News for 03 December 2013

All the news for Tuesday 3 December 2013


Jason Lee pushes England ladies to go on the attack

By: Graham Wilson


JASON LEE, the England women’s coach, may have been a little harsh on his players after their 3-2 defeat by Holland at the Argentina World League Final.

They were, after all, up against the Olympic champions, who had just disposed of the European champions Germany 6-0.

Lee’s squad were 2-1 ahead with only three minutes remaining when the defiance of a defence, led by captain Kate Richardson-Walsh, eventually succumbed to a double strike.

Surbiton’s Georgie Twigg had levelled a Maartje Paumen penalty corner just before half-time.

Goalkeeper Maddie Hinch had kept the Dutch at bay and England forced an own-goal in the 41st minute. But Paumen struck in the 67th minute with another brilliant corner and Lee would have been annoyed to see England’s defence allow Kitty van Male slot the winner just 60 seconds later.

This came after a fightback from two down the previous day when Lee’s squad tore apart South Korea 6-2, with University of Birmingham striker Lily Owsley scoring twice.

Lee said: “Our attacking play and creating chances let us down. We need to be pushing a team like Holland far more throughout the game, not just holding on. We gave the ball away too cheaply at times and in the end that cost us the game.”

Surbiton defender Giselle Ansley said: “It was disappointing in the last three minutes to let in two goals.”

Germany are on the agenda today in the final pool game when Richardson-Walsh will celebrate her 200th England cap.

“When I first started playing in 1999, I never thought I’d see the day when I’d get to 200 caps,” said the Olympic bronze medallist. “It’s a massive honour to receive this in a squad that is making big strides.

“It comes in an important game when we have to get a result out of Germany to make sure we get a good crossover draw in the quarter-finals.”

Daily Express



Ansley confident for Germany World League Final clash



Giselle Ansley is adamant England's women will be better for their defeat to the Netherlands at the Argentina Hockey World League Final as they prepare to play Germany.

England surrendered a 2-1 lead to the Olympic champions in their second pool encounter, two goals in the last three minutes seeing the Dutch run out 3-2 winners.

Next up are Germany, who defeated England on penalties in the final of the European Championships back in August, with both having now lost to the Netherlands.

And Ansley insists she saw enough in the performance against the Dutch, who England beat to set up a European final with Germany, to feel confident going into their final pool match.

"We've had a day to recover now and we look forward to playing Germany in the final pool game," she said.

"We gave it everything out there and I thought it was a positive performance for the majority of the game but it was disappointing in the last three minutes to let in two goals.

"It's still early stages in this tournament and we've got plenty more games to keep fighting. The Dutch came at us hard in the first half and defensively we matched them for pace and diligence, which is very positive."

Yahoo Eurosport



Creffier named captain of Junior World Cup team


Photo: www.photosport.co.nz

After a broken thumb at the Ford National Hockey League this August, Auckland’s Rob Creffier wasn’t sure if he was going to get to the Junior World Cup this month, let alone be named captain of the side.

The 21-year-old midfielder said it was a real honour to be announced captain by head coach Grant Edwards and is looking forward to leading the team onto the field this Friday when they play their first game against Malaysia in New Delhi.

“It is a really privileged position, when I’m on field I like to lead by example by being disciplined and having a high work rate and hopefully that encourages others to follow.

"I think that discipline carries off the field as well. As a team we have recognised the job we are trying to do and now we just need to do it the best we can,” says Creffier who also captained Auckland’s Under-21 team to victory in 2013, which was the first time the team had won in 14 years.

Creffier initially started playing hockey as a 12-year-old in Hawke’s Bay after his family moved across from South Africa, and he says if it wasn’t for Greg Nicol, who is current assistant coach of the Black Sticks Women, he may not have stuck with the sport.

“I was into tennis and soccer and just playing hockey on the side, but then I met Greg and trained for a few years with him and really improved and started getting picked for Central sides.”

It wasn’t until more recently that Creffier moved to Auckland and for the last two years he has played for the Auckland Fury in the Ford National Hockey League.

“Breaking my thumb in August was definitely a bit of a set-back. I spent eight weeks in a cast and it was a bit touch and go – I wasn’t sure how much hockey I would get to play or whether I would even get to go to the Junior World Cup. But the surgery went well, and once I was out of the cast it strengthened up really quickly, it seems to be fine now.”

When asked about the Kiwis’ chances at the Junior World Cup, Creffier thinks his side is well prepared and will be competitive.

“The format means that we have a good chance to progress through. The main thing is to start really well in pool play and then just focus game by game from then.

“We had a really good weekend training camp together before we left Auckland where we made some good progress in training and games, and every training over here we are getting better and more comfortable playing together,” says Creffier.

Edwards has also named Auckland’s Jared Panchia as vice-captain.

The Junior Black Sticks Men will play Malaysia at 11.30pm on Friday 6 December before facing England at 3.30am on 9 December. Their final game is against South Africa at 3.30am on Tuesday 10 December.

All New Zealand games from the Junior World Cup are LIVE on SKY Sport!

CLICK HERE for the team list, SKY Sport schedule and more information

Hockey New Zealand Media release



It’s a massive challenge: Paul Goudoin

 

K Arumugam



“Junior World cup is a massive challenge for me, for my team, says Paul Gaudoin, the Australian coach, before leaving India to take up the most important of his coaching assignments.

Australia had just defeated New Zealand twice at Perth, with high scores, last leg of preparation for the of player-turned coach, for whom India is home away home.

“Delhi is a massive challenge, there are many strong teams up there, and that’s why we prepared hard for the tournament, and this twin-test series helped us a lot”, Paul said.

“Playing against quality teams are important, and this series proved useful for our team”, he explained.

Former Australian captain Paul played for Australia almost a decade, though had to miss out 2004 Olympics due to injury. He won bronze at the Olympics twice.

Paul took over the reins a couple of years ago, first series assignment being the first Sultan of Johor Cup.

“Since I took over the team changed constantly, fitness improved, and we had good exposure too”.

Speaking on the preparation for the ‘massive’ challenge, he said since Australia being a big country, its not possible to assemble the required team for long, and given the situation the team had prepared well.

Australia is considered as the top contender for the title, but Paul strikes a cautious note when comes the question of predicting medals for his team.

“It’s a strong tournament out there, yes, we have prepared well, though we could not get all the players together for long due to geographic reasons. However, the tournament will be a test for us”.

“We have first win quarterfinal and semifinal before thinking of medals. We will put our best foot forward”, said the former midfielder. “This will be a very difficult tournament to win”, asserts the Aussie.

India, Spain, Argentina, are good, so also many European powerhouses.

Indians are a very good side, they played some great tournament in the run up, we will watch them with keen interest” says Paul

At the same time, he conceded that his team had not worked out any practice matches in Delhi, where they reach on first Dec.

Stick2Hockey.com



Practice session shows Germany means business


HARD AT WORK: The German team goes through a tough training session in New Delhi on Monday. Photo: Sushil Kumar Verma

The 45-minute session gave an insight into the preparation that the Germans have employed, sweating over their goal-scoring.

Testing every possible variation and giving every player a chance to display his scoring skill, the session was an indication of how serious the five-time defending champion was about adding a sixth title.

The coach, though, insisted that there was no extra pressure. “It was a completely different team four years ago.

“We would only bring pressure on ourselves by setting big targets from this tournament but that, at the moment, is only to make the quarterfinals,” said Germany coach Andre Henning at the National Stadium on Monday.

The German squad is the youngest of all 16 teams. Five of the players are also part of the under-18 squad and Henning admitted the lack of experience would be a big factor in the team’s performance.

“Under-21 is not only about hockey and skills and tactic but also about the mental strength of a player and there could be some interesting results. There are a lot of question marks and I can’t say how the younger players perform on a big stage like this or in such a big stadium,” Henning admitted.

Tough grouping

The grouping hasn’t made it any easier. Germany is in Pool A with Belgium, Pakistan and Egypt and Henning knows any slip-up could prove costly.

“Both Belgium and Pakistan are very strong and experienced teams and one favourite team will be out after the fourth day, so every game is important,” he said, adding India, Australia and Holland to the list of favourites.

Henning also admitted that with senior coach Markus Weise coming for the tournament, the players here will have an opportunity to use the platform and get into the senior team for the World Cup and the Olympics.

With Mats Grambusch and Christopher Ruhr leading the charge with their experience in the senior team, captain Mathias Muller too was optimistic of his team’s chances.

“It’s a pleasure to lead a strong team. We also know that if we get to play against India, the crowd will be a big factor.

“Ours is a strong group and our first aim is to win the first game,” Muller said.

Last edition’s runner-up the Netherlands too is looking to go one step better. The Dutch begin against host India and coach Sjoerd Marijne was confident of his squad. “This team is very tough and we are geared up for the challenge and the boys are confident,” Marijne said after the team’s practice session.

The Netherlands team manager Floris Evers felt at home after being part of the Hockey India League. “I am waiting to see my friends from Ranchi Rhinos. But I am also confident of our opening match (against India),” he said.

The Hindu



On a wing and a prayer

At a time the Malaysian national juniors team ought to be given motivation and encourgament, they instead were warned on discipline and told not to end up as whipping boys of the Junior world Cup that gets underway in New Delhi this Friday.

Malaysian Hockey Confederation president Tengku Abdullah Sultan Ahmad Shah warned the players not to end up as the whipping team in the tournament while Senior Vice President Dato Nur Azmi Ahmad warned the players to maintain discipline.

On both accounts the two officials have taken the wrong approach to motivate a team that has tremendous potential to do well in the Junior World Cup.

One has to remember that Malaysia are the reigning Junior Asian Champions and the term whipping boys should not be used given that fact that they have fought their way to earn the accolade.

And on the question of discipline, the concern should be more on the sidelines as the team officials, in their eagerness, at times end up emotionally charged thus earning the displeasure of tournament officials that could go against the team.

“We know that it will be tough in the tournament and we need to reamin focussed at the task at hand. There is no such thing as an easy match as we need to play at our best to overcome teams such as New Zealand, England and South Africa,” said manager Mirnawan Nawawi.

“No doubt the pressure is getting to us as the tournament draws closer, but at the same time we realise that the onus is on us to deliver the results.

“The players are in high spirits and despite the glitch in the bags issue, we had our first training session this morning and the players are relaxed, having adapted well to the pitch and the hotel.”

Mirnawan added that both he and coach Muhd Dharma Abdullah were sharing their experience of having played in the 1989 Junior World Cup with the players and have reminded the players to take it one match at a time.

MalaysianHockey.com.my



Nada left out



In what can be described as a bitter blow, Malaysian goalkeeping coach M. Nadarajan found himself  “dropped” from the list of officials of the national juniors team for the Junior World Cup that gets underway in New Delhi this Friday.

Having coached the goalkeepers in the team for the past two and half years, the former international said that while he was disappointed, he respected the decision and hopes the team will do well in the tournament.

“ I am sad that no one chose to tell me that I was not travelling with the team to India for the Junior World Cup. I found out through others that I was not listed,” said Nadarajan

“While I understand that the prerogative is with the management, at the very least they could have told me why my services was not required rather then leave me in the dark.

“Still I pray that the team does well and the keepers play to their best of their ability as I feel the team has vast potential and can easily meet the top six target.”

Nadarajan said that he was making efforts to travel to Delhi to watch the tournament but was put off with the high ticket prices.

National Juniors team manager Mirnawan Nawawi when contacted in New Delhi had this to say;

“I rather not talk about this as my focus is totally on the tournament which gets underway this Friday. I will address the matter upon my return,” was all Mirnawan was willing to say.

Nadarajan is the national goalkeeping coach and is involved with the senior squad most of the time, at times acting as team manager when George Koshy is unable to travel with the team.

The confusion with regards to Nadarajan’s role started after the Sulan of Johor Cup where he was with the junior squad for the tournament.

He was left out of the senior team’s squad to Australia for the Super 9’s as Koshy was given the impression that Nadarajah was accompanying the juniors for their familiarisation tour of the venue in New Delhi.

“I was under the impression that Nada was going to India, thus I went to Australia. I only knew he did not travel to India upon my return. It is sad to hear he is not travelling for the Junior world cup and we left him out of the senior team Korean tour as we thought he will be better utilised in Delhi,” said Koshy.

MHC Senior Vice President Dato Nur Azmi Ahmad said that as far as he was concerned, the issue should be explained by the Juniors team management.

“Nada’s name was not listed in the list of officials submitted to the National Team Management Committee and nor was there any request to take additional officials to the tournament,” said Azmi.

“Therefore I cannot comment on this matter as it was for the juniors team management to look into it in the first place.”

Nadarajan said that all he wanted was a decent reason as to why he was not on the plane to Delhi, but he will now have to wait until the tournament is over to find out why.

MalaysianHockey.com.my



Ready for the challenge

JUNIOR WORLD CUP: Wayward luggage notwithstanding, the boys are up for the fight

By JUGJET SINGH


MISSING luggage was not how the Malaysian national juniors wanted their World Cup campaign to start but K. Dharmaraj's squad took it in their stride and are ready for the challenge.

They play their final friendly -- against defending champions Germany in New Delhi today -- before focusing on their opening match against New Zealand on Friday.

Manager Mirnawan Nawawi said the squad took the missing bags in their stride and thankfully, all the luggage arrived prior to yesterday's first training session.

The team arrived in New Delhi around noon on Sunday.

"Somehow, there was a mix-up and the bags did not arrive with us, but only at midnight and in the wee hours of the morning on two different flights.

"Some of the officials and players were left high and dry and I had to rush to the airport twice to make sure the players had their training attire for today's (yesterday) morning practice session.

"I see it as a minor hiccup, and we are looking forward to the friendly against Germany to get acclimatised to the weather as well as get a feel of the playing field," said Mirnawan.

"Initially we were quite surprised that Germany wanted to play with us as a warm-up for the World Cup.

"But then again, we did beat the Germans in the Sultan of Johor Cup (3-2), but they eventually became the champions."

New Straits Times



National team crosses border with title in mind


KARACHI: The Pakistan contingent reached India to compete at the Junior Hockey World Cup with the trophy in their sights as the 16-nation event gets underway from December 6 in New Delhi, India.

According to a Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF) official, the team is expected to hold training sessions and practice games before the event.

The junior hockey squad trained for several weeks and underwent strenuous training sessions to prepare for the tournament. The players were also given lectures from various Olympians to prepare for the important tournament.

In addition, before departing, the team played two practice games against the Pakistan senior side and levelled 1-1.

Olympian Manzoorul Hassan, head coach and manager of the team, was satisfied with their preparations.

“We are leaving well prepared,” Hassan told The Express Tribune ahead of the team’s departure on Monday. “The players are in a good rhythm and overall the morale is high.”

Pakistan will begin its campaign against Egypt on December 6 in the opening Pool A fixture. Germany and Belgium comprise the rest of the group.

The colts will then go on to play their second match against Germany on December 8 before meeting Belgium on December 10.

We can’t take any team lightly: Hassan

The head coach said reaching the quarter-finals will be the team’s first target.

“We are placed in a tough group and cannot take any team lightly.

“Definitely, our ultimate aim is to win the title and our first target will be to clear the group stage. We’ll play every match as if it’s the final.”

Hassan added that his team was not under pressure to perform in India.

“All the players are going with a positive frame of mind and all their concentration will be on the matches. Most of the players are also a part of the senior team and can handle pressure. We are hopeful of delivering our best.”

Australia, Spain, Argentina and France form Pool B, while Pool C includes the Netherlands, South Korea, India and Canada. England, New Zealand, South Africa and Malaysia are placed in Pool D.

The top two teams from each group will enter the quarter-finals.

The Express Tribune

 



Pakistan reach India for Junior Hockey World Cup

New Delhi - Pakistan junior hockey team's coach M Danish Kaleem says his boys are here to ‘win Indian hearts’ and in the process play well to win the Junior World Cup, starting here at the Major Dhyan Chand National Stadium Dec 6-15.

"Pakistan are here to win Indian hearts, our sportsperson are ambassadors of peace and we should be seen in that light," Kaleem said on landing in the capital from Amritsar, where they had crossed into through the Attari border by road in the morning. "India-Pakistan rivalry, be it in hockey or cricket, is always healthy and exciting. I hope both the teams make it to the final, it will be good for the sport in the sub-continent," he said.

The Olympian refused to accept that the sub-continental hockey was on the decline, and said their style was always pleasing to watch. "The beauty of hockey played by India and Pakistan is skill-oriented and less accented on power. And the skill is always pleasing to watch than the European brand of hit and run hockey," he said.

Kaleem recalled the 1982 Asia Games hockey final when a star-studded Pakistan thrashed India 7-1 here at the Major Dhyan Chand National Stadium. "The 1982 Asian Games will always be a glorious moment for Pakistan hockey. The greatness of that final was the overflowing National Stadium did not leave even when it was evident that Indians were going to lose heavily. Not a single fan left the stadium till the final whistle. Delhi is known for its sporting crowd and we hope they will back us here again," said Kaleem, who was a member of that gold winning side.

Kaleem said hopes were high from the juniors at a time when the senior team, who were record four-time champions, failed to qualify for next year's World Cup for the first time since 1971. "This is a new start for Pakistan hockey. We are going through a tough transitory phase after the senior team failed to qualify for the 2014 World Cup for the first time. We are going through a serious crisis and the Junior World Cup has come at the right time for the players to lift themselves up. We have come here with a talented bunch and they offer a new hope," Kaleem said.

Kaleem said the 2012 London Olympian Umar Bhutta, who will be leading the side and his deputy M Tauseeq were the key players. Bhutta also led the side in the Sultan of Johor Cup, where Pakistan were thrashed 0-4 by India, who went on to win the title.

"But we did well to win the Asian Champions Trophy in Japan last month. In Japan, we had also beaten India even though it was a close match. Some of the youngsters were part of that senior team and the experience will surely benefit them," he asserted.

Pakistan are in Goup A with Germany, the record five times winners and holders, Belgium and Egypt. "We are just thinking about the first match and the match against Germany. We just want to take one match at a time. Pakistan wants to make a winning start and that could change the course of the tournament for us," said Kaleem.

Asked about his team's chances, Kaleem said: "All the 16 teams here have just one aim - win the World Cup - and Pakistan are as determined to win the World Cup." Kaleem signed off saying his wish was a India-Pakistan final.

The Nation



We're here to win hearts: Pakistan hockey coach

NEW DELHI: Pakistan junior hockey team's coach Mohammed Danish Kaleem says his boys are here to "win Indian hearts" and in the process play well to win the Junior World Cup, starting at the Major Dhyan Chand National Stadium Dec 6-15.

"Pakistan are here to win Indian hearts, our sportsperson are ambassadors of peace and we should be seen in that light," Kaleem said on landing in the capital from Amritsar, where they had crossed into through the Attari border by road in the morning.

"India-Pakistan rivalry, be it in hockey or cricket, is always healthy and exciting. I hope both the teams make it to the final, it will be good for the sport in the sub-continent," he said.

The Olympian refused to accept that the sub-continental hockey is on the decline, and said their style is always pleasing to watch.

"The beauty of hockey played by India and Pakistan is skill-oriented and less accented on power. And the skill is always pleasing to watch than the European brand of hit and run hockey," he said.

Kaleem recalled the 1982 Asian Games hockey final when a star-studded Pakistan thrashed India 7-1 at the Major Dhyan Chand National Stadium.

"The 1982 Asian Games will always be a glorious moment for Pakistan hockey. The greatness of that final was the overflowing National Stadium did not leave even when it was evident that Indians were going to lose heavily. Not a single fan left the stadium till the final whistle. Delhi is known for its sporting crowd and we hope they will back us here again," said Kaleem, who was a member of that gold winning side.

Kaleem said hopes are high from the juniors at a time when the senior team, who are record four-time champions, failed to qualify for next year's World Cup for the first time since 1971.

"This is a new start for Pakistan hockey, we are going through a tough transitory phase after the senior team failed to qualify for the 2014 World Cup for the first time. We are going through a serious crisis and the Junior World Cup has come at the right time for the players to lift themselves up. We have come here with a talented bunch and they offer a new hope," Kaleem said.

Kaleem said the 2012 London Olympian Umar Bhutta, who will be leading the side, and his deputy Mohammed Tauseeq are the key players.

Bhutta also led the side in the Sultan of Johor Cup, where Pakistan were thrashed 0-4 by India, who went on to win the title.

"But we did well to win the Asian Champions Trophy in Japan last month. In Japan, we had also beaten India even though it was a close match. Some of the youngsters were part of that senior team and the experience will surely benefit them," he said.

Pakistan are in Goup A with Germany, the record five times winners and holders, Belgium and Egypt.

"We are just thinking about the first match and the match against Germany. We just want to take one match at a time. Pakistan wants to make a winning start and that could change the course of the tournament for us," said Kaleem.

Asked about his team's chances, Kaleem said: "All the 16 teams here have just one aim -- win the World Cup -- and Pakistan are as determined to win the World Cup."

Kaleem signed off saying his wish is a India-Pakistan final.

The Times of India



Netherlands confident of win against India in Hockey Junior World Cup opener

NEW DELHI: Last edition's runners-up, Netherlands definitely start as favourites against India in their opening match of the Hockey Junior World Cup and coach Sjoerd Marijne said his wards are confident of starting their campaign on a winning note in the December 6-15 event.

"The team is very tough and stable and we are geared up for the challenge. All the teams are strong and anyone can win a match on the given day. But the boys are confident about their first match against India and we aim to start this tour with a win," Marijne said after Netherlands second practice session at the Major Dhyan Chand National Stadium.

Marijne's views were backed by Netherlands team manager and Olympian Floris Evers.

"I am waiting to see my friends from Ranchi Rhinos. Here I am as a team manager and my job is to share my experiences and guide them to give their best game during the tournament," said Evers who played for champions Ranchi Rhinos in the inaugural Hockey India League.

"The players in this team have the speed and are good with technical aspect of the game and we are confident of our opening match (against India)," he said.

Evers also spoke highly about India captain Manpreet Singh and Mandeep Singh, who were his teammates in Ranchi Rhinos.

"They are my friends and I am waiting to meet them here. I am hoping that Mandeep plays as well as he did in the HIL last year.

"For me the toughest players in the Indian side are these two and I hope we see Indian and Netherlands in the final. The young Indian side is a tough team," he said.

The Times of India



Holland ready for Indian challenge in Junior World Cup

NEW DELHI: They may have come second behind Belgium in the Euro Hockey junior championships, but the Netherlands will start their campaign in the Junior World Cup as one of the favourites.

The Dutch seemed to be completely prepared for the challenge and in a bid to not let anything hamper their chances, they have even roped in their former Olympian Floris Evers as the manager. Evers has considerable experience of playing in Indian conditions as he was a key member of the Ranchi Rhinos that won the Hockey India League earlier this year.

"Now, I am the team manager and my job is to share my experiences and guide them to put up their best game during the tournament. The players in this team have the speed and are good with the technical aspect of the game," Evers said on the sidelines of a training session at the Dhyanchand Stadium. Netherlands will play India in their opening match on December 6.

Terming the Indian side as 'tough', Evers picked out Rhinos teammates Manpreet Singh and Mandeep Singh as possible stars of the tournament. "They are my friends and I am waiting to meet them here. I am hoping that Mandeep plays as well as he did in the HIL. For me, the toughest players in the Indian side are these two and I hope we see the clash of India and Netherlands in the final."

Netherlands coach Sjoerd Marijne said that he was looking to start the campaign with a win over India. "We are geared up for the challenge. All the teams are strong and anyone can win on the given day. The boys are confident about their first match with India."

India, Pakistan, Belgium, Australia and Netherlands are the strong teams and the ones to watch out for. We have watched India's game and have realized they are a strong team.

We understand that hockey is very big in India and many players for the senior team come out of this tournament. But we have studied the teams and will play our game accordingly on the day."

The Times of India



Hockey suffers the most due to POA tussle: Rana Mujahid

Muhammad Asif Khan


KARACHI: After missing the berth in the Commonwealth Games, the participation of the Pakistan Hockey team, in the next year’s Asian Games, is also in jeopardy. Commenting on the situation, the newly elected Secretary of the Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF), Rana Mujahid, while putting the onus of the ongoing tussle between two parallel Olympic Associations, urged the Government of Pakistan to step-in.  “The Government provides us [PHF] with the NOC, funds etc hence we have to follow their directives. The PHF does not favour a particular faction [of PQA], however wants to see the resolution of this confrontation”, said Rana Mujahid

“The Government of Pakistan should intervene as the deadline to submit the entry for the Asian Games is also approaching”, added Rana Mujahid

Pakistan is the defending champion of the Asian Games to be held in Incheon, South Korea in 2014.

The Pakistan Olympic Association under Syed Arif Hassan - recognised by International Olympic Committee (IOC) - is the only channel available for Pakistan to send athletes at international events.

On the other hand, the POA led by Akram Sahi claims to be country’s legitimate Olympic Association, in view of a court ruling which put restriction on a third-term for a POA office bearer.

“We have apprised the Inter-provincial Coordination minister, Riaz Hussain Pirzada of the situation who has assured the PHF of playing his part in resolving the standoff”, concluded Rana Mujahid

FIeldhockey.com



Pakistan hockey’s participation in Asian Games in danger

ISLAMABAD - Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF) secretary Rana Mujahid has felt that participation of national team in Asian Games is in danger due to the ongoing tussle between two parallel Olympic Associations saying the government must step-in to resolve the issue.

The 17th Asian Games will be staged in Korea from September 19 to October 4, 2014, and will involve 13,000 athletes and officials from the 45 NOCs in 36 sports. Talking to a private news channel, the newly-elected PHF secretary said after missing the berth in the Commonwealth Games, the participation of the Pakistan Hockey team, in the next year's Asian Games, was also in jeopardy.

Commenting on the situation Mujahid, while putting the onus of the ongoing tussle between two parallel Olympic Associations, appealed the government to step-in. "The government provides the PHF with NOC, funds etc hence we have to follow their directives. The PHF does not favour a particular faction of the POA, however, wants to see the resolution of this confrontation,” Rana Mujahid said. Rana said the government should intervene in the matter as the deadline to submit the entry for the Asian Games is also approaching. Pakistan is the defending champion of the Asian Games. The Pakistan Olympic Association under Syed Arif Hassan recognized by International Olympic Committee (IOC) is the only channel available for Pakistan to send athletes at international events.

On the other hand, the POA led by Akram Sahi claims to be country's legitimate Olympic Association, in view of a court ruling which put restriction on a third-term for a POA office bearer. "We have apprised the Inter-provincial Coordination Minister, Riaz Hussain Pirzada of the situation who has assured the PHF of playing his part in resolving the standoff", Rana added.

The Nation



Glynhill Kelburne extend lead at the top

Glynhill Kelburne stretched their lead at the top of Aberdeen Asset Management Men’s National League Division 1 with a 3-0 win over Edinburgh University at the Glasgow National Hockey Centre.

The Paisley outfit are now nine points clear of rivals Western Wildcats, who moved up to second place after a 6-1 away win at AAM Gordonians, leaving Mark Ralph’s side in pole position going into the winter break.

Hillhead’s run of good form appears to have come to a stuttering halt after a second loss in a row away to Grange on Saturday. Keith Joss’ men succumbed to a 4-0 defeat, meaning they have not won in their last four outings. Conversely, Grange’s second win on the bounce has now put the capital outfit in a healthy position to challenge for a play-off spot when the league resumes in February.

In the Tayside derby, Grove Menziesill edged out local rivals Dundee Wanderers by the odd goal, running out 3-2 winners. Chris Anderson’s side now occupy fourth place, while their city opponents slip to the foot of the division.

Finally, PSL Team Sport Clydesdale and Inverleith shared the spoils in a 2-2 draw at Titwood.

In Aberdeen Asset Management Men’s National League Division 2, Uddingston and Watsonians strengthened their positions at the top of the league, both recording 9-0 wins over Erskine Stewart’s Melville FP and Alpha Data Carnegie respectively.

Both sides now look certs to reach the play-offs after third place Aberdeen GSFP lost ground on the top two following a shock 5-3 reversal away to relegation threatened Glasgow University.

Falkirk GHG and Stepps were also significant movers in the league over the weekend, both climbing a place in the division. Falkirk defeated University of St. Andrew’s 4-1, while Stepps were 4-1 winners away to CALA Edinburgh.

At the foot of the second tier, FMGM Monarchs picked up their second point of the campaign with a credible 2-2 draw away to Granite City Wanderers.

2020 Renewables Greenock are still the only unbeaten side in the men’s National League, although they were held to a 3-3 draw at home to University of Dundee in Aberdeen Asset Management Men's National League Division 3.

However, Perthshire’s 3-3 draw against Harris Academy FP means the west coast outfit maintain their seven point lead at the top of the league.

ADTI Aberdeen University closed the gap on Ayr at the bottom with two wins this weekend, recording a 5-2 win at Highland and a 3-1 home victory against Waverley Inveresk Trinity. Ayr also triumphed on Saturday, defeating Stirling Wanderers 8-3.

University of Strathclyde were 4-3 winners over Giffnock.

Saturday’s top of the table clash between Grange II and PSL Team Sport Clydesdale II in Regional League Central Division 1 turned out to be a one-sided affair in the end, with the Edinburgh side extending their lead at the top with a 9-0 win over the Glasgow outfit.

Stepps II were also significant scorers, defeating bottom of the division University of Stirling 13-0.

Thomsons Cycles Kelburne II enjoyed a profitable weekend, beating local rivals Hillhead II 3-0 on Saturday, before netting four goals without reply against Stepps II yesterday.

In Saturday’s basement battle between Western Wildcats II and Edinburgh University III, it was the Auchenhowie side that opened up a three point gap at the foot of the table with a 6-0 win.

Edinburgh University II beat Grange III 8-0.

In Central Division 2, Rottenrow Blue Sox extended their advantage over second place Uddingston II to twelve points with a convincing 7-0 win over Glasgow University II. Uddingston II slipped to a 3-1 defeat away to Clydeside.

PSL Team Sports Clydesdale III climbed up the table with a 3-2 win over CALA Edinburgh, while Erskine Stewart’s Melville FP II dropped down the division following a 2-0 reversal at the hands of local rivals Watsonians.

The matches between Falkirk GHG II and East Kilbride, and GHK and Anchor both ended in 3-3 draws.

Scottish Hockey Union media release



Grove Menzieshill maintain perfect league record

In Aberdeen Asset Management Women’s National League Division 1, the Grove Menzieshill machine continues to roll on relentlessly towards achieving another unbeaten league campaign following a 7-1 success against CALA Edinburgh at DISC. The Taysiders currently hold a 100% record following fifteen wins this season.

Second place Milne Craig Clydesdale Western slipped ten points behind the leaders following a 2-2 draw away to fourth place Dundee Wanderers. Edinburgh University took advantage of the Titwood outfit’s stalemate to close the gap between second and third to a single point with a 3-1 victory against Glynhill Kelburne.

In the bottom half of the division, Watsonians moved up to seventh with a 6-1 win away to GHK Ladies, while Western Wildcats find themselves rooted to the bottom of the league after losing a crucial clash 2-1 at Grange EL.

Erskine Stewart’s Melville FP dented AAM Merlins Gordonians’ hopes of topping Aberdeen Asset Management Women’s National League Division 2 with an excellent 6-1 over the Aberdonians in Edinburgh.

The Edinburgh side also moved up to third in the table after local rivals Inverleith succumbed to a 4-2 defeat against Glasgow University.

It’s looking bleak for Haddington Ladies at the foot of the second division after a 6-0 loss at the hands of Borders Fjordhus Rievers, while University of Dundee dragged Granite City Wanderers into a relegation fight following 3-2 home win against their north east rivals.

In Aberdeen Asset Management Women’s National League Division 3, University of Stirling’s 3-1 win over Waverley Inveresk Trinity moved the students into second place at the expense of their Edinburgh opponents.

University of Strathclyde recorded an important 3-1 victory over Bon Accord MBC in Saturday’s basement battle.

Neither Aberdeen Ladies nor ADTI Aberdeen University troubled the scorers in a 0-0 deadlock.

Milne Craig Clydesdale Western II reinforced their superiority in the Championship League Division 1 with an 8-0 success against Grove Menzieshill A. Edinburgh University II defeated CALA Edinburgh II 4-0 to maintain second place.

In Division 2, Grange EL A were the winners of a capital derby against Watsonians, edging out their rivals 1-0.

Scottish Hockey Union media release



Swapping snow for sand at the 2013 Festival

The 2013 US National Field Hockey Festival, sponsored by CranBarry, gathered 9,000 field hockey enthusiasts to Palm Beach County, Fla. to share in an annual tradition of turkey and turf. In most parts of the U.S. November brings brisk winds and flurries. Festival participants dodged the cold front by venturing to the warmth of Florida. Old friends reunited and new were forged throughout the venue’s astounding 31 pitches.

“The International Polo Club was truly a remarkable site to hold this world renowned event,” said Karen Collins, USA Field Hockey’s Director of Events and Logistics. “Festival is a holiday in itself. Thousands of field hockey athletes, umpires, coaches and fans pour into one central location to celebrate the sport. Participants are emerged in a four-day unique experience and leave the event already eager for next year’s Festival.”

The 2014 National Field Hockey Festival will return to the West Coast in Palm Springs, Cali. Look to usafieldhockey.com for more details pertaining next year’s event.

USA Field Hockey sends our congratulations to this year’s pool winners who walked away with polished medals and the highly sought-after pride that accompanies the title of champions.

This year’s winners are:

U19A – Total Dutch Orange
U19B – Nook Hockey Green
U19C – Jersey Intensity Black
U19D – Spirit USA North
U19E – Xcalibur Gryphons
U19F – Coyotes Kiawa
U19G – Rampage
U19H – PA Power
U19I – PA Mavericks Black
U19J – Rush
U19K – High Stampede
U19L – Alley Cats
U19M – G Force Vikingz
U19N – WVFHC Adanacs
U19O – ADR Blue
U19P – Aim Blue
U19Q – Washington Wolves
U19R – Bluegrass Elite
U16S – WC Eagles II
U16T – Spirit of USA South
U16U – Jersey Intensity Stars
U16V - Aim
U16W – Saints Blue
U16X – Gaels Blue
U16Y – Xcalibur Silver hawks
U16Z – Team Gateway
U16ZZ – Mystx Force
U16YY – PA Mavericks Teal
U14AA – WC Eagles I
U14BB – WC Eagles II
U14CC – Bluegrass Bermuda
U14DD – Edge
U14EE – Alley Cats
U14FF – High Styx
Women’s Open – Red Rose
Mixed Adults – True North

USFHA media release



Rules of Hockey

The International Hockey Federation (FIH) have confirmed that the Mandatory Experimental Own Goal Rule will no longer be within the Rules of Hockey with effect from 1 September 2014.

The Own Goal Rule will remain in place until then. However from 1 February 2014 it will not apply in international hockey. Also, national assocations may continue to apply the rule in order to conclude competitions where the rule has been played. However, this is not mandatory.

England Hockey is currently considering its response to this and will confirm this shortly.

The FIH have also made an amendment to the Rules of Indoor Hockey and this will take immediate effect including all England Hockey indoor activity and qualifiers. This is reproduced as below

Rule 2.3f currently states that: -

Players must leave or enter the pitch for substitution purposes within 3 metres of the centre-line on a side of the pitch agreed with the umpires.

A goalkeeper who is wearing full protective equipment may take part in a substitution across the side-board near the goal they are defending

The guidance in italics is deleted and the Rule now will read: -
Players must leave or enter the pitch for substitution purposes within 3 metres of the centre-line on a side of the pitch agreed with the umpires.

As a result of this change to the Rules, it follows that goalkeepers must substitute from the same position as other players.

England Hockey Board Media release



Experimental ‘Own Goal’ rule to be scrapped



The International Hockey Federation (FIH) will be removing the 'Own Goal' rule from all tournaments next year.

Hockey New Zealand will remove the rule in all tournaments on the domestic calendar starting with the Masters tournament in March.

Hockey New Zealand also recommends that association, school and regional competitions also exclude this rule, to achieve national alignment with the FIH.

After a period of review, the FIH Rules Committee decided not to adopt the rule as a permanent change.

Based upon the feedback from a variety of stakeholders, including national associations, athletes, coaches, technical officials and umpires it was concluded that the Own Goal was seen as contradictory to the reasons for changing the Free Hit Rules.

Concern was expressed that the rule penalises skill, with the encouragement to fire the ball into the circle being seen as unattractive and also increasing danger at lower levels of the game.

CLICK HERE for a detailed definition of the ‘Own Goal Rule’

Hockey New Zealand Media release



England women's coach welcomes decision to abolish own goal rule

By Rod Gilmour



Result: England are pleased the own goal rule has been abolished Photo: REUTERS

Jason Lee, the England women’s coach, has welcomed world hockey’s decision to abolish the own goal rule, but said the decision-makers who consistently tinker with the laws should "leave the sport alone".

The own goal was implemented only last year by the International Hockey Federation to bring it in line with other sports who adopt the rule. However, a swift U-turn last week means that the women's World Hockey League finals, which start today in Argentina, will be the last time it will be used ahead of February’s axing and next summer’s World Cup.

“The FIH was trying to enforce some rulings which stymied danger,” said Lee. “The own goal was contrary to the direction they were trying to go.

“Hockey has changed exceptionally over the last eight years and there is the prospect of three or four rules coming in.

“Every one has unforeseen consequences. If they left them alone, people will find a safe way of dealing with it. There are more problems by continually changing it rather than the rules themselves.”

The FIH was forced to act after several top players spoke out against an experimental ruling that, according to Lee, favoured “aimless hitting into the circle looking for a deflection”.

“It doesn’t encourage skill and more open goal scoring chances,” he said.

Lee believed the commentators’ booth summed up the confusion engulfing the sport. “When they come back to hockey after two years they just can’t follow the rules,” he added.

Meanwhile, England begin their week-long campaign this morning against Korea, looking to finish one step further than their agonising silver at the hands of Germany in this summer's European Championships’ final.

Lee’s side have been drawn in a tough group alongside the Netherlands, the Olympic champions, and Germany. Temperatures are expected to reach 40°C for the afternoon matches.

Lee said: “A lot of international hockey is played in very hot conditions, not quite World Cup in Qatar temperatures, but not too far away from it.

“There are seven teams who can make a case of making the final and we are one of them.”

The Telegraph