News for 16 December 2013

All the news for Monday 16 December 2013


Germany keeps Junior World Cup after exciting final

Large win for the Netherlands over Malaysia for bronze medal



(Photo: Stanislas Brochier)

Match #44 (Final) - France vs. Germany: 2-5 (half-time: 1-1)

France is the good story of this 2013 Hero Hockey Junior World Cup. They arrived discreetly in the competition but managed to win over the American Champions (Argentina), European Champions (Belgium) and Asian Champions (Malaysia) to progress to their first ever final in a top international event. They had however their work cut out against Germany, defending Junior World Cup champions and five time winners of the junior flagship event.

France were supported by a large colony of singing fans, but Germany killed the suspense early when Niklas Wellen stole the ball in the French circle and slotted it past a surprised Edgar Reynaud in the second minute of play.

The French promptly settled their nerves and organized their game. They were working hard, keeping the Germans at bay and not hesitating to rush forward when they saw an opening. In the 16th minute, a quick exchange of passes found Gaspard Baumgarten alone at the top of the circle and he did not think twice to blast a shot past Victor Aly in the German goal, much to the vocal pleasure of the bleu-blanc-rouge crowd.

France suddenly became bolder, pushing temporarily the German defense on the back foot. A cross from Hugo Genestet eluded two German defenders but a rushing attacker could not put his stick on it for the deflection.

Germany forced their first penalty-corner of the match during a French yellow card but could not capitalize. They progressively regained the upper hand and France were under pressure at the end of the period, but half-time was reached with the two teams back to back with one goal each.

Germany came back with more purpose in their stride and play but, incredibly, France scored and took the lead on their first penalty-corner of the match in the 40th minute by Gaspard Baumgarten, his second goal of the game. This did not stand well with the Germans who forced a penalty-corner of their own in the next breath, but were denied by Edgar Reynaud, again in fine form in the French goal.

Germany came back on par in the 44th minute by Niklas Wellen, also his second of the match. He completed his hat-trick two minutes later to put Germany back on top. France however refused to capitulate and fought on every ball, holding the fort firmly  until the 60 minute when Jonas Gomoll made the best of a confusing situation in the French circle to blast the ball past Reynaud.

Two goals down and a handful of minutes to go, France replaced their goal-keeper so that Corentin Saunier could have the experience of a World Cup final and the Germans scored another goal by top-scorer of the competition Christopher Rühr. Germany were were soon hoisting the Junior World Cup, for the sixth time in the history of the event, after an exciting Final that was much closer that everybody was anticipating. France were certainly happy with their performance in this competition, enjoying their silver medals with their fans.

Individual Awards:
Player of the Tournament: Christopher Rühr (Germany)
Goal-keeper of the Tournament: Edgar Reynaud (France)
Top Scorer: Christopher Rühr (Germany), 9 goals
Goal of the Tournament: Jean-Laurent Kieffer (France), Argentina vs. France, 3rd French goal (48th minute)

(3rd-4th) - Malaysia vs. Netherlands: 2-7 (half-time: 1-5)

Asian Champions Malaysia breezed through pool play and quarter-final unbeaten but could not handle the French team in semi-final, losing in an agonizing shootout. The Netherlands were equally dominant until the semi-finals, when they lost to Germany after challenging them until the end with a spectacular three-goal scoring spree.  

In this bronze medal game, the Netherlands drew first blood in the 3rd minute when their captain Roel Bovendeert progressed along the back line, attempted a high shot and batted in goal the rebound from the goal-keeper. The Dutch did not waste any time and added a second goal three minutes later by Thierry Brinkman.  Malaysia responded with a penalty-corner and, with three goals in four minutes, the match was launched on a high note!

The Netherlands had another defensive scare but progressively took control of midfield, making the Malaysians run after their long and patient passes. They had a penalty-corner in the 18th minute, which was not scored directly but Tom Hiebendaal managed to find the ball in the mad goalmouth scramble that ensued and push it in goal. Malaysia were dangerous on a couple of penalty-corners but Jan De Wijkerslooth stood tall in the Orange goal to thwart the attempts.

The Netherlands increased their lead in the 23rd minute by Milan Van Baal with a sweet deflection behind his back, his sixth goal of the competition. Thierry Brinkman soon scored his second of the match and, down 1-5 going into the break, the road ahead seemed rather steep for the young Malaysian team.

The Dutch had the match well in hands at the start of second period and Tom Hiebendaal scored his second goal of the match, carbon copy of Van Baal’s deflection behind the back. Malaysia looked somewhat dispirited, unable to entangle themselves from the Dutch press. They did not help their cause when Zulhairi Hashim picked up a yellow card for a reckless diving tackle that took Roel Bovendeert out of the game for a while. The Netherlands took advantage of the numerical advantage to score their seventh goal by Jelle Galema, with still 18 minutes to go in the game.

Malaysia pulled back one goal on penalty-corner, but the Netherlands cruised to a clean victory for the bronze medal, leaving the Malaysians in the worst spot at the foot of the podium.

FIH site



Australia edge Belgium in shoot-outs for 5th place

New Zealand better than Korea for 7th position



(Photo: Stanislas Brochier)

(5th-6th) - Belgium vs. Australia: 2-2 (shoot-out: 2-3 - half-time: 1-0)

European Champions Belgium arrived in Delhi with the legitimate ambition of going all the way in this Junior World Cup. They were impressive in pool play but were surprised by France in the final minutes of their quarter-final. Australia, bronze medalist in the previous Junior World Cup, went through pool play unbeaten but fell to a dominant German team in quarter-final.

Match started on a high tempo and Belgium earned a first penalty-corner within three minutes of play but the Australian defense was vigilant and cleared the danger. Alexander Hendrickx was again denied on his second and third attempts. Belgium were finally rewarded in the 25th minute when Maxime Plennevaux slotted the ball in goal after Andrew Butturini in the Kookaburras’ goal pushed it back three times in a mad goalmouth scramble.

Belgium has a slight edge on the proceedings in the fairly balanced period and walked into the break with a slim but deserved one-goal lead.

Australia came back strong in second period, immediately pushing the Belgians on the back foot and levelling the score by William Gilmour in the 39th minute. The European Champions were unphased and regained their lead in the next minute with a superb backhand from Alexandre Vanlinthoudt that surprised Edward Chittleborough, in goal for the Kookaburras for this second period.

Australia intensified their pressure and forced a penalty-corner after overwhelming the Belgian defense. The initial shot was saved but Jeremy Hayward collected the rebound and slammed it in goal. The Kookaburras thought that they had scored another one just after by Frank Main, but the goal was denied after a video-referral for an innocuous high stick before entering the circle.

Play became an intense tactical battle in midfield, with some heated exchanges between players when Australia were awarded another penalty-corner in the 61st minute. It was unsuccessfully replayed three times and Australia received a yellow card to compound their misery. Teams threw caution to the wind in the final minutes of play. Belgium had the upper hand for a while but a last Australian rush earned them another penalty-corner. Arnaud Flamand was up to the task and teams moved on to a shoot-out competition.

Both keepers thwarted a couple of attempts, then Dimitri Cuvelier, last shooter for Belgium, took more than his eight seconds to score. In the end, Australia grabbed 5th place, leaving Belgium dejected in 6th position.

(7th-8th) - Korea vs. New Zealand: 2-4 (half-time: 2-3)

Korea started well the competition, with a close result against the Netherlands before elbowing home team India out of contention win an epic come-back. They then lost to Asian Champions Malaysia in quarter-finals and imploded against Belgium. New Zealand did not do as well this year as in the previous Junior World Cup when they reached the semi-finals, although all their loses here in Delhi were by narrow one-goal margins. 

Both teams showed from the start that they were in attacking mood. Seo Inwoo had an early chance for Korea with an open net but he could not control the bouncing ball. New Zealand were threatening on the next action, forcing Korean goal-keeper Yoo Jaeho to come out of nowhere to deny Kane Russell from close range before the same Russell blasted the rebound high in the stands. 

Jeremy Morris gave the advantage to the Black Sticks in the 11th minute with a powerful back hand that went through the keeper. Korea came back on par immediately by You Minyoung pouncing on a cross mishandled by the New Zealand defense. Kane Russell continued the scoring spree with a penalty-corner flick that was nearly stopped by the keeper’s stick but still trickled over the line.

Korea were credited with a goal when the ball slightly brushed off the pads of Richard Joyce in the Black Sticks goal and the video-umpire decided on an own goal. The see-saw continued and New Zealand regained the lead just before half-time with another penalty-corner by Kane Russell.

Korea had their first penalty-corner in the 40th minute but ace-striker You Seungju attempted a fancy option that fizzled out. He was equally unsuccessful on their next penalty-corner even after reverting to his trademark direct high flick. Things were not going Korean’s way and they missed in quick succession an open net and two other penalty-corners, not to mention a number of passes and traps that they usually perform flawlessly in their sleep.

New Zealand also missed their good share of chances, starting with a monumental opportunity when Jeremy Morris missed a perfect pass alone on the far post after Kane Russell wiggled his way through the whole Korean defense. There was intense activity back and forth in the final ten minutes of the match, with another missed penalty-corner by Korea. New Zealand earned a penalty-corner literally in the last second of play, allowing Kane Russell to complete a hat-trick.

New Zealand finished in 7th place of the 2013 Hero Hockey Junior World Cup, pushing Korea down to 8th.

FIH site



Wellen sizzles as Germany’s cup of joy overflows

Y. B. Sarangi



Germany retained the Roger Danet Trophy for the sixth time. - Photo: R.V. Moorthy

For all its show of strength and courage throughout the junior hockey World Cup, Germany deserved to win the crown. Propelled by Niklas Wellen’s hat-trick, the five-time champion asserted its class and decimated an unheralded France 5-2 in the summit clash. It retained the title in style to take home the Roger Danet Trophy for the sixth time.

The German camp, which had checked its emotions after its hard-fought semifinal win over the Netherlands, burst into celebrations when the countdown clock on the giant electronic scoreboards flashed 00:00 in the second half at the National Stadium here on Sunday.

Sense of relief

What a great sense of relief it was for the euphoric Germans, who hugged and congratulated each other and bowed to the cheering fans in the stands.

The contest began a new chapter in the Franco-German hockey rivalry. Germany’s early flamboyance resulted in the second minute goal as Wellen tapped in an accurate cross from the left. But France, brimming with a lot of self-belief, replied strongly.

The deft French half line, led by Hugo Genestet and Gaspard Baumgarten, displayed controlled possession and initiated deceptive moves.

They penetrated the German circle twice and resisted stubbornly when the defending champion applied pressure. Baumgarten banked on Pieter van Straaten’s brilliant pass from the left to shoot home the equaliser from top of the circle in the 16th minute.

Even as the game got physical, Germany wasted a penalty corner to head into the break with the scores level.

Baumgarten put France ahead by slotting in a rebound to covert its first short corner five minutes after resumption. But Wellen had other ideas as he led some sharp German attacks and discovered holes in the compact French defence.

The wily forward seized on two opportune moments to complete his hat-trick and restore Germany’s morale-boosting lead within a space of two minutes. As the French resistance began to crumble under pressure,

Wellen helped Jonas Gomoll to widen the lead in the 60th minute. Christopher Ruhr struck his ninth goal to emerge as top scorer of the event.

The Netherlands outclassed Malaysia 7-2 to finish third for the second time.

The results:

Final: Germany 5 (Niklas Wellen 2, 44, 46; Jonas Gomoll 60; Christopher Ruhr 68) bt France 2 (Gaspard Baumgarten 16, 40).

Classification matches: Third place: The Netherlands 7 (Roel Bovendeert 3; Thierry Brinkman 6, 28; Tom Hiebendaal 18, 37; Milan van Baal 23; Jelle Galema 52) bt Malaysia 2 (Zulhairi Hashim 7, 60).

Fifth place: Australia 2 (Daniel Beale 39; Jeremy Hayward 46) bt Belgium 2 (Maxime Plennevaux 25; Alexandre van Linthoudt 41) via tie-breaker [Australia 3 (Beale, Dylan Wotherspoon, Matthew Dawson) bt Belgium 2 (Plennevaux, Mathew Cobbaert)].

Seventh place: New Zealand 4 (Jeremy Morris 11; Kane Russell 17, 32, 70+) bt Korea 2 (Mingyoung You 13; o.g. 26).

Final standings: 1. Germany, 2. France, 3. The Netherlands, 4. Malaysia, 5. Australia, 6. Belgium, 7. New Zealand, 8. Korea, 9. Pakistan, 10. India, 11. Argentina, 12. South Africa, 13. Spain, 14. England, 15. Egypt, 16. Canada.

Player of the final: Niklas Wellen (Germany).

Player of the tournament: Christopher Rhur (Germany).

Top scorer: Christopher Rhur.

Best goalkeeper: Edgar Raynaud (France).

The Hindu



Wellen’s hat-trick seal sixth title for Germany

By S. Ramaguru



Germany (in white) prove too strong for France in the final of the Junior World Cup, winning 5-2 to capture their sixth title in New Delhi on Sunday. - events.fih.ch

NEW DELHI: A hattrick from Niklas Wellen was enough to take defending champions Germany to their sixth Junior World Cup title when they defeated France 5-2 in an exciting final at the Major Dhyan Chand National Stadium here on Sunday.

The French who are playing in their first major final made a fight of it but the staying power and sharper finishing of the Germans put paid to their hopes of a major upset.

Wellen’s great performance in the early part of the match was the difference in the match and he had good support from his team-mates.

This is the sixth final for the Germans and they are yet to lose in a final match. Their other victories were in 1982, 1985, 1989, 1993 and 2009.

For the French, it was their first ever final in the series.

The Germans took the lead in the second minute with a field goal by Wellen from a quick counter attack on the right.

In the 16th minute the French were back on level terms. Peter van Stratten collected the ball on the left and after beating two German defenders, relayed it to Gaspard Baumgarten in the D who rasped a shot past goalkeeper Viktor Aly.

Baumgarten then gave his team the unlikely lead in the 40th minute.

But the Germans were not to be intimidated and soon were back on top.

It was Wellen who scored the two goals in the 44th and 46th minutes to put the champions back in the lead.

And the match was sealed in the 60th minute with Jonas Gomoll scoring his first goal of the tournament to give them a 4-2 lead.

Christopher Ruhr then slotted home the fifth goal in the 68th minute to take his tally to nine in the tournament, which sealed the top-scorer award for the forward player.

Wellen was named the man-of-the-match (final) to add to their victory.

The Star of Malaysia



Germany subdue spirited France

Biswajyoti Brahma


NEW DELHI: First-time finalists France played hard but it was not enough to stop Germany from claiming their record sixth title at the Hero Junior Hockey World Cup at the Major Dhyan Chand Stadium on Sunday. Many had expected it to be a one-sided contest, considering the two teams' past records in the tournament, but France produced an impressive display to trouble Germany before going down 2-5.

The match was much closer than what the scoreline may suggest with France, who dominated the first half, having the upper hand well into the second half too. In fact, at one stage, they had taken a 2-1 lead, forcing a stunned Germany to work hard for the equalizer. But four goals by Germany sealed the match.

The Germans went into attack right from the word go. An incisive run on the left had the French under pressure and a blunder by their defence gave an easy ball to Niklas Wellen inside the 'D' and he scored to give Germany the lead in the second minute.

With Germany moving fast and dominating the first few minutes, it seemed France would find the going tough. But the underdogs recovered remarkably well. They tightened their defence while at the same time mounting counterattacks. They grew in confidence as the match progressed and within the first 10 minutes created a couple of scoring opportunities and a few more after that. Such was the French dominance during this phase that Germany struggled to come up with a single good move.

In the 16th minute, Pieter van Straaten took advantage of a midfield mistake to pass the ball to Gaspard Baumgarten who hit home from the top of the circle to make it even at 1-1. Germany tried hard to wrest the initiative and were successful to some extent when French player Cristoforo Peters-Deutz was shown the yellow card in the 25th minute for foul play.

France immediately put Germany under pressure after the break by earning their first penalty corner. The German goalkeeper stopped the ball but Baumgarten hit home from the deflection to put France ahead. But their joy did not last long as Germany first equalized and then took the lead through two field goals in quick succession from Wellen.

A goal from Jonas Gomoll and another one by Christopher Ruhr late into the second half completed the scoreline.

The Netherlands taught a lesson or two in hockey to Malaysia when they beat the Asian champions 7-2 to claim the bronze medal. The Malaysians were no match to the Dutch who sealed the match in the first half itself, scoring five goals against Malaysia's one. Thierry Brinkman and Tom Hiebendal scored two apiece for the winners.

Belgium were unlucky to finish sixth as they failed to maintain their lead twice.

After both the teams were locked at 2-2 after regulation time, Australia won 3-2 in the tiebreakers.

The Times of India



Germany beat France 5-2, register record sixth world title

NEW DELHI: Niklas Wellen slammed a brilliant hat-trick to guide defending champions Germany to their record sixth world title, beating unheralded France 5-2 in the summit clash of the Hero Junior Men's Hockey World Cup at the floodlit Major Dhyan Chand, on Sunday.

It was a befitting end to the tournament as both Germany and France dished out splendid hockey much to the delight of the sparse crowd present on a chilly night.

Germany rode on five goals which came from the sticks of Wellen (2nd, 44th, 46th minutes), Jonas Gomoll (60th) and Christopher Ruhr (68th) to pocket their sixth world title, two in a row.

For France, Gaspard Baumgarten (16th, 40th) scored both the goals.

The summit clash between underdogs France and five-time champions was touted as a contest between David versus Goliath but it was not one as the French gave the Germans a run for their money, at least in the opening 35 minutes.

Cheered by their ambassador Michael Steiner, the Germans got off to an early lead when Wellen capitalized on a defensive lapse to score a field goal in the second minute.

But the Frenchmen were no mood to go down without a fight and proved the fancied Germans that they were no pushovers.

It was a neck and neck battle in the opening period as both the teams enjoyed nearly similar percentage of ball possession but France's attacks looked more threatening.

France drew parity in the 16th minute, riding on a fine field goal from Baumgarten, who beat Victor Aly in the German goal with a fierce shot from top of the circle.

Therafter, Germany earned two penalty corners but France defence stood tall like a rock to go into the breather locked at 1-1.

The match livened up after the change of ends as France surged ahead against the run of play when Baumgarten converted his side's first penalty corner to stun the Germans.

Germany soon earned a penalty corner but wasted the opportunity.

The Germans, however, drew level four minutes later when an opportunist Wellen scored from a goal-mouth melee.

France pressed hard and secured another penalty corner in the 45th minute but this time Hogo Genestet flicked wide off the target.

The Germans showed their ruthless character after the change of ends and dominated the lion's share of possession.

Germany took the lead two minutes later when an unmarked Wellen took full advantage of another defensive error to slot home the ball and score his third goal of the day.

Shocked by France's game in the opening period, Germany came out as a more determined outfit in the second half with menacing forays into the rival citadel.

The Germans took the game away from France in 60th minute when Jonas Gomoll scored a field goal from close range to increase their lead to 4-2.

France, however, did not give up and earned their third penalty corner just eight minutes from the hooter but failed to execute the chance.

Germany extended their lead in just two minutes from the hooter through a field effort from Ruhr, who emerged as the top-scorer in the tournament with nine goals.

Meanwhile, last edition's silver medalist Netherlands spanked Malaysia 7-2 to bag the bronze medal.

Australia secured the fifth position by beating Belgium 3-2 in the penalty shoot-out after both the teams were locked at 2-2 at the end of regulation time.

While Belgium took the sixth spot, New Zealand finished seventh following its 4-2 win over Korea in the seventh-eighth play-off match.

The Times of India



Germany pip gritty France for World Cup

New Delhi - Niklas Wellen slammed a brilliant hat-trick to guide defending champions Germany to their record sixth world title, beating unheralded France 5-2 in the summit clash of the Hero Junior Men's Hockey World Cup at the floodlit Major Dhyan Chand, here today.

It was a befitting end to the tournament as both Germany and France dished out splendid hockey, much to the delight of the sparse crowd present on a chilly night.

Germany rode on five goals which came from the sticks of Wellen (2nd, 44th, 46th minutes), Jonas Gomoll (60th) and Christopher Ruhr (68th) to pocket their sixth world title, two in a row. For France, Gaspard Baumgarten (16th, 40th) scored both the goals.

The summit clash between underdogs France and five-time champions was touted as a contest between David versus Goliath but it was not one as the French gave the Germans a run for their money, at least in the opening 35 minutes. Cheered by their ambassador Michael Steiner, the Germans got off to an early lead when Wellen capitalized on a defensive lapse to score a field goal in the second minute.

But the Frenchmen were no mood to go down without a fight and proved to the fancied Germans that they were no pushovers. It was a neck and neck battle in the opening half as both the teams enjoyed nearly similar percentage of ball possession but France's attacks looked more threatening.

France drew parity in the 16th minute, riding on a fine field goal from Baumgarten, who beat Victor Aly in the German goal with a fierce shot from top of the circle.

Therafter, Germany earned two penalty corners but France defenders stood like a rock to go into the breather locked at 1-1.

The match livened up after the change of ends as France surged ahead against the run of play when Baumgarten converted his side's first penalty corner to stun the Germans. The Germans, however, drew level four minutes later when an opportunist Wellen scored from a goal-mouth melee.

Thereafter, Germany hit the top gear and scored three goals, with the last coming with just two minutes from the hooter, to kill the contest.

Netherlands take third spot

Meanwhile, last edition's silver medalist Netherlands spanked Malaysia 7-2 to bag the bronze medal. Australia secured the fifth position by beating Belgium 3-2 in the penalty shoot-out after both the teams were locked at 2-2 at the end of regulation time. While Belgium took the sixth spot, New Zealand finished seventh following its 4-2 win over Korea in the seventh-eighth play-off match.

The Tribune



Germany's Ruhr gets player of tournament award

NEW DELHI: It was double delight for Germany's Christopher Ruhr as he was awarded the player of the tournament and the highest goal scorer award after his team successfully defended their Hockey Junior World Cup title at the Major Dhyan Chand National Stadium here Sunday.

Germany won their record sixth title by beating France 5-2 in the final.

French players also had their share of awards as Jean Laurent Kieffer won the best goal of the tournament award while French stopper Edgar Raynaud was presented the best goalkeeper award.

The Times of India



Dutch whipping

Malaysia go down 7-2 to the Netherlands


NEW DELHI:   MALAYSIA played listlessly to succumb to a 7-2 defeat at the hands of Netherlands in the match to determine the bronze medal at the Dyan Chand Stadium in New Delhi yesterday.

It was a poor performance from   Malaysian players who seemed lost, especially after the Dutch   scored twice within the opening five minutes.

"We have to accept the fact that the Dutch are two rungs above us in terms of ability and we were left chasing shadows," conceded coach K. Dharmaraj.

"We need to make our players understand that classification matches are important.

"They are a tired bunch and having lost the semis seems to have affected their state of mind."

The Netherlands drew first blood in the third minute when   captain Roel Bovendeert progressed along the back line, attempted a high shot and batted in the goal from the rebound of the goalkeeper.

The Dutch did not waste any time and added a second goal three minutes later through Thierry Brinkman. 

Malaysia responded with a penalty-corner goal by Zulhairi Hashim and with three goals in four minutes, the match was launched on a high note.

In the 18th minute,  Tom Hiebendaal managed to find the goal after a penalty-corner goalmouth scramble.

The Netherlands increased their lead in the 23rd minute through Milan Van Baal with a sweet deflection behind his back, his sixth goal of the competition.

Brinkman soon scored his second of the match and, down 1-5 going into the break, the road ahead seemed rather steep for the young Malaysian team.

The Dutch were   in control at the start of second half   as Hiebendaal added his second goal.

The Netherlands continued pressing forward and scored their seventh goal through Jelle Galema  with   18 minutes   left  in the game.

Malaysia pulled back via a Zulhairi Hashim penalty-corner but the Netherlands cruised to an easy victory for the bronze medal.

Meanwhile, in the match to determine the 5th-6th placing, Australia defeated Belgium 3-2 in a penalty shoot-out after the match had ended 2-2 in regulation time.

New Straits Times



Malaysia humbled by Holland in third place match

By S. Ramaguru



Malaysia could not rise to the occasion after the semi-final loss to France on Saturday and were duly beaten by Holland in the 3rd placing match on Sunday to end their Junior World Cup campaign in fourth. - Satwant Singh

NEW DELHI:  Malaysia failed to raise their game and had to settle for fourth place in the 10th edition of the Junior World Cup here at the Major Dhyan Chand National Stadium.

The Malaysians lost 2-7 to Holland in the play-off for third place. This is the third time Malaysia had finished fourth in the series after 1979 and 1982.

The Malaysians played poorly and were given a lesson in goal scoring as the free flowing Dutch completely dominated the match.

In the first half alone, the Dutch managed to score five goals and that effectively ended the Malaysians challenge in the game.

Roel Bovendeert scored as early as the third minute and three minutes later Thierry Brinkman added the second to set the pace for the match.

Brinkman ended up with two goals while Tom Hiebendaal also scored a brace in the match.

The other goal scorers for the Dutch were Milan van Baal and Jelle Galema.

Malaysia scored a penalty corner through Zulhairi Hashim but missed with three other penalty corner attempts in the first half.

Malaysia ended the match with another Zulhairi penalty corner but the effort was academic.

The Dutch finished third to ensure the top three spots in the tournament were dominated by the European teams. France and Germany will contest the final.

Australia took fifth place after a 3-2 penalty shootout win over Belgium. Both teams ended regulation time at 2-2.

Belgium had the lead twice through field attempts by Maxime Plennevauv in the 25th minute and Alexander van Linthoudt in the 41st minute.

Each time the Australians came back to level the score through Daniel Beale and Jeremy Hayward in the 39th and 46th minutes respectively, before clinching the tie in the shootout.

New Zealand finished in seventh when they beat South Korea 3-2 in an earlier match.

The Star of Malaysia



Netherlands win bronze medal playoff against Malaysia

The Netherlands drubbed Malaysia 7-2 to win the bronze medal playoff match of the Hockey Junior World Cup at the Major Dhyan Chand National Stadium here Sunday.

Earlier in the day, New Zealand beat South Korea 4-2 in the 7-8th position playoff while Australia beat Belgium 3-2 for fifth place in a penalty shoot-out after the scores were tied 2-2 at regulation time.

The Netherlands drew first blood in the third minute when their captain Roel Bovendeert progressed along the back line, attempted a high shot and batted in a goal after a rebound from the goalkeeper.

The Dutch did not waste any time and added another goal three minutes later by Thierry Brinkman. Malaysia immediately responded with a penalty corner goal.

The Netherlands took control of midfield and made the Malaysians run after their long passes. In the 18th minute, Tom Hiebendaal found the ball in the goalmouth and pushed it in.

The Netherlands increased their lead to 4-1 in the 23rd minute with Milan Van Baal's deflection into the target. Brinkman soon scored his second goal and down 1-5 going into the break, the road ahead seemed steep for Malaysia.

Hiebendaal scored his second goal in the 37th minute and their final one by Jelle Galema, with still 18 minutes to go in the game.

Malaysia pulled back a goal on another penalty corner but the Netherlands cruised to a clean win for the bronze, leaving Malaysia on fourth.

DNA



Netherlands win bronze in Junior Hockey WC

NEW DELHI: The Netherlands spanked Malaysia 7-2 to bag the bronze medal in the Hero Junior Men's Hockey World Cup at the Major Dhyan Chand Stadium on Sunday.

Last edition's silver medallists, Netherlands dished out a clinical performance to rout Malaysia in a lop-sided third-fourth place classification match.

The Netherlands made the encounter a no contest by racing to a 5-1 lead in the first half before pumping in two more goals after the crossover.

For Netherlands, Thierry Brinkman (6th minute, 28th) and Tom Hiebendaal (18th, 37th) scored a brace each, while skipper Roel Bovendeert (3rd), Milan van Baal (23rd) and Jelle (Galema) found the back of the net once each.

Zulhairi Hashim converted two penalty corners in the seventh and 60th minutes to redeem some pride for the Malaysians.

Malaysia, however, had lot of positives to take from the match as they finished on a creditable fourth spot after 1985.

Meanwhile, Australia secured the fifth position by beating Belgium 3-2 in the penalty shoot-out after both the teams were locked at 2-2 at the end of regulation time.

While Belgium took the sixth spot, New Zealand finished seventh following their 4-2 win over Korea in the seventh-eighth play-off match.

The Times of India



Butturini stars. Burras fifth

Australian U21 men beat Belgium on a shoot-out for fifth pl
ace



Goalkeeper Andrew Butturini was one of the stars for Australia’s Under 21 men, the Burras, as they claimed fifth place at hockey’s Junior World Cup on Sunday after twice coming from behind to take the European Junior Champions, Belgium, to a shoot-out before winning 3-2. The Queensland stopper thwarted his Belgian opponents on three occasions in the shoot-out, culminating in holding up Dimitri Cuvelier to run out the attacker’s eight second shot clock and secure victory.

Having soaked up much of the early pressure the Burras fell behind in the 25th minute to Maxime Plennevaux’s close range conversion after Butturini’s initial save. Aussie skipper Daniel Beale equalised just four minutes into the second period with a goal at the back post (below) but the Belgians were soon ahead again, this time through Andre van Linthoudt whose upright shot on the reverse deceived substitute goalkeeper Ed Chittleborough before hitting the backboard.

But the Burras rallied; Cameron Joyce’s penalty corner was saved by the Belgian goalkeeper but not cleared to safety and Northern Territory’s Jeremy Hayward lashed home to equalise for 2-2 with 24 minutes still remaining (below).

Australia looked to have taken the lead moments later but Belgium’s appeal to the video umpire, citing Justin Douglas’ high control as illegal, was upheld and it remained 2-2, much to the disappointment of the Burras.

Late on, Aaron Kershaw saw two penalty corners charged down by the fast-running Belgian defence while at the other end Ed Chittleborough pulled off a good save with his left glove to deny Gaetan Perez. A last minute Australian penalty corner failed to separate the sides and the match went to a shoot-out.

Tied at 1-1 after one shot each Cameron Joyce saw his effort roll past the post but Australian goalkeeper Andrew Butturini, recalled for the shoot-out, saved well from Maxime Capelle. Dylan Wotherspoon and Matthew Dawson both then converted for Australia while Butturini saved again from Arthur van Doren and after four attempts each it was 3-2. From the Burras’ fifth attempt Jeremy Hayward saw his effort miss the goal but, in dramatic circumstances, Dimitri Cuvelier ran out of time before his shot crossed the line, sparking scenes of celebration amongst the Australians.

National Junior Coach Paul Gaudoin said afterwards, “We started slowly, sluggishly, and our first half was not good. We lacked the energy and sharpness we needed but we turned it around in the second half. At half time we spoke about a few of the things we needed to do and we came out with the energy we needed - we were all over them in the second half.”

Paying tribute to his goalkeeper, Gaudoin added, “Credit to Butters [Andrew Butturini] in the one-on-ones - he pulled off some good saves.”

Reflecting at the end of the tournament, Gaudoin said, “Some of these players have really developed throughout the tournament and have played better the further on we have gone. We lost one match by one goal [the quarter-final against Germany] and that’s what’s disappointing [about Australia’s final position]. We played fifth versus sixth against another side, Belgium, who are better than that position would indicate.”

The Burras' quarter-final conquerors Germany took home the Junior World Cup title for a sixth time after a 5-2 win over France in the Final while the Netherlands took bronze after beating Malaysia 7-2.

Junior World Cup, Men
5th-6th Playoff
Delhi, India

On Twitter: #burrashockey


BURRAS 2 (0)*
Daniel Beale 39 (F)
Jeremy Hayward 46 (PC)

BELGIUM 2 (1)
Maxime Plennevaux 25 (F)
Andre van Linthoudt 41 (F)

*The Burras win 3-2 on a shoot-out

Burras squad v Belgium
(listed alphabetically by surname)
Name (Hometown)
Started

Daniel Beale (Brisbane, QLD)
Robert Bell (Brisbane, QLD)
Andrew Butturini (GK) (Burringbar, QLD)
Matthew Dawson (Central Coast, NSW)
Will Gilmour (Melbourne, VIC)
Jeremy Hayward (Darwin, NT)
Aaron Kershaw (Goulburn, NSW)
Frank Main (Perth, WA)
Flynn Ogilvie (Woonona, NSW)
Kane Posselt (Atherton, QLD)
Dylan Wotherspoon (Mulwillumbah, QLD)

Used Substitute
Edward Chittleborough (GK) (Blackwood, SA)
Justin Douglas (Townsville, QLD)
Casey Hammond (Melbourne, VIC)
Cameron Joyce (Port Pirie, SA)
Luke Noblett (Sydney, NSW)
Jayshaan Randhawa (Eltham, VIC)

Unused Substitute
Tyler Cowley (South Morang, VIC)

Final Standings
1. Germany
2. France
3. Netherlands
4. Malaysia
5. Australia
6. Belgium
7. New Zealand
8. Korea
9. Pakistan
10. India
11. Argentina
12. South Africa
13. Spain
14. England
15. Egypt
16. Canada

Hockey Australia media release



Junior Black Sticks win to take seventh place


Junior Black Sticks Men line up for the national anthems ahead of the 7th/8th play-off in New Delhi. Photo: Stanislas Brochier.

The Junior Black Sticks Men have beaten Korea 4-2 tonight to take seventh place at the 2013 Hero Hockey Junior World Cup in New Delhi, India.

It was a committed effort from the Kiwis as they dug deep to finish the tournament with a win. Kane Russell was once again a game changer for New Zealand scoring a hat-trick and working tirelessly in defence.

“We created the most goal scoring chances of any game throughout the tournament.  It was just a little disappointing that we couldn’t score more goals - poor finishing meant we didn’t put away as many as we should have at the beginning of the game,” said head coach Grant Edwards.

“Overall, a pretty gusty performance from the team  - our defence was strong and we limited Korea’s chances – it’s pleasing to have finished seventh,” said Edwards.

Southern’s Jeremy Morris was the first to score in the 11th minute from a reverse stick shot but the lead was shortly lived when Korean’s You Minyoung scored a field goal two minutes later.  In the 17th minute, Russell scored his fifth goal of the tournament, this time it was a field goal rather than his trademark penalty corner conversion.

Korea scored an own goal when a shot was fired into the circle and a video referral showed that it tipped goalkeeper Richard Joyce’s foot and ricocheted into the net.  New Zealand reclaimed the lead three minutes before halftime when Russell scored his second of the game, a perfectly executed drag flick to the bottom left.

In the second half, it was end to end hockey with New Zealand having more possession and a higher number of circle penetrations. The Kiwis had a number of opportunities to stretch their lead -  one of the best was when Russell superbly dribbled it passed three defenders in the circle and Morris was perfectly in position on the far post but he couldn’t connect.

Korea turned up the pressure as the clock ticked down. But the Kiwis kept fighting and in the last ten seconds, they were awarded a penalty corner and Russell got his hat-trick and was subsequently named Player of the Match for the second time in the tournament.

On receiving the award, Russell said it was pleasing that his team got a win after losing the last two games by only just one goal.

“You could tell both teams were tired today, there were lots of mistakes made by both sides but luckily we hung in there, it wasn’t easy,” said Russell.

Stand out players were Russell and midfielder Jared Panchia.

George Muir didn’t play today due to injury.

The Junior Black Sticks are part of the Sir Owen G Glenn Future Black Sticks programme which is about providing specialised coaching, training and international competition experience for the next generation of Black Sticks.

Full time: 4-2 to New Zealand
Half time:  3-2 to New Zealand
New Zealand goal scorers: Jeremy Morris (11th), Kane Russell (17th, 32nd, 70th)
Korea goal scorers: You Minyoung (13th), Own goal (26th)

Hockey New Zealand Media release



Belgium had the best preparation ever says Mathew Cobbaert

Tazeen Qureshy


Belgium finished sixth in the Junior Hockey World Cup after losing to Australia today. Mathew Cobbaert, captain of the Belgium team said, “We had a lot of opportunities. They (Australia) were a few men down, we should have finished the game at that moment but we didn’t do it. We can’t expect to win if we miss chances.”

Belgium had taken an early lead against Australia after Maxime Plennevaux scored the first goal in the 25th minute. After Australia scored an equalizer in the 39th minute, Belgium bounced back to take the lead two minutes later. However, Australia managed to equal again in the next five minutes. The match then went for shoot-outs which ultimately the Burras won.

“We hate to lose. We had trained really hard for the tournament, perhaps, the best preparation the Belgium team had ever had,” he added.

Belgium, who were among the top favorites to win the cup had a great start in the tournament after they defeated Germany in their first match. “We played some good game. We won against Germany which is hopefully going to be the World Champions. So, we probably won against the World Champions. We lost to France which is again in the final. So, we played some good matches.”

Next in line for them is the European Championship which begins next summer. “We will now go back to Belgium , relax a bit and play for our clubs. Then, we recharge ourselves, take positives out of this tour and get back.”

Stick2Hockey.com



Lack of spectators in Junior Hockey WC is a concern: FIH chief

NEW DELHI: Empty seats during the Junior Hockey World Cup has not gone well with the FIH and the world body's chief Leandro Negre on Sunday said that in future the organisers should be pro-active in bringing spectators in the stadium.

"India has always been a good host but our only concern is lack of spectators. We are not satisfied with this in the Junior Hockey World Cup and we have to find a solution. In future, the organisers have to be pro-active before the tournament, like free tickets can be distributed in schools and colleges. They can offer free cold drink or tea along with the ticket," Negre said in an interview.

He said it was necessary to popularise the game worldwide and for that raising the glamour quotient was a must.

"We have to do something additional to attract people. It can be Bollywood stars, cheerleaders, fireworks, music, etc. We have to glamourise the game like IPL in cricket. Hockey India League is a right step in this direction. We can not compete with cricket but we can approach," he said.

Negre also proposed to hold 2018 Senior Hockey World Cup matches in two different cities with semifinals and final in Delhi.

"Delhi is the capital and hockey event is one among thousand other events (in other sports) while we have seen packed stadiums in smaller cities like Jallandhar or Ranchi. Similarly in Malaysia, Johor Bahru had packed stadium which was lacking in Kuala Lumpur. In Delhi, the stadium is also big and it is tough to have packed crowd.

"I have proposed to Hockey India to have pool matches of 2018 WC in two different cities like Mohali or Ranchi or in Odisha and semifinals and final in Delhi. But it is our (FIH) opinion and there has to be consent of both the sides," he said.

FIH is also planning to introduce Hockey5 on the lines of Hockey9 to popularise the game.

"Hockey 5 is an innovative idea which will make the game spectator friendly, less expensive and popular like indoor and beach hockey in Europe," Negre said.

Asked about his views on resumption of Indo-Pak bilateral hockey, he said that FIH has always favoured it.

"It will be fantastic if India and Pakistan can revive their hockey rivalry. Both the federations are ready but there is political aspect also which they have to consider. My personal opinion is that whenever they play this bilateral series, one test match should be held in Dhaka to promote the game in Bangladesh," said the veteran administrator.

Asked about India's dismal show in Junior Hockey World Cup, Negre said that Indian players need to be mentally tough.

"India has a glorious past of hockey and people want medals immediately which is not possible. It takes time to build a team and they have to be patient. But Indian hockey has improved in the last five years. The weakness of the team is lack of mental strength," he said.

"Indian team is not mentally strong like Germany, Holland. For example, they could not win a crucial match against Korea despite leading 3-1. Teams like Germany or Holland or Australia would not have drawn the match from that stage. But I am sure that India will do well in 2018 senior World Cup," he added.

The Times of India



FIH chief supports SC on sports bodies

Biswajyoti Brahma


NEW DELHI: International Hockey Federation (FIH) chief Leandro Negre on Sunday agreed with the Supreme Court when he said that only sportspersons should head sports federations. The Supreme Court had recently expressed concern over the falling standard of hockey in the country while stating that politicians and businessmen heading sports bodies were causing harm to the games.

"Yeah. It should be that way only. Because the sportspersons love the game they play sport passionately. They know everything about their game. I am watching the match (Junior World Cup semifinal between Netherlands and Malaysia) and I am forming my ideas because I have played the game. If somebody is not from the sport, it's really difficult to understand," Negre told TOI.

But when asked whether FIH had problems in dealing with Hockey India since it is, for all purposes, led by its secretary general who's not a sportsperson, he said: "But I tell you (HI secretary general Narinder) Batra is a key man in India. Thanks to him, things in India are changing. I am telling you because I know."

Hockey India's president Mariamma Koshy is a former state-level player. However, Batra, who actually runs hockey administration in India, does not have any known credentials as a player.

The Times of India



Vietnam slaughtered

MALAYSIA turned on the heat in the men's hockey competition by hammering debutants Vietnam 13-0 at Theinphyu Stadium in Yangon yesterday.

The team, comprising a mix of seniors and juniors, took only two minutes to score their opening goal through Azreen Rizal Nasir and later netted four more for a 5-0 half-time lead.

Malaysia hammered eight more goals after the breather for the convincing win.

Muhammad Azammi Adabi, Dedy Aryadi Jumaidi and Dangerous Lee each scored a brace. "It is a good win in our first game. What is more important is three points in each match and also winning the gold medal," said coach Tai Beng Hai yesterday.

"I have reminded my players not to get overconfident after this win. They need to focus on upcoming matches. We need to play serious hockey."

Beng Hai added his team's big win over Vietnam was not a surprise as Singapore defeated them 8-0. The men's team take on Thailand today while the women play Singapore.

New Straits Times



KL rout Selangor to top group

KUALA LUMPUR: Selangor were given a rude awakening after being trashed 5-1 by Kuala Lumpur in their MHC Under-21 hockey tournament Group B match at the National Hockey Stadium in Bukit Jalil.

KL and Selangor had gone into the match tied on points and looking for a win to top the group.

It was Selangor who fired the first salvo with a Faridzul Afiq Mohd field goal in the second minute. However, KL hit back with a hotly-contested own goal in the 17th minute.

Galvanised, KL went 2-1 up through a Ahmad Iqwan Shah Harun field goal four minutes later. Two more field goals by Nor Syafiq Sumantri (33rd minute) and Daniel Asyraf Abdul Ghani (38th) and a penalty corner by Fahed Saifullah Shahrom Jamil (50th minute) completed the rout.

KL coach Shaiful Azli Abd Rahman was delighted with the win, which puts his side on top of Group B with nine points from three matches.

KL have now scored 16 goals and conceded just one.

“I’m very happy with our performance. We expected a tight match against Selangor ... I’m just glad that we came away with all three points,” said Shaiful.

“It wasn’t the sharpest performance ... we need to tighten our defence but today we had Nor Azrul (Abdul Rahman) who had just recovered from fever. He wasn’t 100% but it’s a good to have him back in the side with two more group matches to go.”

In Group A, Sabah pulled off a surprise 3-2 win over Terengganu to hand the group leaders their first defeat of the tournament.

A double by Mawardi Hamirin in the eighth (field goal) and 30th minutes (penalty corner) and an own goal in the 47th minute were enough to secure the win for Sabah.

Alif Naqiuddin Ahmad Nadhri (7th) and captain M. Shahiram Zali (14th) replied for Terengganu.

The Star of Malaysia



Comeback kings East Grinstead remain unbeaten


East Grinstead Niall Stott

East Grinstead top the men’s Maxinutrition Hockey 5s Championship Premier Division after staging a spectacular comeback against Canterbury on Sunday.

Trailing 4-3 at the break, East Grinstead fought back in an explosive second half and a third goal from Niall Stott (pictured) in the dying seconds secured the victory.

They followed this up with a 6-2 win over Holcombe to make it four wins from four.

After losing out to East Grinstead on the Saturday, Reading were looking to get back on track and they did exactly that with a comfortable 16-1 victory over Loughborough Students.

Nick Caitlin and Tom Carson both scored hat-tricks but Simon Mantell stole the show, hitting an impressive six goals. Clearly in top form, he hit another four in Reading’s 7-4 win over Beeston in the final game of the day.

Doncaster had a bad day at the office, conceding 11 goals in both of their games.

Simon Egerton and Bart Zywicka scored four each as Bowdon beat them 11-3 and although Doncaster managed to score five goals in their second game against Canterbury, their opponents had too much firepower for them and ran out 11-5 winners.

Hardeep Jawanda scored a hat-trick and there were braces for Ben Allberry, Kwan Browne, Mickel Pierre and Liam Foster. That result will be of some tonic to Canterbury after their narrow loss to East Grinstead and they remain third in the table.

Sevenoaks lost to Holcombe 8-3 in their first game and battled to a 4-4 draw against Loughborough Students it the other and now drop to fifth in the table.

Despite their loss to Reading, Beeston managed to chalk up a victory, beating Bowdon 8-3. Adam Dixon, David Ames and Sam Ward all scored two each.

Results from Sunday, December 15 2013:


Bowdon 11, Doncaster 3; Canterbury 7, East Grinstead 8; Holcombe 8, Sevenoaks 3; Loughborough Students 1, Reading 16; Beeston 8, Bowdon 3; Doncaster 5, Canterbury 11; East Grinstead 6, Holcombe 2; Sevenoaks 4, Loughborough Students 4; Reading 7, Beeston 4.

England Hockey Board Media release



Great Scott! Slough are still top of the Premier Division table


Alex Scott scored five goals to help keep Slough at the top of the women’s Maxinutrition Hockey 5s Championship Premier Division following day two’s action at Bromsgrove School on Sunday.

After hitting five goals in yesterday’s games, Scott picked up where she left off and inspired her side to a 5-0 win over East Grinstead with a hat-trick.

Slough scored five again in their second game, running out 5-1 victors over Sutton Coldfield, with Scott finding the net twice.

Bowdon Hightown stay second in the table after Sally Walton scored seven goals in their two matches, a 5-0 win over Olton and West Warwickshire and an 8-2 victory over Leicester.

Nikki Kidd is another player hitting top form. She scored an impressive six goals in Canterbury’s 11-4 win over Olton and West Warwickshire. She wasn’t done yet though, as she added another two to her tally in a 7-5 thriller against Harleston Magpies.

Reading are third in the table after scoring two convincing wins. They outclassed Harleston to win 4-0 in their first game but the best was yet to come as they put ten past East Grinstead. They had six different scorers in the 10-1 victory with Team GB star Helen Richardson-Walsh netting twice.

Despite losing out to Slough, Sutton Coldfield still have something to cheer about after edging out Leicester 3-2 in their other game, courtesy of two goals from Jen Parkinson-Mills.

The Maxinutrition Hockey 5s Finals will be played on 2 February 2014 at Wembley Arena. You can get more information and buy tickets at www.englandhockey.co.uk/maxi5s

Results from Sunday, December 15 2013:

Olton and West Warwickshire 4, Canterbury 11; Harleston Magpies 0, Reading 4; East Grinstead 0, Slough 5; Sutton Coldfield 3, Leicester 2; Bowdon Hightown 5, Olton and West Warwickshire 0; Canterbury 7, Harleston Magpies 5; Reading 10, East Grinstead 1; Slough 5, Sutton Coldfield 1; Leicester 2, Bowdon Hightown 8.

England Hockey Board Media release



Queensmead ready for more action in Monday's fourth Test match

JONATHAN COOK


TWO tribes go to war might be an apt summation of the 3-2 defeat suffered by the South African men’s hockey team in the third Test against Argentina at Queensmead in Durban on Saturday and sets the tone for another hard-fought battle when the fourth Test kicks off at the same venue come 3 pm Monday.

A remarkable 10 players were sent to the sin bin by respected international umpires Gary Simmonds and Sean Rapaport. Of these, eight were yellow card suspensions of five to 10 minutes on the sidelines – five Argentineans and three South Africans – with teams down to nine men at times.

The second-half shuttle run – three yellows apiece - damaged the less experienced South Africans to a greater extent.

“The sin bins certainly seemed to affect us more than Argentina, who are vastly more experienced in the Test arena,” SA head coach Charlie Pereira said Sunday. “We were very good in the first half and poor in the second. Our tempo dropped, we coughed up ball in midfield, and paid the price.”

The coach said SA started the game well with two very good chances that were not converted. “That could have changed the game. We still led 1-0 until just before half-time, when we gave away a soft penalty corner and Argentina scored from a variation.”

The SA side has four new Test match faces as well as recalled players, while men like regular skipper and twice World All Stars selection Austin Smith were rested for this series.

“We are seeing positives in the new blood that has been introduced, which is gratifying,” said Pereira.

Having already qualified for World Cup 2014, an objective going into the series was to have a good look at a wider pool of players.

“Some senior players are battle-scarred after years in the trenches and some mistakes keep repeating themselves on the field,” said the coach.

“It is a bitter blow to lose the series [SA lost the first Test 4-2 and the second Test 1-0], especially after our first-half performance in which we created numerous chances, but the lads will definitely pick themselves up for Monday.”

SA skipper for the series, Rhett Halkett, said the second-half’s sin-bin shuttle cost his team, while efficiency in front of goal was also an issue.

“Unfortunately we were not street smart enough with [keeping] the ball when we were a man, sometimes two men down. We created some good scoring opportunities in both halves but we were not ruthless enough in taking our chances.”

The defender said it was bittersweet for the team to have competed with such heart and passion in a game where SA could have forced a result, only to lose the series.

“Now we have to dig exceptionally deep as a team to continue improving on our previous three performances while also keeping the bigger picture in mind.

"This group is still hungry for a positive result in this series.”

SA Hockey Association media release



7th Nolands PSI Nationals Finals Day lives up to its billing

JONATHAN COOK in Cape Town



Ash Rutherford of the Boland Foxes is in possession as Aimee Davis of the Cape Town Seals challenges during the Girls' U16A final at the 7th Nolands Pro Series Indoor (PSI) Nationals in the Good Hope Centre, Cape Town on Saturday. The Seals beat the Foxes 4-1. Photo: ACTION PHOTOGRAPHY

The 7th Nolands Pro Series Indoor (PSI) Nationals U16 and U18 boys' and girls’ gold medal matches that took place in Cape Town on Saturday produced some superb spectacles.

Indeed, any one of the casual spectators who wandered in to the Good Hope Centre on Finals Day could not have escaped the excitement and sheer drama that played out on in the title showdowns as well as the bronze medal matches on Courts 1 and 2.

The gold medal matches took place simultaneously on the adjacent courts and the quality of play kept the fans enthralled and entertained as the action swung from one goalmouth to the other.

Some finals had relatively modest scores in comparison to the goal-for-goal exchanges in the preliminary rounds, but that does not imply the strike zones were quiet pieces of real estate. Rather, it is a tribute to the at times quite brilliant goalkeeping of the stoppers - and the skills of defenders match hardened and battle-fit after an intense eight or nine face-offs in three-and-a-half days.

The majority of players were on court for the better part of six hard match hours during that time and the quality of their play was the end result of discipline, dedication and sheer endurance, as well as the hard work put in by the coaching staff.

The Boys’ U18A final saw the Johannesburg Gryphons shade the Namibian Hawks – who were gunning for their first ever boys’ gold medal in A section PSI – by a 6-5 scoreline in a crackerjack encounter that could have gone either way.

The Girls’ U18A gold medal match saw the Johannesburg Gryphons edge the East Rand Quaggas 2-1 in another tense affair. The Quaggas’ girls were also seeking their first ever gold medal in A section PSI.

Doing the U18A boys’ and girls’ double was a triumph for the big Gryphons franchise owned by former SA striker and Atlanta 96 Olympian All Fredericks, but one had to feel for the Hawks and Quaggas franchises, who were both in search of their first titles at U18A level.

The Boys’ U16A final was a gripping match-up that many would have paid money to see - the Boland Foxes overpowering the East Rand Quaggas 5-3 in a match where the difference lay in the quality of the corner injection. The Foxes’ PC injectors were fast and accurate, thereby giving the trapper and drag-flicker time to execute with success.

To their credit, Foxes coach Luke Thonissen’s defenders were also immense against the likes of the talented Steven Paulo.

In the Western Cape derby, the Girls’ U16A gold medal match went the way of the Cape Town Seals to the tune of 4-1 over the Foxes.

The Boland Foxes franchise (which includes the Highland Scorpions teams) owned by former SA captain and double Olympian Bruce Jacobs was the runaway winner of the 2013 Franchise of the Year award.

There was also much joy for a new franchise, Brandon Swart’s Pietermaritzburg-based Midlands Stallions.


Courtney Halle of the victorious Midlands Stallions on attack during the Boys' U16B final against the Highland Scorpions of Boland. Photo: ACTION PHOTOGRAPHY

Under coach Richard Robertson the Stallions won the U18B girls’ final in an intense 8-second showdown against Durban Tigers, while Swart headed up the Stallions U16 coaching team (with able assistance from Paul Gonlag) that helped their side edge out the Highland Scorpions of the Boland 4-3 in a heart-stopping encounter.

The successes against seasoned franchises - and with it promotion to the Girls’ U18A section and Boys’ U16A section for the 2014 Noland PSI Nationals - certainly bodes well for the new Stallions franchise, as the midlands of KwaZulu-Natal is a hotbed of talent.

All the Finals Day results, including the B sections, and everything else you require regarding the 7th Nolands Pro Series Indoor (PSI) Nationals - from preliminary round results, to logs to fixtures to videos - can be found at www.psihockey.co.za and it’s well worth a look.

* For the record, the teams taking part in the 7th Nolands Pro Series Indoor (PSI) Nationals included new franchises the Pretoria Pitbulls, Bloem Bears (Bloemfontein), Midlands Stallions from KZN and the Southern Cape Sables.

Plus, of course, regulars the Boland Foxes, Highland Scorpions (Boland), Cape Town Seals, Peninsula Sharks, Cape Sunbirds, Durban Panthers, Durban Tigers, East London Jaguars, East Rand Quaggas, Namibia Hawks, Namibia Eagles, PE Vipers (Port Elizabeth), Johannesburg Gryphons, West Coast Barracudas and the West Coast Stingrays.

The 7th Nolands PSI Nationals U13 and U14 boys’ and girls’ competitions for the year 2013, which took place from Saturday, December 7 to Tuesday, December 10, had 77 teams and more than 750 participants who played in 336 games of indoor hockey three-and-a-half days, while the PSI Nationals U16 and U18 boys’ and girls’ competitions, which included 65 teams and more than 630 participants playing 290 indoor matches, saw the on-court action explode on Wednesday, December 11 - with the gold medal finals day on Saturday morning, December 14.

The organisation involved in an event of this magnitude – from transport to accommodation to meals to entertainment and more - has to be seen to be believed and all involved should take a bow.

Can’t wait for PSI Nationals 2014.

PSI Media release



Aussie World Cup officials

Three women & two men amongst FIH World Cup officiating team
s



Three Australians will form part of the women’s World Cup officiating team after the International Hockey Federation (FIH) announced the officials for the tournament, which takes place in The Hague in May and June next year.

South Australian Rosie Stern, who has just returned from the World League Finals where she was the tournament director, will take on a Technical Official role in the Netherlands while umpires Melissa Trivic (Western Australia)  (pictured) and Lisa Roach (New South Wales) have also received the call-up. The three Australians join a team of 27 umpires and officials for the women’s World Cup.

They will be joined in The Hague by two of their male counterparts, umpires Adam Kearns (Queensland) and Tim Pullman (South Australia), whose appointments to the men’s World Cup were recently announced by the FIH.

Hockey Australia congratulates all five of them on their selections and extends its congratulations to Gary Marsh who has been appointed as a Technical Official at the men's Champions Challenge in Malaysia next year and to Jan Hadfield, who has been named Umpires Manager at the women's Champions Challenge in Glasgow, Scotland, next year.

The women’s and men’s Rabobank Hockey World Cup tournaments take place in The Hague, Netherlands, between 31 May and 15 June next year. The Kookaburras will arrive in Europe looking to defend the World Cup crown they won in 2010 while the Hockeyroos will be aiming to replicate the form they’ve carried through 2013, which has seen them take home the silver medal at the World League Finals and gold at the Oceania Cup and World League Semi-Final tournaments.

Hockey Australia media release