News for 19 September 2013

All the news for Thursday 19 September 2013


African moment of truth for SA national hockey teams

JONATHAN COOK



Mo Mea, pictured here for SA U21 against Zimbabwe during the Junior World Cup Africa Qualifiers at Randburg last year, will be making his debut for the senior side in Kenya.

South Africa’s national hockey teams know what’s at stake when they go to Nairobi, Kenya for the Africa Cup of Nations tournament from September 26 to October 5.

The winners qualify as Africa’s representatives at the 2014 World Cup in The Hague, Netherlands from May 31 to June 15 next year and it is the SA teams’ last chance to gain entry to the four-yearly showpiece.

The SA men failed to end in the top four placings at the World League event in Malaysia in June/July. A top-four finish would have granted automatic entry to the World Cup.  The Investec South Africa women’s team are in the same boat, having failed to finish in the top four at the Investec World League Semi-Finals tournament in London.

Midfielder Tim Drummond of KZN Raiders has withdrawn because of an Achilles tendon injury while double Olympian defender Andrew Cronje is out due to work commitments. “We will not be replacing them, so we are going with 16 instead of the allowed 18, but will have two players out of seven non-travelling reserves on standby and listed on the team sheet,” said SA men’s head coach Charlie Pereira.

Interviewed on national television stations recently, midfielders Jonty Robinson and Clinton Panther, and goalkeeper Rassie Pieterse made it clear that only first place in Kenya matters. A silver medal will mean nothing in the context of World Cup qualification.

Both Robinson and captain Austin Smith have recovered from Dengue Fever, the mosquito-borne disease that cut short their participation in the World League event in Malaysia in July.

SA women’s coach for this event, Fabian Gregory, said the 18 players selected in his line-up are good to go. SA co-captain Marsha Cox and the world’s leading Test match goalscorer, Pietie Coetzee, are unavailable for this trip. Gregory said the side will be led by Cox’s co-captain, Lenise Marais of KZN Raiders.

The SA men and women won the last of the biannual events in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe in September 2011.

Western Province’s star goalkeeper Jacque le Roux and Northern Blues defender Matt Guise-Brown return. Beijing 2008 Olympian striker Geoff Abbott makes a return to the side after a lengthy sabbatical. The new caps are SA U21 defenders Dylan Swanepoel of Stellenbosch and Mohamed Mea of Durban.

Six players who represented the SA men’s team at the World League in Malaysia have been omitted for various reasons. They are goalkeeper Gowan Jones (KZN Raiders), defenders Francois Pretorius (Northern Blues) and Lance Louw (Southern Gauteng) and strikers Craig Haley (Western Province) and Miguel da Graca (SG).

Six players who represented the Investec South Africa women’s team in London in June have been omitted for various reasons, including Southern Gauteng superstars Coetzee and Cox.

The other players left out are goalkeeper Phume Mbande of Northern Blues, defender Nicolene Terblanche (NB), midfielder Tarryn Bright (Western Province) and striker Dirkie Chamberlain (NB).

World Cup 2010 goalkeeper Hanli Hattingh (WP) is back, while London 2012 Olympians Bernie Coston and Lisa Deetlefs (both Southern Gauteng) return after injury. Christine Roos (SG) and Celia Evans (North West) are also back in the team, while Kaila Flemming of Southern Gauteng makes her debut.

The Africa Cup men’s and women’s tournaments will be played in a one-round league format with the top two teams playing in the respective finals.

Egypt’s men’s side, always SA’s biggest opponents for Africa supremacy, have withdrawn due to political unrest in their country. There will be five men’s teams at Nairobi’s City Park Stadium. They are South Africa, Ghana, Nigeria, Namibia and hosts Kenya.

The six women’s teams are South Africa, Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria, Namibia and Tanzania.

SA TEAMS

SA Men: Rassie Pieterse (Southern Gauteng), Jacque le Roux (Western Province), Rhett Halkett (vice-capt, WP), Matt Guise-Brown (Northern Blues), Jethro Eustice (SG), Dylan Swanepoel (SA U21 and WP), Mohamed Mea (SA U21 and KZN Raiders), Austin Smith (capt, WP),  Jonty Robinson (NB), Clint Panther (SG), Wade Paton (KZNR), Taine Paton (KZNR), Julian Hykes (SG), Geoff Abbott (KZNR), Pierre de Voux (WP), Lloyd Norris-Jones (WP).

Investec SA Women: Sanani Mangisa (SG), Hanli Hattingh (WP), Lenise Marais (capt, KZNR), Marcelle Keet (Border), Lisa Deetlefs (SG), Illse Davids (WP), Celia Evans (North West), Shelley Russell (WP), Kaila Flemming (SG), Quanita Bobbs (WP), Sulette Damons (NW), Christine Roos (NB), Jade Mayne (WP), Bernie Coston (SG), Tanya Britz (Free State), Lilian du Plessis (NB), Izelle Lategan (FS), Kelly Madsen (KZNR).

SA FIXTURES
(SA time)

Women

Thurs, Sept 26: SA vs Tanzania (9am)
Sat, Sept 28: SA vs Namibia (9am)
Sun, Sept 29: SA vs Kenya (1pm)
Tues, Oct 1: SA vs Ghana (1pm)
Wed, Oct 2: SA vs Nigeria (9am)
Sat, Oct 5: FINAL (12pm)

Men
Sat, Sept 28: SA vs Namibia (1pm)
Sun, Sept 29: SA vs Kenya (3pm)
Tues, Oct 1: SA vs Ghana (1pm)
Wed, Oct 2: SA vs Nigeria (11am)
Sat, Oct 5: FINAL (2.30pm)

Go to www.sahockey.co.za for the full fixture list.

SA Hockey Association media release



2013/14 National Squads announced for huge year



Pictured: Joseph Bartholomew (www.photosport.co.nz)

Black Sticks men’s and women’s head coaches Colin Batch and Mark Hager have named their 2013/14 National Squads ahead of an enormous year of international hockey.

Two debutants have been named, along with the return of several players in the National Squads, from which Black Sticks teams will be selected for events such as the World League Final, Hockey World Cup and Commonwealth Games.

In the men’s squad, 25-year-old striker Simon Child and veteran defender Brad Shaw both return after breaks from Black Sticks duties earlier this year.

North Harbour defender Joseph Bartholomew (24) has been promoted from the Development Squad following his terrific form at the recent Ford National Hockey League. Bartholomew has been in the National Squad in the past, and has 16 international caps.

“Joe played really well for North Harbour throughout the NHL. One of the features of his game is his tackling and defensive organisation, which is something we want to improve as a team. His attacking skills are also very good, especially on penalty corners where he can drag flick both sides while maintaining accuracy,” said Black Sticks men’s coach Colin Batch.

“It’s also pleasing to have players like Simon Child, Nick Wilson and Steve Edwards back in the squad. They haven’t played for some time and have all had injuries recently so they are certainly raring to get back into international competition.

“We have a very busy year in 2014 and have already started training. The first test for us comes at the Oceania Cup next month so we are all looking forward to making another step forward as a team.”

The women’s squad includes two debutants in Canterbury striker Sophie Cocks (19) and Auckland defender Elizabeth Thompson (18), while Rhiannon Dennison has earned reselection.

Coach Mark Hager said the time was right to blood some exciting young players going into a heavy schedule next year.

“Part of the picture is that we are developing this squad toward the 2016 Rio Olympic Games, but we also expect to perform well over the next 12 months and grow as a unit,” he said.

“Rhiannon had a year away from the programme in 2012 but has played really well at the Under 21 Nationals and the Junior World Cup. She was influential during the NHL for North Harbour and is a very versatile player, being able to play anywhere from the backfield to up front.

“Liz is a strong player in the back-line. She’s very quick, mobile and an all-round athlete, which is what we really like about her. Sophie is an exciting young talent who has speed and the ability to break lines and score goals which is exactly what we need.”

Stacey Michelsen and Katie Glynn have been named following major knee injuries, with Stacey expected to return in February from a torn cartilage and Katie back from a torn ACL in April.

The national selectors, in conjunction with the coaching staff, have extended the squad to 26 players to help cover those players recovering from injuries.

In 2014 the Black Sticks Men and Women will compete at the World Cup, Commonwealth Games and World League Finals, along with other tournaments both in New Zealand and around the world.

 

2013/14 Black Sticks Men’s Squad

Shirt #

Player Name

Ford NHL Team

Position

Age

Caps

3

Joseph Bartholomew

North Harbour

Defender

24

16

2

Cory Bennett

North Harbour

Defender

22

18

18

Phil Burrows

Capital

Midfielder

33

303

13

Marcus Child

Auckland

Midfielder

22

40

6

Simon Child

Auckland

Striker

25

179

1

James Coughlan

North Harbour

Striker

23

20

8

Dean Couzins

Auckland

Defender

32

286

31

Steve Edwards

North Harbour

Midfielder

27

155

4

Nick Haig

Canterbury

Defender

26

119

5

Andy Hayward

Midlands

Defender

28

158

9

Blair Hilton

Capital

Striker

24

99

29

Hugo Inglis

Southern

Striker

22

107

27

Stephen Jenness

Capital

Striker

23

87

20

Devon Manchester

Auckland

Goalkeeper

23

15

25

Shea McAleese

Central

Midfielder

29

181

16

Hamish McGregor

Southern

Goalkeeper

25

19

30

George Muir

North Harbour

Midfielder

19

11

23

Shay Neal

Northland

Striker

23

43

24

Arun Panchia

Auckland

Midfielder

24

110

14

Jared Panchia

Auckland

Striker

19

18

21

Kane Russell

Southern

Defender

21

18

19

Alex Shaw

Capital

Defender

23

27

12

Bradley Shaw

Canterbury

Defender

30

150

22

Blair Tarrant

Southern

Defender

23

81

32

Nick Wilson

Central

Striker

23

124

2013/14 National Development Men’s Squad

Shirt #

Player Name

Ford NHL Team

Position

Age

Caps

-

George Enersen

Canterbury

Goalkeeper

22

-

-

Richard Joyce

North Harbour

Goalkeeper

21

-

-

Dane Lett

Capital

Midfielder

23

-

28

Richard Petherick

Midlands

Defender

27

98

7

Nick Ross

Southern

Midfielder

23

13

11

Jacob Smith

Capital

Striker

21

26


2013/14 Black Sticks Women’s Squad

Shirt #

Player Name

Ford NHL Team

Position

Age

Caps

18

Bridget BLACKWOOD

Canterbury

Defender/Midfielder

22

36

13

Sam CHARLTON

Midlands

Defender/Midfielder

21

61

 

Sophie COCKS

Canterbury

Striker/Midfielder

19

-

14

Michaela CURTIS

Central

Striker

19

9

19

Rhiannon DENNISON

North Harbour

Defender

20

14

22

Gemma FLYNN

Midlands

Midfielder/Striker

23

141

3

Krystal FORGESSON

Auckland

Striker/Midfielder

30

183

25

Sian FREMAUX

Canterbury

Midfielder/Striker

21

21

10

Amelia GIBSON

Canterbury

Goalkeeper

22

18

5

Katie GLYNN

Auckland

Striker

24

118

26

Pippa HAYWARD

Canterbury

Defender/Midfielder

23

24

11

Danielle JONES

Auckland

Defender

22

13

24

Rose KEDDELL

Midland

Defender/Midfielder

19

23

15

Julia KING

Auckland

Midfielder/Striker

20

48

4

Olivia MERRY

Canterbury

Striker

21

15

31

Stacey MICHELSEN

Northland

Midfielder/Defender

22

127

2

Emily NAYLOR

Central

Midfielder/Defender

27

222

 

Brooke NEAL

Midlands

Defender

21

-

32

Anita PUNT

Capital

Midfielder

25

128

23

Cassandra REID

Canterbury

Midfielder/Striker

18

19

7

Aniwaka ROBERTS

Capital

Defender/Midfielder

24

19

30

Bianca RUSSELL

North Harbour

Goalkeeper

35

59

8

Sally RUTHERFORD

Midlands

Goalkeeper

32

41

1

Kayla SHARLAND

Central

Midfielder

27

188

 

Liz THOMPSON

Auckland

Defender

19

-

6

Petrea WEBSTER

North Harbour

Striker/Midfielder

25

34

2013/14 National Development Women’s Squad

Shirt #

Player Name

Ford NHL Team

Position

Age

Caps

21

Georgia BARNETT

Central

Goal Keeper

19

1

 

Erin GOAD

North Harbour

Striker/Midfielder

20

-

28

Charlotte HARRISON

Northland

Striker

24

183

 

Kathryn HENRY

North Harbour

Defender

22

-

 

Belinda SMITH

Auckland

Defender

22

-

 

Jordan GRANT

Canterbury

Midfielder/Striker

22

-

 

Katarina O’CALLAGHAN

Capital

Striker

22

-

29

Jenny STOREY

Canterbury

Defender

21

6

 

Danielle SUTHERLAND

Auckland

Defender/Midfielder

18

-


Hockey New Zealand Media release



Experienced Harrison ditched by Black Sticks

DAVID LONG


One of New Zealand's most recognisable hockey players, Charlotte Harrison, has been axed from the women's Black Sticks squad for the upcoming international season.

The 24-year-old striker, who has played 183 times for her country, has been demoted to the development squad, despite being one of the most experienced players in the country.

The men's and women's Black Stick coaches have today named their squads for 2013/14, with Harrison being a noticeable absentee.

Her sister, Samantha, suffered a similar demotion last year and this time isn't in the development squad.

The women's squad includes two debutantes in Canterbury striker Sophie Cocks, 19, and Auckland defender Elizabeth Thompson, 18, while Rhiannon Dennison has earned reselection.

Coach Mark Hager said the time was right to blood some exciting young players going into a heavy schedule next year.

"Part of the picture is that we are developing this squad toward the 2016 Rio Olympic Games, but we also expect to perform well over the next 12 months and grow as a unit," he said.

"Rhiannon had a year away from the programme in 2012 but has played really well at the under-21 nationals and the Junior World Cup.

"She was influential during the NHL for North Harbour and is a very versatile player, being able to play anywhere from the backfield to up front.

"Liz is a strong player in the backline. She's very quick, mobile and an all-round athlete, which is what we really like about her. Sophie is an exciting young talent who has speed and the ability to break lines and score goals which is exactly what we need."

Stacey Michelsen and Katie Glynn have been named after major knee injuries, with Michelsen expected to return in February from a torn cartilage and Glynn back from a torn ACL in April.

The national selectors, in conjunction with the coaching staff, have extended the squad to 26 players to help cover those players recovering from injuries, yet still couldn't find a place for Harrison.

In 2014 the Black Sticks men and women will compete at the World Cup, Commonwealth Games and World League Finals, along with other tournaments in New Zealand and around the world.

Black Sticks men's head coach Colin Batch has recalled 25-year-old striker Simon Child and veteran defender Brad Shaw after breaks from Black Sticks duties this year.

North Harbour defender Joseph Bartholomew, 24, has been promoted from the development squad after his terrific form at the recent National Hockey League. Bartholomew has been in the national squad in the past, and has 16 international caps.

"Joe played really well for North Harbour throughout the NHL," Batch said.

"One of the features of his game is his tackling and defensive organisation, which is something we want to improve as a team.

"His attacking skills are also very good, especially on penalty corners where he can drag flick both sides while maintaining accuracy.

"It's also pleasing to have players like Simon Child, Nick Wilson and Steve Edwards back in the squad. They haven't played for some time and have all had injuries recently so they are certainly raring to get back into international competition.

"We have a very busy year in 2014 and have already started training. The first test for us comes at the Oceania Cup next month so we are all looking forward to making another step forward as a team."

Stuff



Two debutants for Black Sticks

Two debutants have been named in the women's Black Sticks national squad to prepare for a busy year of hockey.

Canterbury striker Sophie Cocks and Auckland defender Elizabeth Thompson have won selection in a squad of 26, aimed to carry through to the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow next July and August.

Two injured senior players, Stacey Michelsen and Katie Glynn are included, although neither will have recovered from serious knee injuries in time for the Oceania Cup in Taranaki at the end of October, or the World League finals in Argentina in December.

For the first time in a while neither of the Harrison sisters, Charlotte or Sam, are included.

Sam Harrison has opted to make herself unavailable and is playing in Belgium, while Charlotte has been omitted, but remains in the development group.

North Harbour defender Joseph Bartholomew has caught men's coach Colin Batch's eye after a strong national tournament and has been promoted from the development squad back into the senior group.

"One of the features of his games is his tackling and defensive organisation which is something we want to improve as a team," Batch said.

The men's squad of 25 has been strengthened by the return of experienced players Simon Child, Steve Edwards and Nick Wilson from the group which matched the women in finishing fourth at the World League three tournament in the Netherlands this year.

New Zealand hockey squads

Men


Goalkeepers: Hamish McGregor (Southern), Devon Manchester (Auckland)

Defenders: Cory Bennett, Joseph Bartholomew (North Harbour), Dean Couzins (Auckland), Nick Haig, Bradley Shaw (Canterbury), Andy Hayward (Midlands), Blair Tarrant, Kane Russell (Southern), Alex Shaw (Capital).

Midfielders: Phil Burrows (Capital), Arun Panchia, Marcus Child (Auckland), Shea McAleese (Central), George Muir, Steve Edwards (North Harbour).

Strikers: Simon Child, Jared Panchia (Auckland), James Coughlan (North Harbour), Nick Wilson (Central), Hugo Inglis (Southern), Shay Neal (Northland), Stephen Jenness, Blair Hilton (Capital).

Women

Goalkeepers: Amelia Gibson (Canterbury), Bianca Russell (North Harbour), Sally Rutherford (Midlands).

Defenders/midfielders: Bridget Blackwood, Pippa Hayward (Canterbury), Brooke Neal (Midlands), Rhiannon Dennison (North Harbour), Liz Thompson, Danielle Jones (Auckland), Sam Charlton, Rose Keddell (Midlands), Aniwaka Roberts (Capital), Emily Naylor (Central).

Midfielders/strikers: Michaela Curtis, Kayla Sharland (Central), Gemma Flynn (Midlands), Cass Reid, Sophie Cocks, Olivia Merry, Sian Fremeaux (Canterbury), Petrea Webster (North Harbour), Anita Punt (Capital), Katie Glynn , Krystal Forgesson, Julia King (Auckland), Stacey Michelsen (Northland).

Otago Daily Times



Manzoor sets sights on Sultan of Johor Cup title

Pakistan’s junior hockey team head coach Manzoor-ul-Hasan Senior admitted  that despite having no role in team selection, he was confident of a good performance by the players in the Sultan of Johor Cup commencing this Sunday.

Manzoor, appointed head coach on Monday following the elevation of Rana Mujahid to the post of Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF) secretary, left for Johor Bahru on Thursday with the team for the annual event which will run from Sept 22 to 29.

“I played no role in team selection but I’d like to trust the selection of Rana Mujahid’s management,” he said. “I saw the boys in action on Monday and they are eager to perform well in the tournament.

“There are six national team players in the squad while the other members of the team have been playing for the last three years so I think that they have the required ability for international competitions.”

The new coach said that the tournament would see the colts facing top teams like Asian junior champions Malaysia, last year’s runners-up India, Australia, England and Argentina.

“With the help of [coaches] Danish Kaleem and Anjum Saeed, I’ve chalked out the strategy to win against those teams,” he said. “I’m going to Malaysia eyeing the gold medal because finishing on the podium is just not enough.”

Manzoor added that the tournament will provide the youngsters with a good opportunity to show their mettle to revive hopes for the sport’s future in the country.

Pakistan failed to qualify for the 2014 FIH World Cup while the team was denied entry for the Commonwealth Games scheduled to be held in Glasgow next year.

“A number of players in the senior team are now on the verge of retiring,” he said. “These players are our hope for the future as now our targets should be the 2016 Rio Olympics and the 2018 FIH World Cup.”

Official Sultan of Johor Cup site



Indian juniors raring to go

By AFTAR SINGH



Australia's Robert Hammond (left) and India's Manpreet Singh tussling for the ball during the 22nd Sultan Azlan Shah Cup in Ipoh in March. Manpreet will captain the Indian juniors in the Sultan of Johor Cup.

KUALA LUMPUR: The Indian juniors will be powered by four national players for the Sultan of Johor Cup, which begins on Sunday at the Taman Daya Stadium in Johor Baru.

They are midfielder and skipper Manpreet Singh, midfielder Kothajit Singh, defender and penalty corner specialist Amit Rohidas and striker Mandeep Singh.

India, however, have rested four other national player, who featured in the Asia Cup in Ipoh last month – Malak Singh, S.K. Uthappa, Gurmail Singh and Ramandeep Singh.

The Indian juniors have not played any competitive matches since their playing tour to Europe in early June.

They arrive here Thursday from New Delhi and are raring to go, glad for the chance to play competitive hockey in the Sultan of Johor Cup.

Chief coach Gregg Clark said it would give him an accurate idea of what to expect ahead of the Junior World Cup to be held in New Delhi from Dec 6-15.

Since the playing tour to Europe, the Indian juniors have been training only in camp under the watchful eyes of Clark and his assistant Baljit Singh Saini.

But Clark said the six-nation tournament in Johor Baru, featuring top teams like South Korea, Pakistan, England, Argentina and host Malaysia, will provide an “indication” of the strength of the teams ahead of the all-important Junior World Cup.

“It’s nice to finally go for a tournament. We have been in the training camp for a couple of months now and I’m happy with the way things have gone there,” said the South African.

“But obviously at this point we would like to have more competitive matches as part of our preparations (for Junior World Cup). It will give us an accurate indication of where we are from the performance level.

“We haven’t played since the beginning of June after the tour of Europe. So every match is extremely important for us now because you can play as much as you like on the training ground, but what matters is playing against international oppositions.”

India will play a friendly against Malaysia Friday before opening their campaign against England on Sunday.

The squad

Goalkeepers: Harjot Singh, Sushant Tirkey.

Defenders: Amit Rohidas, Jarmanpreet Singh, Kothajit Singh, Surender Kumar, Sukhmanjit Singh, Pardeep Mor

Midfielders: Manpreet Singh (capt), Prabhdeep Singh, Harjit Singh, Satbir Singh, Imran Khan.

Forwards: Mandeep Singh, Amon Mirash Tirkey, Mohammad Amir Khan, Talwinder Singh, Affan Yousef (vice-capt).

The Star of Malaysia



Bhutta terms Johor Hockey Tournament a tough event

Lahore - Pakistan national junior hockey team captain Umar Bhutta Wednesday termed the third Sultan of Johor Hockey Tournament a tough event and said other teams had edge of having senior players in their squads.

Talking to the reporters on the eve of the departure of the team, the junior team captain said: “It is going to be a tough event for us as the other participating teams including Argentina, England, India, South Korea and hosts Malaysia will be going into the field with their senior players in their respective sides which will put extra pressure on us.”

Bhutta said the team was fully prepared to take on the challenge in a decent manner keeping in mind the might of their respective opponents. “We know that every participating team is well prepared and that is why we will be playing every match with precision and full force to get the desired results,” he said.

“Keeping in view our performance during the tour of Europe, I can say we are better prepared and are in a position to counter every opposition, irrespective of their superior standing in hockey world,” he added.

Bhutta said the players took the training camp very seriously and put in their best efforts to overcome their shortcomings. “During the training camp, we focused on improving attacking skills, being up the defence, penalty corner drills and enhancement of physical fitness,” he said and added: “The individual performance report of players shows that there is a visible improvement and its real test will be evaluated during the tournament.”

“The participation in the Johor Hockey Tournament will surely help us to prepare well for the next year’s World Cup. It will also help us in replacing players on some specialized positions besides judging the individual talent of players,” he said.

Bhutta welcomed the appointment of new coach Manzoorul Hasan and said he was confident that the former hockey Olympian would help in lifting the performance of the team with his expertise. “Manzoor is a respected and talented player of his time and under his able guidance, we can improve further,” he said.

To a query, he said: “The event will be played at green plastic surface while we have their training at blue synthetic turf. I think it is not going to be big problem for us and we will easily adjust with the colour of playing surface.”

The Nation



IOCL goes through, carries IOB with it

S. Thyagarajan



SEALING THE ISSUE: With Army XI fighting hard despite being down for the count, Prabhjot Singh (right) produced IOCL's sixth goal that effectively snuffed out what was a spirited challenge. Photo: M. Vedhan

IOCL advanced to the semifinals of the MCC-Murugappa Gold Cup hockey tournament at the expense of Army XI with a thrilling 6-3 win on Wednesday. That victory also opened up the gateway for Indian Overseas Bank to make the grade from Pool A.

Air India beat Punjab National Bank 2-1, and Indian Bank scored its first points with a last-gasp 7-6 win over SAIL in Pool B.

IOCL surged ahead with a perfect penalty corner by Raghunath within five minutes of start. Army responded by stepping up the attack. Chaman Aind and Binoy Bhengra struck to give Army a 2-1 lead.

IOCL retaliated with two spectacular goals by Deepak Thakur — the first through a gentle deflection off a free hit, and the other diving forward to connect a long pass from Didar Singh.

The goal by Raghunath from a penalty corner shortly after the break, and those by Roshan Minz and Prabhjot Singh, effectively ended the contest.

Still, Army fought gallantly right into the final quarter exerting relentless pressure but missing a few chances.

IOCL completed its matches with a tally of 12 points (all four victories), and was followed by IOB with nine points in the Pool. Army had to be satisfied with six points.

Despite going up 2-0 in the first half, Air India looked desultory for the major part of the contest. That was in sharp contrast to PNB’s sallies, presided over by Ajitesh, who scored his side’s only goal four minutes from time.

All prompting by Vikram Pillay and Arjun Halappa failed to inspire the Air India attack. What sustained the team was the early goal by Shivendra and then another by Somanna Pradhan late in the first half.

With only six points from three matches, Air India will be hard-pressed to make it to the last four. PNB cannot be written off at this juncture. It has nine points from three victories, and a better goal-aggregate and difference, should they prove decisive.

Indian Bank’s performance in beating SAIL came too late to be of any value apart from minimising the humiliation it suffered in the competition. As in the earlier matches, it was former international V. Raja who shone, netting four goals.

The credit for scoring the match-winner went to Charles, who shot home 55 seconds from the hooter.

Both the teams finished with three points each.

The results: Pool A: IOCL 6 (Raghunath 2, Deepak Thakur 2, Roshan Minz, Prabhjot Singh) bt Army XI 3 ( Chaman Aind 2, Binoy Bhengra).

Pool B: Indian Bank 7 (V. Raja 4, Philip Martin, Umesh, E. Charles) bt SAIL 6 (Rajini Kandulna, Sunil Toppo, David Dung Dung, David Kullu 3).

Air India 2 (Shivendra Singh, Somanna Pradhan) bt PNB 1 (Ajitesh).

The Hindu



Aussie Walsh to take over as India coach?

Harpreet Kaur Lamba


Australian Terry Walsh is expected to take over as men’s team coach, with Hockey India’s high performance and development committee and the Sports Authority of India meeting in New Delhi this week.

High performance manager Roelant Oltmans of Holland has been on the lookout for an overseas coach, since the sacking of Australian Michael Nobbs two months ago.

Confirmed a committee member, "We have zeroed in on one name and the recommendation has been sent to the Sports Authority of India.

"Terry Walsh is a renowned name in world hockey and his credentials speak for themselves. He is a cut above the rest."

There were five applications in all, it is learnt, three from Australia and two from Holland. "The coach will be given a contract till the Rio Olympics. India have to begin preparations for the World Cup and a four-year programme is the need of the hour," the official said.

Double Olympian Walsh was a member of the Australian 1976 silver medallist team, and later coached the Kookaburras, when they took a bronze at the 2000 Sydney Olympics. Later, he got involved with Holland, guiding the team to a silver at the 2004 Athens Games.

Oltmans filled in as chief coach for the recent Asia Cup tournament, helping India qualify for the showcase event next year. But given that India head into a crucial year - with the Asian Games and the Commonwealth Games, besides the World Cup scheduled for 2014 - the Dutchman emphasised on the need to hire a sharp head at the top.

"That was my immediate priority (to look for a coach) after we finished our Asia Cup assignment in Ipoh, Malaysia. It was clear that I could not carry on in two capacities, as a high performance director and a coach, and we have been discussing a few candidates," said Oltmans.

"I will reach India soon to finalise the details."

The committee has also decided to appoint two scientific advisors - one each for the senior and junior squads - and the announcements are expected soon.

The Asian Age



Have to improve our standard: Arjun Halappa

Krishna Kanta Chakraborty


CHENNAI: Arjun Halappa did not think twice before taking up the national selector's job offered by Hockey India secretary Narinder Batra in June.

The former India midfielder thought his association with Air India, who he continues to play for, and his previous experience with the national team will help him judge the players' performances better . Picking the squad for the Asia Cup was Halappa's first assignment as part of the nine-member selection panel.

According to Halappa, the Indian players shouldn't get carried away with the recent success as world-class teams like Germany, Australia, Korea, Holland, New Zealand and England await them in next year's World Cup.

"I was surprised at the euphoria after India qualified for the London Olympics. It shows that the common people didn't expect India, who ruled hockey for decades , to make it to the Games. We have to improve our standard. I know we don't have infrastructure like Holland or Germany but we can do well if we utilize the existing facilities. We need to channelize talent properly," he said.

The Times of India



Urgent steps need to stop hockey slide: Samiullah

KARACHI: Former Olympic star forward Samiullah Khan has called for quick intervention to save hockey from more embarrassment.

“Our hockey is passing through the toughest phase of its history and if urgent steps are not taken now, Pakistan may also be out of the Asian Games pretty soon,” he said in an interview on Wednesday.

“It is so sad and embarrassing to know that we would not be taking part in the Commonwealth Games after failing to qualify for next year’s World Cup,” he said.

“This is a double blow for our hockey and the main reason for this are the wranglings and dirty politics in Pakistan sports,” he lamented.

Samiullah regretted how the Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF), despite receiving huge grants from the government, had destroyed the game once ruled by Pakistan.

“We were such a force in world hockey, the pioneers of the World Cup and the Champions Trophy. But where do we stand now?” he questioned.

Samiullah, who was known as the “Flying Horse” for his incredible speed and agility in the game, demanded immediate resignation by the whole PHF set-up.

“The PHF officials must accept responsibility for the hockey debacles and should quit their posts. An interim set-up or ad-hoc should be imposed to put the game back on track,” he advised.

Dawn



No. 3 Connecticut takes three-goal victory against No. 7 Massachusetts


Roisin Upton scored her third goal of the season on Wednesday for No. 3 Connecticut. Connecticut Athletics

STORRS, Conn. – Four different Huskies scored and sophomore midfielder Sophie Bowden posted a three-point night to lead No. 3 Connecticut to a 4-1 victory against No. 7 UMass. With the win, UConn remains perfect on the season at 6-0 while the Minutewomen slip to 6-2.

With the win, the Huskies improved to 33-13-3 all-time against UMass and have won 13 of the past 14 contests between the two squads.

Junior forward Anne Jeute got the scoring started for the Huskies with an unassisted goal 10:55 into the game.  Jeute corralled the ball in the middle of the UMass circle and struck a back handed shot low and just inside the far post to give UConn a lead it would not relinquish. The goal was Jeute’s fourth goal in five games this season.

Sophomore defender Roisin Upton gave the Huskies some insurance 22-minutes later when she scored off a penalty corner, less than three-minutes before halftime. Upton’s third goal came thanks to assists from freshman Olivia Bolles and junior Chrissy Davidson.

The Minutewomen cut the UConn lead in half when Brooke Sabia scored off of a penalty corner strike from the top of the circle, ending a 192:43 scoring drought for Husky opponents.

However, Mckenzie Townsend’s first goal of the year gave UConn some breathing room and Bowden’s second goal of the season at the 66:06 mark put the game away.

NCAA



Irish Under 18 Boys & Girls Coaching & Management Vacancies

Applications are invited for the positions of:

Coach
Assistant Coach
Manager

to work with our U18 National Boys & Girls Squads

We are looking for people with:

Experience of working with international or provincial teams and players.
Ambition and commitment to the progression of Irish Hockey
Interested in developing a coaching or management career at International level
People who can work as part of a team with a view to developing young athletes for future consideration at International level.

All applicants are required to provide the following:

Evidence of completion of a Code of Ethics qualification (or willingness to complete one)
2 reference forms (will be sent on receipt of application)
Complete a self-declaration form (will be sent on receipt of application)
Garda or PSNI Vetting (for successful candidates only)

Please send a relevant CV including a covering letter outlining why you wish to be involved with Irish Hockey and what assets you feel you can bring to our junior programs to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or by post to:

Irish Hockey Association, Newstead Building, UCD, Belfield, Dublin 4.

Closing Date 5pm on Wednesday October 2nd 2013

Irish Hockey Association media release