All the news for Tuesday 24 April 2011
New Jersey and California move up in rankings on day three of the US Women's National Championships
COLORADO SPRINGS, C.O. - Play resumed today for day three of the Women's National Championships at American University in Washington, D.C. Well rested from Sunday's off day, athletes took the field ready and raring. Hard fought and exciting battles, found both New Jersey and California moving up one spot in rankings and New England dropping to last position.
Evenly matched New Jersey and Pennsylvania found scoring difficult in the first half. Although New Jersey doubled their shots on goal over Pennsylvania, it appeared the teams would enter halftime 0-0. However, thirty seconds before the whistle marked the end of the first half, New Jersey's Michelle Cesan (New Vernon, NJ) gathered a loose ball in front of the cage and immediately pushed it past Pennsylanvia's keeper.
Ahead 1-0 going into the second, it was New Jersey again who found the back of the net first. This time, Rachel Dawson (Berlin, NJ) fired a shot on goal and teammate Kathleen Sharkey (Moosic, PA) was there to tip it in.
Up two goals to nil, Pennsylvania regrouped and put two consecutive goals past New Jersey's keeper, temporarily making the match tied at 2-2. Pennsylvania's two goals came from the same play on a corner opportunity within minutes of eachother. Shannon Taylor (La Mesa, CA) received the ball from Kayla Bashore-Smedley (Shoemakersville, PA) and ripped a shot from the top of left of the circle to the right corner of the cage. An unsettled and unsatisified New Jersey came fighting back. Katie Evans (Newtown Square, PA) found Sharkey, who again was on post to tip the ball in. New Jersey defeated Pennsylvania, 3-2 and shifted to a second place ranking.
It was clear California stepped on the field with a winning mindset. In the first sixty seconds of play, they were on the boards and up 1-0 over New England. Torrie Albini (Escondido, CA) fired a rocket from the top of the circle that would make any goalkeeper uneasy of what's to come.
A penalty corner awarded to New England tied up the match at 1-1 when a shot from Lauren Pfeiffer (Mt. Laurel, NJ) deflected off of the goalies pads and into the net. California immediately came back and took the lead once again, with Rebecca Spengler (Lititz, PA) redirecting a shot from teammate Kelly Dostal (Louisville, KY).
An all out battle, both New England and California secured one more goal before the half. New England's Corrine Mcconville (Lehighton, PA) went one-on-one with the goalie and came out on top. California's Maren Ford shot across the cage got deflected into goal by a New England defender. California led New England 3-2 going into the second half.
Not quite as eventful and exciting as the first half, only one goal was scored before the end of the match. Rachelle Comeau (Los Gatos, CA) followed through with a shot fired by Albini and secured the lead and the win for California, 4-2. The win placed California ahead of New England in rankings.
Another close match that ended in a draw, was the final match of the day between South and Mid Atlantic. A scoreless battle until the final five seconds in the first half, Melanie Brill capitalized on a penalty corner and put South ahead 1-0. Statistically, the South dominated doubling Mid Atlantics corner opportunities and shots on goal.
Mimicing game play in the first half, the second half was scoreless until the final minutes of play. Katie O'Donnell (Blue Bell, PA) beat a South defender and took a quick shot at the top of the circle. O'Donnell's goal tied the match at 1-1.
Tomorrow will be another exciting day on Jacobs Field as New England take on the South at 2:30pm, Mid Atlantic will battle it out with New Jersey at 4:15pm and California will try to maintain their feisty attitudes against Pennsylvania at 6:00pm.
USFHA media release
Tanvir Dar Hockey Academy’s Two Most Promising Pupils on the National Selectors’ Radar
By Ijaz Chaudhry
Tanvir Dar Hockey Academy, within five years of its inception has come to be recognised as the best reservoir of young talent in the country. The academy players have gained selection at all the levels leading up to the national team.
Among the probables called for the camp for the national team’s next month tour of Holland and Ireland, two teenagers of the academy have also been invited.
Bilal Qadir is perhaps the brightest young star on the horizon of Pakistan hockey. He is achieving laurels at a breath taking speed. The boy from a tiny village near Pir Mahal, has already played for Pakistan under 18. Last summer he captained the Tanvir Dar H.A. team on its tour of Europe. The side won the MOP international tournament in Holland and Bilal was declared the player of the tournament. Only recently, in the just concluded national junior super league, he captained the winning team, Faisalabad, and was again declared the player of the tournament. All this meant that recognition at the national senior level was only a matter of time. Stardom is awaiting this mercurial left side forward.
The other lad, Arsalan Qadir has already distinguished himself on the international stage. The boy from D.G.Khan played a stellar role in Pakistan winning the silver medal at last year’s youth Olympics. The centre forward was tournament’s joint top scorer with 10 goals. He appears to have all the essential attributes of a spearhead: positioning, receiving and finishing. Like Bilal, he also shone at the national junior super hockey league where he appeared for the third placed Multan side.
Ijaz Chaudhry writes on hockey and other sports. For more about him and his work, visit: www.sportscorrespondent.info
Jason Lee promising Golden goodbye
By Graham Wilson
Jason Lee says his GB squad is capable of a top finish in 2012
JASON LEE plans to go out on a gold medal high at London 2012.
England and Great Britain coach Lee has upped the stakes for the inaugural four nations London Cup at Chiswick from July 12-16, which involves England as European champions, Belgium, New Zealand and Korea.
Lee, 41, says his GB squad is capable of a top finish in 2012. He then plans to bow out of the job he has held for nine years.
“We are targeting a gold medal rather than a best or podium performance,” he said.
England, who have renewed their association with the Maxifuel sports nutrition company, are hoping 10,000 fans turn out at the University of Westminster’s Quintin Hogg Memorial Ground in July, site of some 1948 Olympic hockey matches.
“This area is a hotbed of hockey,” said Lee. “And we would expect a good home turnout so that the fans can see how we are evolving.
“There will be a large group of retirees after London 2012. And I intend to stop after London. I have been the longest-serving coach and I am still the youngest. After nine years, the sport moves on. If you stay too long, it stops the system.”
With an eye on the future, FIH officials visit India
LAUSANNE – FIH President Leandro Negre and CEO Kelly Fairweather wrapped up a week-long visit to India. While there, the two met with Hockey India officials to discuss hosting details of the international events scheduled to take place in India in the next four years along with the future of the proposed professional, franchised team league, to be joint sanctioned by FIH and Hockey India.
The FIH and Hockey India have agreed in principle to form a partnership for the formation of the professional league, which will include between six and eight franchised teams and take place in India each year with the first edition in January 2013. The FIH and HI will be launching a process to select a partner with Sports Marketing and Event delivery expertise to assist in this roll out of this project.
The establishment of the professional league, with substantial prize money and incentives for the athletes, is just one of several steps being taken to increase the profile of hockey in India and around the globe. India will also host several other prime FIH events in the upcoming four-year cycle based on the success of the successful World Cup hosting experience last year. The next event that will be held in India is the 2011 FIH Men’s Champions Trophy in December.
While in India, Negre and Fairweather also met with Sports Minister, Mr Ajay Maken and, in two separate question and answer sessions, outlined FIHs global strategic plan to a gathering of Indian hockey officials and Olympians, and met a group of top Indian media representatives.
FIH Media release
New league to follow IPL blueprint
NEW DELHI: World hockey's governing body wants its new competition to draw on the success of cricket's glitzy Indian Premier League and plans to circumvent any 'club vs country' dilemmas by incorporating the tournament on the official calendar.
International Hockey Federation (FIH) chief executive Kelly Fairweather said that it was crucial to present the new league as a form of entertainment, something the IPL has excelled at.
Getting the best players involved was also key, added Fairweather, confirming that the league would be on the official calendar.
"This is why we believe that a professional hockey league organised under a partnership between Hockey India and FIH is key to a new league's success," he said in an interview.
"If a new league is to attract the best players, it must fit in with the top players' other objectives of competing in the wider Olympic and international events."
Responding to questions posed via email, Fairweather said FIH member associations were excited about the proposed league, which would take place over six weeks and begin in January 2013.
"If a new league can be scheduled not to conflict with a players' international duties, then playing in the best league in the world would surely be beneficial to a player's performance development and hence, we would expect countries to be supportive.
"Our discussions with the national associations and players have confirmed this," said the former South African player and coach.
Several high profile cricketers, including West Indies' Chris Gayle and Sri Lanka's Lasith Malinga, have opted to play in the IPL instead of representing their countries.
The FIH was very impressed by the IPL success story, he said.
"The IPL is held as a model of excellence for a franchised league in India. We believe we can learn from this model and adapt it to hockey to be successful.
"Since the IPL has become established, we believe the public, broadcasters, sponsors and investors are all looking for the next IPL and we can see interest in a wide range of sports."
Business tycoons and Bollywood actors are IPL team owners, and the FIH admires the cricket league's marriage of sport and entertainment, such as cheerleaders celebrating every boundary and dismissal.
"Much is made of the IPL's cheerleaders, but the more important point is that IPL have done a great job in presenting sport as entertainment," he added. "We would seek to follow that example."
The FIH is yet to finalise the league's details but the early response has left Fairweather bullish.
"The format is not decided yet and we would expect to work with Hockey India and a sports marketing company to finalise those details. From enquiries made so far, we believe that there are more than enough franchise owners.
"We expect the response from the commercial sector to be positive. However, first we need to establish a transparent and fair procedure to appoint an agency to assist FIH and Hockey India to run the league.
"Once this is achieved, we expect further developments, such as the signing of franchises, players, broadcasters and sponsors to follow quickly."
The Times of India
Ireland names award winners
The ESB Electric Ireland Irish Hockey Awards took place in the Burlington Hotel, Dublin. The evening was attended by many who support Irish Hockey including Liam Molloy, General Manager of ESB Electric Ireland, Darragh Maloney (MC), guest speakers Brain Kerr and Tommy Bowe, and representatives from a number of sporting bodies including the Sports Council of Northern Ireland and the Olympic Council of Ireland.
Many clubs and hockey supporters joined us tonight to celebrate outstanding talent which was displayed throughout the season.
The Award Shortlists and Winners are highlighted below:
Samurai Senior Men’s Club Player of the Year
Shortlist: Mark Black (Cork Harlequins HC), Fran Lee (Monkstown HC), Shane O'Donoghue (Glenanne HC), Mark Raphael (Lisnagarvey HC).
Winner: Mark Raphael
ESB Electric Ireland Senior Women’s Club Player of the Year
Shortlist: Elaine Bromell (Catholic Institute HC), Aisling Campion (Loreto HC), Kate Dillon (Railway Union HC), Emma Stewart (Armagh LHC).
Winner: Katie Dillon
Local Lotto Volunteer of the Year
Shortlist: Alice Garrad (Ulster Elks), Helen Johnston (Railway Union LHC), Cliona Kennedy (Greenfields HC), Geraldine O'Carroll (Catholic Institute HC)
Winner: Helen Johnston
Dixon Rose Umpire of the Year
Shortlist: Malcolm Coombes, Fiona Davitt, Davy Foster, Carol Metchette.
Winner: Davy Foster
Samurai U18 Male Player of the Year
Shortlist: Mathew Allister (Annadale HC and Sullivan), David Cole (Monkstown HC and St. Andrews), Shane O'Donoghue (Glenanne HC and The High School), Ian Sloan (Cookstown HC and Cookstown High).
Winner: Ian Sloan
ESB Electric Ireland U18 Female Player of the Year
Shortlist: Leah Ewart (Armagh LHC and The Royal School Armagh), Katie Mullan (Ballymoney HC and Dalriada), Gillian Pinder (Hermes HC and St. Andrews), Roisín Upton (Catholic Institute and Crescent Comprehensive).
Winner: Roisín Upton
O’Driscoll O’Neil Coach of the Year
Shortlist: Mary Logue (Hermes HC), Mick McKinnon (Railway Union HC) Michelle Rainey (Pegasus HC), Graham Shaw (Glenanne & Loreto HC).
Winner: Michelle Rainey
O’Driscoll O’Neil U18 Coach of the Year
Shortlist: Alison McNeill, Catherine Moore (Greenfields HC), Mona Sexton (Fermoy), Miles Warren (Alexandra College/Irish U-16 Boys)
Winner: Alison McNeill
ESB Electric Ireland Club of the Year
Shortlist: Catholic Institute HC, Lisnagarvey HC, Monkstown HC, Railway LHC.
Winner: Lisnagarvey Hockey Club
ESB Electric Ireland Youth Club of the Year
Shortlist: Greenfields HC, Lisnagarvey HC, Monkstown HC, Pembroke Wanderers HC.
Winner: Monkstown Hockey Club
Orchard Print Developing Club of the Year
Shortlist: Diocesan HC, Newbridge HC, North Kildare HC, Portrane HC.
Winner: Newbridge Hockey Club
School of the Year
Shortlist: Banbridge Academy, Crescent College, Lurgan College, Alexandra College.
Winner: Lurgan College
Samurai Players Player of the Year
ESB Electric Ireland Players Player of the Year
Irish Hockey Association media release