News for 21 May 2013

All the news for Tuesday 21 May 2013

Junior Black Sticks Women happy after 4-3 win

Junior Black Stick Michaela Curtis in action during today’s second test against Korea at Auckland Grammar Hockey Turf. Credit:

The Junior Black Sticks Women (Under-21’s) have put on another strong display today winning 4-3 against Korea’s Under-21 side at Auckland Grammar Hockey Turf.

Coach Chris Leslie was pleased with today’s performance and says this series goes a long way in preparing players for the Junior World Cup in Germany in July.

“It was a step up from the first match [yesterday] and we certainly played with more intensity. We moved the ball on well and stretched the opposition on a number of occasions which was pleasing,” says Leslie.

“Korea is a good side and it’s great to have these matches against them. They have sound basics, run hard and are pretty uncompromising so it makes it a perfect series for selection and as build up to the Junior World Cup,” says Leslie.

The side are playing three more games this week and Leslie says that although it will be hard on the players competing in five games over such a short time period, he is hoping that the team will see big improvements as the series progresses.

“Fatigue is likely to be an issue, but the more you play together the more we hope to gel as a team. The areas of improvement for us are creating more goal opportunities and being more composed in the defensive third – that will be a key focus at the two trainings that we have this week,” says Leslie.

In today’s game, New Zealand were first to score from an own goal when the Korean goalkeeper was caught off guard in the 16th minute. The score was doubled when North Harbour’s Rhiannon Dennison converted a penalty corner drag flick in the 29th minute. Right on the half time hooter, Min Ji Kook took a cracking reverse stick shot and got her team on the scoreboard.

In the second half, Korea equalised through Hyun Ki Kim before Phillipa Symes scored twice for New Zealand to take the Kiwi’s lead to 4-2. Korea scored an own goal in the 63rd minute and it finished up at 4-3.

For the full schedule of games please click here

New Zealand 4 (Own goal, Rhiannon Dennison, Phillipa Symes x2) Korea 3 (Mi Ji Kook, Hyun Ji Kim, Own goal). Half time: 2-1 (New Zealand lead)

Hockey New Zealand Media release

Promotion for Clydesdale Western, but Grove Menzieshill miss out in Europe

Milne Craig Clydesdale Western capped off a fine four days of European competition with a 4-0 win over HC Rotweiss Wettingen to win the EuroHockey Club Champions Challenge II in Prague.

Scotland striker continued her good run of form in front of goal when she opened the scoring for the Glasgow side in the eighth minute before a Catriona Ralph penalty corner strike made it 2-0 in the 17th minute.

The game was put out of sight right on half-time when Susan McGilveray made it 3-0 from another penalty corner set-play in the 35th minute.

In the 55th minute, Jennifer Eadie made it 4-0 from open play to give Neil Menzies’ side a comfortable win that resulted in them topping the final rankings.

Unfortunately, Scottish champions Grove Menzieshill missed out on promotion to the EuroHockey Club Trophy as they lost 4-1 to Russian side Metrostroy in Catania.

Olga Shentsova gave Metrostroy a 1-0 lead in the eighth minute from a penalty corner and proceeded to be the only goal of the first half.

The Russians then struck twice in two minutes to effectively take the wind out of the Grove Menzieshill sails, with Marina Fedorova and Ksenia Svezhentseva scoring from open play in the 52nd and 54th minute to make it 3-0.

Ali Bell pulled one back for Grove Menzieshill in the 60th minute, but Federova got her second of the game six minutes from time to leave the final scoreline 4-1.

Both Milne Craig Clydesdale Western and Grove Menzieshill will now compete in the EuroHockey Club Champions Challenge I next season.

For yesterday's results and final standings, please visit the EuroHockey website.

Scottish Hockey Union media release

Pakistan the first hurdle in World League

By Jugjet Singh

MALAYSIA will open accounts against Pakistan in the World League semi-finals in Johor Baru on June 29-July 10.

The other teams in Malaysia's group are England and South Africa.

In Group A are World No 1 Germany, South Korea, Argentina and a yet to be named team which will be confirmed after Round 2, which will be held in Russia next week.

Japan and Russia are the early favourites to battle for the last spot in Johor Baru.

National coach Paul Revington said: "Even though the group stage will only be a warm-up, every match will be approached with a winning mentality as we want to qualify for the World Cup in Johor Baru and not wait for the Asia Cup (In Ipoh on Aug 24 to Sept 1)."

All eight teams progress to the quarter-final stage, and a win will take Malaysia into the World Cup in the Netherlands next year.

If they fail, the Ipoh tournament will be their final chance to make the World Cup, which Malaysia last played in 2002.

New Straits Times

Malaysia have their work cut out in the World League

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia will face England, Pakistan and South Africa in Group B during the preliminary stage of the World League semi-finals in Johor Baru from June 29-July 7.

The draw and fixtures for the tournament were released by the Malaysian Hockey Confederation (MHC) yesterday.

World No. 1 Germany are in Group A together with South Korea and Argentina. One more team will join the group after the completion of Round Two in Kazan, Russia next month.

Tournament organising secretary Manjit Majid Abdullah said yesterday that the International Hockey Federation (FIH) have agreed to release the fixtures although the eighth team in the fray is not known yet.

“All preparation for the tournament are going smoothly and we are ready to play hosts. By releasing the fixtures early, the participating teams will get a chance to prepare for the challenge,” he said.

The format adopted for the World League semi-finals is similar to that in the Champions Challenge and Champions trophy tournaments.

That means the group phase is of little importance as all the teams will qualify for the quarter-finals.

Matches on July 4 will decide the four teams for the semi-final stage. They automatically qualify for the World League Finals next year.

The tournament also acts as a qualifier for the 2014 World Cup. Teams who qualify for the Finals are almost certain to make the cut.

National coach Paul Revington said that it will be a tough tournament as all the teams in Malaysia’s group are ranked higher.

“But it does mean we cannot win. We will take one step at a time. The tournament offers the first step towards the World Cup in 2014. So we have to try hard to make the grade. This is a good chance for us to secure a berth for 2014,” he said.

The national team will go to Johor Baru today for a three-day training stint. They will also play a visiting provincial team from China in Kuala Lumpur.

The Malaysians also have a training tour to South Africa in early June before setting up camp in Johor Baru from June 25.

The Star of Malaysia

Tenaga stay upbeat despite defeat

By Jugjet Singh

KUALA Lumpur Hockey Club (KLHC) may have won the double but it was Tenaga Nasional who won the accolades and praises in the Malaysia Hockey League this season.

Both sides are now joint record holders with 12 MHL titles each, with Tenaga having seven Overall and five League titles, while KLHC have four Overall and eight League titles.

Tenaga, an-all local outfit, surprised the pundits as they were the only Premier Division side who forced KLHC to share points in a thrilling 3-3 draw.

And the defeat in Sunday's final was also a narrow 2-1, considering KLHC had nine players who had either played at the World Cup or Olympics.

Sapura, Maybank and Nur Insafi also had six foreign players or more each, but Tenaga still managed a laudable second in the Overall and third in the League.

"We see it as our responsibility to the nation.

"If all the teams start to rely on foreign players, who is going to give budding youth and also the local players a chance in the MHL?

"Even though we might lose a little in the early years, once our young players become comfortable playing in the MHL, the results will follow," said Tenaga manager Nor Saiful Zaini.

However, Nor Saiful agreed that if faced with an exodus of players next season, he might have to source for foreign players.

"The feeling is like watching 'Batman Returns' for when six of my players left for Terengganu, I had to scramble around looking for players," lamented KLHC manager George Koshy.

"Even after we won the League title, I did not expect my players to win the Overall title as well because my foreign players hardly had enough time to settle down before the first match," said Koshy.

As for the MHL itself, there was no new exciting talent spotted in both divisions, and teams might have to rely on foreign players for at least another five years before there are enough local juniors to fill their shoes.

New Straits Times

KLHC to rule the roost if other teams don’t raise their game


All conquering: KLHC went through the 2013 season unbeaten in 15 matches.

KUALA LUMPUR: The Kuala Lumpur Hockey Club (KLHC) have been all-conquering in the Malaysia Hockey League (MHL) and look set to continue their domination in the event.

KLHC went through the 2013 season unbeaten in 15 matches and they beat Tenaga Nasional 2-1 to claim the overall title on Sunday and their 13th trophy.

Tenaga Nasional, who have 12 titles to their credit, can take heart that they gave the champions, who completed a fourth double, a fight before losing the final.

So what’s next for the champions?

Team manager George Koshy, who started the team in 2000, said it is only natural for them to evolve over the years and development of the game could be the next step.

“There are already murmurs within the club that we should take part in the Malaysia Junior Hockey League (MJHL) and also channel our efforts in the development aspect of the game.

“The MJHL is one such step while we can also use our national stars to do development work. This year we had two Under-17 players in the team. They would have benefited playing with the foreign players and also the local stars.

“For me the important thing in whatever project is started, it has to be sustained. There is no point putting a team in the MJHL if we cannot keep it going,” said Koshy.

Many assumed that KLHC will be a weakened force this year when six of their stars joined Terengganu.

However, they brought in six foreigners and they have gel with the locals to emerge champions again.

In fact, others should learn from KLHC in the art of building a successful team. It took them almost six years before they won a league title. Since 2006 they have won at least one title every year and in the last four years they have won both titles at stake.

This year the MHL provided more quality matches mainly because of the better recruitment of foreign players.

A total of 17 players came from Pakistan. They were Mohamed Imran, Waseem Ahmad, Fareed Ahmad, Mohamed Umar Bhutta, Akhtar Ali (KLHC), Shakeel Abassi, Mohamed Irfan, Mohamed Waqas, Shafqat Rasool (Maybank), Khasif Ali, Yasir Islam, Mohamed Zubair (Sapura), Nasir Ahmad, Abdul Asim Khan, Shazad Amir, Imran Muhammad, Hussain Mohamed Salman and Ateeq Mohamedn (Nur Insafi).

The other players were Australia’s Timothy Deavin (KLHC) and India’s Raja Veerachamy (Sapura).

Koshy said it is not just the quality of the foreigners that matters but the fact that the local players had been able to blend with them.

“A number of Pakistan players had played here before and as such know what it is all about. Most are national players,” he added.

Overall Tenaga, Maybank and even Sapura made a fight of it but unless they increase their work rate, they will continue to play second fiddle to KLHC.

Organisation-wise the MHL ran without major hitches. But more effort and thought must be put into attracting the fans.

The competitions committee should not be satisfied with just organising the league.

It is mind boggling that past records of the MHL is almost non existent. How does the MHC expect to get publicity if they do not give proper information to the media?

Playing the matches at the second stadium in Bukit Jalil does not make sense when the main pitch is available. Maybe it is high time to take the knockout stage to the other states like Perak to draw in the crowd.

The Star of Malaysia

Gobi’s fate to be decided by MHC’s administrative committee

KUALA LUMPUR: The Malaysian Hockey Confederation (MHC) disciplinary board have passed the case involving Project 2013 assistant coach K. Gobinathan to the their administration to handle.

The Project 2013 assistant coach was referred to the disciplinary board for misconduct during the just concluded Malaysia Hockey League (MHL).

The MHL technical committee who met on April 13 had decided to refer the coach to the board since they are unable to deal with the issue as Gobinathan, a Maybank employee, is not registered with any team in the MHL.

He was alleged to have shouted at the umpires and match technical officials during a match. The report against the coach was made by technical official Surjit Singh.

Gobinathan was deemed to have been a coach for UiTM at that time. The coach admitted helping the team but confirmed that he was not their registered official.

MHC secretary Johari Abdul Aziz said that the disciplinary board, which was chaired by Datuk Mohd Bustaman Abdullah, had met and felt that there is no case for the coach to answer.

“The view of the disciplinary board is that this is an administrative matter. So I will now refer the matter to the MHC management committee or the executive council for further action.

“We can of course just issue a warning letter for his behaviour. And let the matter end there.

“Still we need to wait for the committee to meet before any final decision is taken,” he said yesterday.

UiTM was the Division One league champions and also made it to the final for the Division One overall title but lost to Thunderbolt in a penalty shootout.

The Star of Malaysia

Hockey players end Malaysia league stint

KARACHI: National hockey players return home today after spending over a couple of months at the Malaysian Hockey League (MHL) which concluded during the weekend.

Thirteen Pakistan players participated in the league after featuring in the Azlan Shah Cup. Pakistan national captain Mohammad Imran along with Waseem Ahmad, Fareed Ahmad, Mohammad Umar Bhutta and Akhtar Ali represented the KL Hockey Club that clinched the title.

Imran, who led the team to its title-triumph, scored over a dozen goals including a decisive one in his team’s 2-1 win over Tenaga Nasional Berhad in the final. Players will now assemble for the International Hockey League and the Asia Cup to be hosted in Malaysia later this summer.

Imran said the players’ participation will help in the forthcoming tournaments.

“Players from Australia, India and Malaysia took part in the league,” said Imran. “We all got good practice and feel we’re in form.”

Shakeel Abassi, Mohammad Irfan, Mohammad Waqas and Shafqat Rasool also took part in the MHL and represented Maybank, while Kashif Ali, Yasir Islam and Mohammad Zubair featured for Sapura.

The Express Tribune

Hockey India Sub-Junior nationals start on Tuesday

NEW DELHI: The 3rd edition of the Hockey India Sub-Junior Men & Women National Championship (Finals) will be played at Bhopal from May 21-27.

A total of 28 teams in the men's and 25 in the women's category participated in the national championships which was conducted zonal wise in the month of April.

The winners and runners-up of each of the four zones qualified for the final round.

There will be eight teams playing in each of the men's and women's category, and the teams are divided into two pools.

The matches will be played at Aish Bagh Hockey Stadium and Mayur Park Hockey Stadium in Bhopal.

In the men's category, defending champions Odisha have been drawn in Pool A and will play their inaugural match against Jharkhand tomorrow while in the women's category defending champions Madhya Pradesh Hockey Academy have been drawn in Pool A.

Men: Pool A- Odisha, Karnataka, Jharkhand and The Hockey Maharashtra

Pool B- MPHA, Punjab, Tamil Nadu and Chandigarh

Women: Pool A- MPHA, Karnataka, Chandigarh and Odisha

Pool B- Haryana, Jharkhand, Andhra Pradesh and The Hockey Maharashtra.

The Times of India

Legerton rescues point for Petrotrin

Nigel Simon

Out-of-favour national forward Wayne Legerton came to the rescue of his Petrotrin team-mates when he netted with two minutes left on the clock to earn his team a 2-2 draw with Queen’s Park in the T&T Hockey Board Men’s Championships Division at the National Hockey Centre, Tacarigua on Sunday night.

The Oilmen entered the match as winners of their first five matches for maximum 15 points, two more than Defence Force and Paragon and were favoured to get past the Parkites, joint fourth on nine points with Notre Dame.

However, the Parkites who are chasing a top four first round finish to secure a “Big-Four” qualification spot was first to get on the score-sheet via Shawn Lee Quay in the 15th minute.

With the minutes ticking away it seemed as though the Parkites would be able to hang onto the narrow lead while inflicting Petrotrin’s first loss of the season, but it was not to be as Legerton beat goalkeeper Reiza Hosein in the 68th minute from a penalty-corner set play to earn his team a share of the points.

The point earned carried Petrotrin to 16 from six matches, while Defence Force and Paragon are next with 13 followed by Queen’s Park with ten and Notre Dame, a further point behind in fifth.

On Saturday, Tariq Maracon twice handed Maracon the lead in a 2-2 draw with Corona Fatima for its first point of the season after six matches.

Marcano fired Malvern ahead in the 22nd minute but Jordan Vieira replied for Fatima in the 45th, only for Marcano to get his second on the hour-mark, followed by Colin Young’s equaliser for Fatima in the 67th.

In the Women’s Championship Division, Harvard Maritime Checkers missed a chance to close the gap to two points after a 2-2 draw with Shandy Carib Magnolias on Sunday.

Magnolias, who entered the match in fourth spot with six points from three matches took a third minute lead through a penalty-corner conversion from Mika Ella Tang, but that was undone by Savannah De Freitas’ 18th own-goal to level the match at 1-1.

Both teams continue on their all-out attack in search of the go-ahead item which eventually came for Magnolias a minute before the half thanks to Kelli O’Brien, but ten minutes after the re-start Kwylan Jaggessar drew Checkers level again to split the points.

With the drawn result, Checkers joined Paragon in second spot with eight points, four behind defending champions, Notre Dame while Magnolias is next with seven, one more than Malvern, 3-1 come-from-behind winners of Ventures on Saturday.

Ventures, losers of their previous four matches took a surprise lead in the 13th minute via Jenny Thompson but national forward Oire Trotman cooled the nerves of her Malvern team-mates with a quick brace, in the 31st and 32nd minute for a 2-1 half-time advantage while former national captain, Sherlan Cabralis sealed the win in the 40th.

In the Trinity Men’s Division, teenagers, Teague Marcano scored twice and Jacques Poon-Lewis the other for Malvern in its 3-1 whipping of Defence Force to regain sole possession of top spot with maximum 18 points, three more than Queen’s Park while Paradise is next with 13 and Notre Dame, fourth with 12.

However, in the Trinity Women’s competition, Paragon blanked Malvern 2-0 with second-half goals from Shanice Cudjoe and Gabrielle Thompson.

T&THB results

Men’s Championship:

Malvern 2 (Tariq Marcano 22nd, 60th) vs Fatima 2 (Jordan Vieira 45th, Colin Young 67th)

Women’s Championship:
Malvern 3 (Oire Trotman 31st, 32nd, Sherlan Cabralis 40th) vs Ventures 1 (Jenny Thompson 13th)

Mixed Veterans:
Police 3 vs Paragon 0 - by default


Trinity Men:

Malvern 3 (Teague Marcano 51st, 68th pen, Jacques Poon-Lewis 42nd) vs Defence Force 1 (Neil Clarke 48th)

Trinity Women:
Paragon 2 (Shanice Cudjoe 48th, Gabrielle Thompson 57th) vs Malvern 0

Men’s Championship:
Queen’s Park 1 (Shawn Lee Quay 15th) vs Petrotrin 1 (Wayne Legerton 68th)

Women’s Championship:
Magnolias 2 (Mika Ella Tang 3rd, Kelli O’Brien 34th) vs Checkers 2 (own goal 18th, Kwylan Jaggessar 45th)

The Trinidad Guardian

Ghanaian Regional Hockey League begins: Police Ladies, Legonites suffer defeats

Rasheedat Kadiri

The Dwadifuo Adanfo Greater Accra Regional Hockey League kick started last weekend with eight matches at the Theodosia Oko Hockey Stadium in Accra.

The opening day games witnessed very high fan turn out, a situation which pleases organisers of the league.

In the ladies matches, Trustees of SSNIT recorded the highest score line when they beat CEPS 3-1.

The Ghana Police Service Ladies suffered a one nil defeat to VRA Customs.

The game between the Reformers and Fire Extinguishers ended goalless.

In the seniors’ division SAPHOLDA beat Citizens by 5-0 while Multi Sticks lost by 3-2 to NDK Financiers, Ark Ladies 5-0 Veteran Ladies.

Police Service defeated Reformers 2-0 in the men's category.

In other matches, Legonites lost by a lone goal to Real Ambassadors, Golden Sticks 1-0 Ex Chequers.

Hawke’s Bay sponsorship wins award

Bruce MacTaggert, Founder of the Hawkes Bay Community.

Congratulations to Bruce Mactaggart who won the inaugural Innovation in Sports Award at the Unison Hawke’s Bay Sports Awards on Saturday night.

Bruce and his late wife Robyn were instrumental in bringing together the Hawke’s Bay community to ensure the Black Sticks Men and Women had all the support they needed in the build-up to the 2012 London Olympics.

With Bruce out of the country, his daughter Sam collected the award on his behalf. Click here to watch Sam’s acceptance speech.

Hockey New Zealand Media release