All the news for Monday 1 February 2010
India defeat Sri Lanka 7-2 in SA Games
DHAKA: V Raghunath and Mohammad Aamir Khan scored two goals each as India beat Sri Lanka 7-2 to register their second consecutive victory in the 11th South Asian Games ON Sunday.
Fresh from their 21-0 mauling of Nepal on Saturday, Indians put up a spirited display at the Moulana Bhashin Stadium as Dharamvir Singh, captain Ajitesh Roy and Pramod Kumar also chipped in with one goal each to complete the tally.
Sri Lanka pulled back twice through captain Abeyarathne, who scored in the 15th and 60th minutes.
Indians drew the first blood when Dharamvir scored in the fourth minute.
Raghunath then sounded the board in the seventh and 40th minutes, while Mohammad Aamir scored in the 21st and 65th minutes.
Roy banged in one in the 46th minute, before Pramod Kumar found back of the net in the 52nd minute.
In another match of the day, Pakistan drubbed Nepal 19-0 in their campaign-opener to remain in course for an expected final clash with arch-rivals India.
The Times of India
Pakistan rout Nepal in hockey in SA Games
DHAKA: Pakistan displayed its prowess in hockey when it scored an effortless 19-0 victory over Nepal in the 11th South Asian Games (SAG) hockey at Moulana Bhasani National Hockey Stadium in Dhaka on Sunday.
Pakistan led the first half 8-0.
Pakistan swooped on the Nepalese from the very beginning and took the lead in just four minutes after the push-off.
Pakistan, consisting of under-21 players, easily took control of the game against their lowly opponents with their free-flowing moves.
Scorers: Wasif Siddique (2, 33, 51, 52, 61, 67 minutes), Abdul Qayyum (4, 12, 40, 58, 62 minutes), Mohsin Bilal (7 minute), Zubair Ahmed (20 minutes), Zeeshan Ali (22, 31 minutes), Sabtain Raza (39, 48 minutes), Abdul Khaliq (47 minute), Naghman Ahmed (64 minute).
Pakistan: Mohammad Khurram, Wasif Siddique, Zeeshan Ali, Mohsin Bilal, Aamir Shahzad, Waqas Akbar, Abdul Qayyum, Abdul Khaliq, Sabtain Raza (Captain), Kashif Javid, Abdul Ghaffar, Imran Butt, Mohammad Khalid, Zubair Ahmed, Zeeshan Ali.
Nepal: Chander, Prince, Hit Kumar, A Ramjan, Amit, Samuyal, Ram, Dipendra, Ranjit, Rajandra (Captain), GH Kumar, Satya Nar, BA Padam, Amit Kumar, Bikash, Krishna, Devendra and Retesh.
Pakistan play their next match against hosts Bangladesh and Nepal take on Sri Lanka on February 2.
Associated Press of Pakistan
Netherlands stage a late comeback to win
Netherlands 3, USA 2
CHULA VISTA, CA - The USA Field Hockey Women's National Team fell to the Netherlands, 3-2, in a test match at the U.S. Olympic Training Match in Chula Vista, CA. Michelle Kasold scored both goals for the USA.
It was a disappointing result for the USA, who held a lead against the 2008 Olympic gold medal winners until the final minutes. The Dutch scored on a penalty corner to draw the game in the 69th minute and added a field goal moments before the final whistle.
Michelle Kasold scored two goals in the first half as the American offense looked strong, with strikers putting together an effective passing attack. Kasold scored in the 9th minute to put the USA ahead early.
"I knew I could get it in the circle, so I just went for the shot," said Kasold. "It happened to tip off the defender's stick and I think it threw off the goalkeeper."
The strikers and Kasold benefitted again in the 25th minute with another field goal. A pass from Maren Ford into the shooting circle set up Kasold's score.
"I saw Maren and I couldn't get the ball on the outside, so I cut right in and she threw me a perfect ball," said Kasold. ?"I got a little touch on it past the goalkeeper coming out."
The American attack early was fluid, as the team's practice and preparations seemed to pay off.
"We had good spacing," said Kasold. "We moved their defense around and attacked their players to open up space for the forwards. They gave us good lengths to run in and easy balls to play forward."
"The strikers were presenting in great spaces," said team captain Carrie Lingo. "It's something we've been working on in the past couple of games, so it was nice to see the fruit of the practice."
The Americans had several scoring chances in the half and seemed to have the Dutch defense back on their heels.
In the second half, a renewed Dutch team went on the offensive. Holland's attack was persistent, but missed several scoring opportunities. One penalty corner strike clanged off the goal crossbar above Amy Tran. The Dutch were finally able to score the equalizer in the final minute, as Maartje Paumen delivered the tying goal on a penalty corner.
"Holland did what they do well," said Lingo. "They knew they needed a goal, and stepped up their game. I don't think we stepped up to match that at the end."
Holland's Kelly Yonker scored in the final moments, celebrating as the final whistle sounded. It was a hard moment to face, as the Americans had been on the verge of drawing, if not defeating, the number one team in the world.
"We handled the ball better than we have in the past, and that allowed us to take advantage of some good buildup. Unfortunately, we haven't been in this situation too often and we learned some lessons at the end of the game," said Bodimeade.
"It's a hard lesson," said Lingo. "The game is 70 minutes. It's just a lesson we have to take now and move forward."
"Holland's a good side, and we're building to be at their level," said Bodimeade. "Along the way, you need to be in certain situations to know what to do in them. There was some inexperience there today. We'll be better in the long run because of it, but it cost us today in this game."
Despite the loss, the match may prove to be a watershed moment in the team's development as they move towards the AtaHolding Women's World Cup Qualifier.
"There were many positives," said Terry Walsh, Technical Director of High Performance. "Getting a position of 2-0 and holding it for a very long time was positive. As was not having the lead undermined quickly by a very good opponent. Even with the first goal against us, which was a careless goal, we didn't capitulate. We held our ground."
"I think it is a significant moment for us," said Bodimeade. "To come out and put 60 minutes of good play against a one of the best teams in the world who was really trying was a big step for us."
"It was the first time we've been in a position of ascendency against one of the best teams in the world - if not the best," said Terry Walsh, Technical Director of High Performance. "Overall, our contesting was matched with theirs. We won more than our fair share of 50/50 balls. There was a belief that grew. There was an ability to control the frustration the opponent was bringing on the pitch. It was the best I've seen from us in four years. We were able to match the best in the world."
Above all, the test matches are learning opportunities for both teams.
"We've played well coming from behind in the past, but to be a front-runner against one of the top teams in the world was a new situation for us," said Bodimeade. "It brings with it different scenarios and challenges, and it's fantastic to have Holland here to learn how handle that."
"I thought we were able to compete with the Dutch," said Walsh. "We were certainly there physically, and most of the time we were where we needed to be mentally, but we're still learning how to play under the conditions when pressure is very high. It was very pleasing. It's been a considerable improvement. Lee's done a great job taking the team from a mediocre performance last week to a strong performance today. Today was a really heated game, and that's what a test match should be."
The Netherlands visited Chula Vista almost exactly one year ago. Coming off their gold medal performance in Beijing, the Dutch routed the USA in several matches. A year later, the USA was on the brink of a victory against the number one team in the world.
"Holland was here last year and we had some performances that made us question if we were heading in the right direction," said Bodimeade.
"It's hard to compare," said Walsh. "We were in a different spot in our preparation phase. After the Olympics, we were going through a transition with our players and we were trying to find out where we were as a team, and we were thumped. Obviously, now we have the Qualifier coming up in six weeks. I think now the Dutch would say it's been a worthwhile, competitive environment, not just a nice trip, but a good competitive series. They've had some very good contests with us."
The USA will face China on Wednesday, February 3. The Netherlands make their final appearance at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Chula Vista.
USA - Michelle Kasold - 7' (FG)
USA - Michelle Kasold - 8' (PC)
NED - Ellen Hoog - 51' (FG)
NED - Maartje Paumen -69' (PC)
NED - Kelly Jonker - 70' (FG)
Netherlands 6, China 2
CHN: Fu Baoyung - 7' (FG)
CHN: Ma Yibo - 8' (PC)
NED: Welton - 21' (FG)
NED: Hoag - 22' (FG)
NED: Agliotti - 27' (FG)
NED: Tonber - 36' (FG)
NED: van As - 44' (FG)
NED: Hoag - 52' (FG)
USFHA media release
Korea Republic beat Kookaburras 2-1 in Hobart
Korea Republic have beaten Australia 2-1 in the men's hockey Test in Hobart on Sunday night, ruining Mark Knowles' 150th game celebration.
Despite the loss, the Kookaburras won the series 2-1.
The home side did the majority of the attacking in the early stages but Korea struck first through captain Jong Ho Seo's field goal in the 15th minute.
The Koreans were given an advantage soon after when fan favourite Eddie Ockenden was sin-binned for two minutes during which a penalty corner attempt was thwarted by Kookaburras goalkeeper Nathan Burgers.
Australia continued to generate scoring attempts but had to wait until the second half to equalise when youngster Glenn Simpson scored a field goal in the 36th minute.
This celebration was short lived, Korea answering right back with a penalty corner goal to regain the lead at the 38 minute mark.
The Kookaburras now return to Perth to continue to prepare for the World Cup, beginning in New Delhi on February 28, with coach Rick Charlesworth looking for improvement on the Hobart performance.
"I think it confirms as I have been saying all along that we aren't solid enough yet," he said.
"Tonight was an important match for a number of young players. We have to finish better and tonight we had five or six penalty corners, some missed opportunities.
"We are a work in progress and tonight underlined that there is still more work to do."
First International Goals by two future stars
By Ali Lee
Two young athletes in the women's national team program are having a big impact on the team's current tour of South America. Both have score their first, of what will sure to be many, international goal for Canada this past week in Chile.
pendleton_09.jpgIn only her third international match, Victoria native Robyn Pendleton lit up the field with a highlight goal that sealed the Canadian women’s field hockey team’s 2-0 win over Chile on January 28, 2010. The game marked the third match of a 4 game series and put the Canadians one game closer to tying up the series.
With an impressive junior national and university background leading into her first senior tour, Pendleton felt little pressure leading into the game commenting, “you just know what to expect at that high of a level.” Pendleton’s goal came 42 minutes into the game when the ball was sent towards the circle and tipped through by a defender. Making no mistake, Pendleton was able to smash the ball hard and low to the far corner. When asked about the importance of her goal Pendleton stated, “it gave us a bit of a security blanket. A 1-0 game means it can still go either way.”
Pendleton has found herself mostly setting up goals but is determined to improve her goal scoring abilities. “I really want to work on reverse stick shots and focus on getting my shots off quicker, more accurately and be able to execute better under pressure.” Ultimately, Pendleton knows there is always pressure to score as a forward but she plays her best when she is relaxed. Before a match Robyn claims that she is focused but relaxed and does so with a pre-game sandwich. Robyn and the rest of her teammates will regroup over night before heading to Buenos Aires, Argentina tomorrow.
kozniukanna 2009.jpgOnly 17 years old , West Vancouver native, Anna Kozniuk was able to find the back of the net and earn her first international goal against Chile on January 29, 2010. Not only was this a highlight for her career but it was also a late goal that gave the Canadians a 2-1 lead over Chile, allowing them to tie their 4-game series. A grade 12 student at Argyle Secondary School, Kozniuk credits her older brother, sister and mother as being her inspirations at a young age. “They were always supportive of me and tried to give me the best opportunities to excel at field hockey.”
Kozniuk’s crucial goal came late in the second half off a penalty corner that was initially aimed by Diana Roemer to Robyn Pendleton. The Chilean goalie was able to bat Pendleton’s deflection away from the net but with a great individual effort, Kozniuk used her reverse stick to bat the ball into the mesh. Kozniuk exclaimed, “I was really excited but also re-focused quickly because it was important for us to still keep them away from our end to hang on to the win. After I scored, we started playing a bit more defensive and remained focused to keep the turnovers down and keep possession of the ball.”
Kozniuk was unlucky not to have had her first goal come a day sooner when a great reverse stick shot was disallowed because the ball was inches from being within the circle. Following that game Kozniuk said, “I really want to get this back tomorrow” but tried not to focus only on that during the game. “The game 4 win is a good step in the right direction for improving our team. Compared to previous tours, the chemistry seems to be a lot better both on and off the field,” Kozniuk claims and that may be just where the success lies.
With just over a year of international experience, Kozniuk has become a real impact player and is a great role model for many aspiring young athletes. Her advice is to keep focused and always have goals in mind that are reachable but still challenge you. We look forward to the many more successes that Kozniuk helps Canada achieve as they head to Buenos Aires, Argentina tomorrow.
Field Hockey Canada media release
Going to be real close, says Brasa
OUR SPECIAL CORRESPONDENT
New Delhi: A month away from starting their campaign in the World Cup hockey in the capital, national coach Jose Brasa said he would be delighted to find India in the semi-finals of the 12-team competition.
Speaking to The Telegraph on Sunday, Brasa, known for his plain talking, said: “Reaching the semi-finals would not be an easy task. We are in a tough group that has Australia, Spain, England and Pakistan. The fight for the top two spots from this group is going to be real close.
“Please don’t get me wrong,” said the Spanish coach, believed to be one of the best in the business. “I am only trying to make you aware of the reality. It doesn’t mean I have no faith in my boys.
“After six months of intense training at Pune, they are in good shape, capable of challenging any team. If we manage to make the last four, then the trophy could be ours,” he added.
On Sunday, the Indian team has shifted its base to the capital and will start practising at the Major Dhyanchand Sports Complex from Monday, the venue for the World Cup.
The coach is happy with the arrangement but said he would have loved to play a few more friendly matches against top teams this month.
“All other teams are playing practice matches. It’s good that we would be able to make use of the turf that will host the World Cup, but with a few more friendlies things could have been better,” Brasa commented.
Striker Prabhjot Singh, according to Brasa, would be leading the Indian attack in the World Cup, being hosted in India for the first time in 26 years. “He is affectionately called Jyoti in the camp. It means light, I was told. Prabhjot should really show the light to others in the team,” said the coach.
Apart from Prabhjot, the coach also singled out forward Arjun Halappa, centre half Sardara Singh and goalkeeper Adrian D’Souza for special praise. “All these boys have to come good for India’s success,” he said.
Brasa’s team would play a mixture of modern and traditional Indian style of hockey in the World Cup.
“In the last six months, I have given my boys full freedom to play typical Indian style of hockey where they play close to each other in the opponents’ area. Let them explore the game in their own way but at the same time I have made them go through drills where they will have to be clear and fast with the ball.
“My defenders are yet not perfect but I have asked them to concentrate on tackling and challenging the opponent.
East Grinstead and Surbiton meet in the Men's Indoor final
Men’s Semi Final 1
Surbiton progressed in style to the final of the National Indoor Hockey Championships at the expense of Loughborough Students on Sunday afternoon. A 7-5 victory over the 2008 winners saw Surbiton into the live televised final in this, their first outing at the National Indoor Hockey Championships.
There was a great pace to the opening minutes of the tie with both teams vying for the upper hand and it was Surbiton who grabbed the initiative through Dan Fox with a move down the right which he flicked across goal and inside the far post.
And it was 2-0 soon after when James Tindall, the England and Great Britain forward, converted after a good passing move down the left flank.
The goals gave Surbiton that upper hand that they craved and after Loughborough Students’ England defender Richard Smith conceded possession inside his own half it looked as though things might get worse for the Students as Surbiton were awarded a penalty corner. The corner forced Giles Cadman in the Loughborough goal into a good save from which the Students broke and won a corner of their own.
From the set piece Smith’s powerful flick rebounded hard back off the left post and away from goal. Surbiton were then grateful to their own England and Great Britain defender Ben Hawes who cleared a second Loughborough corner at the top of the circle as the Students looked for a way back into the match.
Nick Catlin, called into the England World Cup squad after impressing at the ABN AMRO Champions Trophy in Melbourne in December, was next to threaten the Surbiton goal as he punched through the white defence. Unfortunately for Catlin it was another of his Melbourne teammates, Dan Fox, that recovered to clear his shot as it made its way to goal.
That interception was to prove crucial as Surbiton responded and scored two goals in the space of 60 seconds just before the quarter hour mark. First, a rash challenge by Cadman on Richard Alexander was punished with a penalty stroke and a green card for the goalkeeper – Tim Pinnock netting the penalty high into the top corner – before an excellent passing move opened up the Loughborough defence, Tindall the ultimate beneficiary for 4-0.
Good defensive work from Richard Alexander kept the Students at bay as they pressed Surbiton . John Jackson looked like he might pull one back for Loughborough at the end of the first period but after beating goalkeeper Duncan Holmes to the baseline his crossed flew harmlessly across the face of the goal.
Loughborough Students faced an uphill battle as they returned for the second half and it got steeper when Pinnock bagged his second and Surbiton’s fifth, knocking home for a straight forward finish on the back post after Dan Fox’s pass.
Jackson did get his goal a minute later as he opened the Students’ account, spinning in the circle and flicking home beyond Holmes.
Loughborough’s substitute goalkeeper Michael Scott made a number of excellent saves throughout the second half and he was called upon to make a double save at the top of his circle from a Surbiton penalty corner on 25 minutes.
England and Great Britain forward Matt Daly scored a sixth for Surbiton when he flicked home in the 27th minute and it could have been seven had Tim Benford not cleared what looked likely to be Pinnock’s hat-trick after Tindall had eliminated Scott with a clever cut back.
With ten minutes remaining Loughborough embarked upon a mini revival, which began with Richard Smith firing home a penalty corner at the second attempt. It was still 2-6 with three minutes to go when Loughborough were awarded the second penalty stroke in the match after the ball struck the foot of Surbiton captain Andrew Sheridan on the goal line. Smith stepped up and with the noisy Students fans in the crowd cheering him on, fired low into the bottom left hand corner sending Holmes the wrong way.
It looked as if the fight back might have been on when Students’ captain David Beckett netted a fourth to take his side to within two goals with two minutes still to play but Spaniard Alberto Esteban Velazquez had other ideas. With a superb flick into the goal from the edge of the circle he took the game out of Loughborough’s reach although there was still time for Jackson to score his second and Students’ fifth to produce a scoreline that slightly flattered Loughborough, 7-5 to Surbiton.
Loughborough Students 5 (0)
John Jackson 24,40 (F,F)
Richard Smith 31,37 (PC,PS)
David Beckett 38 (F)
Surbiton 7 (4)
Dan Fox 2 (F)
James Tindall 5,13 (F,F)
Tim Pinnock 13,23 (PS,F)
Matt Daly 27 (F)
Alberto Esteban Velazquez 38 (F)
Men’s Semi Final 2
East Grinstead and Reading went head to head in a fast and furious a 12 goal thriller in the second men’s semi final at the National Indoor Hockey Championships.
Both teams were firing on all cylinders and Reading proved that they were up for the game early on as they enjoyed the best of the pressure, Simon Mantell and Jonty Clarke coming close but unable to score. Mantell did make his mark on the game with the first of his goals on 11 minutes, a great individual effort ending with a lofted shot over Richard Potton in the East Grinstead goal.
A minute later, Reading were on target again to take the score to 2-0, Mantell junior firing his second home after being picked out by Richard Springham. East Grinstead fought back to make it 2-1 with a well rehearsed penalty corner move that led to a clinical finish by former international Mark Pearn.
Reading went into the break with a 3-2 lead as both teams traded goals late in the half. Reading’s third was the result of good build up play from Harry Jawanda, who played it down the right, dribbling through a crowd of players, pulling it back across the edge of the circle to the waiting Iain Mackay, who put the ball high into the net. East Grinstead came back with an instant reply as the FIH World Young Player of the Year Ashley Jackson scored to keep EG within one goal of Reading at the break.
The second half began at a frenetic pace leading to East Grinstead winning a penalty stroke for a trip in the circle. The stroke, taken by Jackson, brought the score level and set up a thrilling climax with both teams battling hard to win.
The momentum was with East Grinstead who went on to take the match by the scruff of the neck, scoring four goals in as many minutes. Captain Scott Ashdown scored their fourth on 23 minutes and a minute later Pearn scored the second goal of what was to be semi final hat-trick, putting his team into 5-3 lead.
David De Prez, the top goal scorer in this year’s Indoor England Hockey League Premier Division with 26 goals, was on target to give East Grinstead a 6-3 lead in the 25th minute and together with Pearn’s hat-trick goal East Grinstead raced into a 7-3 lead.
A valiant effort by the Reading men and in particular Simon Mantell saw them attempt to stage a comeback with Mantell netting his own hat-trick to give their supporters some hope but it was not to be. Although Jawanda managed to nick a goal in the dying seconds of the game East Grinstead marched on to the live Sky final.
East Grinstead 7 (2)
Mark Pearn 16,24,34 (PC,F,F)
Ashley Jackson 20,22 (F,PS)
Scott Ashdown 23 (F)
David de Prez 25 (F)
Reading 5 (3)
Simon Mantell 11,12,24 (F,F,F)
Iain Mackay 17 (F)
Harry Jawanda 40 (F)
England Hockey Board Media release
East Grinstead crush Surbiton for the Indoor title
East Grinstead secured back to back National Indoor titles thanks to a thrilling 9-5 victory over Surbiton at the Trent FM Arena in Nottingham on Sunday evening. England and Great Britain star Ashley Jackson was once again the hero with four goals in the final against Indoor England Hockey League Premier Division newcomers Surbiton.
The victory means East Grinstead will be England’s representatives in the 2011 European indoor competition.
Despite their underdog status Surbiton were first to threaten, firing a dangerous ball across the East Grinstead circle inside three minutes.
It did not take long though for East Grinstead to assert their authority on the match with a brace of penalty corners, the second of which FIH World Young Player of the Year Ashley Jackson rifled into the right side of the net at blistering pace. 1-0 East Grinstead after seven minutes.
James Tindall, returning to fitness from the broken foot he sustained while on England duty at the ABN AMRO Champions Trophy in December, nearly equalised a minute later but a combination of a deflection from East Grinstead goalkeeper Richard Potton and the crossbar kept East Grinstead ahead.
Mark Pearn doubled EG’s lead in the eighth minute and shortly after, Surbiton’s England and Great Britain defender Richard Alexander had to be at his best to bring his international teammate Jackson to a halt at the top of the circle.
East Grinstead by now were looking good for their lead and when German Mats Grambusch broke down the left hand side there was a chance for captain Scott Ashdown to make it three. Although he was crowded out he managed to win a penalty corner, which ultimately came to nothing.
David de Prez put East Grinstead 3-0 up after displaying excellent individual skill at the top of the circle before flicking the ball into the goal.
Surbiton hit back in the 14th minute through Tim Pinnock whose powerful penalty corner flick flew inside the left post and so began a spell of Surbiton pressure with Richard Potton in the East Grinstead goal saving from close range as Surbiton pressed.
With a minute of the half remaining Ben Hawes missed a prime opportunity to make it 3-2 when he fired wide from inside the left of the circle and Surbiton were made to pay less than 60 seconds later. Ashley Jackson displayed his trademark close control to outfox the Surbiton defence at the top of the circle before knocking the ball home to make it 4-1 at the break.
The game seemed to slow slightly at the beginning of the second period but East Grinstead began the stronger as they looked to build their advantage. Some last ditch defending led to an East Grinstead penalty corner but the set piece was deflected high over the bar.
Surbiton rallied and pulled a goal back in the 26th minute through James Tindall, although Potton will have been disappointed that ball appeared to squirm through him and over the line to make the score 4-2.
With the match still delicately poised a time out was called following the goal and Hawes soon had another opportunity to score. A mazy dribble through the East Grinstead defence exposed Richard Potton but the goalkeeper did well to block Hawes shot.
Surbiton were really giving their all as the second half passed the midway point and when the ball fell to Richard Alexander a yard from goal and with Potton prone on the floor it looked as if Surbiton would reduce the deficit. But it was not to be. A combination of defender and goalkeeper conspired to pressure Alexander and his shot trickled agonisingly wide of the far post.
As they looked to relieve the pressure on their defence East Grinstead broke upfield and won a penalty corner. With lightening quick passes Glenn Kirkham pulled out the top of the circle where Ashley Jackson jumped the left slip and Scott Ashdown fired a rocket beyond Duncan Holmes in the Surbiton goal to make it 5-2.
There then followed an incredible period of two minutes in which the score went from 5-2 to 9-3. Surbiton pulled one back through Tim Pinnock’s flick into the far corner before East Grinstead went on the rampage. Ashley Jackson and Scott Ashdown combined to waltz through the Surbiton defence with Ashdown netting for 6-3; Jackson completed his hat-trick shortly after with a goal from the right hand side and scored again to make it 8-3. With two minutes remaining Mike Holland got in on the act with a goal for 9-3. Determined to give a good account of themselves there was still time for two more Surbiton goals from Pinnock, from a penalty corner, and Michael Hoolihan sweeping home from the left side of the circle.
With the match broadcast live on Sky Sports, the game was an incredible advert for indoor hockey. With four goals in the final, Ashley Jackson proved once again that he is worth his weight in goals to club and country.
Afterwards, East Grinstead Richard Organ said, “We started well and were in control but allowed Surbiton back into the game. We reacted well and sealed it after attacking more. Next year we want to make it three in a row.”
Mark Pearn, East Grinstead’s number three said, “It was a pretty good game, although I felt as if we struggled a bit in the second half. Surbiton defended deep and we had to change our tactics to break them down.”
Man of the hour Ashley Jackson added, “It was good fun. We were confident before the game but always knew anything could happen.”
Finishing, Matt Jones, East Grinstead manager, said “The National Indoor Hockey Championships have been a great advertisement for indoor hockey. The new arena has been fantastic and the electricity of the indoor game should really help with getting people interested in the sport.
“The semi final was tough test because we all know of Reading’s quality and Surbiton’s depth and talent was clear for everyone to see here. It certainly wasn’t a one sided goal. We’re delighted to have won tonight.”
East Grinstead 9 (4)
Ashley Jackson 7,2,36,37 (PC,F,F,PC)
Mark Pearn 8 (F)
David de Prez 12 (F)
Scott Ashdown 34,35 (PC,F)
Mike Holland 37 (F)
Surbiton 5 (1)
Tim Pinnock 14,34,39 (PC,F,PC)
James Tindall 26 (F)
Michael Hoolihan 40 (F)
England Hockey Board Media release
Pukka Lestars take the title again after 36 years
A thrilling and dramatic women’s National Indoor Hockey Championships final came down to a nail biting penalty stroke shoot out after Alex Scott cancelled out the 2-1 lead that Rebecca Herbert had given Leicester with fewer than ten minutes remaining. With the crowd on the edge of their seats and the Sky Sports cameras in attendance both goalkeepers pulled off saves before Scott missed her second penalty of the match to hand victory to the women in orange.
Leicester and Slough lined up having seen off Canterbury and the 2009 Champions Bowdon Hightown in Saturday’s semi finals with Leicester looking to secure a first national indoor title since 1978 and Slough aiming to make it 14 National Indoor Hockey Championships, avenging the painful memory of their 2009 defeat in Birmingham.
There were early chances in the opening minute for both sides as first Beckie Herbert lobbed an effort wide of the post before Ashleigh Ball threaded a pass across the face of the Leicester goal mouth.
Chloe Rogers calmly cleared the danger from Slough’s first penalty corner of the match in the second minute after Jane Smith had squeezed the ball through the feet of Maddie Hinch but Slough did not have to wait long to take the lead and were ahead in the fourth minute. Alex Scott drew Hinch and her defenders to the edge of the circle before squaring to the unmarked Smith who carefully slotted home under the diving body of the recovering Hinch.
Leicester’s first corner moments later came to a disappointing end with the ball trickling off a Leicester stick and off the back line.
Midway through the half Slough’s Nat Bell did well, playing a one-two with herself off the right hand boards to evade Gemma Darrington’s challenge but Hinch proved up to the task, producing a stick save to prevent Bell from crossing the ball.
Leicester called the first time out of the match with nine minutes of the half remaining as coach Andy Fairbrother looked for his side to improve their circle penetration.
Chloe Rogers responded with a break into the circle two minutes later but she was thwarted by Slough’s England goalkeeper Duggan at close range.
The EuroHockey Nations Trophy Goalkeeper of the Tournament then produced an outstanding save with her stick low to her right after Leicester captain Vanessa Hawkins deflected a quick pass on target.
With five minutes of the half remaining Slough thought they had doubled their lead but the umpire’s whistle had already gone for a foul in the build up and from the resulting counter attack Leicester equalised, Rebecca Herbert forcing the ball home from the centre of the circle.
The time out chat had clearly worked for Leicester who came close to taking the lead from a penalty corner a minute later.
Slough won a corner of their own with 19 minutes on the clock, Alex Scott finding the defender’s foot but Hinch was out quickly to smother Jane Smith’s shot from the top.
Half chances for both sides came and went in the opening minutes of the second half. Jane Smith cleared a switched Leicester penalty corner before, at the other end, Smith failed to properly connect on her reverse from the top of the circle.
Hinch was again at the heart of the Leicester defence in the 29th minute making two saves in quick succession, the first from a penalty corner and the second a diving save at the feet of the Slough forward.
With both teams intent of dribbling it was touch of class from Beckie Herbert which broke the deadlock in the 32nd minute as she powerfully flicked a shot from the left hand edge of the circle which Duggan could only help on its way into the top corner of the net.
Ashleigh Ball responded for Slough but her flick across goal went wide and seconds later Herbert passed up the chance for a hat-trick as she fired wide of the far post with just the goalkeeper to beat.
With seven minutes remaining Leicester captain Hawkins saw yellow, reducing her team to five. And with Slough mounting a sustained attack Hannah Smith prevented a certain goal with her body, diving full length and leaving the umpire with no choice but to award a penalty stroke.
Up stepped Alex Scott to take the penalty but Hinch guessed right and saved at a comfortable height with her right hand to keep the score at 2-1.
Scott was not to be stopped though and she restored parity from a controversial penalty corner with three minutes remaining. Hinch was adjudged to have committed an offence, resulting in the corner, and Scott roofed her effort from the top of the circle to make it 2-2.
With 39 minutes on the clock Herbert pushed another effort beyond the far post after driving through the Slough defence.
With the hooter gone, the Sky Sports cameras trained and the crowd on the edge of their seats Leicester won a penalty corner in the dying seconds of the match. Hawkins, back on the pitch from her suspension, pulled the ball out to Rogers at the top of the circle but Becky Duggan’s sliding block cleared the ball to safety and set up a penalty stroke competition to determine the 2010 Women’s National Indoor Hockey Champions.
Leicester’s Kerry Williams and Slough’s Jane Smith both scored their first penalties and when Chloe Rogers’ effort squeezed in off the inside of the right hand post the crowd shrieked in unison. Chloe Strong, who had scored the winning penalty in the Slough’s semi final shoot out with Bowdon Hightown, then saw her flick saved by the left glove of Hinch but Becky Duggan gave Slough hope with a save from Beckie Herbert. Up stepped Alex Scott for Slough’s third flick. Having seen her penalty in normal saved by Hinch to her right, Scott went the other way but missed the goal entirely sparking scenes of celebration amongst the Leicester team who had secured their first national indoor title since 1978.
Afterwards, Herbert was named Player of the Tournament after scoring two goals in the final and one in the semi final.
Mike Williamson the Slough coach said afterwards, “We had our chances tonight, enough to win, but we didn’t take them. It was very disappointing because when we played them in the league we took them and won.”
Player of the Tournament Herbert said it was a “brilliant” game. “In the past we’ve had a history of being relegated so we really didn’t expect to win. It feels great.”
Maddie Hinch, whose saves helped Leicester secure the title said, “It’s unbelievable. We came in as an underdog. We played a defensive style yesterday against Canterbury but today we played with much more attacking emphasis. Throughout the game you got the feeling we could actually do it, and we did.”
Leicester coach Andy Fairbrother was incredibly happy. “The team felt under a bit of pressure with Leicester not having won since 1978 but they worked incredibly hard today. I can’t say much more because I’m so happy.”
Leicester* 2 (1)
Rebecca Herbert 17,32 (F,F)
Slough 2 (1)
Jane Smith 4 (F)
Alex Scott 37 (PC)
*Leicester win 2-1 on penalty strokes.
England Hockey Board Media release
English Junior Club Indoor titles decided
U16 Boys Clubs Final
A man of the match performance from Bromley & Beckenham’s Harry Sellers clinched the U18 Boys Clubs title at the National Indoor Hockey Championships in Nottingham on Sunday morning against Havant.
From the outset Bromley & Beckenham (B&B) took the game to Havant with Harry Sainsbury forcing Havant goalkeeper Matt Levy into an early save. Less than a minute later the other Harry, Harry Sellers, had his goal bound shot cleared off the line by Havant’s Daniel Faulkner.
It was not long before B&B broke the deadlock through Harry Sellers’ low flick at a penalty corner but Havant were level almost immediately through George Cairns who pushed home after good work from a teammate down the left hand side. Havant then took the lead a minute later through Josh Gibbard who tapped in from close range after the ball had rebounded to him off the post.
B&B pulled themselves back level in slightly fortunate circumstances when Harry Sellers broke into the right hand side of the circle and his pass across circle was turned into the goal but an unfortunately Havant defender, the B&B boy credited with the goal.
Midway through the half the team in white were ahead after an excellent piece of play. A pinpoint through ball from Bromley & Beckenham captain Rob Farrington was met by Harry Sainsbury inside the circle. Sainsbury added the faintest of touches to guide the ball beyond Levy and inside the far post.
By now B&B were enjoying the better of the half and Sellers bagged his second from a low penalty corner effort into the bottom corner. Shortly after, his intercept on the halfway line allowed him the space to drive into the circle and his effort brought out the best in Levy who saved well with his stick.
Just before the break Farrington got his reward for an excellent first period with a tidy finish into the bottom corner for 5-2.
The Havant team talk had obviously fired up the Hampshire boys and three minutes into the second half Tom Martin in the B&B goal had to be sharp to snuff out a one-on-one at the top of the circle. At the other end Sellers so nearly added to his tally but for the width of the post as he watched his shot across goal come back off the upright and away to safety.
On 19 minutes Havant looked certain to score after a good cross towards the far post but Ollie Preston’s intervention prevented a goal. Martin then blocked well at the top of his circle from a Havant penalty corner but could do nothing to stop Sam Hatherley’s shot in the 21st minute. From the left top of the circle Hatherley shaped his shot across the goalkeeper and into the back of the net, hitting the top of the backboard.
Bromley & Beckenham seemed content to soak up Havant pressure, hitting back on the counter attack. Goal number six came four minutes from time as Sellers finished from close range with the simplest of tap ins after rounding the goalkeeper.
The goal sparked Havant into change as they replaced the goalkeeper with a kicking back but it proved to be too little too late. By the time Sellers rounded off a fine display with his fifth in the 28th minute he had already seen Levy return to the pitch to save his penalty stroke effort but it was not to matter as Bromley & Beckenham finished the match 7-3 winners and national indoor champions for the first time.
Bromley & Beckenham 7 (5)
Harry Sellers 3,6,11,26,28 (PC,F,PC,F,F)
Harry Sainsbury 11 (F)
Rob Farrington 14 (F)
Havant 3 (2)
George Cairns 4 (F)
Josh Gibbard 5 (F)
Sam Hatherley 21 (F)
U16 Girls Clubs Final
The girls’ U16 club final was dominated by the Trojan girls today at the National Indoor Hockey Championships in Nottingham with the team from the south proving the more clinical with a 7-3 victory.
Trojans started the match the better of the two sides and opened the scoring through captain Lizzie Gittens, who picked up the ball outside the circle before playing it across to her teammate Jenny Peebles who put it past the keeper for the Trojans first.
More Trojans pressure brought a penalty corner and another goal, this time scored by Alice Pyrgos. Trojans were relentless in the first period, scoring again from open play through Becky Van Berkel in the sixth minute. There was no let up for Beeston as Trojan turned on the pace scoring another two goals giving Peebles and Van Berkel their second goals of the match.
Beeston did hit back right at the end of the half through a penalty corner, Lowri McIntosh pushing the ball out to Katie Hopkinson who made no mistake of finding the net with a clinical shot buried deep into the net. Half time and Trojans went into the break 6-1.
The second half commenced and Beeston showed grit and determination against a brilliant Trojan side; Hopkinson was the brightest of the bunch for Beeston and she brought the score to 6-2 soon after the restart.
Trojans made it 7-2 in 20th minute, captain Gittens leading her side by example and scoring a great individual effort to leave Martha Baker in goal stranded.
Beeston enjoyed one final push and with probably the best goal of the game Hopkinson from the smallest of angles managed to lift the ball over Baker into the top right hand of the goal from the opposite side of the circle, a truly magnificent goal to get her hat-trick.
A convincing performance by Trojans secured the national title, winning 7-3. Despite their defeat Beeston can take heart from their performance and in the excellent individual effort by Hopkinson who looks to be a star for the future.
Trojans 7 (6)
Jenny Peebles 1,9 (F,F)
Alice Pyrgos 5, 8 (PC,F)
Becky van Berkel 6,10 (F,F)
Lizzie Gittens 20 (F)
Beeston 3 (1)
Katie Hopkisson 15,18,28 (PC,F,F)
U18 Boys Clubs Final
Old Loughtonians U18 boys won the final of the U18 Boys Clubs National Indoor Hockey Championships at the Trent FM Arena on Sunday morning after beating Beeston in the home city by six goals to one.
In spite of the seemingly one sided nature of the match this was a highly entertaining affair which saw end to end free flowing attacks for the first ten minutes of the match with both goalkeepers called into action on several occasions.
First blood went to Old Loughts through a fantastic piece of individual skill from Harry Kempe in the tenth minute. Picking up the ball on the left hand side of the Beeston circle he flicked it high into the net for the opening goal and a minute later he doubled his tally, squeezing the ball home after a melee in the middle of the circle.
In the space of two minutes the Essex side had raced into a three goal lead as Liam Peoples got in on the act with a well placed deflection from Adam Miller’s straight through ball.
Beeston responded with an attack of their own but Liam Adams could not find the net from a narrow angle.
On the stroke of half time Harry Martin scored Old Loughtonians fourth from close ranged as the game slipped away from the ‘home’ team.
The second half did not quite have the same level of pacey entertainment as the first and was punctuated by a number of penalty corners. Two early Old Loughts corners came to nothing as David Overton stood firm in the Beeston goal. Beeston too earned a corner which ultimately came to nothing.
Old Loughts had the chance to bury the game midway through the half as they powered forward but a quick pass across the circle found only the back line.
On 25 minutes Matt Lewis netted Old Loughts’ fifth with a powerful flick into the far side of the net and Kempe completed his hat-trick a minute later after showing good composure to round Overton and fire home after the goalkeeper had made two good blocks at the top of the circle.
Perry Foster in the Old Loughts goal was certainly not a spectator and pulled off a good save just prior to Tom Vickerstaff’s goal for Beeston two minutes from time, following up from close range after a Foster save.
With just seconds left on the clock, Old Loughtonians were awarded a penalty corner which Overton raced out to block and the match finished 6-1 sparking scenes of mass celebration from the team in purple and white and their vocal supporters high in the stand.
Beeston 1 (0)
Tom Vickerstaff 28 (F)
Old Loughtonians 6 (4)
Harry Kempe 10,11,26 (F,F,F)
Liam Peoples 12 (F)
Harry Martin 15 (F)
Matt Lewis 25 (PC)
U18 Girls Clubs Final
Today at the National Indoor Hockey Championships in Nottingham, Belper were the victors in a one sided match against their local rivals Beeston in the Girl’s U18 Clubs Final.
The match began at a fairly leisurely pace with neither side significantly troubling the other. Belper had more of the opening pressure with a couple of penalty corners but were unable to make them count.
The Derbyshire side opened the scoring through Joanna Leigh after Anna Toman had carried the ball down the line before pulling it back to her teammate Leigh who slipped the ball into the net past the Beeston goalkeeper Yasmin Haywood. Leigh, who also played in the U18 schools competition on Saturday and who has been in fine form over the two days, put her club 2-0 up by picking up a rebound from the goalkeeper. After picking up the ball she buried it into the top right hand corner of the net.
The first half finished with a Beeston half chance that could have put them back in the game but instead was shot wide of the goal by Madi smith. At the break Belper led 2-0.
The second half saw Beeston fade away quickly as Belper mounted their attack once more, this time through Sophie Hawkins. Belper went on to hit the post as Beeston looked evermore unlikely to come back into the game. Six minutes from the end Belper sealed their victory with a penalty corner scored by Toman. And less than a minute later, another rebounded shot from the Beeston goalkeeper fell back to Alice Sharp who beat Haywood at the second time of asking.
Belper the deserving winners of the Championship match, convincingly saw off Beeston with a 5-0 victory. Ultimately, Beeston played well but could not match their stronger opponents.
Beeston 0 (0)
Belper 5 (2)
Joanna Leigh 5,11 (F,F)
Sophie Hawkins 20 (F)
Anna Toman 24 (PC)
Alice Sharp 24 (F)
England Hockey Board Media release
Wanderers still on course
VWS Dundee Wanderers are still on line for their first ever Subway indoor national league title, they held on to their four points advantage after beating Milne Craig Western 5-2, followed by a 3-3 draw with city rivals Grove.
Wanderers opened strongly in the Grove tussle, Julie Bryce converted a pass from Vikki Bunce for the opener and five minutes later an innovative penalty corner involving Sam Sangster and Bunce saw the latter put the league leaders two up. But Wanderers took their eye off the ball and allowed Grove back into the contest in the final two minutes of the half. Lynsey Glass was given space to pull one back from open play, but with 25 seconds to go Wanderers conceded an unlucky penalty and Louise Carroll converted from the spot.
Wanderers went 3-2 in front two minutes after the interval, Bunce`s high shot was brilliantly saved by Grove keeper Anna Schwartz but the Wanderers` playmaker followed up to volley the ball home. Back came Grove, Jaime Lyon found herself on the loose, she pushed the ball on to the unmarked Susan Hamilton who finished off the move in style.
Against Western Amy Rowatt opened the scoring, followed by a Bunce penalty corner that flew into the roof of the net. Holly Cram pulled one back for Western but Bunce set up another chance for Jess Webb to put Wanderers two up. A mix up on the goal line gave Morag McLelland the chance to reduce the deficit to 3-2.
The game was won eight minutes into the second half with a glorious run and strike by Bunce and in the final minute Amy Rowan opened up the Western defence with a run from her own half and Bunce finished off for her hat-trick.
Western made heavy weather of disposing of Grove`s second string 4-2. Kerry Hall opened for the Taysiders only for veteran Helen Walker to equalise before the interval. The Glasgow outfit raced into a 3-1 lead through Morag McLelland and Ellie Cockburn. In the final minute Hall pulled the score back to a single goal but Ali Cox saved Western`s blushes with a late strike on the final whistle.
Grove saw off their second string by a predictable 5-2, Evie Durham scored three while the other goals came from Louise Carroll and Leigh Fawcett.
In the relegation pool Clydesdale gave themselves a life line with a narrow 3-2 victory over Inverleith, the goals came from Sheena McKelvie, Wendy Justice and Nicky Skrastin. Neither side made much impact on their survival plan earlier in the day, Clydesdale lost 6-4 to Kelburne, Amy Hislop scored four, while CALA trounced Inverleith 8-2, Amy Brodie grabbing a hat-trick.
Scottish Hockey Union media release
Maybank squeeze into semi-finals
MAYBANK just made it to the semi-finals of the Malaysia Hockey League (MHL) Pemier Division when they edged UniKL-IBIL 2-0 in the second leg quarter-final at the Tun Razak Stadium yesterday.
The Tigers had an aggregate of 5-3 and will face Tenaga Nasional who hammered UiTM 7-0 for a 9-0 aggregate win.
In the other quarters, Sapura, who already have a 4-1 cushion, took it easy in the return leg and lost 1-0 to Nur Insafi but advanced 4-2 on aggregate to play Kuala Lumpur Hockey Club in the semi-finals.
KLHC, who hammered ATM-Airod 10-2 in the first leg, beat them 7-3 to qualify on a 17-5 aggregate.
Maybank took the lead in the 13th minute when Hairul Nizam was on target off a penalty corner, and Hairul delivered again in the 60th minute to seal the match.
However, Maybank coach S. Valappan agreed that is was not an easy win.
"UniKL deserve credit for playing good hockey but we had experience on our side and that counted. It was a shaky match after we took the lead as UniKL had many chances and could have levelled the score.
"We took the tough route as we squandered many penalty corner chances and will have to work on that in the next week for the semis," said Velappan.
UniKL coach I. Vickneswaran said Maybank players were clever in generating faults, which killed his team's chances.
"Some of the faults which earned Maybank the goals and also crucial penalty corners were results of manufactured faults.
"Maybank players fell even though my players did not have any contact with them. But that is part of the game, and I accept the defeat in good spirit," said Vickneswaran.
However, considering his team have an average age of 22, Vickneswaran feels there is future in this team.
"If this set of players are kept together and play again in the MHL next season, I believe they will be the team to watch."
Tenaga Nasional, who had a 2-0 cushion from the first leg, let loose their forwards and nailed seven more goals.
Amin Rahim (eighth, 69th), Izwan Firdaus (10th, 46th), Shazril Irwan (48th, 58th) and Anwar Ali (62nd) delivered for Tenaga.
New Straits Times
TNB demolish UiTM to set up semis showdown with Maybank
By S. RAMAGURU
KUALA LUMPUR: Former champions Tenaga Nasional stormed into the Malaysia Hockey League semi-finals with a 7-0 rout of UiTM in a quarter-final second-leg match to go through 9-0 on aggregate at the KL Hockey Stadium here yesterday.
Tenaga will play against another former champions, Maybank, in a two-leg semi-final tie on Feb 5 and 6 at the Tun Razak Stadium.
Maybank ended the challenge of newcomers UniKL-IBIL yesterday with a 2-0 win in the second leg at the Tun Razak Stadium. The first-leg match last Friday had ended in a 3-3 draw.
Tenaga, who only managed to beat Division One champions UiTM 2-0 in the first-leg match, were expecting another tough match but it turned out to be a breeze at their home ground.
National defender Mohd Amin Rahim opened accounts with an eighth minute penalty corner goal and rounded up the scoring in the 69th minute. Two players scored a brace – youngsters Izwan Firdaus (10th, 46th) and Shahril Irwan Nazli (48th, 58th). Mohamed Anwar Ali scored the other goal in the 62nd minute.
Tenaga coach Manjit Singh said: “It was a good workout and the youngsters came through well to show that they can be depended on. The semi-finals offer a different opposition and we need to remain sharp with our scoring.”
Hairul Nizam Rani was the toast for Maybank, scoring the two goals – in the 13th and 60th minutes – to give his team a 5-3 aggregate win over UniKL.
Maybank used their experience well to slow down the pace against their fast and young opponents. The first goal gave the Tigers the breathing space and their ability to keep the ball out of the D also helped. UniKL had six penalty corners in the match but were let down by poor execution.
Maybank coach S. Vellapan said: “I must give them credit for pushing us all the way. There are still a lot of areas for us to improve on and we need to work on them before the semi-finals.”
Penang’s Nur Insafi defeated Sapura 1-0 but their efforts were all in vain. Sapura rode on their 4-1 win in the first leg to advance.
Nur Insafi played a much improved game but had to wait until the 59th minute to score a field goal through Mubeen Ur Rahman.
Sapura then kept Nur Insafi at bay to set up a semi-final tie against Premier Division champions Kuala Lumpur Hockey Club (KLHC).
The Star of Malaysia
Hockey players asked me to spearhead a concert for funds: Big B
NEW DELHI: Bollywood legend Amitabh Bachchan on Sunday said that the Indian hockey team has asked him to spearhead a fund-raising concert to be held in Chandigarh.
"The Hockey national team is on its way back from training camp at Pune and has a desire to meet me...The Hockey team has been struggling with their association and handlers for their pay to be settled," Bachchan writes in his blog.
"It has not happened they say till time and are anxious that I spearhead a concert to be held in Chandigarh to collect funds for them and their welfare. I have asked for details and shall see what can be done for a cause as noble as this," he added.
The disgruntled national hockey players had gone on strike in Pune earlier this month protesting non-payment of their dues and incentives.
The Times of India
Shahbad hockey girls perform without rewards
CHANDIGARH: Shahbad near Kurukshetra in Haryana has earned the name of cradle of women's hockey in the region. Surender Kaur, who currently heads the women's hockey team, Rani, the star scorer of Indian team, Sandeep, the girl with golden stick are among the nine players attending a national camp being held in Hyderabad for the SAF Games.
Despite being the captain, Surender, the only player who has been able to make it to World XI, is yet to find any job in Haryana police. She is currently employed as LDC in the Railways.
Like Surender Kaur, Rani's family is yet to come out of financial constraints as her father continues to ply a horse cart. Despite the indifference, it is these girls' love for the sport and the nurturing ground, that helps them carry on in face of odds.
Their condition contradicts what Haryana chief minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda at a press conference on Thursday. "We have done a lot for sports and recently we have released a grant of Rs 1 crore to Hockey India. So far the problems of the players from Haryana are concerned, we have drawn a comprehensive policy and their problems would be taken care of," he had said.
It appears that he is not aware of the ground realities. The players, their families and coach blame babudom for the present problems. "Except for Mamta Kharab and Sardara Singh, none of our players has been inducted in Haryana police or any other department. Except for Indian Railways, no one has given employment to our girls who have been playing the game for the past 20 years. Take the case of Surender Kaur, captain of Indian hockey team. She continues to be an LDC with Railways," Baldev stated.
He recalls the moments when locals, family friends of players and senior players had to pool in money to meet certain requirements. Inquiries revealed that Rajwinder Kaur, Balwinder Kaur, Simarjeet Kaur, Gurpreet Kaur, Ramaneek Kaur and vice-captain Suman Bala had to be sent back home for corrective knee surgeries from camp.
Except for Anil Dhantori, Shahbad MLA, who himself is sportsperson, no one has come forward to extend monetary help for surgeries of these girls. Otherwise every surgery costs somewhere between Rs 70,000-90,000. Had there been medical insurance, these problems could have been sorted out, the coach maintained. "The diet charges have increased after the hockey nursery was declared an acadamy. We are waiting for a grantso that we start a hostel here," he added.
The Times of India
Khusropur, a real match for Sansarpur
Khusropur: If Sansarpur has been known as undivided India’s first and foremost hockey nursery, its immediate neighbour, Khusropur, too, has no less distinctive hockey history.
Situated on the southern periphery of Jalandhar Cantonment and to the east of Sansarpur, about 1.5 km away, this village of 2000 has not only produced seven hockey Olympians, two of whom played for Canada, but also a large number of national and international players.
And starting tomorrow, the Khusropur Sports Club will be playing host to the 14th Invitation Hockey Tournament that carries a cash prize of Rs 31000 for the winners and Rs 21000 for the runners-up team.
Arjuna awardee and Olympian Haripal Kaushik, one of the most prominent hockey player the village has produced since the British introduced hockey here more than 90 years ago, says that the village’s special bondage with the armed forces is reflected in the list of the participating teams in the tournament. Signals, EME, Artillery XI, Madras Regiment, besides Border Security Force, Khusropur XI, Sansarpur XI, Punjab and Sind Bank Academy and Mehli XI have confirmed their participation.
Colonel Haripal Kaushik played for the country in the 1956, 1960 and 1964 Olympic games. He has been associated with the Indian Hockey Federation in various capacities, including a national selector and a member of the coaching panel also.
Gurmail Singh Rai and his wife Rajbir Kaur are one of hockey couples the game has. While Gurmail was a member of the 1980 Olympic champion Indian team, Rajbir Kaur played a stellar role in helping India win the 1982 Asian games gold medal.
Amarjit Singh Rana, also a member of the 1980 Olympic gold medallist team, belongs to this village. He later migrated to Canada and lives there now. Rajwinder Singh, who settled down in Europe after representing the country in the 1971 World Cup, too, is a Khusropurian.
Jagdev Singh, burly fullback of Punjab police, who represented the country in Barcelona Olympic games, is also from this village. Harbhajan Singh (1984) and Ranjit Singh (1988) represented Canada in the Olympic games.
Piara Singh, Gurdev Singh and Avtar Singh either represented the country or were in national camps.
This unique village has another distinction. It has been a regular feeding channel to defence forces. Now it has a Brigadier, six Colonels and Lieutenant Colonels, 14 Majors/Captains, 15 Junior Commissioned Officers and 100 other ranks - a tremendous contribution indeed. The village has a winner each of the prestigious Military Cross, Vir Chakra, Order of British Empire and mention in dispatches.
Colonel Haripal Kaushik, who has been following the progress of fellow villagers, says that Honorary Captain Narang Singh was perhaps the first outstanding player from the village to make a mark. He participated early in the 20th century in the Punjab Native Infantry Hockey Tournament.
“There used to be a joint Sansarpur-Khusropur Hockey Club in 1900s. It continued till the number of players rose manifold and both the villages then opted for separate hockey clubs. Some of the outstanding pre-partition hockey players of Khusropur were Jaswant Singh, Ishar Singh, Atma Singh, Pandit Mathura Das, Faqir Chand, Pandit Ram Parkash Natha, Gurpartap Singh, Gurdial Singh, Brigadier Sarup Singh, Chanan Singh and Ratan Singh.
“The village has now a stadium, 10-kanal of land for which was given by Colonel Kehar Singh and rightly it has been named after him. Other contributors were Baba Sham Singh and Ram Singh and the rest was the village common land. The Army authorities provided the engineering support for leveling the playfield. It was in 1995 that Khusropur Sports Club came into being,” adds Colonel Kaushik.
Later, Edward Alosiyus, a former goalkeeper of India, settled in the village and started coaching youngsters with a missionary spirit. He continued his good work till he was transferred to Hyderabad, his hometown.