News for 05 May 2013

All the news for Sunday 5 May 2013

Stage is set in Saint-Germain for men’s World League Round 2

6 teams fighting for a ticket to the next round

Tom Boon in action for Belgium at the Olympic Games (Photo: Stanislas Brochier)

The Men’s World League Round 2 starts on Monday in the pleasant Stade George-Lefèvre in Saint-Germain, just outside Paris, with 6 teams fighting to a ticket for the next round of the competition. While Belgium is favorites to win, second place will be fiercely contested between Canada, host France, Poland and Scotland.

This is the third Round 2 competition of the current World League, after tournaments in New Delhi (where India and Ireland qualified) and Rio de Janeiro (where Argentina and South Africa qualified). The last Round 2 tournament will be in Elektrostal, Russia, at the end of May. All qualified teams will join the top 8 teams in the FIH Rankings at the World League semi-finals in June.

Belgium are the top ranked team in this competition (9th in the latest FIH Rankings) and are on the momentum of a brilliant performance at the Olympic Games in London, where they finished 5th. Their inspirational Captain Maxime Luycx retired after the Olympic year, but Belgium still arrive in Saint-Germain with a formidable squad including 10 Olympians, led by John-John Dohmen, Jerome Dekeyser, Tom Boon, Felix Denayer and FIH Young player of the Year nominee Florent van Aubel. 

Belgium is both the youngest and most experienced squad in Saint-Germain, and showed their current ambitions by beating both France and Poland in recent preparation matches.

Canada is the next team in the World Rankings at 14th, but had mediocre results in their recent international competitions, finishing 3rd at the Olympic Qualifier in Delhi and 6th at the 2012 Champions Challenge in Quilmes. Eleven of the players who competed at the Qualifier in Delhi are still on the squad, but they are now without their charismatic veterans Ken Pereira and Rob Short, as well as Scott Sandison and Sukhwinder “Gabbar” Singh (more than 1,000 Caps between them).

This young Canadian team is led by captain and penalty-corner striker Scott Tupper, forwards Philip Wright and Mark Pearson, and can also rely on two solid goal-keepers, but they might suffer from their lack of competitive matches in the last 6 months.

At 17th, France are next in the FIH Rankings. Their rebuilding phase under Frédéric Soyez gained momentum after a good performance at the Olympic Qualifier in Delhi, where they edged out Canada and Poland to reach the Final. Despite losing heavily against host India, they left convinced that they were not far from the next level, and might be capable of upsetting the top teams on a good day.

France, now captained by Frederic Verrier, have kept 10 players from the Qualifier in Delhi and register the return of veteran Matthieu Durchon, after 4 years of retirement from the international scene. The venue is the home club for 7 of the French players, and Les Bleus will certainly be pushed by the local crowd in their decisive matches.

Ranked 19th in the world, Poland won the first ever World League event in August in Prague to qualify for Round 2, but had a poor showing a few months later at the Champions Challenge in Quilmes, where they finished 8th. They have not played much outdoor since, and might have trouble finding their rhythm in the early matches. Led by their talented Captain Dariusz Rachwalski, MVP at the 2011 Indoor World Cup, they are always difficult opposition and should certainly not be taken lightly.

Canada, France and Poland are very close in the rankings, and their recent confrontations have always been tight affairs. At the Olympic Qualifier in Delhi, France beat Poland 2-1, Poland beat Canada 3-2, Canada and France tied 1-1, then Canada beat Poland 4-3 for 3rd place. At the Champions Challenge in Quilmes, Canada and Poland tied 3-3 in pool play before Canada beat Poland 4-2 for classification.

Both Scotland (ranked 23rd) and Portugal (ranked 50th) qualified for this Round 2 through the Round 1 tournament in Lousada, Portugal, in September. Scotland cruised over the opposition, scoring 30 goals and conceding none. Led by Niall Stott, the Scots arrive in Saint-Germain convinced that they can challenge Canada, France and Poland despite the gap in ranking.

Low ranked Portugal were the revelation of the Round 1 competition in Lousada; entering in 4th position, they edged out Gibraltar for the second qualifying spot after a dramatic penalty shoot-out, showing that no competitor should be taken lightly in an event such as the new World League.  

Action starts on Monday at Stade Georges Lefevre (Camp des Loges) in Saint-Germain with Belgium against Portunal, Canada against Scotland and finally host France against Poland. Matches on Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday are at the same times (13h00, 15h30 and 18h00) with France always playing the last match of the day.

Monday May 6:
13h00: Belgium vs. Portugal
15h30: Canada vs. Scotland
18h00: France vs. Poland

FIH site

'Leonas' hockey team sacked

Men’s coach Nicola was dismissed late on Thursday

Buenos Aires Province Senator Aníbal Fernández fired women’s and men’s national team coaches in his first week as Argentine Hockey Confederation (CAH) president. Marcelo Garraffo and Franco Nicola had been named in December.

Buenos Aires Province Senator Aníbal Fernández, who was elected as Argentine Hockey Confederation (CAH) president last Saturday, fired women’s national team coach Marcelo Garraffo yesterday and men’s coach Franco Nicola on Thursday citing that he has different plans.

“I couldn’t even explain my project, which makes me feel sad”, said Garraffo to Hockey Mobile website. “It is a pity to cut this project just for political reasons but we have nothing to do but accept the decision.”

Garraffo received the piece of news on behalf of his assistant coach Claudio “Lalo” Junquet. “We said to the players that today (yesterday) was our last training session.” Garraffo was scheduled to meet Fernández late yesterday to agree the end of the contract’s conditions.

Seven-time awarded best female World hockey player Luciana Aymar, 35, had said that she would seriously consider her retirement if Garraffo was fired.

Former Cabinet Chief and Quilmes Athletic Club president Fernández had remarked after winning the elections that he was considering to end the contracts with the national team coaches because he said it was not right for CAH former president Daniel Marcelini to have named new coaches with a two-year contract three months before the end of his presidential term.

Even though there was no official statement, the main candidates are Carlos Retegui for the men’s team and Emmanuel Roggero for the Leonas.

Retegui, who coached the Leonas from 2009 to 2012 with the team taking the 2010 World Cup and 2012 Olympic Games silver medal while he was in charge, may return to the men’s team — he coached the men’s national team in 2008 and early 2009, including the 2008 Champions Trophy bronze medal — with Mario Almada as assistant coach while former goalkeeper Roggero would be assisted by María Paz Ferrari.

Nicola acknowledged his dismissal when he met with Fernández along with Buenos Aires Hockey Association (AHBA) Mario Galliano late on Thursday and he was told that he was not included in Fernández’s plans so he was required to quit his post.

“I was offered to work as a member of an advisory body but I was not interested. I was a successful coach and want to remain doing the same job,” said Nicola to Hockey Mobile.

Nicola was named as men’s team coach after the Olympic Games. While he was in charge, the team earned 18 wins out of 18 matches, including a Champions Challenge, South American championship and World League round two titles — the best winning streak ever reached by the men’s national team.

Both teams’ next tournaments will be in the World League semifinals. The Leonas will play in London from June 22 to 30 although the team are already qualified for the final as hosts (the final is scheduled to play in November in Tucumán) and the men in Johor, Malaysia from June 29 to July 7.

Buenos Aires Herald

Northern Blues men and WP women win SA U21 titles


The Northern Blues U21 men’s hockey team and the Western Province U21 women’s team were crowned as South African champions at the respective National U21 Tournaments in Pretoria and Durban on Saturday evening.

Northerns, under the guidance of coach Craig Fulton and captained by Benjamin Raymond, beat Western Province 2-0 in the final at Tuks after leading 1-0 at half-time, the goals going to Emile Odendaal and Ross Gonsalves.

At Queensmead, Western Province’s 2-0 win over North West came through a brace of goals by Tarryn Glasby in the second half. The WP team was under the guidance of coach Andi Bernstein and captained by Taryn Mallett.

A power failure in Durban caused a delay in the evening matches.



(11th/12th) Witwatersrand (5) 7 (Thobani Moyo 2, Senna de Abreu, Werner Marquardt 2, Rob Morris 2) Eastern Gauteng 0

(9/10) EP (1) 4 (Libongo Vatyi, Steven Dent, Own Goal, Curtis Samboer) Namibia (0) 1 (Luke Bolton)

(7/8) North West (3) 4 (Ignatius Malgraff 2, De Wet Coetzen 2) Southern Gauteng (0) 2 (Brynn Cleak, Own Goal)

(5/6) KZN Inland (1) 3 (Damian Kimfley, Le-Neal Jackson, Lloyd de Kock) WP Peninsula (0) 2 (Rushin October, Dirk Truter)

(Bronze medal match) KZN Coastal Raiders (2) 4 (Davyn Keuter, Richard Pentecost, Daniel Sibbald, Ryan Wallace) Free State (1) 3 (CJ van Wyk, Dylan Swanepoel, Achmat Richards)

(Gold medal match) Northern Blues (1) 2 (Emile Odendaal, Ross Gonsalves) Western Province 0


(11th/12th) Witwatersrand (2) 6 (Annene Janse van Rensburg 2, Bianca Viljoen, Schemoné Swanepoel, Own Goal, Kayla van der Walt) Eastern Gauteng 0

(9th/10th) Namibia (2) 3 (Marian Laubscher, Marcia Venter, Dunell van Taak) WP Peninsula 0

(7th/8th)Eastern Province (1) 4 (Keisha Arnolds, Cassandra Lister, Talia Nomdoe, Tristian Schroder ) KZN Coastal Raiders (1) 1 (Amy Visagie)

(5th/6th) Free State (6) 10 (Izelle Lategan 3, Tanya Britz 3, Lisa Hawker, Cornelle Botha, Line Malan, Nicole Walraven) KZN Inland (1) (2) Caitlyn Seegers, Vicki Jonker)

(Bronze medal match) Northern Blues (1) 2 (Kylie Oosthuizen, Amoné Mouton) Southern Gauteng (0)

(Gold medal match) Western Province (0) 2 (Tarryn Glasby 2) North West 0

SA Hockey Association media release

IHL Finals Decided

Following today's action in the IHL Semi-Finals, the Finalists for tomorrows show piece Irish Hockey League Finals at Three Rock Rovers Hockey Club, Grange Road,Dublin 16 have been determined.

Electric Ireland Women's Irish Hockey League Final

1:30 Loreto Hockey Club vs Railway Union

Men's Irish Hockey League Final

16:00 Monkstown v Banbridge

Today's Semi Final results & goal scorers were as follows:

Men's IHL Semi Finals

Banbridge  6 vs 1 Cookstown

Banbridge :  Caruth x2; Dowds; McShane; McCandless; Ward
Cookstown :  Allen

Monkstown  2 vs 1 Lisnagarvey

Monkstown :  Good; Carson
Lisnagarvey :  Cockram

Electric Ireland Women's IHL Semi Final

UCD  1 vs 1 Railway Union (Railway win 5-4 on penalties)

UCD :  Beatty
Railway Union :  O.G.

Loreto Hockey Club  2 vs 1 Ards (Loreto win on silver goal a.e.t)

Loreto: O'Kelly, Keegan

Irish Hockey Association media release

Men's District & Reserve Cup/Plate Finals review

Inverleith Men District win

Hillhead lll proved too Much for Watsonians lll as they won 4-0 to deservedly claim the Men’s Reserve Plate Final.

Stuart Caldow opened the scoring in the 28th minute to put Hillhead in the lead. Greg Walker made life harder for Watsonians as he hit the back of the net 10 minutes later, putting his side 2-0 up at half time.

Hillhead did not sit back in the 2nd half and it wasn’t long before Andrew Kirk got them their third goal of the match. Watsonians lll tried to find inspiration for the comeback but Hillhead proved to be too difficult for them as Fraser Ward secured the win in the 63rd minute, making it 4-0.

Western Wildcats hit 6 past Dundee Wanderers to collect the Men’s Reserve Cup Final, in a thrilling 6-3 match.

It was Western who got that all important first goal, with Barry Kane hammering home from a penalty corner in the 8th minute. It took Kane three attempts to get his second, as his first was saved by the keeper and his second hitting the bar. Fortunately Kane was able to get a third shot off and hit home to put his side 2-0 up.

Dundee Wanderers got one back through Bruce Robertson, before Western scored not long after to make it 3-1. Ben Gibson Jr put his side back in the game, taking it to 2-3 just before half time.

Any hopes of a comeback for Dundee Wanderers were dashed as Andrew Sewnauth got his hat-trick with two goals in the 48th and 54th minute. Another hat-trick followed as Barry Kane put his third away in the 63rd minute. Despite being 6-2 down with seconds to go, Dundee Wanderers kept their heads held high to get a well deserved 3rd goal.

Mens District Win

AMN Hillhead ll had to fight hard to beat Aberdeen GSFP ll 3-2 and lift the Men’s District Plate.

After 18 minutes of great resilience from both teams, it was Hillhead who broke first through Ashley Perman. Aberdeen reacted almost immediately as they levelled the score line 2 minutes later, with Andy Fraser finding the back of the net. Hillhead got a perfect end to the first half as Jonny Horn scored in the last minute, putting his side 2-1 up.

Aberdeen pushed hard for the equaliser in the second half and eventually found it, as Greg Anderson slotted home in the 53rd minute.  However, it was Hillhead that came out on top and found the winning goal through Alan Meikle.

Despite Grove Menzieshill getting the first goal in the game, Inverleith went on to win 8-1 in the Men’s District Cup Final.

Grove got off to a fine start, opening the score through Chris Anderson. However it only took Inverleith two minutes to make it level, as Stuart Hatton slotted past the keeper. Inverleith started to turn up the heat, scoring two goals in two minutes through Rob Hall and Stuart Hatton. Rory McDougall got the next goal for inverleith, putting his side 5-1 at half time.

Things got worse for Grove in the second half as they conceded again, with Hatton completing his hat-trick. Grove gave it everything they had to try and encourage a comeback but suffered yet another blow as Inverleith scored a sixth. Akshay Joshi completed the scoring with a last minute goal, seeing Inverleith win 8-1 and deservedly win the District Cup.

Scottish Hockey Union media release

Orkney win back the District Cup!

Women's District Plate Final

Hillhead ll beat Grange EL B 4-1 to win the Women’s District Plate.

Hillhead went in the lead early on, as Linda Smith hit one past Lindsay Stitt. They managed to find a second not long after, through Captain Vicki Lockhart.

Women's District Cup Final

In the second half, Hillhead continued to dominate the game and found a third goal just a couple of minutes in, through Alison McCallum. Grange did not give up and showed fighting spirit as Emily Salvesen gave her side a chance of a comeback.

Despite Grange’s effort, Louise Andrews put a fourth past the keeper and secured her team the women’s District Plate.

Despite losing out in the Cup Final last year, Orkney went on to beat 3-2 Milne Craig Clydesdale Western lV to win the Women’s District Cup.

After an end to end start, Orkney opened up the scoring on the 11th minute through Claire Irvine, who hit home from close range. Irvine put her team 2-0 up 22 minutes in, with her 2nd goal.

Western did not give up and pressed hard in the second half, forcing goalkeeper Lynn Cursiter in to a string of fine saves. It wasn’t until the 67th minute Cursiter let one past, with Karen Longmuir finding the back of the net. However, hopes of a comeback were dashed as Orkney scored straight after, with Fiona Miller making it 3-1. MCC Western lV stayed strong and got a second goal in the last minute, but proved to be nothing more than a conciliation.

When asked about how it felt to win the District Cup, Orkney goalkeeper and Captain Lynn Cursiter said, “It feels fantastic! Last year [in the final] we lost in the dying minutes, so it is great to come back stronger and win it.

Western made it hard for us today. They really changed the game in the 2nd half and put us on the back foot. But we were solid defensively and managed to secure the win”

Scottish Hockey Union media release

Champions Kuala Lumpur Hockey Club set sights on overall title and creating history

KUALA LUMPUR: The Kuala Lumpur Hockey Club (KLCH) are definitely the team to watch out for when the two-legged semi-finals begin on Friday.

They are fast closing in on their 13th title and become the top dogs in the history of the Malaysia Hockey League (MHL).

They currently share the record of winning 12 trophies with Tenaga Nasional.

KLHC equalled it when they lifted their eighth league title last month to add to the four overall titles won earlier.

They’ve won the double a record three times and could well extend it if they win the overall title again this year.

KLHC have been the dominant team in recent years, from 2006 to be exact – when they won their first-ever title.

Their league triumphs were achieved from 2006 to 2013 and they captured the overall titles in 2008 and from 2010 to 2012.

Tenaga won their league titles in 1990, 1991, 2001, 2002 and 2003 and the overall titles in 1987, 1989, 1991, 2003, 2004, 2007 and 2009.

But KLHC team manager George Koshy said that it’s not the records that they are after.

“What’s important is that we take each campaign seriously and go out to win them. I certainly do not know about the records and am not concerned with them,” he said.

KLHC play Sapura in the semi-finals and will surely start as the favourites to make the final.

But Koshy said it would foolish of them to take any team for granted at this stage.

“Sapura have a good team and our matches in the preliminary round were close. We will prepare well for them,” he said, adding that having players with a winning mentality had made it a little easier for them.

“We had to make some major changes to our team this year when six players left.

“The six we brought in were foreigners and they have the experience to play at this level. Their performance in the preliminary round was good and we expect them to keep it going.

“It’s a good sign for us when they gel with the team without any problems. I’m sure they too will be excited at the prospect of winning the overall title.”

The six foreigners in the KLHC team are Australian Timothy Deavin and Pakistan’s Mohamed Umar Bhutta, Akhtar Ali, Waseem Ahmad, Mohamed Imran and Fareed Ahmad.

KLHC won the league title without dropping a game – the only blip was their opening 3-3 draw with Tenaga.

If they get past Sapura next weekend, who will dare bet against them achieving another double – their fourth – and a record 13th trophy?

The Star of Malaysia

Underdogs all set to bite

TNB CUP: Sapura coach Beng Hai looking to Khasif to upset the formbook


Sapura’s Mohd Faizal Daud (centre) attempts to get past two UniKL players in the quarter-final, second leg of the TNB Cup on Friday. Sapura won 3-2 and 6-4 on aggregate.

WITH nothing to lose but much to gain, Sapura coach Tai Beng Hai is banking on Pakistani import Khasif Ali to secure an upset victory in their TNB Cup semi-final against league champions Kuala Lumpur Hockey Club (KLHC).

Beng Hai, whose charges secured a 6-4 aggregate win over UniKL in the quarter-finals, said he was happy to enter the match as underdogs but admitted that getting the better of the three-time double champions would be an uphill task.

The first leg will be held on Friday at the National Hockey Stadium in Bukit Jalil.

"We have made our target of reaching the semi-finals. Whatever we manage after this is a bonus for us," said the former national coach.

"Obviously they (KLHC) are the favourites. They have become even stronger this season and have not lost a match to date.

"There is no pressure on us to win. I am hoping the boys play to their full potential during the game."

Beng Hai, whose charges lost 3-2 in both the first and second round league matches to KLHC last month, added that converting as many penalty corners as possible will be key if they are to spoil the party for the champions.

That responsibility will fall on the shoulders of Khasif, who currently leads the scoring charts with 17 goals in both league and cup competitions. Khasif was signed from Nur Insafi earlier this year.

"KLHC have very few weaknesses so we really need to take our chances well, especially on the penalty corners.

"Khasif has been an excellent signing for us as we did not have a top-class flicker in the team before him.

"A number of people have said that Khasif has been lucky to score so many goals but I disagree.

"The truth is he has great skill, vision and anticipation which have allowed him to get all those goals."

The other semi-final will see Tenaga Nasional play Maybank. Tenaga had beaten Terengganu 8-3 on aggregate in the quarter-finals.

Friday -- TNB Cup semi-finals, first leg: Tenaga Nasional v Maybank (6pm); Sapura v KLHC (8pm). Matches at Pitch II, National Hockey Stadium.

Presidents Cup semi-finals, first leg: TNB Thunderbolts v MBI (6pm); UiTM v Sunday2030 (8pm). Matches at Pitch I, National Hockey Stadium.

New Straits Times

Malaysians strike chord with Castelldefels

CASTELLDEFELS Hockey Club coach Juan Manuel Mas Ortiz is hoping to sign another two Malaysian players to compete for the club on their return to the National Women's League One in Spain next season.

Ortiz, who was hired last year to lead the club's promotion drive after being relegated from the top flight at the end of the 2011-2012 season, said he was delighted with the performances shown by Malaysian duo Siti Amarina Ruhani and Fazilla Sylvester Silin in League Two this season.

He had signed them at the start of the 2012-2013 competition together with former Olympic Spanish players Esther Termens and Lara Domenech.

"They (Siti and Fazilla) have contributed a lot with their international experience, skills and quality. The team have been rewarded with very good results for it," said the former Spain women's Under-16 national coach.

"Siti has been an impressive centre-back, our key player in defence, and also in the penalty corner set pieces.

"Together with Lara Domenech, Fazilla has been our best forward and has been amazing. She scored 25 goals this season."

Castelldefels have secured promotion to the top flight next season as they are already assured of a top-two finish this season. They can still emerge champions if they win their last two league matches in the coming week.

Ortiz said he was resigned to losing the pair, who want to complete their studies back home, but was hoping to rope in more Malaysian talent.

"I would definitely like to keep them here but I have to respect their decision to finish their studies.

"Getting into Spanish clubs is not that easy as they (clubs) prefer to take players from Argentina because they can speak Spanish and it is easier to adapt, however, other players can also be successful in this league.

" I now have to negotiate with MHC again, to see if another two national players from Malaysia can join our squad and compete with us in League One next season.

"I really hope to continue with our agreements, which benefits both parties."

Siti and Fazilla, who are both 26, have been capped 77 and 69 times.

New Straits Times

Sardar Singh recommended for Khel Ratna

Principal Correspondent

A file photo of Indian hockey team captain Sardar Singh.

Hockey India (HI) has recommended the name of Indian hockey team captain Sardar Singh for this year’s prestigious Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna Award.

Under Sardar’s captaincy, the Indian team reached the semifinals of the Champions Trophy in Melbourne last year. India also won the silver medal in the Asian Champions Trophy in Doha.

Strikers Danish Mujtaba and Tushar Khandker, drag-flicker V.R. Raghunath and former captain and goalkeeper Bharat Chetri have been recommended for the Arjuna Award.

Ritu Rani,Saba Anjum and Joydeep Kaur have been recommended for the Arjuna Award in the women’s category. HI has recommended current selector and Olympian Syed Ali for the Dhyan Chand Award.

The Hindu

HI recommends Sardar Singh for Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna award

NEW DELHI: India captain Sardar Singh has been nominated by the Hockey India for the prestigious Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna Award.

According to a statement issued by the national federation, Sardar's name was recommended by the Hockey Award Recommendations Committee.

Sardar has been the captain of national men's hockey team since November 2012 and under his leadership, India reached the semi-finals of last year's FIH Champions Trophy in Melbourne after a period of 30 years.

Sardar-led team also won the silver medal in the second men's Asian Champions Trophy in Doha last year.

He was recently declared Asian Hockey Federation Player of the Year 2011. He was also a part of the FIH World Star Team in 2010 and 2011, and was nominated for FIH Player of the Year last year.

Apart from Sardar, HI has nominated the names of Danish Mujtaba, V R Raghunath, Tushar Khandekar and former skipper Bharat Chetri for the Arjuna Award in the men's category.

Among women players who have been recommended for this year's Arjuna Award are captain of the Indian women's hockey team Ritu Rani, former skipper Saba Anjum and defender Joydeep Kaur.

HI has also recommended Olympian Syed Ali's name for Dhyanchand Lifetime Achievement Award.

The Times of India

IOA delegation for the IOC meeting

The acting president of the suspended Indian Olympic Association (IOA), Prof. Vijay Kumar Malhotra, will lead a four-member delegation for the meeting with the International Olympic Committee (IOC), scheduled to be held at its headquarters in Lausanne, on May 15.

On Friday, in a communication addressed to the IOC president, Dr. Jacques Rogge, it was mentioned that N. Ramachandran (squash), Tarlochan Singh (archery) and S. Reghunathan (kayaking and canoeing) will accompany Prof. Malhotra for the meeting, as the only officialrepresentation from the IOA.

The IOA office, however, had on Thursday suggested a five-member delegation, including the three now mentioned by Malhotra, plus R.K. Anand and N.K. Batra.

On Friday, the IOA office wrote again to the IOC to state that it should not entertain Malhotra’s proposal alone but should consider he five-member delegation as suggested.

In a late development, the IOA wrote to IOC, “The list sent by Mr. V.K. Malhotra does not represent the consensus arrived amongst the National Sports Federations in India. The NSF’s request that all the five delegates of NFSs are invited to the 15th May, 2013 meeting in Lausanne as leaving out any one would result in delegation not representing and reflecting the different views of the National Sports Federations and the Olympic Movement in India.”

The IOC, in its letter sent on Thursday, had stated that the delegation of the suspended IOA “represent and reflect the different views of the national sports federations and the Olympic movement in India.”

It was also categorically mentioned by the IOC that “the suspended IOA, consult, coordinate and agree with its member federations to submit the names of not more than three representatives of national sports federations.”

While the secretary general of the suspended IOA, Randhir Singh is expected to be part of the delegation in his capacity as the IOC member in the country, the Union Sports Ministry announced a five-member delegation from its side, led by the Sports Minister Jitendra Singh.

The Hindu

Gill lauds Batra’s exclusion from four-member delegation for IOC meeting

K.P.S. Gill emphasised that Indian Hockey Federation is the sole legal National Sports Federation for hockey in India. File Photo: Shiv Kumar Pushpakar

Indian Hockey Federation (IHF) patron and Chief Advisor, K.P.S. Gill on Saturday applauded Indian Olympic Association (IOA) acting chief V.K. Malhotra’s decision not to include Hockey India Secretary General Narinder Batra in the four-member delegation for a meeting with the International Olympic Committee (IOC) in Lausanne on May 15.

The IOA on Friday finalised a four-member delegation, which will accompany Sports Ministry officials, for the May 15 meeting with IOC to find a way for India’s return to the Olympic movement.

Besides, Malhotra, the list includes N. Ramachandran (Patron, Squash Rackets Federation of India), Tarlochan Singh (Vice-president, Archery Association of India) and S. Raghunathan (President, Indian Kayaking Canoeing Association).

“Let me congratulate your stance for not including in your list of delegation for Lausanne the dubious and unethical individual Narinder Batra,” Gill wrote in his letter, dated May 4, 2013, to Malhotra.

Criticising Batra, Gill said, “It is a well known fact that the conniving Narinder Batra has been playing games for his own selfish interest and ensured that the IOA does not show any favourable inclination towards the IHF. Along with the FIH he has been using blackmailing tactics and putting pressure on the government and the IOA for his own selfish motives.

“It was Narinder Batra who moved the courts for the implementations of the Govt sports guidelines and now he himself has been contradicting it.

“Any individual who has no ethics and passion cannot be and should not be allowed to be a part of any delegation going to discuss the IOA matters with the IOC,” he added.

Gill emphasised that IHF is the sole legal National Sports Federation for hockey in India.

“As you are aware, the IOA has given this submission in the Delhi High Court, which also ruled that the IHF is the only legal body for hockey in the country. The Delhi HC also ruled that Hockey India formed in a very clandestine manner is private body and has no locus standi,” he said.

“The IOA website also lists IHF as the recognised body of the IOA and if you recall just before the IOA elections, the Delhi HC also gave voting rights to the IHF.

“We have been functioning as the sole NSF with all the states units affiliated to us and in turn there are hundreds of clubs which are affiliated to the state units,” he insisted.

Stating that he was looking forward to IOA’s co-operation and assistance in re-establishing IHF as the sole national body for hockey in India, Gill said, “We are prepared to assist and cooperate with the IOA to resolve all pending issues for further promotion and development of the game in India provided dubious individuals and unethical people are kept away from the IOA.”

The Hindu

Dar Academy Boys in action at the National under 16s

By Ijaz Chaudhry

In Pakistan’s any national championships, whether the senior or for any age group, the Dar Hockey Academy’s boys will be very much there. The reservoir has an unlimited supply.

The ongoing national under 16 championships in Lahore has 19 lads from the Dar HA appearing for no less than six teams.

Lahore, which has emerged as one of the favourites for the national under 16 title, features six academy boys. Two of them, Adeel Latif and Sikander Mustafa starred for the Pakistan junior squad which recently won the under 16 Asia Cup in Singapore.

The Lahore side also has the services of two coaches of the Dar HA in Waqas Butt and Ejaz. Waqas Butt, who has attended the camp for Pakistan’s national team in the past, is the goal keeping coach. He has been making a great effort in grooming young net minders and is working on quite a few of them. Four of his pupils are in action for different teams in these championships.

The Dar HA boys at the national under 16 championships:

-Lahore: Adeel, Sikander, Abid Bhatti, Ahad, Awais, Mansoor (Goal Keeper)
-Sialkot: Usman, Waseem, Aamir
-D.G.Khan: Mubashar, Aamir
-Mirpurkhas: Asad, Umair Aziz, Bilal, Hammad, Waqar, Mubashar (Goal Keeper)
-Multan:Kashif (Goal keeper)    
-Hyderabad:Hamza (Goal Keeper)    

Ijaz Chaudhry writes on hockey and other sports. For more about him and his work, visit: Exclusive

EHF names Umpires 4 Europe

20 umpires from 16 Nations chosen

Jamie Hooper from Wales (Photo: Tom Swain)

The EHF is delighted to announce the names of those selected for the new EHF U4E (umpires for Europe) programme.

Following the huge success of European Hockey Federation's Umpire Development Programme, the EHF Education Committee, Umpires has launched a 3 tiered strategy.Applications for the second tier EHF U4E opened in March.

The EHF received 43 nominations from 16 different Nations for the new EHF Umpires 4 Europe Programme (U4E). The level of interest shows the understanding that continuing to educate our European umpires is imperative for the future standard of hockey in Europe.

The EHF Education Committee agreed 20 places for U4E in 2013, to ensure that the programme is delivered at a high standard. Due to the over subscription the following criteria for selection was agreed:

* The first preference nominee of all sixteen Nations.

* Three women from the second preference nominations, as there were more men than women nominated as first choices.

* The final place was given to a developing Nation.

We recognise that those who were not successful will be disappointed, but hope that it may be possible to include them in future years.

The twenty selected U4E umpires for 2013 are therefore as follows:

Sophie Ashcroft SCO    F
Johannes Berneth GER    M
Rafael Carvaho POR    M
Daniel Denta DEN   M
Caroline Fenn ENG   F
Elodie Franchomme FRA    F
Marc Gabarro ESP    M
Antun Gunjina CRO   M
Gabor Harastko SRB    M
Jamie Hooper WAL   M
Inga Jenkova LTU    F
Darko Koncic CRO   M
Dovile Lidaite LTU    F
Shane O'Donnell IRE     M
Mustafa Ozdal TUR    M
Esin Ozturk TUR    F
Maksym Perepelytsya UKR M
Verena Scherz AUT    F
Natasa Stankovic SRB    F
Wajid Khan NOR   M

The Programme will start with a practical weekend in Breda, The Netherlands, 23rd – 25th August 2013 and will run for the remainder of 2013 with various Seminars and support for the umpires.

The Final Tier, Supporting National Growth is explained here.

European Hockey Federation media release