News for 08 July 2013

All the news for Monday 8 July 2013


Germany take Gold in Johor Bahru

Olympic champions defeat Argentina in showpiece final



GOLDEN BOYS: Germany were 4-2 winners over Argentina in the Gold medal match of the Hockey World League Semi Final tournament in Johor Bahru, Malaysia. (Photo: FIH / Frank Uijlenbroek)

Germany are the winners of the Hockey World League Semi Final tournament in Johor Bahru after defeating Argentina 4-2 in a pulsating tournament final. Florian Fuchs scored twice to help the world number 1 side to victory, although they were given a huge test by an Argentinean team that looks capable of rapidly rising up the FIH World Rankings over the next few years.

The match brought to an end a fantastic week of top class hockey in Malaysia, which saw three teams – Germany, Argentina and England – seal their places at the 2014 Rabobank Hockey world Cup. There were also individual prizes handed out to the players who excelled during this tournament, with Germany captain Max Mueller winning the Player of the Tournament while 20 year old Argentina defender Gonzalo Peillat picked up the gong for Talent of the Tournament (U-21). The Goalkeeper of the Tournament award was given to Korea’s Lee Myung Ho, while three players – Abdul Haseem Khan (PAK), Gonzalo Peillat (ARG) and Christopher Zeller (GER) – shared the top scorer awarded with seven goals apiece.

Argentina gave as good as they got in a fiercely contested and hugely entertaining first half, twice coming from behind against the Olympic champions to go into the half time break with the scores on par. Christopher Zeller opened the scoring in the 22nd minute after brilliant build-up play from Moritz Fuerste, but Argentina’s 20 year old penalty corner expert Gonzalo Peillat rattled in a stunning leveller just four minutes later. Florian Fuchs volleyed Germany back in front in the 32nd minute only for Matias Paredes to tie the scores up on the stroke of half time.

The South Americans were arguably the better team in the early stages of the second period, but Germany grew in strength as the half progressed and netted a stunning 67th minute goal when Florian Fuchs touched home a brilliant pass from Christopher Ruehr. The win was sealed by Christopher Wesley in the final minute, who blasted a powerful backhand shot into the roof of the net via the glove of Argentina keeper Juan Vivaldi. 

Final Standings

Gold: Germany (Qualified for 2014 Rabobank Hockey World Cup)
Silver: Argentina (Qualified for 2014 Rabobank Hockey World Cup)
Bronze: England (Qualified for 2014 Rabobank Hockey World Cup)
4: Korea
5: Malaysia
6: Japan
7: Pakistan
8: South Africa

Awards
Top Scorers: 7 goals - Abdul Haseem Khan (PAK), Gonzalo Peillat (ARG) & Christopher Zeller ( GER)
Goalkeeper of the Tournament: Lee Myung Ho (KOR)
Talent of the Tournament (U-21): Gonzalo Peillat (ARG)
Player of the Tournament: Maximilian Mueller (GER)

FIH site



Korea beaten as England grab Bronze

Asians denied automatic World Cup qualification



(Photo: Frank Uijlenbroek)

England – Korea 2-1 (1-0)


A 59th minute goal from Harry Martin gave Bobby Crutchley’s young England team a 2-1 victory over Korea in the 3-4 Placement match at the Hockey World League Semi Final event in Johor Bahru, Malaysia. The victory confirmed England as third place finishers in the competition, denying Korea automatic qualification for the 2014 Rabobank Hockey World Cup in The Hague.

The result was good news for New Zealand, who are confirmed qualifiers for the World Cup by virtue of being the highest ranked of the two fourth place finishers from Rotterdam and Johor. The Black Sticks are ranked 6th in the world, ahead of Korea who are 8th.  However, Korea's high finish in the tournament means that they still have an excellent chance of qualifying for the event should they fail to do so at their continental championship.

Despite missing key players Ashley Jackson and Mark Gleghorne for this match through injury, England gave a good showing of themselves in the first half and took the lead in the 12th minute. Ben Arnold was the scorer, driving from left to right across the circle before firing accurately into the bottom left corner of Lee Myung Ho’s goal.  Korea’s chances in the first half were limited, but looked extremely threatening in the early stages of the second period. 

Korea came agonisingly close to levelling the scores in the 48th minute when Jeon Byung burst into the circle and tipped the ball past England goalkeeper George Pinner, only for Lee Nam Yong’s diving backhand effort to travel just wide of the unguarded net.

Moments later, Nam Hyun Woo brought another fine save from Pinner, before Korea eventually grabbed an equaliser in the 51st minute. England charged down the initial penalty corner flick, but a second effort towards goal was deflected in by Kim Seong Kyu.

The goal seemed to be something of a wake-up call for England, who once again began to take the game to Korea and scored what proved to be the winning goal eleven minutes from full time. A penalty corner variation came the way of Nick Catlin, who placed a perfect pass onto the stick of Harry Martin who could not miss from close range.

Korea had a superb chance to equalise in the final minutes of the game when they won a penalty corner, but England shot-stopper Pinner produced a fine diving save to deny the flicked effort from the top of the circle.  

FIH site



5/6: Malaysia out-shoot Japan

7/8: Pakistan power to 6-2 victory over South Africa



(Photo: Frank Uijlenbroek)

5-6 Placement
Japan – Malaysia 1-1 (1-1) (Shoot-out 3-4)


Malaysia won a dramatic penalty shoot-out against Japan to claim 5th place at the Hockey World League Semi Final in Johor Bahru. The two teams finished normal time with scores bolted together at 1-1, but two misses efforts in the shoot-out from Japan’s from Heita Yoshihara and Kei Kawakami gave Malaysia a fine win.

Today’s result significantly boosts Malaysia’s chances of landing a place for the 2014 Rabobank Hockey World Cup should they not achieve qualification through their continental championship. 

A big crowd turned up to watch the home team in action and made a huge amount of noise, singing and drumming their way throughout virtually every minute of the contest.  In the tenth minute, the partisan fans were given the perfect reason to cheer, when Muhammad Razie Abd Rahim netted his sixth goal of the tournament, rattling home a penalty corner to give Malaysia a deserved lead after dominating the early stages.

Japan improved as the half progressed, and began to ask some serious questions of the Malaysian defence with some positive attacking play. They pulled themselves level in the 29th minute thanks to a super-slick penalty corner routine which saw three passes and a close range deflection from Shinji Kawauchi.

Just before half time, Japan came within a whisker of moving ahead in the match when team captain Koji Kayukawa’s deflected penalty corner effort flew just wide of the left post.

The early stages of the second half was evenly contested between these two giants of Asian hockey, with both sides creating goal-scoring opportunities. A wonderful, driving run into the circle from Japan’s Heita Yoshihara resulted in a penalty corner, but the chance went begging before an Abd Rahim set piece drag-flick was charged down by the Japanese defence.  

The final stages of the match were controlled by Malaysia, but the Japanese defenders made numerous crucial tackles to deny the home favourites and force the second penalty shoot-out of the tournament.

The first four shoot-out efforts were scored before Malaysia handed the initiative to Japan when Faiz Helmi Jali missed before Koshi Yamabi reinforced the Japanese advantage.  However, misses from Japan’s Heita Yoshihara and Kei Kawakami gave Malaysia a thrilling victory, with Muhammad Firhan Ashaari and Mohd Fitri Saari converting glorious efforts before the crowd went wild.

7-8 Placement
South Africa – Pakistan 2-6 (0-1)


Pakistan ended their tournament on a positive note by defeating South Africa 6-2 in the 7-8 placement game at the Hockey World League Semi Final event in Johor Bahru. The Greenshirts coped well with a spell of early South African dominance to take a 1-0 lead into half time before scoring five times in the second half, with Muhammad Waqas, Muhammad Rizwan Sr, Aamir Shazad, Abdul Haseem Khan (2) and Abbas Haider Bilgrami doing the damage. The result means that Pakistan secure a seventh place finish in the tournament, with South Africa forced into eighth.

South Africa were impressive in the early stages of the half, but Pakistan soon woke up and began to put pressure on Erasmus Pieterse’s goal. The first strike of the half arrived in the 22nd minute when Waqas bundled home a penalty corner, before three goals in quick succession at the start of the second half from Muhammad Rizwan Sr, Aamir Shazad, Abdul Haseem Khan moved the score to 4-0. Abbas Haider Bilgrami cracked home a fifth in the 53rdminute before South Africa staged a mini revival thanks to field goals from Timothy Drummond and Lloyd Norris-Jones.

The final goal of the game came from Haseem Khan, who netted his seventh of the tournament four minutes from full time.

FIH site



World number one Germany win World League Semi-Final hockey title

Germany are the winners of the World League Semi-Final tournament in Johor, Malaysia after defeating Argentina 4-2 in a pulsating tournament final, the International Hockey Federation (FIH) website said Sunday.

Florian Fuchs scored twice to help the world number one side and back-to-back Olympic champions to victory, although they were given a huge test by world number 10 Argentina, who look capable of rapidly rising up the world rankings over the next few years.

The top three teams – Germany, Argentina and England – seal their places at the 2014 Rabobank Hockey World Cup in The Hague, Netherlands next June.

The top four, which includes South Korea, qualify for the World League Final tournament in Delhi, India next January.

Germany captain Max Mueller won the Player of the Tournament award while 20-year-old Argentina defender Gonzalo Peillat picked up the gong for Talent of the Tournament (Under-21).

The Goalkeeper of the Tournament award was given to South Korea’s Lee Myung Ho, while three players – Abdul Haseem Khan (Pakistan), Peillat and Christopher Zeller (Germany) – shared the top scorer award with seven goals apiece.

Argentina gave as good as they got in a fiercely contested and hugely entertaining first half, twice coming from behind against the Olympic champions to go into the half-time break with the scores on par.

Zeller opened the scoring in the 22nd minute after brilliant build-up play from Moritz Fuerste, but Argentina’s penalty corner expert Peillat rattled in a stunning leveller just four minutes later. Fuchs volleyed Germany back in front in the 32nd minute only for Matias Paredes to tie the scores up on the stroke of half-time.

The South Americans were arguably the better team in the early stages of the second period, but Germany grew in strength as the half progressed and netted a stunning 67th-minute goal when Fuchs touched home a brilliant pass from Christopher Ruehr.

The win was sealed by Christopher Wesley in the final minute, who blasted a powerful backhand shot into the roof of the net via the glove of Argentina keeper Juan Vivaldi.

FINAL STANDINGS

Gold: Germany
Silver: Argentina
Bronze: England
4: South Korea
5: Malaysia
6: Japan
7: Pakistan
8: South Africa

SA Hockey Association media release



England secure World League bronze medal


Nick Catlin in action for England in the third place play off against Korea at the World League Semi Final

England beat Korea 2-1 to take the bronze medal at the World League Semi-Final in Malaysia. England worked hard for the victory, with a strong team performance against an in-form Korea side. The goals came from youngsters Ben Arnold and Harry Martin either side of half time, and England’s defence held strong only allowing Korea to break through once.

England were without two experienced athletes as Mark Gleghorne and Ashley Jackson both missed the game through injury.

Speaking after the game Reading’s Nick Catlin said, “We’re really really happy with the result today. As a group we came out here with the primary objective of qualifying for next year’s World Cup and we achieved that with our win over Japan. We were very disappointed with our performance against Argentina yesterday, but it was great to come back with the win today. We’ve been building this team since April and playing in Malaysia is as tough as it gets so it’s been good experience for some of the new players.”

After conceding three goals early on in yesterday’s game against Argentina, England set out to prove that lessons had been learnt. Crutchley’s men looked assured and back to their composed approach, building play up patiently and waiting for the right opening.

With 13 minutes played Beeston’s Ben Arnold poached the ball from the Korean defence and used his pace to drive across the circle to create space for the strike. The speed and accuracy beat Myung Ho Lee in Korea’s goal to make it 1-0 and give Arnold his second goal of the tournament.

England continued with the same approach for the rest of the half, but they weren’t able to capitalise. Half chances fell to Tom Carson and Barry Middleton, but Korea defended well. Just before half time Korea had a great opportunity to equalise but pressure from Adam Dixon meant Hye Sung Hyun’s attempt went wide.

Korea built momentum in the second half and England spent the majority of the early stages trying to break down their opponents attacks. With 20 minutes left to play Korea won the first penalty corner of the game. England thwarted the initial attempt, but Korea played the ball back into danger and an unmarked Seong Kyu Kim deflected the ball past a helpless Pinner in goal to make it 1-1.

Against the run of play, England won their first penalty corner in the 59th minute. After breaking early Korea lost a man off the back line and England took full advantage with a well worked routine. Richard Smith disguised his pass back to the injector, Nick Catlin, who squared the ball to Martin and with a simple tap in he restored England’s lead.

At 2-1 Korea pushed everyone forward looking for an equaliser, but England defended really well. Pinner made a match winning save in the final two minutes of the game to secure the bronze medal.

Speaking after the game England’s Head Coach Bobby Crutchley said “I think we showed a lot of resilience out there today and I’m very proud of the team and their ability to bounce back from a disappointing performance yesterday. We were under added pressure missing two players and subsequently the team had to dig deep. This tournament has given us a much needed confidence boost ahead of the European Championships next month.”

Watch the England Men’s team in action on home turf from 1 – 4 August as they take on the Netherlands in the NOW: Pensions Nations Cup. Go to englandhockey.co.uk for more information.

ENGLAND 2 (1)
Ben Arnold 13 (FG)
Harry Martin 59 (PC)                                                                

KOREA 1 (0)
Seong Kyu Kim 51 (PC)

England Hockey Board Media release



England get a bronze boost in Malaysia

England defeated South Korea 2-1 to claim bronze at the World League in Malaysia on Sunday.

Ben Arnold opened the scoring in the first half for England before Korea's Kim Seong-kyu levelled the score in the 51st minute.

However, solid defensive work by England and a goal for Harry Martin from a penalty corner eight minutes later sealed the win.

England learned the lessons from yesterday when they conceded three early goals in the game against Argentina and looked much more assured against their Korean opponents, building up play patiently and waiting for the right openings.

Beeston's Arnold poached the ball from the Korean defence and used his pace to drive across the circle to create space for the strike, with its speed and accuracy too good as England took a 1-0 lead in the 13th minute.

Korea built momentum during the second half and managed to convert their first penalty corner attempt after England made an initial block, with unmarked Kim deflecting a follow-up shot into the back of the net.

England then won their first penalty corner against the run of play. Richard Smith disguised his pass back to the injector, Nick Catlin, who squared the ball to Martin, allowing him to restore England's lead and with a simple tap in.

Speaking after the game Reading's Catlin said: "We're really really happy with the result today. As a group we came out here with the primary objective of qualifying for next year's World Cup and we achieved that with our win over Japan.

"We were very disappointed with our performance against Argentina yesterday, but it was great to come back with the win today.

"We've been building this team since April and playing in Malaysia is as tough as it gets so it's been good experience for some of the new players."

The Independent



England take Bronze



England took third place in the FIH World Hockey League Semi-final when they defeated South Korea 2-1 in the third placing play off at the Taman Daya Hockey Stadium.

England had already secured their place in the 2014 World Cup before the match started due to their No 4 ranking in the world.

The match was important for the Koreans, as a third place would have given them an automatic berth. But with the fourth placing g finish they must wait for the Continental championships to finish before knowing if they had secured their berth.

Otherwise the Koreans like Pakistan, Malaysia and India must win the Asia Cup in Ipoh in August to secure their berth.

The English were the aggressors in the first half and they deservedly took the lead in the 12th minute through Ben Arnold.

From then on the South Koreans increased their pace as they searched hard for the equaliser. The English stood firm and walked off at half time with the 1-0 lead.

It was not surprising that the Koreans began to push harder in the second half but England goalkeeper George Pinner was in good form when they broke through.

But in the 51st minute the Koreans finally got the important equaliser.

Kim Seong-kyu who was lurking near the goalpost managed to deflect in the shot which had Pinner well beaten.

As they surged forward the Koreans made a mistake and gave away a penalty corner in the 59th minute. That proved fatal

The English played a variation and the ball was relayed back to the penalty corner pusher Harry Martin who had the easy task of slotting past Lee Myung-ho in goal.

The next ten minutes saw Korea trying their best but time ran out on them.

Official WHL R3, Johor Baru Microsite



Malaysia take Fifth



Malaysia took the fifth spot in the World league Semis when they defeated Japan 4-3 on shoot out after a 1-1 draw in regulation time.

Both the teams were well aware of the fact that not only was fifth place at stake but also a back door entry into the 2014 World Cup was a possible prize.

After some early probing by both teams, Malaysia made inroads on the left as Chua Boon Huat forced a penalty corner in the 10th minute.

And it was Mohd Razie Rahim who stepped up and buried the drag flick into the Japanese goal to give Malaysia a deserved 1-0 lead.

Instead on building on the lead, the Malaysian players started slowing the pace and this allowed Japan to control the midfield.

Japan took advantage of it and forced apenalty corner in the 29th minute from which Shinji Kawauchi turned in a ball as keeper S.Kumar was left in no mans land.

Japan forced their second penalty corner two minutes before halftime but Fitri saari managed to deflect the attempt wide.

Japan were the early aggressors in the second half as the Malaysian defence kept giving the ball away. And in the 49th minute Japan won their third penalty corner.

A poor stop led to a malaysian counter which yielded a penalty corner. But this time Razie was denied by the Japanese first runner.

A sustained pressure of five minutes by Malaysia was wasteda s they failed to find a decent shot at gaol and Japan went on to slow the pace again.

Malaysia forced three penalty corners in the 63rd minute but failed to get a single shot on goal and the match looked set towards a shootout.

The shoot out as it happened:

Faisal Saari (MAS) - Scores

Japan (10) - Scores

Shahrun Nabil (MAS) - Scores

Japan (4) - Scores

Faiz Helmi (MAS) - Miss

Japan (29) - Scores

Firhan Ashaari (MAS) - Scores

Japan (8) 0 - Miss

Fitri Saari (MAS) - Scores

Japan (11) - Miss

Official WHL R3, Johor Baru Microsite



Hope yet for Malaysia

SLIM: Hosts down Japan to finish fifth and now wait for Continental championships to know their fate

By JUGJET SINGH


THE national hockey team were held 1-1, then taken to a shoot-out, before they tamed Japan 4-3 to finish fifth in the World League Semi-finals at Taman Daya Stadium in Johor Baru yesterday.

And the fifth spot could prove to be priceless for the hosts as there is a huge possibility that it might turn into a World Cup ticket after the four Continental championships are over.

"It was by far the worst performance by Malaysia in this tournament, but in the end, the most important thing is that we finished as high as we could after being knocked out it the quarter-finals," said Malaysia's coach Paul Revington.

Revington, who had sent in a quit letter two weeks before the tournament started, did not want to comment on his future just yet.

"No comments. I will need some time to think about that and come back to you guys," said Revington.

Malaysia lived dangerously as they toyed around with the fifth placing before finally subduing the Japanese in the penalty shoot-out.

In the first half, Razie Rahim's penalty corner in the 10th minute saw Malaysia take the lead, but after that, it was a tale of missing sitters.

And Japan grew in confidence as Malaysia kept missing their chances, and nailed the equaliser off a confusing penalty corner set-piece in the 29th minute when Shinji Kawauchi got the last touch.

Malaysia played in patches in the second half and were lucky that Japan were not interested to attack but instead parked the bus and defended for at least 20 minutes and relied only on counter-attacks which never came.

And in the end, the match went into a shoot-out with Malaysia only failing to score one, when Faiz Helmi misjudged, while Japan's Kei Kawakami and Manabu Haatakeyaman missed to give Malaysia a 4-3 win.

In the seventh-eight placing match Pakistan beat South Africa 6-2.

And now coach Akhtar Rasool and his men want to forget the painful episode in Johor Baru and prepare for the Asia Cup in Ipoh.

"We played well in almost all the matches but were unlucky, especially against Malaysia in the fifth-eighth match. We had more opportunities and played much better than Malaysia, but the goals never came," said Akhtar.

And if they miss the boat in the Asia Cup, Pakistan will sit out of the World Cup for the first time since they made their debut in 1971.

RESULTS -- Seventh-Eighth: South Africa 2 Pakistan 6; Fifth-Sixth: Japan 1 Malaysia 1 (Malaysia win shoot-out 4-3); Third-Fourth: South Africa 1 England 2; Final: Argentina 2 Germany 4.

New Straits Times



Pakistan avoid wooden spoon

KARACHI: Pakistan avoided a last-place finish at the Hockey World League (HWL), defeating South Africa 6-2 to finish seventh at the eight-team event in Johor Bahru, Malaysia.   

After getting their campaign off to a fine start and topping their group to qualify for the last-eight, the Greenshirts recorded back-to-back defeats to be reduced to fighting for seventh place against South Africa.

Having defeated the opponents during the group stage, Pakistan resisted South Africa and ended up recording a convincing win.

The Proteas made several attempts but it was Pakistan who got the opener with Mohammad Waqas finding the target through a 22nd-minute penalty-corner.

Leading the first half 1-0, Pakistan returned to the final session aggressively, smashing five more goals to hit the Proteas for six for the second time in the event.

They scored three goals within five minutes (37 to 41) with Mohammad Rizwan Senior, Aamir Shahzad and Haseem Khan doing the damage. Abbas Haider stretched the lead by scoring another in the 53rd minute.

South Africa strived for a fightback, getting a couple of goals from Timothy Drummond and Lloyd Norris-Jones but that was never going to be enough especially with Haseem completing the mauling by scoring yet another goal four minutes before full time.

Criticism continues

Olympians continued to lament Pakistan team’s abysmal performance as it missed a golden opportunity to qualify for the World Cup at the HWL.

“It’s sad to see such a performance against lower-ranked teams,” said former captain Islahuddin Siddiqui. “Pakistan had the best chance in this event as top teams like Australia and the Netherlands were not a part of it.”

The Express Tribune



Pakistan thump South Africa to secure seventh spot


— Photo courtesy: FIH/Frank Uijlenbroek

KARACHI: Pakistan trounced South Africa 6-2 in the 7-8 placement match of the World Hockey League on Sunday in Johor Bahru, Malaysia.

Abdul Haseem Khan scored two while Mohammad Waqas, Mohammad Rizwan Sr, Aamir Shazad and Abbas Haider Bilgrami scored a goal each.

Waqas opened the scoring through a penalty corner in the 22nd minute and Pakistan were leading at half-time. Quick goals from Rizwan, Shazad, Haseem and Bilgrami in the opening minutes of the second half strengthened Pakistan's position.

South Africa fought back and scored two goals through Timothy Drummond and Lloyd Norris-Jones but it was not enough to break Pakistan's momentum, who scored their final goal four minutes before full time through Haseem.

Pakistan were knocked out by Korea in the quarterfinals while hosts Malaysia beat them to fifth place 3-1 on Saturday.

The Greeenshirts now have to win the Asia Cup to qualify for the World Cup.

Dawn



PHF takes the flak from Manzoor Junior for team’s poor showing

Mohammad Yaqoob


LAHORE: Former Pakistan captain Manzoor Junior has slammed the Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF) and the entire management of the Pakistan team for yet another debacle in the World Hockey League, qualifiers for the 2014 World Cup, and demanded of them to resign, by taking full responsibility of the results.

Pakistan, after losing the quarter-final against South Korea 4-3, also tasted a 3-1 defeat at the hands of Malaysia on Saturday in the World League to play the seventh and eighth position match against South Africa on Sunday in Malaysia and has no chance to qualify for the World Cup through this round.

“The same PHF management led by Qasim Zia and Asif Bajwa was at the helm of affairs when Pakistan finished last in the 12-team contest in the 2010 World Cup in India and after four years the situation is same as we will be fighting for the bottom places,” Manzoor remarked while talking to Dawn on Saturday.

“Though I have no hope that anyone will show character by resigning, I would like to suggest to them to show courage to save hockey from further disaster,” he said.

He also urged the government to seriously consider the situation and hand over the PHF to a suitable man.

The ex-Olympian said he had already pointed out that the national team was selected on a pick-and-choose basis by the PHF and the team management.

He said the PHF had damaged the team by picking up the same officials with changing duties. “Hanif Khan as chief selector could not achieve any big success but despite his failures he was appointed as coach. Similarly, Akhtar Rasool has been advising the PHF since day one but has failed to contribute in the team’s success. And later on he was named as head coach, but the performance of the team under his supervision never improved,” Manzoor pointed out.

He said Malaysia played a fine game on Saturday with better planning and kept the Pakistan team at bay.

“I wonder our team played a defensive game against Malaysia and that too when Akhtar Rasool and Hanif Khan are on the coaching panel,” Manzoor further said.

“The Malaysian dominated the ball-possession as well as ball-controlling,” Manzoor maintained.

He said PHF president Qasim Zia and secretary Asif Bajwa had damaged the cause of hockey by unnecessarily involving themselves in the affairs of the Pakistan Olympic Association (POA).

“For the last two years, both Qasim and Asif have been involved in the POA politics and after Qasim lost POA elections on Feb 4, 2012, they have been involved in forming interim committee of the POA and holding the National Games.

Manzoor said though now Pakistan had the chance to qualify for the World Cup by winning the upcoming Asia Cup, India, South Korea and Malaysia would also be contesting the regional event with the same mission which would make the contest for Pakistan tougher.

He said the main target of the PHF was to win the 2014 World Cup which it had set some five years back on the occasion of assuming charge. But now everyone has seen what kind of planning and preparation it has made for achieving the main target,” he concluded.

Dawn



Shahnaz holds PHF responsible for team’s debacle

Mohsan Ali


ISLAMABAD - Olympian Shahnaz Shaikh has come down hard on Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF) and held them responsible for team’s poor showings in almost every major event.

In an interview with The Nation on Saturday, former coach Shahnaz said current PHF management was very fortunate to remain at the helm of affairs despite completing their four-year tenure.

Shahnaz said the PHF can't complain about lack of funds as a reason behind poor showings as the federation had received almost Rs900 million grants from federal and Punjab governments. The PHF never went even close of getting such financial backings in the past and despite that the results of the under current management were humiliating, he added.

He said after every tournament defeat the PHF start to give false statements that their main task was winning the next tournament but they never performed any tournament yet. “Before the departure of for the World Hockey League, management had claimed that they had managed to overcome all the flaws of players and would give desired results. Everyone has now seen the “desired results” given by the team, which can't even make it to the semifinals despite having a relatively easy pool.”

Shahnaz said the behaviour of the players inside the circle whether attacking or defending was totally unprofessional which was the main reason behind poor goal-converting ratio and conceding goals.

Shahnza said the PHF had completely failed to improve the standard of the game and enhancing the pool of players. “A number of players in the current squad should have been retired or shown the door at least two years back. It clearly indicates that the tall claims regarding the PHF ghost academies is a total fraud and unproductive upon which the PHF has wasted a lot of money.”

Shahnaz made an appeal to Prime Minister Mian Nawaz Sharif, who is also the Patron-in-Chief of the PHF to remove incompetent officials from the PHF otherwise it would be even impossible for Pakistan to qualify for the World Cup.

The Nation



Six minutes turn South Africa/Pakistan World League match on its head

JONATHAN COOK


The South Africa men’s hockey team were victims of six minutes of mayhem that transformed the game and dashed their hopes of finishing seventh at the World League tournament in Johor, Malaysia Sunday.

After a very good first half in which they dominated territory and possession, despite trailing 1-0 at the break, SA were hit by field goals from Pakistan’s Muhammad Rizwan Snr, Aamir Shazad and Abdul Haseem Khan between the 37th and 42nd minutes and, metaphorically, barely in the blink of an eye the Africans were four goals behind.

Essentially it was game over as Pakistan were now revitalised, the momentum had well and truly shifted in their favour and the world’s fifth-ranked nation were unlikely to concede four or five goals from that point, SA now chasing the game and taking the attacking risks that go with that parlous position.

The first-half goal came from Muhammad Waqas via the penalty corner route in the 22nd minute - against the run of play in a hesitant Pakistan first half in the face of a confident, attacking performance by SA that wasn’t turned into goals, especially in the first 15 minutes.

Following the three-goal whammy in six minutes after the changeover, Abbas Haider Billgrami made it 5-0 in the 53rd minute with a well-taken backhand before SA had a great spell that realised two fantastic goals inside three minutes.

Both goals were the product of the potential this SA team have if given the same opportunities as the other countries in the world’s top 20 men’s hockey nations.

The first saw a diagonal ball from left to right by Miguel da Graca into the strike zone that was superbly deflected into the goal by a diving Tim Drummond at full stretch. That 62nd minute effort was follow hardly two minutes later (64th) when Clint Panther’s long ball found Drummond, whose pass into the strike zone connected with Lloyd Norris-Jones on the half-volley that gave Butt no chance in goal.

Haseem made it 6-2 four minutes from the end (66th).

World number 12 SA were also playing two men short – key men in captain and playmaker Austin Smith and midfielder Jonty Robinson, both in hospital with Dengue Fever, the mosquito-borne virus.

Smith missed the last three games, played over four days of intense heat and humidity, and Robinson the last two-and-a-half. Given that final placement positions rested on the outcome of each match, it is remarkable that the 14 remaining SA field players were able to put up such a brave fight against teams that had two extra rolling substitutes on each occasion.

It was a fast-paced match with thrills and spills aplenty in each goalmouth and both number one goalkeepers, Imran Butt of Pakistan and South Africa’s Rassie Pieterse, pulled off memorable saves, as did Pieterse’s understudy, Gowan Jones, who played in the last 21 minutes. There were also superb defensive tackles, SA’s Lance Louw just one player who caught the attention.

Vice-captain Rhett Halkett led the side for the third consecutive match and the commitment of the South Africans was again remarkable, two players in particular having stormers, midfielders Drummond and Panther, but every man had moments of significance for the team.

SA have a second chance at qualifying for the 2014 World Cup if they win the Africa Cup in Nairobi, Kenya in September/October.

SA Hockey Association media release



Hard, painful lessons says SA men’s hockey team head coach Charlie Pereira

JONATHAN COOK


South Africa men’s hockey team head coach Charlie Pereira said from Singapore Sunday night that the World League Semi-Final tournament in Johor Bahru, Malaysia over the last nine days had seen hard, painful lessons learned.

An hour before the team flew out from Singapore back to South Africa, Pereira reflected on Sunday’s 6-2 defeat to world number five Pakistan in Johor Bahru, which left world number 12 SA consigned to eighth place.

“It was frustrating as we played so well in the first half and let some great chances go a-begging,” said Pereira. “In these games one has to take the opportunities, as it changes the dynamics of the game. And then to concede just before half-time was not ideal. But worse was to follow in what I described afterwards as madness - to concede three goals in five minutes and be out of the contest after working so hard in the first half is unacceptable.

“Hard lessons, is what I can call this trip - and they are painful.”

The SA head coach said that SA captain Austin Smith and midfielder Jonty Robinson – key players who missed the last three winner-takes-all matches due to contracting Dengue Fever, a mosquito-borne illness – were transferred from Johor Bahru to Kuala Lumpur, the Malaysian capital, Sunday evening.

“The South African doctor is looking after the lads until they are fit enough to fly,” said Pereira. “It’s not an ideal situation. We had hoped that they would be coming home with us.

“Austin and Jonty have been badly missed. Both are quality players and vital for their set-play skills. Two short on the bench for the third game in a row, it took its toll as we wilted in the Johor heat. "

Pereira said he is proud of the fight that the team had in them, to finish off with two goals at the end against Pakistan and show that SA can match most teams for periods in the game.

“The challenge is to match them for longer and longer periods, and that will only be possible if we are able to play 50 Test matches a year and train with the same intensity that the professional teams we play against are training," the coach added.

Pereira said the South African team is due back at OR Tambo International Airport at around 6.30 am (SA time) Monday.

SA Hockey Association media release



SA hockey stars contract dengue fever

By Murray Williams and Sapa



South Africa men's hockey captain Austin Smith is one of the two team members who have contracted dengue fever. Picture: Duif du Toit/Gallo Images

Cape Town – Two top South African hockey players taking part in the World League tournament in Johor, Malaysia were moved to Kuala Lumpur on Sunday for medical treatment, after contracting a dangerous tropical disease.

National men’s hockey team captain Austin Smith and midfielder Jonty Robinson are receiving treatment for dengue fever, a mosquito-borne virus.

Smith and Robinson were both absent from the team that lost 6-2 to Pakistan as South Africa’s hopes of finishing seventh at the World League tournament slipped away.

A source close to the team told the Cape Argus by phone that the pair’s condition was “okay”, but they were being moved to the capital nevertheless.

Wikipedia describes dengue fever, also known as “breakbone fever”, as an infectious tropical disease with symptoms of fever, headache, muscle and joint pains, and a characteristic skin rash similar to measles.

“In a small proportion of cases the disease develops into the life-threatening dengue hemorrhagic fever, resulting in bleeding, low levels of blood platelets and blood plasma leakage, or into dengue shock syndrome, where dangerously low blood pressure occurs,” the site read.

Smith missed the team’s last three games,which were played over four days of intense heat and humidity, and Robinson the last two.

Independent Online



Black Sticks Men confirmed for World Cup


Photo: www.photosport.co.nz

The Black Sticks Men have secured a spot at the 2014 Hockey World Cup in The Hague, Netherlands after England edged Korea in this morning’s bronze medal match at the World League Round Three tournament in Malaysia.

After finishing fourth at the World League Round Three event in Rotterdam, the Black Sticks are now confirmed qualifiers for the World Cup by virtue of being the highest ranked of the two fourth place finishers across both World League Round Three tournaments. The Black Sticks are ranked 6th in the world ahead of Korea who are 8th.

If England had lost, the Kiwis would have needed to beat Australia at the Oceania Cup in Taranaki in October to clinch a spot at the World Cup.

As highest ranked fourth place finisher, the Black Sticks also qualify for the men’s World League Final to be contested in India in January.

Head coach Colin Batch said qualifying for the World Cup as well as the World League Final was a good reward for his improving side.

“It’s certainly well deserved, we showed a lot of development in our preparation to and during World League Round Three. It wasn’t easy but I’m very glad we have qualified,” he said.

“While we have achieved qualification, we know we still have a lot of work to do to get to the level we need, and that’s the challenge for the coaching staff and players.

“The great thing about qualifying for the World League Final is that we can use that tournament as important preparation in the lead up to the World Cup.”

The Black Sticks Men join the Black Sticks Women who have also qualified for the 2014 World Cup, which runs from 31 May – 15 June in The Hague, Netherlands.

Both the Black Sticks Men and Women now have a break from national trainings, returning to their regions of origin to prepare for the Ford National Hockey League which starts on August 10th.

The NHL is compulsory for all Black Sticks and is the key selection event with Colin Batch and Mark Hager naming their 2013/2014 squads following the tournament.

Hockey New Zealand Media release



HWL Semi Finals – Re-live the action!

Full match replays & highlights available on FIH You Tube channel



(Photo: Frank Uijlenbroek)

The Semi Final phase of the Hockey World League may have drawn to an end, but that does not mean that your enjoyment of those events also has to stop. 

The FIH is happy to point you in the direction of our official You Tube Channel, which features highlights from every single match played at the tournaments in Rotterdam, London and Johor Bahru. Full match replays are also available, as well as a number of exclusive videos that take you “behind the scenes” at these special FIH events.

The FIH you Tube Channel also provided free live streaming of every match played during the Semi Final phase, making the Hockey World League accessible to sports fans all around the world. 

Highlights of the four Gold medal matches from the Hockey World League Semi Final competitions can be found below. To see everything that the FIH You Tube channel has to offer, please click here.   

FIH site



Universiade gets underway in Kazan, Russia

Ten men's and four women's teams do battle for students' world title




Today marks the start of the hockey competition in the 27th Summer Universiade in Kazan, Russia. On Day 1, the men's competition kicks off with Korea facing Ukraine, Japan taking on France, Malaysia lining up against Poland and South Africa meeting Italy.

Hockey is making only its second appearance on the programme of the Universiade, with the first dating back more than 20 years: Hockey debuted at the 1991 World University Games in Sheffield.

The hockey competition in Kazan features 14 teams from eleven countries. The ten men's teams compete in two pools, with Pool A featuring the representatives of Russia, South Africa, Malaysia, Poland and Italy, while Pool B sees Germany, Korea, Japan, France and Ukraine battle for semi-final places. In the women's competition, four teams compete in one pool: Russia, Korea, Japan and Belarus.

Pool play for men and women will take place from today until Saturday, 13 July, with the women's placement matches scheduled for Sunday, 14 July, and the men's the following day.

The Universiade is a biennial multisport event, bringing together university students from around the world. The event has enjoyed rapid growth in recent years, and the current edition in Kazan is recordbreaking: more than 13.000 athletes from more than 170 countries participate in 27 different sports.

To follow the action in Kazan, please visit the website of the 27th Summer Universiade in Kazan at http://kazan2013.ru/en.

FIH site



Hockey team captain says its best to play safe

CHANDIGARH: Captain of the Indian hockey team, Sardar Singh, joined hands with the Chandigarh traffic police to sensitize city residents about traffic rules and awareness at Sukhna Lake. Singh, who spent almost one hour with traffic policemen educating commuters and passersby about traffic rules, blamed the rising number of accidents on alcohol and drugs.

Interestingly, Singh happens to be the first hockey player to spread traffic awareness. Earlier, international cricketers like Mahender Singh Dhoni, Adam Gilchrist, Chris Gayle and some celebrities from the film industry participated in traffic awareness programs of the traffic police.

Singh was accompanied by SSP (traffic) Maneesh Chaudhary and DSP (security) Sandeep Sarang. He also distributed traffic related literature among commuters and visitors at Sukhna Lake. The Arjuna award winner appealed to youngsters to face challenges bravely instead of felling prey to drugs.

The Times of India



Assault charge laid after punch-up at West Coast hockey match

By Christine Linnell of the Greymouth Star


A hockey match in Greymouth, New Zealand at the weekend erupted in fisticuffs that left one man with a broken tooth and his alleged assailant under arrest.

The violent punch-up occurred at the Westurf Stadium during a regular senior men's match on Saturday between Greymouth and Cobden.

Police said a 38-year-old Blaketown man allegedly punched a 48-year-old Greymouth man four times in the head, breaking a wisdom tooth and causing minor cuts and bruises.

He was arrested and charged with assault, and will appear in Greymouth District Court on July 12.

Sport Canterbury West Coast manager Jack O'Connor said adult sportsmen should be role models.

"It's disappointing to see this sort of incident happen in the public domain and the sporting field, at a time when we're trying to promote good sideline behaviour."

Sport Canterbury West Coast was trying to focus on the positive side of sport, including rewarding positive sideline behaviour.

Mr O'Connor said hockey was a rough sport but the assault, which he witnessed, was unacceptable.

"With any contact sport there's always confrontation. To see it escalate is disappointing."

West Coast Hockey Association president Peter Henderson agreed the incident was disappointing, and said any disciplinary action would depend on a committee meeting and the results of the court case.

The New Zealand Herald