News for 28 November 2013

All the news for Thursday 28 November 2013


'Roos complete prep games

Hockeyroos make it three from three in warm-up fixtures


Goals from Emily Smith (2), Georgie Parker and Madonna Blyth helped the Hockeyroos to a 4-0 win over Korea in their final practice match ahead of the World League Finals, which begin this weekend.

In stifling heat in Tucuman, the match was played as three periods of 20 minutes as the Hockeyroos completed a solid week of preparation following wins over Argentina and England.

After sitting out those earlier matches, Teneal Attard returned to the Hockeyroos line up against Korea following a spell out through injury. The experienced midfielder has been recovering from a hamstring injury sustained in Queensland's first match at this year's Australia Hockey League. 

There now follows three days of recovery and light training for Adam Commens’ team ahead of Sunday morning’s opening Pool B clash with hosts and Olympic silver medallists Argentina.

The Hockeyroos get their World League Finals campaign underway in a rematch against Argentina on Sunday morning (11:00am AEDT / 8:00am AWST). That match will be shown live on the International Hockey Federation’s YouTube channel and on delay on ABC 1 in Australia.  

HOCKEYROOS 4 – KOREA 0
Thursday, 28 November
Uncapped warm-up fixture

Hockey Australia media release



Indians confident of good show in junior World Cup


Members of Indian Junior Men's Hockey team display their jersey during a press conference for the Junior Men's Hockey World Cup in New Delhi on Wednesday.

The countdown for the junior World Cup, to be held here from December 6 to 15, started with Hockey India announcing an unchanged squad which had taken part in the recently concluded Asian Champions Trophy and the England team arriving here on Wednesday.

For the host, the build-up had been a long-winding and meticulous affair with a battery of coaches, including chief coach Gregg Clark, taking care of every aspect of the preparation.

The team finishing fifth in the Asian Champions Trophy in Japan was not much of an issue as the trip was supposed to give exposure to the under-21 boys.

“In Japan, we had some weaknesses. But we improved to make those our strong points. We are learning about ourselves,” said Clark, on the occasion of the announcement of the side at a function here.

Midfielder Manpreet Singh will lead the side, while deep defender Amit Rohidas will function as his deputy. Penalty corner expert Gurjinder Singh has shed several kilos to become leaner and vows to exhibit better skills in the event.

Taking advice


“Sandeep Singh takes out time to visit our camp every week and shares his knowledge with us.

“I have trained as per his advice on how to look for space and create angles (while shooting from short corners). In Japan, I had scored three goals out of four attempts and I feel confident,” said Gurjinder.

Penalty corner defence has been another area of concern and goalkeeping coach Dave Staniforth, who specialises in this subject, has contributed a lot. “I have worked on the players’ mindset. It is important to keep the guys stable.”

The South African was satisfied with the progress of the goalkeepers too.

Following his sensational debut in the Asia Cup, forward Ramandeep Singh, who commanded a whopping $81,000 in the Hockey India League (HIL) auction, has kept his feet on the ground. “It (the success) is a big thing for me, but I am not taking pressure. I will keep it simple.”

Manpreet assured that the side would not buckle under the pressure of expectations. “There will be pressure of playing in front of the home crowd. But some of us recently played in Malaysia (where a lot of Indians backed us) and remained unaffected. I have told them to forget about the crowd and concentrate on their job,” said Manpreet.

According to coach Baljit Singh Saini, this time the preparation had been well-planned. “Everything has been planned so meticulously and there are coaches to look after every aspect of the game. The team is all set for the competition.”

India, placed in Pool ‘A’, will meet the Netherlands in its first match at the National Stadium here on the opening day of the event.

The squad: Goalkeepers: Sushant Tirkey and Harjot Singh; Defenders: Gurjinder Singh, Amit Rohidas (vice-captain), Surender Kumar, Sukhmanjit Singh, Pardeep Mor, Kothajit Singh; Midfielders: Manpreet Singh (captain), Satbir Singh, Harjit Singh, Imran Khan, Prabhdeep Singh; Forwards: Malak Singh, Mandeep Singh, Talwinder Singh, Akashdeep Singh, Ramandeep Singh.

Standbys: Jagdeep Dayal (goalkeeper), Lalit Upadhyay and Gurmail Singh (midfielders) and Affan Yousuf (forward).

Chief coach: Gregg Clark; Coaches: Baljit Singh Saini and B.J. Kariappa; Goalkeeping coach: Dave Staniforth.

The Hindu



HI announces junior WC squad; captain says ready for challenge

NEW DELHI: Manpreet Singh, who was today appointed the captain of the Indian team for the upcoming FIH junior hockey World Cup, said they are putting all their energy and focus on tackling a tough Holland side in their opening match.

Hockey India announced an 18-member squad for the prestigious tournament, scheduled to be held from December 6-15 here at Major Dhyanchand National stadium.

All the players, who have been picked, had played in the Asian Champions Trophy in Japan, where they finished fifth. The only change is, defender Amit Rohidas has replaced Kotahjit Singh as the vice captain of the team.

"We are well prepared and the focus is on the match against Holland. We are practicing keeping in mind the challenge that will be posed by Holland. We are putting a lot of emphasis on penalty corner conversion and playing attacking game. We will get good results," Manpreet said after Hockey India (HI) distributed team jerseys to all 18 players.

Manpreet, who is the most experienced player in the side with 85 international matches under his belt, said their approach will be to take one match at a time.

"We will do well, but I don't make any tall promises. We will go step by step. The immediate target is to do well against Holland. I have learnt a lot of things playing with the senior team and will try to apply those things," he said, adding that Germany, Australia and Argentina will pose a big challenge.

Apart from India and Holland, Pool C also features Korea and Canada.

The Times of India



Manpreet to lead team at World Cup

NEW DELHI: Talented midfielder Manpreet Singh, a veteran of 85 international matches, was on Wednesday named the captain as India picked an 18-member squad for the junior hockey World Cup to be held in the Capital next month. Defender Amit Rohidas will be Manpreet's deputy. India will open their campaign against the Netherlands on December 6, followed by matches against Canada (December 7) and South Korea (December 10).

"Playing a World Cup at home will be a memorable occasion for the players. We have prepared well and are looking forward to taking on the world's best," team's coach Gregg Clarke said.

"We will go step by step. The immediate target is to do well against Holland. I have learnt a lot of things playing with the senior team and will try to apply those things," skipper Manpreet said.

The tournament schedule is set with four pools of four teams of which two from each pool will advance to the quarterfinals. India are placed in Pool C with the Netherlands, S Korea and Canada. Pool A will feature Germany, Pakistan, Belgium and Egypt. Australia, Spain, Argentina and France are competing in Pool B while England, New Zealand, South Africa and Malaysia will clash in Pool D. All the matches will be telecast live on Ten Sports, Hockey India said adding that the tickets for the event can be purchased from www.ticketgenie .in.

India, who won a silver in 1997 World Cup and followed it up with their only gold medal in the event in 2001, failed to repeat the feat in subsequent events. In 2005 they were fourth and in 2009 they finished a lowly ninth.

Squad:

Goalkeepers: Sushant Tirkey, Harjot Singh; Defenders: Gurjinder Singh, Amit Rohidas, Surender Kumar, Sukhmanjit Singh, Pardeep Mor, Kothajit Singh; Midfielders: Manpreet Singh (captain), Satbir Singh, Harjit Singh, Imran Khan, Prabhdeep Singh; Forwards: Malak Singh, Mandeep Singh, Talwinder Singh, Akashdeep Singh, Ramandeep Singh; Standbys: Jagdeep Dayal (goalkeeper), Lalit Upadhyay and Gurmail Singh (midfielder), Affan Yousuf (forward).

The Times of India



India ready for Dutch challenge in Junior Hockey World Cup: Manpreet

NEW DELHI: Rising hockey star Manpreet Singh, who will be leading the 18-member Indian team in the 18-nation Junior World Cup, said Wednesday that the first match against the Netherlands will be crucial.

Manpreet, who was announced as the captain Wednesday at a glittering ceremony organized by Hockey India (HI), feels that the first match could change things for India.

"We are well prepared and the focus is on the match against Holland. We are practicing keeping in mind the challenge that will be posed by Holland. We are putting a lot of emphasis on penalty corner conversion and playing attacking game. We will get good results," Manpreet said.

Manpreet said that Germany, Australia and Argentina will pose a big challenge for India. Instead of making tall promises, Manpreet said the team will take one match at a time.

"We will do well, but I don't make any tall promises. We will go step by step. The immediate target is to do well against Holland. I have learnt a lot of things playing with the senior team and will try to apply those things," he said.

Though it is a junior World Cup, all the 18 boys have played with the senior team and in between they have played 324 international matches.

Senior India player Kothajit Singh, 20, is the most experienced with 89 international matches while Manpreet has the experience of 85 matches. Defender Amit Rohidas will be Manpreet's deputy.

Ramandeep Singh, who made his debut in the Asia Cup, has also found a place in the side while talented forward Affan Yousuf has been kept in the stand bys.

Coach Gregg Clarke said with just a week left, the whole team was excited for the tournament.

"Playing a World Cup at home will be a memorable occasion for the players. We have prepared well and look forward taking on the world's best," the South African said.

India are in pool C with the Netherlands, South Korea, Canada. Pool A features Germany, Pakistan, Belgium and Egypt while Australia, Spain, Argentina and France are in pool B. England, New Zealand, South Africa and Malaysia make up group D.

India play the Netherlands in its first match slated for Dec 6 followed by matches against Canada (Dec 7) and South Korea (Dec 10).

Team:

Goalkeepers: Sushant Tirkey, Harjot Singh

Defenders: Gurjunder Singh, Amit Rohidas, Surender Singh, Sukhmanjit Singh, Pardeep Mor, Kothajit Singh

Midfielders: Manpreet Singh, Satbir Singh, Harjit Singh, Imran Khan and Prabhdeep Singh

Forwards: Malak Singh, Mandeep Singh, Talwinder Singh, Akashdeep Singh and Ramandeep Singh

Standbys: Jagdeep Dayal (Goalkeeper), Lalit Upadhyay (Midfielder), Gurmail Singh (Midfielder), Affan Yousuf (Forward)

The Times of India



We are ready to face Holland in our first match: Manpreet Singh

Tazeen Qureshy




Enthusiastic Manpreet Singh is back as the captain of the junior team, this time shouldering more responsibility in guiding the young brigade to the Junior World Cup.

Even as Hockey India announced his name for the top job today in an impressive function, where the jerseys of players were given away, Manpreet was in his usual best, brimming with confidence, and interacting without tired or remorse.

Addressing the media after team announcement, he oozes confidence when says his team is ready to face Holland in their first encounter in the World Cup.

“Holland is an important team but we have accordingly trained ourselves. We have specific trainers in all areas and are ready to face them.”

Having been part of all the major events of the past two years, Manpreet acquired adequate knowledge in understanding of the game, and is ready to part his knowledge to his teammates, who will all be facing a great test for their characters in ten days time, when the Delhi's Dhyan Chand stadium hosts the Junior World Cup.

Obviously, Manpreet Singh will the focus of the nation, and he is all set to assimilate the experience he gained, in order to stand up to the task.

With an experience of 85 international caps, Manpreet says he has learnt a lot from his seniors to guide the team.

“I will be putting a lot of things into practice which I grasped from my seniors. There is no such senior-junior. We will be playing as one team.”

Talking about his expectations from the World Cup, he adds, “Our aim is to take one match at a time and concentrate on it. This way, we will aim to move ahead.”

Fitness-wise also he says, the team has been training well under trainer Mathew Eyles and there are no fitness issues.

Though Manpreet is a man to watch, and at present seems to equip with everything that is required to put up a show, only time will tell how much of his enthusiasm and energy turn into a match winning trait.

Stick2Hockey.com



3 from city make it to Indian junior hockey squad

Nitin Sharma


Chandigarh - When the Indian junior hockey team last won the World Cup at Hobart in Australia back in 2001, Harjot Singh, Gurjinder Saini and Kurali youngster Harjeet Singh were still in kindergarten. The three hockey stars from the city now have a chance to emulate that feat after being included in the Indian team for the Junior World Cup to be held in New Delhi from December 6.

And there is no shortage of confidence among the three. While Harjot and Gurjinder passed out from the Chandigarh Hockey and Football Academy in 2010, Harjeet is a product of the Surjit Hockey Academy in Jalandhar.

"It is a moment to remember for all of us. When we heard the news of our selection, we confirmed from each other about the team. My father, who is a truck cleaner was away in Lucknow for delivery of goods and he was almost in tears. My family has supported me all through these years and we will try to win a medal in the World Championships. My family is still paying the loan they took for my training and I will aim to give my best," said Harjeet, who belongs to Niholika village in Kurali and was adjudged as the best player in the Sultan of Johar Cup in September last year.

The duo of Harjot Singh and Gurjinder Singh were trainees of CHFA and had opted for the rebel World Series of Hockey last year but made their return to the Hockey India fold early this year. "We were too young when the Indian junior team won the world title in 2001. But training at the academy gave me an opportunity to train under some of the members of the team like Baljit Singh Dadhwal and Rajpal Singh. Dadhwal paji used to give me kits during my days at the academy and I would also seek goal-keeping tips from him. The world Cup is happening in front of the home crowd and their support will motivate us," said 19-year-old Harjot, who belongs to Amloh village near Fatehgarh Sahib and is a former student of GMSSS-42.

For drag-flicker Gurjinder Singh, a troubling elbow injury meant that he was sidelined for more than two months early this year but the 20-year-old made a comeback in the Asian Champions Trophy last month. "Jugraj paji gave me some useful tips on drag-flicking and his inputs have helped my game. At the academy, late coach Jasbir Singh Bajwa would spend hours with us and if we win the Junior World Cup, it would be a tribute to him from us," said Gurjinder.

Indian Express



Junior hockey ‘keeper to be decided at 11th hour

by Aftar Singh



Mohd Hafizuddin Othman (pic) and Mohd Hazrul Faiz Ahmad Sobri are vying for the starting goalkeeper's spot for Malaysia in the World Junior hockey championship starting in New Delhi next week. - Filepic

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysian National junior coach K. Dharmaraj will only name his first choice goalkeeper for the Junior World Cup, which begins in New Delhi next week, after the two friendlies against defending champions Germany (Dec 3) and South Korea (Dec 4).

The national juniors will leave for New Delhi on Sunday.

Dharmaraj said that both the goalkeepers – Mohd Hafizuddin Othman and Mohd Hazrul Faiz Ahmad Sobri – have been performing well in training and in friendlies.

Both players are 21 years old and hail from Terengganu.

Hazrul was named the best goalkeeper in the inaugural Sultan of Johor Cup in 2011 and was also in the Junior Asia Cup in Malacca last year.

But Hafizuddin was picked as the main goalkeeper for the Juniors following his outstanding performances in the playing tours to Europe, South Korea and India this year.

Dharmaraj said that although Hafizuddin was the first choice in the Sultan of Johor Cup in September, Hazrul had shown steady progress in the five friendlies against Egypt two weeks ago.

“They are both equally good ... I will field them in each half of the two friendly matches (against Germany and South Korea) and see how they perform,” said Dharmaraj.

“We will play against world No. 1 Germany, who have skilful players and good penalty corner set-pieces. So, it will be interesting to see how well both keepers perform against them.

“It will also be good to play against the Koreans as they have a number of national players and are fast on their counter attacks,” said Dharmaraj.

The Malaysian Hockey Confederation (MHC) have set a top-six target for the national juniors in New Delhi.

Sixteen teams will feature in the Junior World Cup and world No. 12 Malaysia will open their Group D campaign against world No. 4 New Zealand on Dec 6.

Malaysia’s other matches are against South Africa on Dec 8 and England (Dec 9).

Malaysia are expected to finish in the top two in the group and advance to the quarter-finals.

Their opponents in the last eight will be either Holland or hosts India from Group C. The other teams in Group C are South Korea and Canada.

Germany are in Group A with Belgium, Pakistan and Egypt while Group B comprises Australia, Argentina, Spain and France.

Dharmaraj acknowledged that “we are the lowest rank team in the group and we’ll take it one match at a time”.

“My boys have five days to get used to the chilly conditions in New Delhi before facing the Kiwis in the opening match,” said Dharmaraj, who guided Malaysia to the Junior Asia Cup triumph in Malacca last year.

The Star of Malaysia



Bhutta to lead Pakistan in Junior World Cup

KARACHI: Olympian Umar Bhutta has been retained as captain of the national junior team that will represent the country in the Junior Hockey World Cup to be played in India.

Pakistan will send an 18-member squad for the event that will be contested by 16 teams from December 6 to 15 in New Delhi.

The final squad was named following the trials in Lahore on Wednesday.

Bhutta, who led the team at the Sultan of Johor Cup in Malaysia in September, has been retained as captain on the back of his experiences with the senior team.

Mohammad Tauseeq, another member of the senior team, has been named vice-captain in place of Syed Kashif Shah. The squad includes two goal-keepers in Mazhar Abbas and Amin Yousaf.

However, Mohammad Khalid’s inclusion in the touring squad is subject to his fitness which will be gauged during the practice games between the senior and junior teams on November 29 and 30.

Khalid will be replaced by Kashif Javed if he fails the fitness test.

“The squad has been named after thorough assessment,” head coach Manzoorul Hasan told The Express Tribune.

“We have tried our best to select a balanced squad comprising the best available players.

“Umar [Bhutta] is experienced and was the best option to lead team while Tauseeq has been promoted after his fine show with the Pakistan team at the Asian Champions Trophy.”

The colts, tied in Pool A, will begin their World Cup campaign with a match against Egypt, while Germany and Belgium are the other teams in the group.

Squad

Umar Bhutta (captain), Mohammad Tauseeq (vice-captain), Mazhar Abbas, Amin Yousaf, Kashif Shah, Faisal Qadir, Rizwan Junior, Ammad Shakeel, Zohaib Ashraf, Mohammad Umair, Mohammad Dilber, Aleem Bilal, Arslan Qadir, Tassawur Abbas, Mohammad Irfan, Rizwan Ali, Mohammad Adnan, Mohammad Khalid/Kashif Javed.

The Express Tribune



PHF names 19-member national squad


Umar to lead Pakistan at Junior Hockey World Cup

LAHORE: The Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF) on Wednesday named a 19-member national squad that will take part in the Junior World Cup to be played from December 6-15 in New Delhi, India. Muhammad Umar Bhutta will lead the team at the prestigious event. “The team was named following the trials held at the National Hockey Stadium. It is a balanced combination capable of attaining desired results,” said a spokesman for the PHF. He said PHF president Akhtar Rasool Chaudhary in consultation with the team management approved the squad. The spokesman said the junior team would play two practice matches on November 29 and 30 to give final touches to their preparations for the World Cup. The matches will be played at Johar Hockey Stadium. “During the practice matches, if player Muhammad Khalid proves his fitness he will be the part of team otherwise Muhammad Kashif Javed will substitute him.

Squad

Mazhar Abbas (goalkeeper), Amin Yousaf (goalkeeper), Muhammad Khalid, Syed Kashif Shah, Muhammad Faisal Qadir, Muhammad Rizwan Junior, Muhammad Tousiq (vice captain), Ammad Shakeel Butt, Zohaib Ashraf, Muhammad Umair, Muhammad Umar Bhutta (captain), Muhammad Dilber, Muhammad Aleem Bilal, Muhammad Arslan Qadir, Tasawwar Abbas, Muhammad Irfan, Rizwan Ali, Muhammad Adnan and Muhammad Kashif Javed.

The Daily Times



Pak team named for Jr World Hockey Cup

LAHORE - The Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF) on Wednesday announced 19-member junior squad to participate in the Junior Hockey World Cup to be held in New Delhi from December 6-15.

“The team was named following trials held here at National Hockey Stadium and we believe it is a balanced combination capable of attaining desired results,” said a PHF spokesman.  He said PHF chief Chaudhry Akhtar Rasool approved the squad after consulting with the team management. “The junior hockey team will play two practice matches here on November 29, 30 to give final touches to its preparations for the cup. The matches will be played at Johar Hockey Stadium.”

The PHF has appointed following panel of technical officials for the smooth conduct of the practice matches. M Shafqat will be tournament director while Olympian M Shafqat, Mirza Waheed Baig, M Shafique Bhatti and Dr Urfan will be tournament officers. M Irfan, Sohail Ashraf, Munawwar Hussain Ch and Ejaz Chatta will act as judges while Rashad Mahmood Butt will be umpires manager. The umpires will be Rana M Liaqat, Munir Ahmed and Hafiz Atif Malik.  During the practice matches, if player M Khalid proves his fitness, he will be the part of contingent otherwise M Kashif Javed will substitute him.

Pakistan Jr Squad: Mazhar Abbas (GK), Amin Yousaf (GK), M Khalid, Syed Kashif Shah, M Faisal Qadir, M Rizwan Jr, M Tousiq (vc), Ammad Shakeel Butt, Zohaib Ashraf, M Umair, M Umar Bhutta (capt), M Dilber, M Aleem Bilal, M Arslan Qadir, Tasawwar Abbas, M Irfan, Rizwan Ali, M Adnan and M Kashif Javed.

The Nation



Shahnaz terms PHF elections unconstitutional

ISLAMABAD: Former Olympian Shahnaz Sheikh on Wednesday termed the Pakistan Hockey Federation’s (PHF) elections a sheer violation of the federation’s constitution. While questioning the fairness and transparency of the elections on November 25, he said the national federation should have contacted the former Olympians before conducting the elections. It is pertinent to mention that Akhtar Rasool became the president while his fellow Olympian Rana Mujahid retained his post unopposed as secretary general. “The national hockey has declined to such an extent that we could not qualify for the World Cup, Commonwealth Games and even Asian Games,” he added. Shahnaz demanded the patron-in-chief of the PHF, the Prime Minister of Pakistan, to intervene for the betterment of the national game.

The Daily Times



Notification of Rules of Hockey 2013 change with effect from 1 February 2014

Based on a recommendation from the FIH Rules Committee, the FIH Executive Board has agreed a change to the Rules of Hockey.

Mandatory Experimental Own Goal Rule

Rule 8 Method of Scoring currently states that:

8.1 A goal is scored when:
a. the ball is played by an attacker, or touches the stick or body of a defender, within the circle
b. after either of these actions, the ball does not travel outside the circle before passing completely over the goal-line and under the crossbar.

With effect from 1 February 2014, this will no longer be mandatory and will become an Experimental Rule only.

With effect from 1 September 2014, the Experimental Own Goal Rule will be deleted and replaced by an amended Rule 8 Method of Scoring which will state that:

8.1 A goal is scored when the ball is played within the circle by an attacker and does not travel outside the circle before passing completely over the goal-line and under the crossbar.
The ball may be played by a defender or touch their body before or after being played in the circle by an attacker.

It also follows that, as of 1 September 2014, the guidance to Rule 9.7 that Defenders are also permitted to use the stick to stop or deflect the ball at any height if it is otherwise likely to enter the goal as a result of Mandatory Experimental Rule 8 will also be deleted

The above timetable for the Rule change provides a significant period of notice for National Associations and Continental Federations;
specifically:

 

  • The Own Goal will not apply to International Hockey with effect from 1 February 2014.
  • This means that all International Tournaments with effect from 1 February 2014 through to the World Cup (and beyond) may be played without the Own Goal i.e. international teams will be able to practice with the Rules that will be in force in the World Cups (and beyond)
  • National Associations, who wish to do so, may continue with the Own Goal in order to complete their current Leagues and Competitions using this Rule
  • National Associations, who wish to do so, may play without the Own Goal with effect from 1 February 2014

In the introduction to the Rules of Hockey 2013, it was advised that, after a period of review, the FIH Rules Committee would decide whether or not the Mandatory Experimental Own Goal Rule would be adopted as a permanent change to the Rules. Based upon the feedback from a variety of stakeholders, including National Associations, Athletes, Coaches, Technical Officials and Umpires it was concluded that the Own Goal was seen as being contradictory to the reasons for changing the Free Hit Rules. Concern was expressed that the Rule penalises skill, with the encouragement to fire the ball into the circle being seen as unattractive and also increasing danger at lower levels of the game.

FIH Rules Committee



Talking Hockey: own goal rule wiped out creativity, though umpires likely to disagree

By Ross Bone



Rule change: spectacular own goals for deflections by defenders or goalkeepers will soon be a thing of the past Photo: GETTY IMAGES

World Hockey implemented own goal rule to bring field game in line with other sports, but has been forced into hasty U-turn

The International Hockey Federation announced this week that they are to scrap the own goal rule that was brought in on a trial basis last season.

Teams will no longer be awarded a goal unless the ball is touched by an attacker’s stick inside the D, meaning spectacular own goals for deflections by defenders or goalkeepers will soon be a thing of the past.

Following the introduction of the rule, it was not long before we saw players speak out against it.

Reigning FIH World Player of the Year Moritz Fürste and Australia’s Jamie Dwyer, himself a five-time winner of the award, were two of the more vocal critics.

Both claimed, with plenty of justification, that the rule discouraged skilful, well-crafted moves and instead promoted ugly, 'hit-and-hope' styles of play.

That is certainly backed up by a number of games I have seen at different levels. Some teams have taken to crashing the ball in from anywhere near the D, resulting in multiple turnovers, dangerous play, injuries, uninspiring hockey and a lack of goals.

There is one group who may not welcome the decision, though: the umpires.

Their job is already a difficult one and with a crowded D and the ball coming in at speed it is often hard to tell who diverted the ball into the net.

With the own goal rule, the umpire didn’t need to worry about who touched it, just that someone did.

Making the umpires’ jobs easier is always a good thing, but I’d rather see teams playing creatively and see the occasional umpiring mistake than be subjected to ugly, predictable, route one hockey.

As one commenter put it, if you aren’t good enough to create your own chances, you don’t deserve to have the other team score for you. Spot on.

Ross Bone writes for The Top of the D blog. Follow him on Twitter

The Telegraph



Repton School claim hockey history as six former pupils play in GB v Germany series

By Rod Gilmour



Six of the best: (from left to right) Shona McCallin, Georgie Twigg, Susie Gilbert, Charlotte Stapenhorst, Ellie Watton, Joie Leigh

Six Old Reptonians earn international field hockey cap in same match to set schools' record

Repton School has laid claim to a slice of hockey history after six former pupils played in the same international match two weeks' ago.

During Great Britain womens' recent three-match series in Germany, Susie Gilbert and Georgie Twigg were joined by previously uncapped players Ellie Watton, Shona McCallin and Joie Leigh.

Meanwhile, Charlotte Stapenhorst, also a former pupil at the Derbyshire school, received her first cap for Germany in the same series in Mannheim.

Great Britain beat Germany 3-1 in the opening match, with Twigg netting. However, Germany won the next two games by the same scoreline.

Martin Jones, director of hockey at Repton School and a former GB international said: “Repton School pupils continue to dominate on the hockey field, both in school and, as this proves, at national and international level.

"We are absolutely delighted for the Old Reptonians concerned in the historic achievement this week.”

Although Repton's claims have yet to be rubber-stamped, the school is likely to have secured a record, with the country's two other hockey powerhouses, Millfield and Bromsgrove, unable to match the feat.

Meanwhile, nine members of that GB squad have travelled to Argentina with England for the World League Final. England play Korea on Saturday in their first group match.

The Telegraph



Irish Hockey Introduce Residential Summer Camp with King’s Hospital school


Photo L-R: Ronald Wynne (KH); Vivienne Clarke (IHA); Mike Heskin (IHA)

Irish Hockey are proud to announce that they will be holding their first ever residential Summer Camp in 2014 at The King’s Hospital school. Irish hockey are building on the success of their day hockey camps which last year saw eleven camps run across seven weeks around Ireland. The summer camps provide an opportunity for children of all levels of hockey to hone their skills in a fun, friendly and safe environment which are safeguarded by Irish Hockey’s best practise guidelines and spearheaded by some of Ireland’s top coaches.

Commenting on the introduction of a residential camp Irish Hockey CEO Mike Heskin said “We are delighted to be able to present a hockey residential camp next summer. This is the next natural  step for us given the quality of camp we have built up in the day camps over the last five years. We have partnered with The King’s Hospital as they offer the very best in terms of facilities, venue and experience in providing a quality venue for our residential campers, something that has also be recognised by other sports such as Leinster Rugby who also host their residential camps at The King’s Hospital.”

“Irish Hockey are in a position to offer children the opportunity to learn new skills, build on their existing skills and ensure no matter what level of hockey you are at you will be challenged and well catered for throughout the camp. The residential camp also gives us an opportunity to build in lifestyle elements and education for the children such as nutrition and recovery work while the social program will see cinema nights, swimming, games, quizzes and treasure hunts, camps like this see lifelong friendships formed and Irish Hockey are very excited to be able to bring such an opportunity to the hockey community.”

Commenting on the partnership Ronald Wynne, Bursar, from The King’s Hospital said "We are delighted to welcome the Irish Hockey Association to our campus at The King’s Hospital where we have developed over the years a range of high quality residential sports camps such as Hockey, Rugby, Basketball. We look forward to playing our part in assisting the Irish Hockey Association to further develop youth hockey in Ireland."

Further details on the camp will be available in the coming weeks.

Irish Hockey Association media release



Meet Jodie the wonder girl: Hockey ace, black belt in judo and medal winning swimmer ...

... who and also finds time to study to be a dentist

BY JOHN FLACK



High achiever: Teenager Jodie Kee is a champion in four sports

Most of us would be happy to be talented in just one sport.

But Belfast student Jodie Kee has several under her belt – having lifted multiple titles in swimming, judo, hockey and even water-skiing.

And as if that doesn't keep her busy enough, the 19-year-old is also studying to be a dentist.

Jodie is currently in her first year at Queen's University Belfast and admits that, while she doesn't have a lot of free time, she is still very committed to her many sporting loves.

She recently received a call-up to the extended Ulster Under-21 hockey squad ahead of the inter-provincial title defence in the new year as a reward for some outstanding performances.

But that's only the tip of the iceberg as far as her long list of sporting achievements is concerned and the term multi-talented could well have been invented for the teenager.

Jodie is a multiple Ulster champion swimmer, an Irish junior record holder in three water-skiing disciplines and a black belt in judo.

She was named Belfast Telegraph Swimmer of the Year in 2004 in the 10-and-under category and is the proud holder of over 30 Ulster titles in the pool, having also represented her province in 2006 and been an Irish Schools butterfly champion in 2002 and 2003.

But they're not the only trophies on the mantelpiece.

The Belfast teen won a silver medal at last year's Commonwealth judo championship in Cardiff and has been a member of the Great Britain U20 squad in the same sport in the past.

She could have staked a claim for a place in next year's Northern Ireland Commonwealth Games team in judo but has instead opted to concentrate on hockey.

"If I had decided to try to make the Commonwealth team it would have meant putting all my efforts into that," Jodie said. "I wouldn't have been able to play hockey to any extent and I am also conscious that it's my first year in dentistry and that's important as well – I don't have much spare time as it is"

An ankle injury forced her to retire from swimming a few years ago so, these days, she concentrates mainly on hockey with her U21 call-up a boost having played at representative level in her younger days.

Jodie says she is enjoying life at Queen's having started her career at nearby Belfast Harlequins.

In addition to her playing commitments, Jodie coaches hockey at Methody and Harlequins and she plans to return to judo next year.

And she'll still have time to get her water skis on for the British and Irish Inter-varsities tournaments.

QUOTES

"I wasn't able to play too much hockey last season with Harlequins with the judo being priority but I have more time now I am with Queen's. People frequently ask me which sport do I prefer but, really, they are so different it is a hard one to answer. In judo though it's all about 'me' and there is so much pressure, whereas you have your team mates to talk to in hockey."

Belfast Telegraph



Perak stun KL for title

UNDER-14: Selangor beat Penang for girls’ crown

By JUGJET SINGH


PERAK overcame the odds to beat six-time champions Kuala Lumpur 2-0 in the Boys' MHC-Milo-NSC National Under-14 final in Kuala Terengganu yesterday.

It was the third title for Perak, who were also champions in 2005 and 2006.

It was Perak's second win over KL in the tournament having also won 4-2 in the group stage.

Aliff Ikhemal did the damage with a field goal in the second minute, before tournament top scorer Arif Sabron cemented the win in the 60th minute by scoring his 16th goal in eight matches.

Perak coach Ezral Ariff said: "Credit to my boys for playing well in the final. Goalkeeper Mohamed Izhar deserves special mention as he was in top form to deny the KL strikers."

In the match for bronze, Terengganu beat Malacca 3-2 with goals from Shahrin Izzuddin (17th) and Wan Rifqi (54th and 67th). Malacca's goals came via Aliff Najmi (33rd) and Izzat Rais (51st).

In the Girls' final, Selangor came back twice from trailing by a goal to beat Penang 5-3. Selangor's scorers were Nurul Aida Abdul Razak (13th), Nurul Hidayah (20th), P. Revathi (22nd), Azieah Azman (39th) and Ellya Amanina Ellias (49th). Penang received a gift goal in the 11th minute before Nurul Hidayah (13th) and Mimie Zulakha Zaini (58th) scored.

RESULTS -- Boys' final: Perak 2 Kuala Lumpur 0; 3rd/4th: Terengganu 3 Malacca 2.

Girls' final: Selangor 5 Penang 3; 3rd/4th: Kuala Lumpur 3 Malacca 0.

ROLL OF HONOUR -- Boys, Best Player of the Tournament: Mohamed Akhimullah (Terengganu)

Top scorer: Arif Sabron (Perak -- 16 goals).

Best goalkeeper: Tyrendrraj Azwind (Negri Sembilan)

Player of the final: Pavandip Singh (KL)

Fairplay: Malacca

Girls, Best Player of the Tournament: Nazatul Huzra (KL)

Top scorer: Arinah Azyyati (KL) and Ellya Amanina Ellias (Sel) 11 goals each

Best goalkeeper: Aina Nadiah Fadzil (KL)

Player of the final: P. Revathi (Sel)

Fairplay: Pahang

New Straits Times



Perak upstage defending champs KL in hockey final

KUALA LUMPUR: Perak upset defending champions Kuala Lumpur 2-0 in the final to lift the boys’ MHC-Milo-NSC National Under-14 title at the Batu Buruk Hockey Stadium in Kuala Terengganu on Wednesday.

It was Perak’s third title, having won it in 2005 and 2006.

Perak, who beat KL 4-2 in the preliminary rounds earlier, drew first blood as early as in the second minute through Mohd Aliff Ikhemal.

They then had to wait until the 60th minute for the second goal through ace striker Arif Sabron. It was his 16th goal in eight matches, earning him the top scorer’s award.

Perak coach Mohd Ezral Ariff was delighted with his team’s performance and victory.

“I want to praise my boys for playing well in the final. We made good use of our chances to beat KL for the second time in the tournament.

“KL had a number of chances to score but our goalkeeper Mohd Izhar was in top form,” said Ezral.

In the third placing match, hosts Terengganu edged Malacca 3-2.

Mohd Shahrin Izzuddin gave Terengganu the lead in the 17th minute but Malacca hit back with two goals through Mohd Aliff Najmi (33rd) and Izzat Rais (51st) for a 2-1 lead.

But the east coast team fought back to score two goals in the last 16 minutes through Wan Mohd Rifqi in the 54th and 67th minutes.

The girls’ final saw Selangor twice coming back from a goal down to beat Penang 5-3.

Penang took an 11th minute lead off an own goal by a Selangor player.

But the Islanders’ joy was shortlived as Nurul Aida Abdul Razak equalised for Selangor two minutes later.

Penang regained the lead in the 20th minute through Nurul Hidayah Mohd Sanusi’s penalty corner attempt.

This time Selangor reacted by scoring four goals – P. Revathi (22nd), Azieah Azman (39th, 48th) and Ellya Amanina Ellias (49th) – to take a 5-2 lead.

Although Penang reduced the deficit with another penalty corner goal by Mimie Zulakha Zaini in the 58th minute, it just came way too late.

Meanwhile, Kuala Lumpur beat Malacca 3-0 to finish third.

KL’s goals were scored by Nur Amirah (14th minute), skipper Arinah Azyyati (47th) and Nurfarah Yasmin Mohd Muharen (56th).

The Star of Malaysia



US National Hockey Festival Kicks Off On Thanksgiving Day

The 2013 National Hockey Festival presented by CranBarry kicks off tomorrow at the International Polo Club in Palm Beach County, Fla. The National Hockey Festival has become the world’s largest amateur field hockey event, attracting more than 4,000 athletes from across the United States, Canada, and Europe to compete over the Thanksgiving holiday. The event runs November 28 to December 1, and will attract nearly 8,000 visitors to the local area.

“Festival is truly a unique event and the largest of its kind,” said Karen Collins, USA Field Hockey Director of Events and Logistics. “We are excited to be in Palm Beach County and are looking forward to a great weekend of sunshine and competitive hockey. This year, we have incorporated additional elements to make the experience more premier, entertaining and enjoyable for all.”

In total, 196 Under-16 and Under-19 teams in 28 pools will compete at the 2013 National Hockey Festival held on the pristine polo fields of the International Polo Club. An additional 16 Mixed-Adult and Women’s teams will add to the excitement and elevate the overall level of play.

2013 marks the introduction of the highly anticipated Under-14 girls division at Festival. Opening the younger division represents one of many initiatives by USA Field Hockey to progress the game toward becoming a lifetime sport in the United States. The new division allows younger athletes the opportunity to participate in the field hockey community’s celebration of the game, rather than simply watching their older siblings play. Forty-two Under-14 teams in six pools will compete to be crowned a champion.

“Festival is about celebrating our sport and spending a holiday weekend with family and friends while playing the game we all love,” said Steve Locke, Executive Director for USA Field Hockey. “We are excited to have more families join us in Palm Beach County this year for what will be another exciting holiday weekend filled with hockey.”

This year’s Festival is also packed with activities beyond game play. Many free clinics and seminars will be taking place over the course of the next three days for Festival participants of all ages. Events range from youth clinics to rulebook seminars to adult open play. Refer to the usafieldhockey.com Festival page for a complete list and times.

With all of the memories sure to be made at this year’s National Hockey Festival, USA Field Hockey is seeking individuals who have a talent for taking photographs to assist in capturing the “A Day in the Life at Festival” collection for use on usafieldhockey.com and in FHLife. For those who are inclined, photographs must be of high resolution (minimum size 3000x 4000 pixels) that capture universal, timeless images of what surrounds the sport, before one steps onto the field and after the final whistle blows. Images can be submitted to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

For the latest announcements, schedules, scores, and all things Festival, regularly check usafieldhockey.com.

USFHA media release



Nick Wilson 'turning a corner' on injury


Photo: www.photosport.co.nz

Black Sticks striker Nick Wilson is hoping to be back on the turf soon following almost six months of rehabilitation from a serious knee injury.

The 2012 Player of the Year hasn’t played any international hockey in 2013, having last pulled on the Black Sticks singlet at the Champions Trophy in Melbourne last December.

Wilson went on to play for the title winning Ranchi Rhinos in the Hockey India League before heading to Dutch club Rotterdam, where he suffered the injury.

After playing through several weeks of pain and thinking the seemingly innocuous injury would get better, scans revealed serious bone bruising to the end of his femur near the knee.

“The doctors said to me you’ve got to stop hockey, you can’t keep going or it will get worse and you could jeopardise your career,” Wilson said.

Unlike many other injuries, this one is unique in that there is no defined time frame for recovery. The 23-year-old has found that unpredictability extremely frustrating, and is itching to get back into action.

“I’ve been going to gym for six months now and it’s shown little improvement and that’s really hard to come home to after you’ve worked so hard.

“It’s frustrating because you don’t know how long you’re out for. Hockey’s such a big part of my life that for it to be taken away is such a big shock.”

Wilson is currently training as much as he can without aggravating the injury, and is running on a specialist treadmill at 70% of his body weight.

“This week I had a meeting with our doctor and he said ‘I think you’ve turned a corner’ so that was good to hear. The bone bruising is still there but it’s getting better so hopefully I’ll be back soon.”

Wilson has only played one tournament under head coach Colin Batch, but has watched on with interest and likes what he sees.

“I think Colin has brought a new flavour to the team. They’re playing some great hockey and the biggest thing I think they’ve gained is some team culture - everyone is working for each other.

“It’s going to be quite an intimidating time for me to come back and try to fit into the team. It’s a new style of play and I have to fit into that, so I’ll be learning just like I was when I played my first test match.”

The Black Sticks’ next big challenge comes at the World League Final in January, and Wilson is using that as motivation to be fully recovered as soon as possible.

Hockey New Zealand Media release



Waterloo man pitches ‘field hockey of dreams’

By Mark Bryson


WATERLOO — Phil Hignell is looking for the ideal location to build his pet project.

The Waterloo man hopes to bring a water-based field hockey turf to this area of Canada and believes he can make it happen by Sept. 10, 2018, his target date for a project he calls The Turf Initiative.

"I really do believe it can be done in the next five years but you have start the process by raising money and that's where I am now, right at the beginning," said Hignell, an adviser with Sun Life Financial and longtime field hockey aficionado.

"The next step is to get the website up and running and then I'll start making the rounds, talking to people during the indoor season this winter."

Hignell, 60, will also investigate whether government money is available as he estimates the project will cost about $3 million when all is said and done. The field, with watering system, will cost close to $2 million and the rest of the funds will be used for fencing and a permanent structure for players and officials to use, he said.

Water-based turf fields are irrigated before, during and after games in accordance with International Hockey Federation regulations. The synthetic fibres are considerably shorter than those used for football and soccer — more like indoor carpet than grass — and the wetted down turf reduces friction on the ball and creates an ideal field of play.

Hignell has been involved with field hockey for about 50 years and is the founder and secretary of the KW Olympic (Field) Hockey Association. He is also a certified coach and umpire, and has overseen an indoor league at RIM Park in recent years. And he still plays, although an injury has forced him to temporarily hang up his stick.

Hignell plans on approaching the cities of Kitchener and Waterloo about his plan, as well as the two school boards, to see if there is interest in some form of partnership.

Hignell circulated a glossy brochure about The Turf Initiative, and how he planned to raise funds for it, during the recent Ontario Federation of School Athletic Associations field hockey championship in Waterloo.

The brochure lists a large number of sponsorship options, including naming rights for $100,000. All sponsors will have the opportunity to have their names listed on the Builders Wall.

There is currently only one water-based field hockey turf in Ontario, at the Cassie Campbell Community Centre in Brampton. The facility opened in July of this year and hosted the men's Pan American Cup in August. Two other water-based pitches are slated to be built in downtown Toronto in time for the 2015 Pan American Games.

A facility in this area, said Hignell, would be used by players of all ages and all skills levels, from youngsters learning the game to international competitions.

The difference between a water-based pitch and the multi-purpose turf used for football and soccer comes down to speed, said Hignell.

"It's like in ice hockey after the flood between periods. The ice is clean and the puck moves across the ice a whole lot better than it does at the end of the period, when there is snow on the ice," he said.

Waterloo Region is a field hockey hotbed at the high school level as local teams have won't the past eight Ontario championships. Five players from this area recently represented Canada on the international stage, including Hignell's son Nick who has been capped twice by the men's national team.

Kitchener sisters Brienne and Tegan Stairs, as well as Amanda Woodcroft and Jessica Buttinger of Waterloo, have also played for Canada recently.

The Record