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News for 19 November 2016

All the news for Saturday 19 November 2016

Pakistan team cleared by government for Junior hockey World Cup in India: PHF

KARACHI: Pakistan Hockey Federation has finally got clearance from the government to send its national junior team to Lucknow, India for the FIH Junior World Cup next month.

A reliable source in the PHF said that the ministry of inter-provincial coordination has informed the federation that the government has given the NOC for participating in the December 8-18 Junior World Cup.

"The PHF officials were anxious about getting the NOC to send its team to India next month as the FIH event is scheduled from December 8 to 18th and it is an important event for the future of Pakistan hockey. But now the ministry has informed the PHF that the government has given the clearance," the source said.

He said given the current tension between the two countries, the PHF had genuine concerns whether they would get clearance to play in India.

"The PHF has already set up camp for the junior team in Lahore under the supervision of Olympian Tahir Zaman and they have high hopes that the team would do well in India," the source said.

There was more good news for Pakistan hockey as a cheque of 20 million rupees was also released as a special grant by the government for the cash strapped PHF during of a meeting PHF secretary Shahbaz Ahmed had with Pakistan Sports Board officials in Islamabad.

The PHF is confident of a good show from its junior team in Lucknow as the under-21 players recently played in the final of a top ranking tournament in Malaysia. They lost 1-3 to Australia but did well overall.

Pakistan has in the past taken part in the senior World Cup, Commonwealth Games hockey tournament and Champions Trophy on Indian soil in the last few years.

The Times of India

Govt allows PHF to participate in Jr World Cup in India

Lahore - Pakistan government has allowed Pakistan Hockey Federation to participate in the Junior Hockey World Cup to be held in India, next month.

A PHF official has confirmed this on Friday saying the PSB has received NOC from the government, and the board will forward it to the PHF on Monday. “Yes, the ministry has sent the NOC letter to Pakistan Sports Board and we are expecting to receive it by Monday,” the official said.

The PHF official has further confirmed that the visa applications of team members have already submitted at Indian consulate. “We have already applied for visas. Our itinerary will be finalised soon and if we get the visa in time, we shall be in Lucknow by December 5, so that the players may get ample opportunity to acclimatise with the conditions,” he added.

The FIH Junior Hockey World Cup will be played in Lucknow, India from December 8 to 18. Pakistan hockey team has been placed in Pool B alongside Belgium, Netherlands and Egypt. The green shirts will play their first match of the mega junior event on December 9 against the Netherlands, followed by games against Egypt and Belgium on 11th and 12th December respectively.

The Nation

Experienced Indian Squad for Lucknow Junior World Cup

s2h team

With two Rio Olympians in Harmanpreet Singh and goalie Vikas Dahiya in the list, India picks up an envious and experienced outfit for the forthcoming Junior World Cup to be held in Lucknow. As India finished medal-less at home in the last edition in Delhi, serious efforts have been taken up to turn the tide at Lucknow. The team composition speaks for this.Mandeep Singh, who is in the senior core group, Harjeet Singh, who lead India to Valencia victory recently and also oscillate between senior and colts side, India present a formidable crack team for the home's big number.

Vikas Dahiya
Krishan B Pathak

Dipsan Tirkey
Harmanpreet Singh
Varun Kumar
Vikramjit Singh
Gurinder Singh

Harjeet Singh
Santa Singh
Nilakanta Sharma

Parvinder Singh
Gurjant Singh
Armaan Qureshi
Mandeep Singh
Ajit Kumar Pandey
Simranjeet Singh


Hockey India announces men's team for Junior World Cup

NEW DELHI: Hockey India on Friday announced an 18-member Indian junior men's team for the Uttar Pradesh Junior World Cup scheduled to be held at Lucknow from December 8 to 18.

The team includes drag flicker and defender Harmanpreet Singh, who has been nominated for the 2016 Rising Star of the Year award from the FIH. He was also part of the Indian team that participated in the 2016 Rio Olympics.

Known for his abilities as a striker, Mandeep Singh too finds himself in the squad. He was part of India's forward line in the FIH Champions Trophy in London earlier this year where he rose to the occasion scoring three field goals in crucial matches.

He will be joined in the forward line by Armaan Qureshi, Parvinder Singh, Gurjant Singh, Ajit Kumar Pandey and Simranjeet Singh.

Defender and dragflicker Varun Kumar who scored the maximum goals in India's successful campaign in Valencia will be joined by Vikramjit Singh and Gurinder Singh in the defence structure, while the midfield will be formed by Santa Singh, Nilakanta Sharma, Manpreet, Sumit along with Harjeet Singh.

India's custodian in goal will be Vikas Dahiya who was also part of the Indian team at the Rio Olympics as a stand-by goalkeeper for PR Sreejesh. Krishan B Pathak will be the second goalkeeper for India.

"The final combination has been formed keeping in mind the recent results. I believe this team combination is the best we have in junior hockey and the boys are ready both mentally and physically to do everything it takes to stand on the podium," said Roelant Oltmans.

"Though our goal is to win the gold medal, we will be taking it match-by-match and the best part is that this group knows how to keep their emotions in check," he added.

India will begin their campaign against Canada on December 8th and will face England on December 10th and play South Africa on December 12th as part of their Pool D league matches.

The matches can be seen live on Star Sports 4 and Star Sports HD 4.


GOALKEEPERS: Vikas Dahiya, Krishan B Pathak

DEFENDERS: Dipsan Tirkey, Harmanpreet Singh, Varun Kumar, Vikramjit Singh, Gurinder Singh.

MIDFIELDERS: Harjeet Singh, Santa Singh, Nilakanta Sharma Manpreet, Sumit

FORWARDS: Parvinder Singh, Gurjant Singh, Armaan Qureshi, Mandeep Singh, Ajit Kumar Pandey, Simranjeet Singh.

The Times of India

We will take it match by match in Junior World Cup: Oltmans

BENGALURU: Indian senior hockey team's chief coach Roelant Oltmans said the focus of the junior team is on its opening match in what he thinks will be an unpredictable World Cup beginning in Lucknow next month.

"Every tournament we go into we wish for the best possible results. Our focus is that of winning the first match. If we did that we go to the next round. Every team in the last 16 years wanted to win the junior world cup, there is no doubt. We will take game by game and that's what I have always done," Oltmans said on Friday.

Asked who would be the tougher side to beat in the tournament, Oltmans said, "It is difficult to say which team is tougher than others, because no team is consistent, now a days. Take for instance, England which lost all their junior players because they crossed the age".

The Dutchman is also not worried the possible showdown against Pakistan.

"Pakistan is not in our group. We are in Group B and they are in Group D. We might face them, but not before semifinals. For me, it doesn't make any sense to talk about a game between India and Pakistan.

"But we will have a long chat a day about it before the match against Pakistan when you all come to Lucknow," he said in a lighter vein.

Asked it has been long since Indian junior team has won the World Cup, Harendra said the team can take pride in history, but that alone does not give anything on platter.

"Yes, we take pride in history that we once won the world cup (in 2001), but that does not give anything on the plate. We instead have to live in present," he said.

Oltmans said the team has two practice games to play against Netherlands and Argentina ahead of the World Cup in Lucknow.

Junior coach Harendra Singh said the probables for senior team will be selected from the pool of junior players after the World Cup.

"These are a bunch of highly talented players. After the world cup, we will decide on the probables for the senior team from the pool of junior players. For now, we are focusing on the upcoming tournament," he said.

Replying to another query, Harendra said both the senior and junior teams practice together and the latter get to learn many things from the former.

"For sometime now, the senior and junior teams are playing together or practising together, which helps. It is paying dividends too," he said.

The Times of India

India banking on team of all-rounders

Manuja Veerappa

BENGALURU: The Punjabi music on the loudspeaker, which is an integral part of the Indian junior hockey team, played as usual in the background at the SAI, South Centre on Friday.

There were a few crestfallen faces among the jubilant ones as Hockey India's High Performance director Roelant Oltmans announced the 18-member squad for the Junior World Cup beginning in Lucknow on December 8.

As the core group has been quite set over the past few months, there were no surprises in the squad coached by Harendra Singh. The team's captain and his deputy are yet to be named.

The squad has a healthy sprinkling of players who have sparkled in international tournaments both with the senior and junior teams. But the test that awaits them is the pressure of playing a World Cup at home.

The Times of India

Junior Pan Am experience colours approach to World Cup for Canadian youth

Shaheed Devji

Jamie Wallace carries the ball in Canada’s first game at the 2016 Junior Pan American Games in Toronto in May 2016 (By Yan Huckendubler)

With less than one month to go before the 2016 Men’s Junior World Cup in India, the anticipation is building.

Canada’s Under-21 Men’s National Team will be one of sixteen teams looking to claim the title of best junior nation in the world, and with that can come some pressure.

But for a group of young athletes who are headed to their first Junior World Cup, the experience of the World Cup qualifier last summer in Toronto has helped calm the nerves.

“You really have to play your best each game to get the result,” says 17 year-old Jamie Wallace, who – at 16 – was the youngest player on the Canadian roster at the 2016 Junior Men’s Pan American Championship in Toronto in May.

“I didn’t expect the game to be as fast, especially against the lower ranked teams,” he adds. “I was really surprised how good the Mexicans were, how good Trinidad was. It just shows that at the international level, if you have a bad game any team can win.”

Canada got off to a less than ideal start at the Pan Ams, losing its first two games.

But it was that adversity that helped the likes of Wallace, and teammate Fin Boothroyd, and others like Thomson Harris get their international bearings quickly.

“We learned to battle the adversity,” says Boothroyd, who was also playing in his first major international competition at the Pan Ams. “Coming out and losing our first two games was pretty difficult – we were expected to win those ones – and just dealing with the expectations and pushing through it and being cohesive as a team.”

It brought the team together. Canada went on to win its next three games and finish with a silver medal and a spot in the Junior World Cup.

“The feeling that we were going to go to a Junior World Cup and the excitement around the guys and the coaching staff was just electric,” Boothroyd adds.

What’s more, it gave many players a taste of what a top-flight international competition is like and has prepared them for what’s to come in India in December.

“I’m excited again. I’m excited to face this new competition and see how we can do,” says Boothroyd. “I sort of have a little bit of experience under my belt internationally now but definitely not at the level we are going to be experiencing in India.”

The World Cup will be another step up.

And despite it being unknown for all but two of the Canadian men (after playing in 2013, Brandon Pereira and Balraj Panesar will be competing in their second Junior World Cup), the Junior Pan American Games experience will inform how players – especially those who have nothing bigger to compare it to – approach the upcoming competition.

“Mentality wise, you can’t really underestimate anyone, especially at the World Cup. All the teams are going to be really good, they’re all going to be really prepared,” says Wallace, who – as a part of Canadian tradition afforded to the youngest player on the team – wore the captain’s arm band in the Gold Medal match in Toronto.

Wallace is no longer the youngest on the team – although he is not far off in age. But what he and his teammates have gained in experience will not only help them, but others, who in India, will be in the same boat they were in just months ago.

“I definitely feel a bit more ready and experienced,” he says. “I can give some advice to the new guys because I think when they step on the field they’re going to be shocked at how good those guys are.”

Canada opens the Junior World Cup against host India on December 8th at 7:00pm local time.

Help Canada’s Under-21 along the road to the Junior World Cup. Local apparel outlet Nine O’Clock Gun is once again selling Red Caribou hats. $10 from every purchase goes directly to the team, to help offset costs. Buy two hats and get a 25% discount with the promo code juniorcaribou. Click here to buy.

Field Hockey Canada media release

Bleby names U21 squad for Junior World Cup

Jon Bleby gives the team talk to his England U21 side

Jon Bleby, England U21 Men’s Head Coach has named the 18 athletes to travel to India to compete in the 2016 Junior World Cup. The tournament which takes place in Lucknow from 8-18 December brings together the top 16 U21 sides in the world as they fight to take home the coveted title of Junior World Champions.

England are in Pool D and will open their campaign against South Africa on 8 December. Their second pool match pits them against hosts, India on 10 December before they round things off against Canada on 12 December. The quarter finals and placement matches take place from the 14th of December with the final all set for the 18th.

Bleby has named a strong side with 14 of the athletes who came fourth at the recent Sultan of Johor Cup travelling to the tournament in India. The four players who did not travel to Johor who have come in are James Albery, Jonty Griffiths, Ed Horler and Liam Sanford.    

Beeston are the best represented with four of the squad coming from the Nottinghamshire outfit. Loughborough Students and Durham University have each supplied three of the squad.

Head Coach Bleby told England Hockey:

“We are really excited and looking forward to the challenge of the Junior World Cup. As a group we will strive individually & collectively to learn as much from the experience as we possibly can and carefully taking one game at a time our goal is to win every game. The Junior World Cup is always an extremely tough tournament but I strongly believe we have selected a very skilful & hard working group who are good to go.”

The squad and support staff in full can be found below:

James Albery (Beeston)
Will Calnan (Hampstead and Westminster)
Jack Clee (Birmingham University)
James Gall (Nottingham University)
Robbie Gleeson (Beeston)
Jonty Griffiths (Loughborough Students)
Ed Horler (Loughborough Students)
Chris Proctor (Beeston)
Toby Reynolds-Cotterill (GK) (Loughborough Students)
Liam Sanford (Bath Buccaneers)
Peter Scott (Bath Buccaneers)
James Simpson (Hampstead and Westminster)
Rhys Smith (Durham University)
Tom Sorsby (Beeston)
Jack Turner (Durham University)
Eddie Way (Birmingham University)
Jack Waller (Durham University)
Chris Wyver (GK) (Old Georgians)

Non Travelling Reserves        
Elliot Bullman (GK) (Teddington)
Elliot Hibell (Beeston)
Josh Pavis (Beeston)
Duncan Scott (Southgate)
James Oates (Canterbury)

Support Staff  
Jon Bleby         Head Coach
Paul Gannon     Manager
Kwan Browne    Assistant Coach
David Ralph      Assistant Coach
Mark Bateman   Performance Analyst
Sandy Tubby    Physiotherapist
Dominika Goroszeniuk   Doctor

England Hockey Board Media release

Bennett "ready for the next chapter."

Bennett Keegan and Booth celebrate

This week one of England Hockey’s most well known and well loved team managers stood down from her duties. Melissa Bennett, who was most recently the Women’s U21 Team Manager has taken the decision to move away from her management role in order to spend more time with her family.

A popular member of the “team behind the team” at U21 level, Melissa started out as a Futures Cup manager nine years ago when the tournament was still in its infancy. She could not have known then that the path she would take would lead her all the way up to becoming a vital cog in the machine for the U21s.

Craig Keegan, the Head Coach of the Women’s U21s who has worked with Melissa said:

"Mel significantly contributed to implementing the Single System and managed that process through its first few years. As an England team manager, I have worked with Mel for the past 4 years at U21 level. She is someone that players and staff valued greatly. Mel managed the U21 team that qualified for the 2013 Junior World Cup, where the team finished 4th. She will be greatly missed."

Bennett centre with the rest of the U21 coaching staff

With the U21s on their way out to Chile right now to compete in the Junior World Cup it will perhaps seem strange to many not to see the familiar face of Bennett out there with the squad, but despite the obvious fear of missing out for the first time in years, she is now ready to move onto the next chapter. She told England Hockey:

“When I got involved with team managing I didn't really know what to expect. My first role at Futures Cup turned out to be the start of a nine year journey, ending in managing the U21 England and GB women's teams.”

“For me the role was about being a part of a team where my task was to support players and staff to perform at their best. I have worked with very talented players over the years and most importantly watched them all develop from junior players into senior internationals or those starting their careers as professionals. It has been fun, challenging and rewarding and I would like to say thank you to everyone I have worked with. And of course i want to say good luck to the women and men at the Junior World Cups over the next few weeks.”

All at England and Great Britain Hockey would like to wish Melissa well and thank her for her superb efforts over the years.

England Hockey Board Media release

HC Oranje-Rood set for massive Dutch derby

The EHL KO16 draw served up a series of potential fireworks with some of the world’s best club sides learning who their opposition will be at Eindhoven’s HC Oranje-Rood from April 14-17, 2017.
The home club HC Orange-Rood have been paired with AH&BC Amsterdam in one of the marquee games of the competition. The Eindhoven club recently beat Amsterdam 3-1 in the Hoofdklasse and so the latter will be keen on a measure of revenge.
The winner of this tie will go on to meet the victor from the meeting of Irish champions Lisnagarvey and Atlètic Terrassa.
German champions Rot Weiss Köln will meet the reigning EHL holders SV Kampong in the KO16 in a repeat of last year’s KO8 meeting. The German side will be looking for a completely different outcome having lost that tie 5-1.
The winner of that game will meet either Polish champions WKS Grunwald Poznan or Real Club de Polo.
It’s an all-Belgian battle for KHC Dragons and Racing Club de Bruxelles. They are another couple of sides who know each other well with this match-up between the two teams who met in their national grand final in the spring.
Their KO8 opponent is guaranteed to be contesting that phase of the competition for the first time. Racing Club de France and Ireland’s Banbridge have both never made it to the last eight of the EHL and so will be eyeing a special piece of history.
English champions Wimbledon have once again been handed a tough draw as they look to get the better of three-time EHL winners UHC Hamburg.
Their section of the draw features Mannheimer HC and Spanish winners Club Egara in what looks another well-matched tussle.
The fixture schedule and ticketing details will be finalised in the coming weeks.
EHL KO16 draw, April 14 to 17, 2017 – HC Oranje-Rood, Eindhoven:
HC Oranje-Rood vs AH&BC Amsterdam
Lisnagarvey vs Atlètic Terrassa
Wimbledon vs UHC Hamburg
Mannheimer HC vs Club Egara
KHC Dragons vs Racing Club de Bruxelles
Banbridge vs Racing Club de France
WKS Grunwald Poznan vs Real Club de Polo de Barcelona
SV Kampong vs Rot-Weiss Köln

Euro Hockey League media release

Vikki Bunce retires from international hockey

Vikki Bunce

After 206 caps for Scotland and 14 for Great Britain, Vikki Bunce has announced her retirement from International hockey.

One of Scotland’s most exciting players since she burst onto the scene, Vikki has played in three Commonwealth Games; played in two World Cups (outdoor 2002 & indoor 2007); won Gold in the 2011 EuroHockey Nations Championship II; won bronze in Champions Challenge I in 2011; and was captain of the women’s national team.

The decision to retire has not been an easy one for Bunce and she wrestled with the decision for many months, being extremely proud to have been part of the Scotland team. However, now that the decision has been reached she is grateful to everyone she has played with or been coached by in the past.

Bunce said, “There are so many people I’d like to thank. I’ve been playing international hockey since the age of 13 so there have been so many people that have made a significant contribution to my career. I’ve tried to contact many of these people personally but it’s been so hard when you’ve been at it for so long!

“Both my clubs, Dundee Wanderers and Bonagrass Grove, have played such an important role in my development. From an early age I was fortunate to play with so many fantastic players, like mixed hockey at Wanderers with the likes of Niall Stott then moving to Grove to play with players like Pauline Stott, Sue Fraser and Ali Ramsay. It was incredible and I learnt so much from just being around them.

“The effort from all coaches involved at both clubs made me the player I am today, of that I have no doubt. Laterally the opportunity to coach Dundee Wanderers Ladies team as given me a whole different perspective to hockey, and doing it while playing has been a challenge - but one that I have loved.”

Vikki Bunce

Vikki will continue to play club hockey with Dundee Wanderers but ultimately it’s the challenge of balancing international hockey with work, family and club hockey that has led to Bunce’s decision to retire.

Since the Europeans last summer she has started a new job with sportscotland institute of sport as East & Central Assistant Regional Performance Manager and it has become a main focus for Vikki.

Scotland Senior Women Head Coach Gordon Shepherd paid his own tribute, he said: “Vikki has been an extra special player throughout her career for Scotland. She has been an asset to the senior women’s team, and was exciting to watch on the pitch whether outdoor or indoor. Vikki is without doubt one of the best indoor hockey players Scotland has ever produced. She will be missed by the players, coaches and spectators.”

Of her many achievements playing for her country, the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow is a special memory for Bunce. She added: “I’ve had so many great experiences in a Scotland shirt that it’s tough to pin it down to just one. Walking out at the Opening Ceremony at Glasgow was amazing, it still gives me goose bumps thinking about it – the noise was like nothing I had ever experienced and it all completely surpassed what I had imagined. Captaining Scotland in the Indoor programme was also very special to me.”

She was involved in the full time GB programme in the lead up to London 2012, the first time she had ever experienced being a full time athlete. Bunce felt that she learnt a lot about herself and hockey during this time. Progressing through age group hockey was also something that Bunce looks back on with fond memories.

The journey into senior hockey has been the focal point of her adult life and she has centred everything on the senior programme, from family life to work and everything in between. Bunce continued: “Hockey has defined many of my decisions in life and there have been lots of people involved along the way. My family have supported me through thick and thin - my mum has always been so supportive and never pushy, she’s allowed me to make my own decisions and learn from my own mistakes. To Iain and Oscar who have had to deal with life without me around a lot of the time, a massive thank you for the unconditional love and support. You make it all worthwhile.”

Vikki Bunce

Scottish Hockey Union media release

Hockey Stars 2016 - Women's Goalkeeper of the Year

With voting now open for this year's Player, Goalkeeper and Rising Star of the Year awards, we look at the contenders.

Today we look at the achievements of the athletes shortlisted for women's Goalkeeper of the Year.

Remember, you can vote right up until midnight (CET) on 2 December by .

Maddie Hinch (GBR)
Hinch was superb from start to finish at the Rio Olympics, with her performance in the shoot-out against the Netherlands in the event final sealing a remarkable gold medal triumph for Great Britain.

Joyce Sombroek (NED)
Named Best Goalkeeper at the Hockey Champions Trophy in London, Sombroek helped her team to silver medals at the Hockey Champions Trophy and at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games. 

Kristina Reynolds (GER)
Played in all eight of Germany’s matches at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, making the big saves at important times to help Die Honamas to the bronze medal.

Jackie Briggs (USA)
Played a central role in USA’s bronze medal at the Hockey Champions Trophy in London, keeping a remarkable clean sheet in the shoot-out victory over Australia.

Belen Succi (ARG)
Succi (pictured right) was at the top of her game at the Hockey Champions Trophy in London earlier this year, helping the team win a seventh title, of which Succi herself has been directly involved in six.


FIH site

Hockey Stars 2016 - Men's Goalkeeper of the Year

With voting now open for this year's Player, Goalkeeper and Rising Star of the Year awards, we look at the contenders.

Today we look at the achievements of the athletes shortlisted for men's Rising Star of the Year.

Remember, you can vote right up until midnight (CET) on 2 December by clicking here.

Juan Vivaldi (ARG)
The 37-year-old goalkeeper was at his brilliant best in Rio de Janeiro earlier this year, proving to be the rock at the heart of Argentina’s sensational Olympic gold medal success.

Jaap Stockmann (NED)
Although the Netherlands missed out on a place on the podium at the Rio 2016 Olympics, the form of Stockmann – the 2014 Hockey Stars Goalkeeper of the Year - was as consistently excellent as ever.

Vincent Vanasch (BEL)
A superb year for Belgium’s top class shot-stopper, who made numerous crucial reflex saves to help Belgium win the silver medal at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games.

David Harte (IRL)
The 2015 Hockey Stars Goalkeeper of the Year showcased his rare talent on the greatest stage of all, producing superb performances as Ireland’s hockey team made their historic return to Olympic action after 100 years.

Parattu Raveendran Sreejesh (IND)
Sreejesh, outstanding as India claimed the silver medal at the Hero Hockey Champions Trophy in London, captained his team at both the Rio 2016 Olympics Games and the Asian Champions Trophy, winning the title at the latter.


FIH site

TUK seek promotion to Premier League


Dedan Kimathi University's Bonface Murunga (centre) dribbles past Wazalendo Youth's James Were and Charles Namale (right) during their KHU men's National League match on August 7, 2016 at City Park Stadium. PHOTO | CHRIS OMOLLO |  NATION MEDIA GROUP

The battle for promotion to next season’s Kenya Hockey Union (KHU) men’s Premier League takes center stage this weekend with five clubs in the running to claim the two available slots.

Technical University of Kenya (TUK) lead the second tier league with 21 points and will clinch promotion if they avoid defeat in their last two matches this weekend. The students face Daystar University on Saturday at City Park Stadium and a win will not only see them secure promotion, but also win them the national league.

TUK’s coach Collins Wadonderah has said that he will not change a winning side after his team’s impressive 4-1 win over Multimedia University last weekend move them closer to promotion.

“It is a significant weekend for us and we will not celebrate until we get the job done. These are two tricky matches but the ultimate goal is to ensure we secure promotion to next season’s top flight league,” Collins Wadonderah told Saturday Nation Sport.

Kelly Ingati will retain his position in goal while Nimrod Bitonga who has been effective in converting penalty corners will be expected to lead the forward line.

The students take on fourth placed Impala Club on Sunday in their final match of the season.

Impala need to win the match by a huge margin and hope other results go their way to secure the second spot.

The team lie fourth on 16 points ahead of their final fixture. Impala Club Coach Amwai Olubayi intends to have his team play with intensity and score early goals as they seek a crucial win over their rivals.

“It will be like a final for us and our concentration levels need to be up so that we can have a chance of winning and hopefully qualifying for the Premier League,” he said.

Second placed Wazalendo Youth, could also gain promotion this weekend if they beat Daystar in their final fixture on Sunday.

Wazalendo, who are on 19 points, will however need to win by a bigger margin so as to ensure they finish ahead of Multimedia University and Parkroad Tigers, both of whom are on 16 points, and have two matches left.

Multimedia University will be away to Kabarak while Tigers host Karate Axiom at City Park.

With the men’s Premier league play-offs set for next weekend, clubs that did not take reach the knockout stages will play classification matches.

Newcomers Chase Sailors take on Nakuru club to determine position five and six while Kenya College of Accountancy University (KCA-U) battle Parklands for the seventh and eight places.

Wazalendo and USIU-A will do battle for positon nine and ten. The 2016 season concludes next Sunday.

FIXTURES (All matches at City Park stadium unless stated)


National men: TUK v Daystar University – 12pm, Kabarak University v Multimedia University – 2pm (Kabarak), Parkroad Tigers v Karate Axiom – 4pm
Premier women: JKUAT v Vikings – 2pm
Premier men: Wazalendo Youth v USIU-A – 6pm (Position 9&10)


National men: Karate Axiom v JKUAT- 9am, TUK v Impala – 11am, Daystar v Wazalendo Youth – 3pm
Premier men: Chase Sailors v Nakuru – 1pm (Position 5&6), KCAU v Parklands - 5pm (Position 7&8)

Daily Nation

North Carolina and Delaware advance to NCAA field hockey national championship

By Lee Tolliver

Photo credit: Bill Tiernan

The last time Delaware advanced to a national field hockey championship was in 1978 when the Blue Hens lost to West Chester (Pa.) in the Association of Intercollegiate Athletics for Women final.

One of West Chester’s players was Karen Shelton, who has been coaching at North Carolina for the past 36 years.

Delaware will have to face its past once again, when it faces Shelton’s Tar Heels Sunday in the Blue Hens’ first NCAA Division I final at 1 p.m. at the L.R. Hill Complex at Old Dominion.

Delaware (22-2) scored a 3-2 victory over Princeton in Friday’s semifinals to advance, while North Carolina (20-5) needed overtime for a 2-1 victory over Connecticut.

Delaware’s victory came in the most exciting match of the afternoon.

Esmee Peet, the Blue Hens’ fifth-leading scorer all-time, put her team up 1-0 15 minutes into the first half when she blasted in Maura Zarkoski’s penalty corner set up off Kayla Devlin’s injection pass. But Princeton tied it 51 seconds later when Ryan McCarthy accepted Sophia Tornetta’s pass off a loose ball in the Delaware scoring circle. McCarthy appeared to have given her team a 2-1 advantage with four minutes left, but the goal was reviewed and called too high off the initial strike.

Delaware took charge in the second half after coach Rolf van de Kerkhof ordered his team to play more direct. The Blue Hens responded by earning four quick penalty corners. But all four attempts – big hits from the top of the circle by Meghan Winesett – were denied. On a fifth corner, and after some player input to Kerkhof, Delaware tried a “dump left” corner and went up 2-1 on Kiki Bink’s big sweeping shot with 15 minutes left to play.

Cat Caro tied it on a penalty corner blast with four minutes left, leaving everyone thinking there would be another overtime. But Peet took a short feed from Winesett on a quick counter with 1:30 left to give Delaware its 18th straight win.

North Carolina found itself in a sluggish match with Connecticut (22-2). After a scoreless first half, the Huskies went up 1-0 on Barbara Hoogen’s unassisted shot, only to have the Tar Heels tie it six minutes later when Sam Night deflected Emma Bozek’s slant into the circle.

Lauren Moyer finished an overtime that saw North Carolina take total control by sending in a pass from Malin Evert, who had stolen the ball at the 16-yard line.

The Virginian Pilot

Final Two

UD tops Princeton to reach NCAA field hockey title game

The University of Delaware field hockey team will play for the national championship. Photo by Mark Campbell

The University of Delaware field hockey team defeated Princeton University 3-2 in an NCAA championship tournament semifinal game played Friday evening at Old Dominion University's L.R. Hill Sports Complex in Norfolk, Virginia.

The Blue Hens will face the University of North Carolina at 1 p.m., Sunday, also in Norfolk, for the national championship. It will be UD's first appearance in the national championship game.

North Carolina earned its spot in the finale with a 2-1 win in overtime against the University of Connecticut.

UD took the early lead 1-0 on a first-half goal by senior Esmee Peete at 15:05 off a penalty corner, with assists by Maura Zarkoski and Kayla Devlin. Princeton tied the score on a goal by Ryan McCarthy less than one minute later. The teams went into the half tied 1-1.

The Hens took a 2-1 second half lead on a goal by sophomore Kiki Bink in the 55th minute as the defender redirected the shot from Greta Nauck.

Again Princeton came back to tie on a goal by Cat Caro on a penalty corner with a little over three minutes to play.

A man down due to a yellow card, UD took the lead for good on a second goal as senior Meghan Winesett sent the ball to a wide open Peet with just a minute and a half left to play.

UD junior goalie Emmeline Oltmans had three saves, and Bink was credited with a defensive save. Princeton goalie Grace Baylis had two saves.

With the win, UD improves to 22-2. The Hens have won 18 straight games since losing at Princeton on Sept. 11.

“This is unreal. To have the opportunity to set and reach our goals is simply amazing," said Peet, a senior tri-captain. "This group is so connected this year. We all want to work for each other and play for each other, so we feel like we can face any opponent at any time. We’ll do anything for this program because we love to play the game and we love to play for each other.” 

“It’s just amazing. I can’t really believe it," Nauck said. "To be competing for a championship is just a feeling I can’t really describe. You have to believe in yourself and fight the entire 70 minutes. The game isn’t over until the clock says zero and we fought every minute today. Anything is possible.”

“This is what we’ve worked for the entire year," UD head coach Rolf van de Kerkhof said. "We’ve gotten better throughout every game we’ve played. Princeton is a great team with a great tradition of hockey and we had to dig deep to do what we had to do, but we got it done. At the end of the day, there’s only one tournament in the country that you want to be dancing in, and I love 'November Madness' as it relates to field hockey. For us to compete for a NCAA tournament championship, of course it’s exciting, but with this group we celebrate until midnight and then we go back about our business. This group has taken ownership of that approach and they’re level-headed and ready to go.”

UD Daily

Many Extra Activities Happening at the National Hockey Festival

PALM BEACH COUNTY, Fla. - With the 35th annual National Hockey Festival being a little less than one week away, USA Field Hockey wanted to inform attendees of many other activities happening at the International Polo Club. Before or after your team plays on the beautifully cut grass or after you are done browsing through vendor village, stop at the USA Field Hockey tent for a full schedule of the many activities happening each day.

New to 2016 is the USA Field Hockey Forum Tent. From 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. daily, this tent will give attendees the chance to come and listen to some key-speakers as well as learn the ins and outs of USA Field Hockey specific departments and programs. Each topic covered has a full agenda of discussion. See the complete schedule below.

Also this year, there will be a Fundamental Field Hockey field were an array of FREE events will be held. You can learn the warm-up that the U.S. Women's National Team does, compete in a skills challenge as well as view a skills demonstration from 5x World Hockey Player of the Year Jamie Dwyer. Also taking place on this field are the 2016 OBO Goalkeeping Clinics. Pre-registration is required for these FREE goalkeeping clinics and they are open to athletes of all ages. Space is limited so sign-up today! See the complete schedule below.

NCSA: "The College Process" Athletes, Parents & Coaches
Interested in learning more about how to begin the college search, recruiting guidelines and how to get started? Next College Student Athlete (NCSA) can answer your questions and help you every step of the way.

Let's Grow the Game
Meet Sally Goggin, USA Field Hockey's National Development Director, and learn more about USA Field Hockey's Grow the Game programs and initiatives. Come share what's worked to grow the game in your community. Meet Karen Marley, and learn about adding field hockey in physical education curriculum.

Get Ready for Indoor!
With winter right around the corner, it's time to start thinking about indoor. Meet former U.S. Men's National Indoor Team members and USA Field Hockey Board of Directors Chairman Shawn Hindy, and learn about the indoor game and how playing indoor can help improve your skills.

Adult & Masters Field Hockey
Field hockey is a sport for all ages! Meet Warren Prestwich, USA Field Hockey's Region 7 Development Manager, U.S. Men's Master's Chairman and U.S. Men's Over-50 Team member. Learn about adult and masters field hockey in the world and in your community. Get in the game!

Field Hockey Secrets with 2x Olympian Melissa Gonzalez
Go from good to great! U.S. Women's National Team athete and 2x Olympian Melissa Gonzalez will discuss what it takes to rise above the competition.

Ask the Umpire
Have questions about umpiring and rules of the game? Steve Horgan, USA Field Hockey's Director of Umpiring, will be here to answer your questions.

Coach Education Program
Meet Liz Tchou, USA Field Hockey's Senior Manager of Coach Education and Atlanta 1996 Olympian. She will review the Coach Education Program ad explain how to schedule an instructional coaching clinic in your community.

Futures Program & International Events
Meet Lisa McCoy, USA Field Hockey's Director of Futures and International Events, and learn about the Olympic Development Pipeline, Junior High Performance and upcoming 2017 events.

Coaching: Preparing a Team for Success
Meet U.S. Women's National Team head coach Craig Parnham and learn about preparing a team for competition.

Jump Into Umpiring
Meet Steve Horgan, USA Field Hockey's Director of Umpiring, and learn about umpiring at all levels and how to get started.

Annual General Membership Meeting
Join USA Field Hockey's Executive Director Simon Hoskins as well as meet the national governing bodies' staff and Board of Directors. There will be a brief presentation of the state of USA Field Hockey followed by an open floor for membership topics of interest.

USA Field Hockey Foundation
Meet Pam Stuper, USA Field Hockey Foundation President, and learn about the Foundation's role and plans.

USA Field Hockey Membership
Meet Adam Andrasko, USA Field Hockey's Member Services Director, and Glen Hollingsworth, USA Field Hockey's Senior Membership Coordinator. Ever wonder exactly what comes with a USA Field Hockey Membership? Find out straight from the source and learn how to maximize the value of your membership today!

Q&A with Team USA Olympians & Athletes
Here's your chance to meet Team USA Olympians and U.S. Women's National Team athletes. Come prepared with questions you'd like to ask about their field hockey experience.

Learn Team USA's Warm-Up with 2x Olympian Melissa Gonzalez
The right warm-up can improve performance and reduce injuries. Medical studies show that the wrong warm-up will reduce performance, power and strength and can actually damage muscle tissue. Learn the warm-up the U.S. Women's National Team uses before each game.

Skills Challenge/Fundamental Field Hockey
The new Fundamental Field Hockey equipment is in! Kids of all ages are welcome to come give it a try, play small games and work on basic skills. USA Field Hockey is experimenting with a new skills challenge and encourages players of all ages to come give it a try.

Crush Your Competition! Workout with 2x Olympian Melissa Gonzalez
Come learn exercises that will improve your ball movement and control, passing and receiving, scoring, eliminating an opponent and winning the ball from an opponent. Developed by Dave Hamilton, USA Field Hockey's former Director of Sports Science, these exercises are the fastest way to improve your game and rise above the competition.

On-Field with Craig Parnham
Athletes: Come work on your skills with the U.S. Women's National Team head coach Craig Parnham.

Skills Demo with Jamie Dwyer
Athletes, Coaches and Fans: Here's your chance to learn from one of the best players in the world! Come watch Jamie Dwyer demonstrate some of his best skills. Bring your sticks for a chance to show him your stuff. After the demo, join Jamie at the JDH Booth in vendor village for autographs from 2:30 p.m. - 3:30 p.m.

OBO Goalkeeping Clinics, presented by CranBarry
National Hockey Festival's presenting sponsor CranBarry and their sponsored USWNT athletes, Jackie Briggs and Alesha Widdall, will be running a FREE goalkeeping clinic. Craig Parnham and Liz Tchou will be helping with the sessions. Pre-registration is required and space is limited.

USFHA media release

SA National High Performance Hockey Academy to visit Pretoria

SA Women’s Hockey Coach, Sheldon Rostron, sharing his expertise with young players

Hockey players and coaches in Pretoria can look forward to a unique opportunity to improve their skill-set and knowledge by working closely with former and current South African hockey coaches and players at the Investec Hockey Academy.

Aimed at raising the calibre of school girl hockey, the national initiative will be bringing an iconic line-up of SA’s top hockey talent to St Mary’s Diocesan School for Girls on Saturday, 3 and Sunday, 4 December.

Among the team of well-known hockey coaches are SA Women’s Hockey players Shelley Russell, Lisa Deetlefs and Sulette Damons; as well as one of leading women’s coaches in world hockey, Lindsey Wright.

The courses for players offered at the Investec Hockey Academy are the Fundamental Players’ Course (ages 8 to 11), an Intermediate Players’ Course (ages 12 to 15) and an Advanced Players’ Course (ages 16 to 18). The coaching courses will run alongside the players’ courses, allowing coaches the opportunity to work with the national coaches in the age group of their school teams.

The Investec Hockey Academy’s next set of courses will commence on 3 and 4 December at St Mary’s Diocesan School for Girls in Pretoria in Pretoria. To book contact Bernadine on 031 940 5565 or visit www.investechockeyacademy.com

Investec Hockey Academy media release

Sports Minister congratulates new FIH President Batra

NEW DELHI: Sports Minister Vijay Goel has congratulated Hockey India chief Narinder Batra on being elected as the first non-European President of the International Hockey Federation (FIH) on last Saturday.

Goel expressed hope that the game of hockey will spread world wide under Batra's leadership.

"I hope that under Shri Batra number of hockey playing nations in the world will increase and hockey will regain place of prominence in the international arena," Goel said in a message.

Batra on Saturday became the first non-European President of the FIH after he was elected to the top post by an overwhelming margin during the penultimate day of the 45th FIH Congress in Dubai.

Batra, who is the president of Hockey India, defeated David Balbirnie of Ireland and Australia's Ken Read to become the 12th FIH President - the first Asian to grab the post in the world body's 92-year-old history.

The Times of India

J&K CM congratulates new IHF president Narinder Batra

JAMMU: Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Mehbooba Mufti today congratulated Hockey India chief Narinder Batra on being elected as the first non-European President of the International Hockey Federation.

The Chief Minister, who is also chairperson of Jammu and Kashmir State Sports Council, in her message said that with Batra's election to the world sports body, sports activities in the State would get a further boost.

"Recent win at Rome by our young Tajamul Islam and now the elevation of Narinder Batra is recognition of the fact that there is ample sports talent in the State which needs to be honed," the Chief Minister said adding that Government would make all efforts to do that.

Batra, who was elected IHF president last Saturday, has played hockey for J&K and has also been the member of J&K State Sports council.

The Times of India

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