed to buy a replacement player from the reserve pool,” he said.

Interestingly, several players from the rebel World Series Hockey (WSH) managed to get decent amounts during the bid. Experienced forward Prabhjot Singh Sr. was bought by Mumbai for $46,000 while V.S. Vinaya went for $40,000.

The prominent names that failed to find any buyers include forwards Deepak Thakur, Rajpal Singh and Arjun Halappa, the last a national selector.

The Hindu



Young Ramandeep fetches highest price in HIL Closed Bid

Click here for the full list of players snapped up at the auction


NEW DELHI: Young striker Ramandeep Singh today fetched the highest price in the closed bidding for next year's Hockey India League after he was picked up by Uttar Pradesh Wizards for USD 81,000.

Ramandeep, whose base price was set at USD 2600, came to the limelight in the ninth men's Asia Cup and third Sultan of Johor Cup this year. He scored his maiden goal in his debut match at the Asia Cup, besides netting six goals in the Sultan of Johor Cup.

Another young striker Nikin Thimmaiah got the second highest bid amongst the domestic players when he fetched USD 59,000 from the Uttar Pradesh Wizards.

Veteran India forwards Prabhjot Singh and Bharat Chhikara also managed to attract buyers in today's close bidding.

Both Prabhjot and Chhikara were bought by Dabur Mumbai Magicians for USD 46,000 and USD 32,000 respectively.

Among other Indian junior players, defender Gurjinder Singh was picked up by Dabur Mumbai Magicians for USD 56,000, while forward Affan Yousuf was bought by Jaypee Punjab Warriors for USD 35,000.

Amongst the overseas players, Ryan Archibald of New Zealand became the most expensive player when the new and sixth franchise of HIL, Kalinga Lancers picked him up for USD 71,000.

In today's closed bid, six franchises picked up a total of 49 Indian and overseas players for the second season of the HIL.

Out of the total 154, the list of 49 players who were sold in the bid includes 28 Indians and 21 overseas players.

The newly-introduced franchise Kalinga Lancers from Odisha bought 24 new players while Ranchi Rhinos bought one player, Dabur Mumbai Magicians 11 players, Uttar Pradesh Wizards four players, Jaypee Punjab Warriors five players and Delhi Waveriders four players.

The six franchises spent USD 1.37 million to buy 49 players from Australia, New Zealand, Spain, Argentina, Ireland, England, South Africa and India.

The sixth and new entrant of HIL, Kalinga Lancers was jointly bought by Odisha Industrial Infrastructure Development Corporation (IDCO) and Mahanadi Coalfields Limited (MCL) and will be based out of Bhubaneshwar.

Former India captain Dilip Tirkey will be the mentor of the team while newly-appointed Indian men's team foreign coach Terry Walsh has been appointed as the chief coach.

In another development, Cedric D'Souza will replace AK Bansal as the coach of Delhi Waveriders. Bansal will assist Walsh in the Kalinga Lancers team.

Meanwhile, in the trading window which was opened from August 19 to September 30, Dabur Mumbai Magicians traded two players Sandeep Singh and Satbir Singh to Jaypee Punjab Warriors.

Hockey India secretary general and Hockey India League chairman Narinder Batra welcomed the new franchise, Kalinga Lancers to the HIL family.

"It's great to see that promising junior players have been bought by franchises at higher than the expected amounts which is a good sign for the future of Indian hockey," he said.

Batra also informed that Pakistani players are unlikely to feature in the second edition of HIL as well as the Pakistan Hockey Federation has not yet sent No Objection Certificates (NOCs) to Hockey India.

The Times of India

 



Ramandeep fetches highest price in auction

New Delhi - Promising and talented junior star Ramandeep Singh fetched a record $81,000 from Uttar Pradesh Wizards in the Hero Hockey India League Closed Bid player-auction here today. Six franchisees snapped up 49 Indian and overseas players for the second season of the Hero HIL. Ramandeep Singh, who scored his maiden goal in his debut match at the 9th Men’s Asia Cup, had scored six goals in the 3rd Sultan of Johor Cup 2013. Amongst the overseas players, Ryan Archibald was bought for $71,000 by the new franchisee from Odisha, Kalinga Lancers.

Six franchises spent $ 1.37 million to buy 49 players from Australia, New Zealand, Spain, Argentina, Ireland, England, South Africa and India.

Indian forward Nikin Thimmaiah garnered the second highest bid amongst the domestic players at $ 59000 from Uttar Pradesh Wizards who had substantial amount left at their disposal to splurge on the players.

Out of the total 154 players, the 49 who were sold sold today in the closed bid auctons were 28 Indians and 21 foreign players. The Kalinga Lancers bought 24 new players while Ranchi Rhinos bought one, Dabur Mumbai Magicians 11 players, Uttar Pradesh Wizards 4, Jaypee Punjab Warriors 5 and Delhi Waveriders 4.

Another promising Indian junior snapped up for an impressive amount was defender Gurjinder Singh, who was bought by Dabur Mumbai Magicians for $56,000, forward Affan Yousuf was sold for $35,000 to Jaypee Punjab Warriors.

Hockey India Secretary General and Hockey India League Chairman Narinder Batra said Kalinga Lancers were a welcome addition to the HIL franchisee line-up and it was great to see promising junior players being bought by franchises at higher than the expected amounts which was a good sign for the future of Indian hockey.

In the trading window which was opened from 19 August to 30 September, Dabur Mumbai Magicians traded two players, Sandeep Singh and Satbir Singh, to Jaypee Punjab Warriors.

Auctioned players: Players-positions, base price-sold price and teams: Ramandeep Singh (India, midfielder, base price $2600, sold $81,000, UP Wizards), Ryan Archibald (New Zealand, midfielder, baseprice $25000, sold $71000, Kalinga Lancers), Nikin Thimmaiah (India, forward, $2600-59000, UP Wizards), Trent Mittion (Australia, midfielder-forward, $20000-59,000, Mumbai Magicians), Gurjinder Singh (India, defender, $2600-56000, Mumbai Magicians), Kiel Brown (Australia, defender/midfielder, $25000-55000, Kalinga Lancers), Barry Middleton (England, midfielder/forward.

The Tribune



Three more heading to Hero Hockey India League


Adam Dixon in action for England

GB & England stars Barry Middleton, Simon Mantell and Adam Dixon are set to follow Ashley Jackson to India this January as the Hero Hockey India League enters its second year.

Barry Middleton, England captain and Holcombe star, went for the highest amount at over double his transfer price ($53,000) and heads to the Ranchi Rhinos to join his GB and England team-mate Ashley Jackson, who will be playing for his second year. Adam Dixon, currently playing for Beeston, transferred for $41,000 to the Dabur Mumbai Magicians along with Reading's Simon Mantell, who moved for $26,000.

Indian forward Ramandeep Singh secured the highest bid of $81,000 and will be joining the Uttar Pradesh Wizards at the start of the 2014 season, while Ryan Archibald of New Zealand got the second highest bid of $71,000 from the new team for the season: the Kalinga Lancers.

England Hockey Board Media release



Indian players are careless: Terry Walsh

Rohan Puri


NEW DELHI: The chief coach of the Indian men's hockey team, Terry Walsh, feels Indian players are talented but are extremely careless and need direction.

"The players here are very skillful, but they are very careless. They are careless because they don't understand when and why and how," Walsh told TOI.

On being asked how he plans to tackle this issue, he said, "A lot of discussion, a lot of video work, a lot of practice on the pitch and addressing the issue all the time so that we find solutions. In the end, repetition is the remedy. The only way you can improve a skill is by continuous repetition."

Walsh said patience and flexibility are the two ingredients one needs to be successful in a country like India.

"Well it depends on a person's personality and flexibility. If you come to the India without flexibility, you will stagnate and die. It's not possible to deliver unless you are flexible and have an open mind," Walsh said.

He also said that players cannot afford to be complacent and must constantly focus on improvement.

"Our objective is to improve. We will not settle for fourth or fifth or seventh positions. What we are trying to do is progress. The process is the important part. I am looking for execution of a process which is productive."

The Times of India



Flexibility and patience key to success in India: Walsh

NEW DELHI: Indian men's hockey's newly-appointed foreign coach Terry Walsh feels patience and flexibility are the two key ingredients which a person needs to be successful in a tough country like India.

Some of Walsh's high-profile countrymates -- hockey legend Ric Charlesworth and former cricketer Greg Chappell -- did not have the best of stints as coaches of the Indian teams and Walsh said he was well aware about what they lacked.

"According to my view, it's about one's personality and flexibility. If you come to the Indian environment without flexibility, you will stagnate and die. It's not possible to deliver unless you are flexible," Walsh told reporters on the sidelines of Hockey India League Closed Bid 2013 at a city hotel here today.

"You also have to have a degree of patience because it takes time to mould and change things here. It's not an instant thing.

"Some of the people who worked here previously expected instant changes which is very difficult to achieve here," he said referring to Charlesworth and Chappell.

The reputed Australian, a silver medallist in the 1976 Montreal Olympic Games, was appointed as Indian men's hockey team's chief coach last month after Michael Nobbs' sudden ouster.

Walsh, who comes with a vast experience of coaching and has also represented Australia in three Olympics, will reportedly get a salary of Rs 7.2 lakh per month from the Indian government.

Walsh, who has already started his work, said he had done his homework before landing in India.

Asked whether he had discussed with Charlesworth about what to expect in India, he said: "I played with him (Charlesworth for about 14 years). I had reasonable interaction with him before coming here. Our interaction was all about flexibility and how to be patient. Everyone can raise issues but the difficult part is to find solutions.

"When you talk about high performance in international hockey, it's about finding solutions. You can't perform if you don't have trust," he said.

Walsh said it is a known fact that Indian players are skillful but what they need is direction.

"The first impression I had of Indian players are that they are very skillful but they are careless," he said.

"I did not set any specific goals before coming here because you have to be realistic. We shouldn't forget that we are 10th in the world. My main aim will be to see the team progress sensibly.

"The players are looking for direction. So we need a viable programme which includes development of coaches and players at grass-root level, but I don't know how much time it will take to achieve this," the 59-year-old said.

"We have to take some elements from Australia and some elements from Europe and blend them together. It will be an interesting experience," Walsh added.

Walsh said he has no problem in working with Hockey India's High Performance Director, Roelant Oltmans, as they share a "common aim".

"The common aim for both of us is to put correct process in place. Over a period of time results will come. We just have to ensure that what we are doing is similar to world's best practices that are followed in modern day hockey," he said.

Walsh also emphasised that performance would be the sole criteria for representing India during his tenure.

The Times of India



Duke knocks off top-seeded Maryland, advances to first final since 2005


Lauren Blazing made 12 saves to help the Blue Devils knock off Maryland. Duke Athletics

NORFOLK, Va. – Duke is back in the title game.

The Blue Devils (17-6) outlasted top-seeded Maryland 3-2 to advance to its first NCAA championship game since 2005. Head coach Pam Bustin's squad moves on to face the winner of the second semifinal contest between Connecticut and North Carolina at 4:45 p.m. Sunday for a chance to capture the program's first national championship.

Senior forward Emmie Le Marchand paced the attack with one goal and one assist, while redshirt sophomore goalkeeper Lauren Blazing and a stalwart Duke defense kept the Terrapins off the board for the final 41 minutes to ensure the semifinal win.

The match opened with a flurry of offensive activity and Duke penetrated the scoring circle in the third minute to capitalize first on a feed from Le Marchand to junior Jessica Buttinger. The goal was Buttinger's eighth of the year and gave the Blue Devils an early advantage before Maryland evened up the score just minutes later on a penalty corner opportunity with Hayley Turner providing the finish.

After Blazing and the defense weathered a couple of dangerous penalty corner plays by the Terrapins, Duke earned a penalty corner of its own midway through the half. Senior Paula Heimbach redirected the hit by classmate Brenna Rescigno for her first goal of the season and second of her career.

The Blue Devils went up by two goals in the 28th minute when Le Marchand tallied her fifth goal of the tournament, putting back her own rebound past Maryland keeper Natalie Hunter. Once again the Terrapins were quick to respond, with Jill Witmer connecting on a cross inside to teammate Anna Dessoye less than a minute later. Neither side scored the rest of the way in the period, sending Duke into the locker room at the intermission with a 3-2 lead.

Shots were even at 8-8 after the first 35 minutes while Maryland led in penalty corners, 3-1.

The Terrapins came out firing in the second half, logging six shots in the first 12 minutes of the period, but Blazing and the defense remained solid against the bevy of attacking pressure. The Blue Devils went a man up at the 11:47 mark when a Maryland player was sent off with a yellow card, setting up a Duke penalty corner with just more than nine minutes to play.

Freshman Heather Morris sent a shot just wide left of the cage and the Terrapins were once again unable to get past the Duke defense on their own penalty corner a few possessions later. Blazing posted two more saves in the final three minutes to propel the squad to its first NCAA title game appearance under Bustin.

Blazing finished with 12 saves – including eight in the second half – while Maryland’s Hunter totaled four on the other end. For the match, the Terrapins led in shots 19-10 and held a 6-4 advantage in penalty corners.

Maryland concludes its season with a final record of 22-2.

NCAA



Duke wins, UNC falls in field hockey semifinals

NORFOLK, Va. — A Tobacco Road field hockey final almost became a reality on Friday. Duke held up its end in an upset. North Carolina, however, fell in heartbreaking fashion.

The Blue Devils outlasted top-ranked Maryland 3-2 in the first semifinal at L.R. Hill Sports Complex. Emmie Le Marchand paced the attack with one goal and one assist, while goalkeeper Lauren Blazing and a stalwart Duke defense kept the Terrapins off the board for the final 41 minutes.

With the win, Duke plays Connecticut at 4:45 p.m. Sunday. The Blue Devils (17-6) are chasing the program’s first national title.

“One of the most important things in a period of pressure like that is you’re just trying to regain control,” Blazing said of the second half. “We were kind of just absorbing their pressure. Being a part of the defense and working with them, they kept the shots pretty easy – low-angle shots or shots from the top of the circle. I thought we came out of it well.”

North Carolina fell to No. 4 Connecticut 2-1 after a two overtimes and a penalty shootout. In the back-and-forth, best-of-five series, UConn made two of its first four shots, and when UNC missed its fourth the game was over.

“It was a game that was a little bit back-and-forth and, of course, grueling – two overtime periods are tough and to lose in a shootout is heartbreaking, but it’s part of the game,” said UNC coach Karen Shelton, who reach her 18th final four in 33 seasons with the program.

Friday’s meeting was the second of the season between the two teams, the first less than a month ago. UNC (18-6) won that meeting 2-1.

News Observer



UConn edges UNC in penalty strokes, moves game away from third title


Sarah Mansfield, right, made four saves for the Huskies. Connecticut Athletics

NORFOLK, Va. – The Connecticut Huskies defeated North Carolina in dramatic fashion to advance to the NCAA championship game on Sunday afternoon. UConn, who bested the Tar Heels in strokes to take a 2-1 victory, has rolled to its sixth consecutive win and avenged three of its four season losses, improving to 20-4 on the year. North Carolina concludes its season with a record of 18-6.

UConn gained an early lead against North Carolina in the first half. The Huskies took advantage of their first penalty corner just four minutes into the game to jump on the scoreboard. Off the corner, Roisin Upton sent a hard low shot from the top of the circle that skirted through traffic and found the stick of a sliding Marie Elena Bolles on the back door. Bolles redirected the shot into the back of the cage from a low angle just off the right post for the 1-0 lead.

Both teams vied for possession for the remainder of the period but North Carolina could not solve Sarah Mansfield to break onto the scoreboard. She dismissed three first-half shots and came out of the goal to make several big plays to deny the Tar Heels many scoring chances.

North Carolina emerged from halftime with energy to earn a pair of corners early in the second half. The Tar Heels were able to draw even on the scoreboard 8:43 into the second frame of play. Charlotte Craddock found herself open on the left side of the circle and received a loose ball, evading Mansfield and depositing a low hard shot into the corner of the goal. UConn could not muster a shot in the second half but played relentless defense to prevent further Tar Heels scoring. At the end of regulation, a deadlocked 1-1 scoreboard sent the contest to overtime.

The Huskies regained their footing in the overtime periods and rattled off seven shots to swing momentum back in their favor. An early UConn corner with just more than nine minutes remaining in overtime nearly sealed the deal, but a Chloe Hunnable shot trickled wide right of the net. Anna Jeute nearly notched the winner midway through the second overtime but her rebound effort sailed high right of the net. The Tar Heels threatened to take the game with only seconds left on the clock in the latter overtime, but Mansfield rushed out to make a huge save and send the contest to penalty strokes.

Roisin Upton took the first penalty stroke, but Ammer made a save to open up the shootout. Casey Di Nardo stepped up first for the Tar Heels, but Mansfield shut the door on her attempt to keep it scoreless. Anna Jeute buried UConn’s second attempt into the right portion of the goal to put the Huskies up 1-0. Emily Wold took the second stroke for North Carolina, with her shot skirting wide of the goal. Marie Elena Bolles batted third for UConn, but her shot trickled wide right off of Ammer’s pads. Loren Shealy, shooting third for the Tar Heels, had a chance to tie the strokes at one apiece but her high lob stayed within reach of Mansfield’s arm as she swatted the shot safely away from net. Mansfield’s save left the door wide open for Chrissy Davidson, who logged the Huskies' second goal to seal the win for the Huskies.

Sarah Mansfield played a spectacular game between the pipes for Connecticut, stopping four shots and forcing several wide attempts in a full 105:00 of playing time. Ammer also logged all 105:00 in goal for the Tar Heels, stopping seven shots overall including five overtime stops in the setback.

The Huskies will face the Duke Blue Devils at 4 p.m. Sunday in the hopes of winning their third national title. Duke upset Maryland in the earlier semifinal by a score of 3-2.

NCAA



UNC falls to UConn in NCAA field hockey semifinal shootout

BY PAUL WHITE



UNC Athletics Photo

NORFOLK, Va. — It didn’t happen in the championship game this time. But for North Carolina, the end was every bit as disappointing.

The Tar Heels, who had lost in the title game the past three years after winning it all in 2009, fell to Connecticut in the NCAA Tournament semifinals Friday at Old Dominion University’s L.R. Hill Sports Complex in the first NCAA field hockey tournament game to be decided by the new shootout format.

Tar Heel forward Charlotte Craddock’s second-half goal knotted the game at one, and it stayed that way through two overtimes. The Huskies took over in the shootout, though, as Anne Jeute and Chrissy Davidson both connected for UConn while Huskies keeper Sarah Mansfield denied all four Tar Heel shooters.

“To go into shootouts there’s a winner and a loser, and that’s what stinks about sports,” North Carolina midfielder Emily Wold said. “It could be great if you’re the winner and come out on top. For us, it was a disappointing loss and it hurts. But...congratulations to UConn. “

The Huskies (20-4) will take on Duke (17-6) in the championship game Sunday at 4 p.m.

In previous years, games that weren’t decided after two overtimes were settled by penalty strokes — players taking shots on goal from seven yards out. The shootout, introduced this season, allows players to dribble towards the goal from 25 yards out before making a play within eight seconds.

The new format is a boon to aggressive goalkeepers, and UConn has one of the best in Mansfield, a two-time All-America who repeatedly rebuffed challenges by Tar Heel snipers. Mansfield forced Wold to shoot wide of the cage in the second shootout round, then batted Loren Healy’s flip shot out of the air á là Shaquille O’Neal in the third.

“I just tried to keep my head calm, and tried not to remind myself that this was to get into the national championship game because then I’d start panicking,” Mansfield said. “So I just tried to keep clear thoughts and just react to the ball.”

Emma Bozek was finally able to beat Mansfield when she dribbled around the Huskies netminder in the fourth shootout round. But in a final bit of Tar Heel frustration, the ball skipped off her stick and out of bounds and she streaked in front of the empty cage.

“That’s just the nature of sports,” Sheally said. “It didn’t fall our way this time, unfortunately.”

Craddock’s goal rallied the Tar Heels from a 1-0 halftime deficit and was the highlight of a strong second half in which North Carolina outshot UConn 7-0 and had five corners to the Huskies’ one.

But the Huskies controlled play through both extra periods, firing off eight shots while the Tar Heels didn’t manage any over the 30 overtime minutes.

The Herald Sun



Uddingston goal-spree set to continue

Aberdeen Asset Management Men's National League

Division 2


Top of the table Uddingston extended their goal tally to a staggering 78 after last weekend’s 19 goals. They travel away to bottom side FMGM Monarchs who face their toughest test yet.

Second place Watsonians face struggling Glasgow University, last time these two met the score line was only 1-0 to the Edinburgh based side, they will be hoping to score a few more this time to keep up with top side Uddingston.

At the other end of the table Alpha Data Carnegie take on CALA Edinburgh, despite being next to each other in the table there are eight points separating them.

Another close tie where fifth place Erskine Stewart Melville FP travel away to sixth place Falkirk GHG, both teams are level on 20 points with the Edinburgh based side having a slightly better record and a game in hand.

Granite City Wanderers face a challenging weekend as they play away to fourth place Aberdeen GSFP, who may have lost their last two matches will fancy their chances against this lowers side after they won 6-3 earlier on in the season.

Stepps welcome University of St Andrews who will be full of confidence after their 8-1 win last weekend and knowing they came away with the win last time they met.

One match on Sunday, Aberdeen GDFP welcome Erskine Stewart Melville FP.

Division 3

2020 Renewables Greenock travel away to seventh place Highland. Greenock have yet to lose a match and will be wanting to keep the ball rolling, last time these two met the top side were comfortable victors, winning 6-1.

Third place Harris Academy FP will have been disappointed at losing out on three points after narrow one goal defeat last weekend to a struggling Giffnock side. They face Waverley Inveresk Trinity at home; both teams drew 5-5 earlier in the season so expect goals galore again as both teams will be fighting for the win.

Fourth place University of Dundee welcome struggling Ayr whilst bottom side ADTI Aberdeen University face a tough task of playing second place Perthshire.

Stirling Wanderers take on University of Strathclyde who they played recently and faced a staggering loss of 7-2 they will be hoping it won’t be a repeat performance at the weekend.

Regional League

Central Division 1


Edinburgh University II will be full of confidence after their 10-0 win over University of Stirling last weekend, they face fellow club mates Edinburgh University III.

Third place Hillhead II welcome Stepps II, last time these two met Hillhead took the three points in a comfortable 4-1 win.

Second place PSL Team Sports Clydesdale II welcome fourth place Thomsons Cycles Kelburne II, local rivals played each other recently in which Kelburne lost out in the tight match by one goal 3-2.

Inverleith II play bottom side Western Wildcats II, who almost upset the top of the table Grange II in a close 3-2 loss last weekend. Elsewhere University of Stirling welcome Grange III.

Central Division 2

Rottenrow Blue Sox remain top after a hard fought win over second place Anchor last weekend they travel away to fourth place East Kilbride.

Falkirk II move up to ninth after a big 8-0 win over PSL Team Sport Clydesdale III, they face a more challenging task this weekend as they travel to Anchor.

Third place Uddingston II take on bottom side Livingston &West Lothian, after securing their first win of the season last weekend this will be a tough task for them to secure any points from this match.

Struggling Glasgow University II face eighth place Erskine Stewart Melville FP II, GHK take on PSL Team Sports Clydesdale III and midtable side Watsonians take on lower team Alpha Data Carnegie II.

CALA Edinburgh II face a double header weekend when they play Clydeside on Saturday followed by travelling away to East Kilbride.

Lower table battle on Sunday as Livingston & West Lothian take on Glasgow University II both fancying their chances in this fixture.

North Division

Top side AAM Gordonians II travel away to Aberdeen GSFP II, the Gordonians came out on top last time 4-0.

Bottom side ADTI Aberdeen University II take on fellow lower league team AAM Gordonians, the students have yet to pick up points so will see this fixtures as their best opportunity.

Finally Aberdeen GSFP III welcome Grove Menzieshill II.

Scottish Hockey Union media release



Hillhead Ladies looking to maintain title chase

Aberdeen Asset Management Women's National League

Division 2


Hillhead face struggling University of Dundee who have had a poor start to the season with only four points on the table. The students lost 6-1 last time they faced the westenders and will be hoping to improve tomorrow.

Borders Fjordhus Reivers and fourth place Erskine Stewart Melville FP, separated only two points, face each other in a mid-table battle. When these two teams met earlier in the season the Edinburgh based side were the victors taking the three points home in a close 2-1 win.

Second place AAM Merlins Gordonians welcome seventh place Glasgow University. The students have had a mixed bag of results totalling more draws than wins, they will be aiming for a solid win and to nick the three points off the second place team.

Inverleith moved up to third after last weekend’s tense draw with second place AAM Merlins Gordonians; they travel to Granite City Wanderers this weekend who will want to redeem themselves after last week’s 7-0 loss to Hillhead.

Division 3

Top of the table clash this weekend with top team University of St Andrews travelling away to second place Waverly Inveresk Trinity. The students may be steaming ahead on 28 points but the Bangholm outfit have two games in hand and full of confidence after only one loss to their name.

At the other end of the table bottom side University of Strathclyde welcome Aberdeen and after their first win in 4 games will be wanting to keep up form and gain another three points to help them move up the division.

Struggling Bon Accord MBC face third place Stirling University, the university based side’s recent run of form has been solid but after last weekend’s loss to Aberdeen they will be hoping to correct themselves and get another three points.

Championship

Division 1


After last weekend’s defeat to Edinburgh University II, Glasgow Accies face another tough ask as they take on Milne Craig Clydesdale Western II.

Grove Menzieshill A welcome local rivals CALA Edinburgh II whilst Milne Craig Clydesdale Western III take on Edinburgh University II in Glasgow.

Division 2

On Saturday Kelburne II play their first game of this new division as they take on Grange EL at home. Elsewhere on Sunday Edinburgh University III welcome Stirling Wanderers.

Scottish Hockey Union media release



Kirkham retires from international hockey


Glenn Kirkham in action for Great Britain at the 2012 London Olympic Games

After making 223 appearances for England and Great Britain, Glenn Kirkham has announced his retirement from international hockey at the age of 31.

Kirkham competed in two Olympic Games and following London 2012 he decided to take some time away from the centralised programme to focus on his family and teaching career and has recently decided that he will not be rejoining the international squad.

Kirkham is part of a select group of individuals who have made over 200 international appearances, a feat which he achieved over a nine year period following his debut against Belgium back in 2003. He has been one of the most consistent members of the squad in recent years winning bronze, silver and gold medals in major tournaments. In 2009 he was part of the squad who became European Champions after defeating Germany 5-3 in the final.

Speaking about the difficult decision to retire from a sport he loves, Kirkham said: “After having a break from international hockey following the London Olympics, it now feels the right decision to call time on what has been a thoroughly enjoyable and challenging international career. The break has given me the chance to spend more time at home with my family, and also return to full time employment, and having done so I now feel I'm unable to fully commit the time and energy required to return to the international programme.”

He added: “I feel very lucky to have been able to play at the very highest level and represent my country at two Olympic Games. I have been able to travel the world playing a sport that I love and have played since the day I was old enough to stand and hold a stick. England and Great Britain have made huge progress on the pitch over the last ten years and to have been involved in the group during this time has been incredibly rewarding.”

Following Kirkham’s announcement, international and club teammate, and close friend Ashley Jackson said: “Glenn did not always receive the attention he deserved away from the pitch given his abilities on it. Not only is he one of the best people I know away from hockey, his attitude at training, during matches and in tough times always lifted any team he was part of. His ability on the pitch was recognised by his teammates and all that played against him.  I am thankful to have spent so many years playing alongside Glenn and am grateful for everything he has done to make me the player and person I am today.”

Although Jason Lee is now head coach of the women’s team, he led Kirkham throughout his playing career as head coach of the GB and England men’s team. He said: “Glenn is one of the players that always impressed me with his immense focus and drive. I first started coaching him when he was about 17 years old during the days of the regional academies all the way through to what turned out to be his last ever international some 15 years later in the bronze medal play-off at London 2012. He was someone who brought huge energy, as well as quality, to his work and in my opinion became that player which the team could rely on in any circumstance to keep us going. Although not recognised as much as others because he wasn’t often a goal scorer, he was one of the key architects of the GB & England men’s team progress over the last 10 years.”

Kirkham also added his thoughts on the current men’s squad, now under the lead of Bobby Crutchley: “I feel sure that the men's team is in a good position with a nice blend of exciting young talent and experienced players to push on and qualify for Rio Olympics in 2016. I wish Bobby [Crutchley], the management and player group the very best of luck for the challenges ahead.”

“I have many people to thank for their support throughout my international career. All those at England and Great Britain Hockey, in particular David Faulkner [Performance Director from 2005-2012], Jason Lee and the coaching group, and to all those team mates who I've had the pleasure and honour of playing international hockey with. I also owe a huge amount to The Perse School, Cambridge, who have been the most supportive employers I could have wished for throughout my senior international career. Finally, and most importantly, a thank you to my family. In particular my parents, brother and sister, and my wife Marie for all their support, encouragement and understanding.”

Deciding to make his initial break from international hockey a definitive one will allow Kirkham to spend more time with Marie and his young daughter Freya, and for him to continue his role as Assistant Director of Sport at The Perse School and competing domestically for East Grinstead HC.

Kirkham will be hoping that his club side, East Grinstead, will make it through to the Maxinutrition Hockey 5s Finals at Wembley Arena on Sunday 2 February. You can find out more about the event here.

England Hockey Board Media release



Leicester Ladies Hockey to Host European Trophy June 2014


Leicester Ladies

Leicester Ladies Hockey has been confirmed as the host for the Womens European Club Trophy 2014 to be held at the beginning of June 2014. The event will run from the 6-9 June and will feature teams from Belgium, Ireland, Spain, Belarus, Russia and Ukraine as well as England's Leicester Ladies.

The event will run at Leicester Grammar School for its duration and the city will play host to players from the top European hockey clubs. A project team has been set up to organise the event, with volunteers and project managers from the club working alongside Leicester Grammar, their partners and their sponsors.

Coming very swiftly on the back of the recent news that Leicester Ladies has been nominated to receive the freedom of the City of Leicester, this event presents a unique opportunity for the Leicester public to see some top class hockey in the city and find out more about the sport and their local club. This will also be the first time the Leicester Ladies play this level of European hockey in front of a home crowd in their club's long history.

The club is appealing for new business partners who would be interested in supporting this event - especially in the areas of transport, seating and temporary stands, pa/entertainment systems and small catering/snack outlets. They would also like to speak to schools in the area who would be interested in running a school trip to watch some top class hockey in their home town.

England Hockey Board Media release



Canterbury's Kwan Browne yet to receive recognition for player-coach role, says Michael Farrer

By Rod Gilmour



Doubling up: Kwan Browne has been in fine form for Canterbury this season Photo: ADY KERRY

Kwan Browne, the former Trinidad and Tobago skipper, has won plaudits for his player-coach performances in the NOW: Pensions Men’s Premier Division

Michael Farrer, Canterbury’s captain, believes that midfielder Kwan Browne has yet to receive the credit he deserves for his coaching skills.

Browne, the former Trinidad and Tobago skipper, won England Hockey’s performance coach of the year title in August after guiding Canterbury to third place in last season’s NOW: Pensions Men’s Premier Division.

The Trinidadian is player-coach for the Kent side but his impact has stretched across the south in recent years; England international Ashley Jackson labelled him as a “big influence” for the style of hockey he employed while coaching at East Grinstead.

“Kwan is obviously a terrific player but his coaching, in my opinion is second to none,” said Farrer.

“He’s important to the team because of his on pitch play but he perhaps doesn’t always get the credit he deserves for his coaching. He’s recently won some awards for it which shows he’s starting to get that credit which is great for him and the club.”



Canterbury have so far relied on youth this season and are slowly finding their feet after back-to-back defeats to Reading and East Grinstead. They currently lie fifth in the league, helped by Liam Foster’s hat-trick against Surbiton two weeks’ ago.

Farrer admitted that the enjoyment factor that Browne is bringing to the side will also benefit Canterbury is they look to pose a threat to the premier division’s top four.

“He just loves to play and that’s the most important thing,” Farrer said. “As long as he’s enjoying himself and still smiling at the end then that’s going to be good for him and good for us.”

The Telegraph



PHF to name Junior World Cup squad on Tuesday

LAHORE: Pakistan will name its squad for next month’s Junior Hockey World Cup on Tuesday, head coach Olympian Manzoorul Hasan Senior said on Friday. Manzoor said that eight players, who were part of the Pakistan team, which won the Asian Champions Trophy title in Japan earlier this month, had joined the training camp, which is being held at two venues here. The Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF) organised the camp in two phases with the first one being held in Islamabad and the second part commenced here the other day. “It is the last phase of the training camp for the event and all 29 probables are attending it,” Manzoor said. The final team will be selected from that pool and will be announced on November 26. The eight junior players who were part of the senior squad at the Asian Champions Trophy have gained vital international experience and they will hopefully play an important role at the World Cup.

The 10th Junior World Cup starts in New Delhi from December 6th. Pakistan’s sole triumph at the event was in its inaugural edition in 1979. Since then, Germany have been the most successful side at the tournament, winning it five times with Australia, India and Argentina claiming a title apiece. Manzoor informed that the morning session of the camp was being held at the National Hockey Stadium with the newly-built Johar Town Hockey Stadium being used for the evening session as it was better equipped to practice late in the evening as it had effective floodlights. “The main focus in the camp is to improve our penalty corner conversion and finishing,” Manzoor added. Pakistan have been drawn in Pool A alongside Germany, Belgium and Egypt and Manzoor was optimistic about his team’s chances. “We are in a good position to beat any side at the World Cup,” he concluded.

The Daily Times



Nadia focusing on hockey for another year

by Aftar Singh



Captain Nadia Abdul Rahman (second from left) training with her team-mates at the Bukit Jalil Stadium. Nadia plans to quit only after next year's Commonwealth and Asian Games.

KUALA LUMPUR: For national women’s captain Nadia Abdul Rahman, her hockey career is more important than having a family right now.

The Jerantut-born midfielder married civil engineer Azri Safwan in December last year.

But the 28-year-old Nadia, who will feature in next month’s Myanmar SEA Games, is not ready to have a child yet.

Nadia, who has been representing Malaysia since 2002, said that she plans to have a family after she retires from playing hockey next year.

“My services are still needed by the national team and I love to play hockey for the country.

“I have a loving husband who understands my needs and I am thankful for his support,” said Nadia, who has been the national skipper since 2011.

Nadia, who has 110 international caps, added that she would feature in next year’s Glasgow Commonwealth Games in July and the Incheon Asian Games in September, before she quits the game.

“We did well to win the bronze in the Asian Champions Trophy (in Kakamigahara, Japan, two weeks ago) by defeating higher ranked China twice – in the preliminary rounds (1-0) and the playoff for the bronze medal (3-1).

“It was the best achievement for me and also the national team.

“We are fired up to give our best in the SEA Games to win the gold,” said Nadia.

Six teams will feature in the SEA Games and Malaysia will open their campaign on Dec 13 in Yangon against Myanmar, followed by Cambodia (Dec 14), Singapore (Dec 16) and Thailand (Dec 19).

The final and the third-fourth placing match are scheduled for Dec 20.

The last time hockey was included in the SEA Games programme was in Korat in 2007 when Malaysia won both the men’s and women’s gold.

The Star of Malaysia



Goals galore as Sabah thrash Sarawak at U-14 meet

by S. Ramaguru


KUALA LUMPUR: Sabah are in contention for a semi-final berth after hammering neighbours Sarawak 7-3 in Group A of the MHC-Milo Under-14 hockey championships at the Batu Buruk Hockey Stadium in Kuala Terengganu on Friday.

Mohd Faiz Azman, Joewel Banggai, Bhello Silverius, Duncan Zulkarnian (two goals), Mohd Azizul (two goals) scored for Sabah while Sarawak replied through Michael Xavier, Mohd Hazig Ashraf and Vincent Narang.

Sabah have seven points after four matches but face two tough matches next – against former champions Perak on Sunday and Kuala Lumpur on Monday.

Perak lead the group with 12 points from four matches and a win over Sabah will seal their semi-final berth. Their last match is against Penang on Monday.

Sabah began the tournament with a 2-0 loss to Perlis. They bounced back to draw 2-2 with Penang and beat Kedah 3-1.

Sabah coach Zulkifli Zainal was happy with his team’s performance.

“There are still two more matches to go ... they will decide our semi-final berth. Perak and KL are the strongest teams in our group and we have to beat them if we are to think of the last four,” he said.

Zulkifli, a former national goalkeeper, took over as Sabah coach 11 months ago.

“I handle both their junior and senior teams and also help with their development plans. This team is made up of mostly 12 and 13-year-olds ... as such, we’ll still have them around for the next two years. I see this as a good start to our plans to groom them. Our aim here is to finish as high as possible,” he said.

In the girls’ category, Penang and Kedah cemented their places at the top of the standings in Group B with their third straight win. Penang beat Negri Sembilan 3-2 while Kedah thumped Johor 9-2.

On Sunday, Kedah will face Selangor and Penang will take on Johor.

Selangor, with six points, must beat Kedah to stay in contention for a place in the semi-finals.

In Group A, Terengganu and Kuala Lumpur stayed ahead of their rivals. One more win for either team will secure them a semi-final berth.

The Star of Malaysia



Sabah trounce Sarawak

By Zainuddin Muhammad


SABAH beat the daylights out of their neighbours, Sarawak with a 7-3 victory in Group A of the Boys' National-Under-14 hockey tournament in Terengganu yesterday.

However, Sabah are in for a test of their true strength in the next two matches when they play Perak tomorrow and Kuala Lumpur on Monday.

Sabah HA secretary Avtar Singh said: "The boys are not from any special school and were selected from various schools in the state.

"Their run has been impressive, and it could have been even better if not for that draw against Penang."

Sabah are third on the standings behind leaders Perak and second placed defending champions Kuala Lumpur.

Perak, with a clean sheet of four wins, look set to play in the semi-finals, while Kuala Lumpur are also tipped to be in the last four as they have Sarawak and Sabah in their final fixtures.

"We have two tough matches against potential semi-finalists Perak and KL, but hopefully they will keep the momentum in the next two matches," said Avtar.

RESULTS - Boys' Group A: Sabah 7 Sarawak 3; Group B: Kelantan 1 Pahang 2.

Girls' Group B: Penang 3 Negri Sembilan 2, Johor 2 Kedah 4.

TODAY: Boys' Group A: Penang v Perlis, Kuala Lumpur v Kedah; Group B: Selangor v Malacca, Johor v Terengganu.

Girls' Group A: Pahang v Kuala Lumpur.

New Straits Times



Terengganu girls go on rampage

By Zainuddin Muhammad


THE Terengganu girls proved to be a cut above when they whipped Pahang 8-1 in a MHC-Milo-NSC Under-14 Hockey Championships match in Kuala Terengganu yesterday.

After more than 36 hours of rain, the hosts, who beat Sarawak 6-2 on the opening day, turned on the style with captain Tuan Nurul Hidayah scoring four goals, including one goal from a penalty corner, in the Group A match at Gong Badak Hockey Stadium.

Terengganu's other scorers were Nurul Syazwani Nasri (2) and Intan Natasha Roslan and Nurul Ain Adila.

Pahang's consolation goal came courtesy of Fatin Nur Jannah.

Also on six points but in second place in the group were Kuala Lumpur, 5-1 winners over Malacca on the second day, and 3-0 winners against Sarawak yesterday.

Kuala Lumpur took the lead through Hazatul Huzra's second minute strike before Siti Nurliyana Abdul Rahim and Nur Liyana Aina Shahrom contributed a goal each in the 58th and 64th minute.

Terengganu and Kuala Lumpur need just another win each to ensure their semi-final spots.

RESULTS -- Boys' Group A: Sarawak 0 Penang 5, Kuala Lumpur 2 Perak 4, Kedah 1 Perlis 1; Group B: Johor 1 Negri Sembilan 0, Pahang 1 Selangor 3, Terengganu 6 Malacca 4.

Girls' Group A: Kuala Lumpur 3 Sarawak 0, Pahang 1 Terengganu 8.

TODAY -- Boys' Group A: Sabah v Sarawak; Group B: Kelantan v Pahang.

Girls' Group B: Penang v Negri Sembilan, Johore v Kedah.

New Straits Times



Successful Technical Congress in Chiclayo



Chiclayo, Perú - Today was the technical congress for Hockey tournament of XVII Bolivarian Games. It was attended by Mr. Jose Quiñones President of the Peruvian Olympic Committee, also express his best wishes for a successful Games. The CON President take the moment to announce they will build two Water pitch during 2014.

The team Managers of the 6 participating countries completed the documentation and equipment check.

Attending the meeting
Chile - Braulio  Calderón
Dominican Republic – Félix Paulino (M)
Elena Severino (W)
Ecuador – Johana Morales
Guatemala – Paolo Campo
Venezuela – Zuleika Seijas (W)
Rafael Oropeza (M)
Perú – Diego Carvalho

Julio Neves PAHF Representative introduce Mr. Adrian Della Mattia(ARG), tournament director who addressed the audience talking about the importance of following the rules. Juan Manuel Requena(ESP) Umpires Manager spoke about collaboration between officials and athletes. Followed by the importance of respect to the Umpires. Dr. Hernán Sverdlick(ARG) PAHF Medical Officer instructed about medical services and the current rules it related to doping.

Gianni Delucchi President of the Peruvian Hockey Federation close the meeting thanking the nations participating in the XVII Bolivarian Games.

Tomorrow the games begin at 10:00am with Venezuela vs Dominican Republic.

For more information, results and pictures, please visit the Pan American Hockey Federation web site at www.panamhockey.org

Pan American Hockey Federation media release