All the news for Friday 15 July 2011
Kookaburras defeat Spain in the opening match of their European Tour
The Kookaburras have begun their European tour with a come from behind 3-2 win over Spain, but have suffered another long term injury to a key player.
Kookaburras co-captain and 2004 Athens Olympic gold medallist Mark Knowles injured his foot during the match and will now be sidelined for 2-3 months.
Knowles joins the long list of key players who are injured including Jamie Dwyer, Des Abbott, Grant Schubert and Graeme Begbie, Liam De Young, Rob Hammond, Luke Doerner, Tim Deavin and Kieran Govers.
While the Kookaburras will be disappointed to lose another player, they will be pleased with their performance against Spain and their ability to come back from a 2-0 lead to Spain early in the first half.
After scoring with only five minutes to go until half time to make it 2-1 the Kookaburras controlled the game after half time, scoring the next two unanswered goals to commence their European tour on a positive note.
The Kookaburras will again play Spain on Saturday 16 July.
Kookaburras 3 Spain 2 (1-2 half time)
Goals – Brent Dancer, Jonathon Charlesworth, Matthew Butturini
Hockey Australia media release
Black Sticks in final but McLeod wants more
Black Sticks men's coach Shane McLeod will give some bench players game time in tomorrow's match against England, having already secured a spot in the London Cup hockey final – but he's still demanding improvement.
New Zealand sealed a spot in Sunday's final of the four-nations tournament with a last-gasp 3-2 win against Belgium in Chiswick, London, yesterday.
After an opening 2-0 win over Korea, New Zealand are the only unbeaten team and will contest the final irrespective of tomorrow's result.
McLeod now has the luxury of being able to test different combinations against the world No4-ranked England, who have been bundled out despite being the highest-ranked team at the tournament.
But his decision to rotate players or the fact New Zealand are unbeaten doesn't mean he is entirely satisfied.
"I think we've been a little bit wasteful in our attacking third; we've created a lot of opportunities but we haven't reaped the rewards from what we've created," McLeod said yesterday.
"And we need to make sure we don't have those flat patches that we had against Belgium."
The seventh-ranked Black Sticks battled back from an early Belgium goal to lead 2-1 at halftime through goals by Stephen Jenness and a strike by Matthew L'Huillier from a penalty corner.
Belgium, ranked 13 in the world, equalised with 10 minutes remaining when Tom Boon scored his second goal, while Black Sticks captain Phil Burrows was on the sideline after being sinbinned for a rough tackle.
But the Kiwis regained composure and scored a late winner through Nick Wilson.
McLeod was generally happy with the performance, and the way in which they responded after Belgium's equaliser, but is demanding better against England.
Sixth-ranked Korea upset England 5-4 in yesterday's other match, consigning England to their second loss in two days. Korea and Belgium will tomorrow play off for the other spot in the final.
McLeod doesn't necessarily know what to make of England's results.
"Their coach said they often don't play well at home, which is not a good thing leading into an Olympics in London, but I'm just not sure about them," he said.
"They were dominating against Korea, playing pretty well, and then Korea just seemed to get counter-attacking goals. But they got five of them so there is obviously something not going well for England.
"We'll try and take advantage of that but at the same time they're a top five side and they'll be hurting."
McLeod said he wanted to use tomorrow's match against the European champions as a "bit of a gauge, because England have already qualified for the London Olympics so we can gather information and test elements of our game against them".
Hockey squads flick off tourney
T&T’s men and women’s hockey teams will open their campaigns against host Canada when the Four-Nation Classic hosted by Field Hockey Canada to celebrate its 20th anniversary flicks off today in Vancouver. The tournament which also involves Japan and Chile takes place at Wrigght Field, University of British Columbia, Vancouver. First in action will be the local women’s team against Canada from 1 pm (TT time) while the men will face the host country two hours later.
T&T women’s team is coming off a recent 3-0 sweep of neighbours Guyana (6-1, 7-0, and 4-0) on home soil earlier this month and will also face Canada’s Developmental side Canada A, Chile and Japan as they continue preparations for the Pan American Games in Guadlajar, Mexico, from October 19 to 28. In Mexico, the local women coached by Anthony Marcano will compete in Group A with Argentina, Barbados and Canada while Group B comprises Chile, Cuba, Mexico and USA. The national men’s team led by reigning T&T Hockey Board’s Player of the Year Darren Cowie of Queen’s Park will meet the Canadians in two other matches as well as Chile.
The Trinidad Guardian
Govia fires Parkites to vets title
Mixed Veterans champs...Members of Queen’s Park hockey club pose for a team photo after beating Notre Dame 6-1 on Monday at the National Hockey Centre, Tacarigua to clinch the Mixed Veterans Division title. In photo from back-row left are Andre Attale, Winston Govia (manager), Gary Chin, Michael Santiago, Kendall Tull, Paul Weekes, Roger Walcott, Peter Rodriguez, Chris Aird, Errol Dos Santos, Raphael Govia (captain), Azad Ali and Tony Williams. Front row kneeling are Ronald Murray, Derek Daniel, Bryan Lee Chow (goalkeeper), Derek Tang Nian, Robert Mouttet and Gary Griffith. Photo: Courtesy QPCC
Raphael Govia scored a beaver-trick to lead Queen’s Park to a 6-1 drubbing of Notre Dame and with it the T&T Hockey Board Mixed Veterans Division title on Monday. Gary Griffith added a double for the Parkites who led 4-0 at the interval at the National Hockey Centre, Tacarigua while Selwyn King got a second-half consolation for the Dames. With the win, the Parkites pushed their points tally 34 points from 13 matches, four ahead of Malvern with one match left for both clubs to complete their schedule. Malvern got a goal each from Rigel Gomes, former national coach David Francois and Peter Edwards to shut out Corona Fatima 3-0 on Tuesday while on Wednesday third placed Carib whipped Police 4-1. For Carib, Kevin Adams, Wayne Williams and Ramsammy-brothers, Neil Ramsammy and Ronald Ramsammy were on target while Anthony Reyes scored for Police.
Mixed Veterans Division:
QPCC 6 (Raphael Govia 4, Gary Griffith 2) vs Notre Dame 1 (Selwyn King)
Malvern 3 (Rigel Gomes 16th, David Francois 23rd, Peter Edwards 45th) vs Fatima 0.
Carib 4 (Kevin Adams 19th, Neil Ramsammy 24th, Wayne Williams 48th, Ronald Ramsammy 60th) vs Police 1 (Anthony Reyes 57th).
Teams P W D L F A Pts
QPCC 13 11 1 1 44 20 34
Malvern 13 9 3 1 35 15 30
Carib 13 7 3 4 25 23 23
Fatima 13 5 4 4 32 30 19
N/Dame 13 4 4 5 34 26 16
D/Force 12 4 2 6 31 30 14
Police 13 1 1 11 15 35 5
Paragon 12 0 2 10 16 53 2
The Trinidad Guardian
Scotland U18W match rained off, whilst U18M prepare for Euro semi-final
Scotland U18W's confrontation with high-flying Holland in the European U18 Championship in Utrecht was postponed this afternoon by torrential rain, which has completely flooded the all-weather artificial grass pitches.
Assuming the weather relents, the games will go on tomorrow, originally designated as a rest day, at the same time with Colin Clarke's squad playing their last pool match against the hosts and favourites for the title.
The Scots are currently competing in the top tier of the European youth competition, and whilst the going has been tough with losses to Belgium and Ireland, the experience has been invaluable for the squad.
They will play-off for the 5th-8th places this weekend following the pool matches.
Meanwhile, Scotland U18M are dreaming of promotion in Cernusco, Italy, and this target is very much still alive after the 5-1 trouncing of Ukraine in the final pool match on Wednesday.
The Scots finished runners-up to Austria in the pool, but now enter the business end of the tournament with a crucial semi-final clash with Poland, who topped the other group.
The prize for the winner is automatic promotion to the top flight in two years time and a place in Saturday`s final against either Austria or Switzerland; for the loser the consolation of a bronze medal match.
The other group was tight, as the Poles started off with draws against Switzerland and Wales, and only secured top spot on goal difference from these sides after crushing the Czech Republic 8-1 in their final encounter.
Scotland coach Graham Dunlop has taken heart from his side`s performance against Ukraine. "We had a poor first half, we picked it up in the second and then played our best hockey of the tournament so far."
Scottish Hockey Union media release
IHF, HI to bury their differences
A solution appeared in sight on Thursday as the two rival bodies — Indian Hockey Federation (IHF) and Hockey India (HI) — agreed in principle to bury their differences at the end of a series of meetings.
A final draft was prepared for the merger of the IHF and HI with both agreeing to a new name for the sake of Indian hockey.
The meeting, at the Shastri Bhawan, was held in the presence of two senior officials from the Union Sports Ministry, which had taken the initiative to solve the problem that has hampered the smooth conduct of the game for some time.
The IHF officials sought a day's time to take the final decision on the draft that suggested an expanded body of the two executive committees. “We are positive and want to get over it as early as possible,' said IHF president R.K. Shetty.
“We have moved ahead in the right direction and a solution is round the corner,” confirmed HI secretary N.K. Batra.
The contractual obligations of the two bodies would be allowed to progress and officials from the two bodies confessed that it would help in better administration of hockey in the country. A contentious issue was the eligibility of the players already signed up for the World League, floated by the IHF and Nimbus, to represent thecountry. HI will need to sort this out with the International Hockey Federation (FIH).
HI was agreeable to fix a cut-off date for those who had already committed, it is learnt. It will need the approval of the FIH also since the international body had said that only tournaments conducted by its affiliated units would be recognised and players competing in unauthorised competitions faced bans.
“Hockey is bigger than Shetty and Batra,' said the IHF president. “We have to assess the comfort level of working together and take the process forward. We have to forget our egos and some compromise has to be made,” he added.
“Let us run hockey together” is the motto that the meeting adopted. A new name for the unified body would mean a lot to the hockey fraternity. The focus is on the efficient organisation of the proposed international tournaments to be hosted by India in the next couple of years — Champions Trophy, Olympics qualifiers, junior World Cup and the World League finals.
According to a Sports Ministry official, most issues were likely to be thrashed out by this weekend.
Factions meet, hockey gains
Uthra G Chaturvedi
At long last, hockey in India seems set to have a single administrative body to run the sport. The two warring factions, Hockey India (HI) and the Indian Hockey Federation (IHF), after several hiccups, agreed on Thursday on the broad principles of forming one governing body. The final draft agreement will be signed on Friday.
However, both sides are unwilling to use the word ‘merger’, and have agreed upon retaining their identities till the nitty-gritties of the arrangement are worked out and “all other issues have been resolved”.
“It is not a merger. It can be called an amalgamation of representatives from both sides to end the stalemate,” IHF president RK Shetty told The Indian Express after the meeting that was also attended by Sports Secretary Sindhushri Khullar. Both parties also met Sports Minister Ajay Maken on Thursday morning.
Shetty also confirmed that a new body will be formed, by bringing together the two administrative units on an as-they-exist basis, which will represent India at the International Hockey Federation (FIH). “It will be a new body with a new name, though we haven’t finalised any yet. Once that is done, we will approach the Registrar of Societies,” he said.
Sources, however, said that the new name is likely to be Bharat Hockey or Indian Hockey Confederation (IHC), a name that already exists with the FIH.
While the crux of the proposal remains the same as the one initially proposed by the sports ministry on June 11, a few changes have been made to accommodate the IHF — most notably, the earlier clause that HI be the sole National Sports Federation for hockey in India and maintain affiliation with the international federation has been done away with.
For his part, HI secretary general Narinder Batra also confirmed the move. “We have always been in favour of finding an amicable solution. We were prepared today as well to sign the final draft but the IHF wanted a formal approval of their working committee. Hopefully it will be all be over by this time tomorrow,” he said, after the meeting.
Batra added that there would be no overlapping of interests. “Even though both HI and IHF will exist in the country, there will be only one organisation that will govern the sport. That organisation will select, train and field teams in international events and conduct national tournaments, including the national championships,” he said, adding wherever there was a conflict of interest, the two parties would continue working independently.
“We will have our league, they will have theirs. There is no overlapping of interest,” he said, clearing the way for the World Series and adding that the FIH was completely in the know of the development.
With regard to both HI and IHF actually merging into one body, Shetty said it was a possibility in the future. “This is the best way forward because once we work together for some time, the comfort level and trust will automatically build up. Maybe a year or two down the line, when all other issues are slowly sorted out — including on state associations — there may well be a single body in existence,” he said.
HI, IHF officials meet Maken to resolve hockey crisis
NEW DELHI: Hockey India (HI) and Indian Hockey Federation (IHF) officials met sports minister Ajay Maken on Thursday to resolve their long-standing dispute over recognition and power-sharing.
Thanks to the meeting, they made considerable progress towards having one unified body in the country.
The two warring factions met in the morning and had a second round of talks in the evening during which it was decided to have a new name of the merged body.
Names such as Bharat Hockey, Indian Hockey and Indian Hockey Confederation cropped up during the meeting, attended by secretaries of both the HI and IHF.
From Hockey India, apart from Batra, Rajeev Mehta, Pratap Satpathy and Anandeshwar Pandey were present at the meeting. IHF was represented by secretary Ashok Mathur.
"We had a positive meeting. Our stand is clear, we have agreed in principle to all the recommendations by the sports ministry. Tomorrow, there is another round of meeting and we are looking forward to have an amicable solution to the issue," HI secretary-general Narinder Batra said.
IHF secretary Ashok Mathur said he was satisfied with the outcome of the meeting.
"We had a joint meeting with Hockey India and sports ministry officials today. The ministry has given us a blueprint of the merger. They have suggested an expanded executive board of the proposed body. They have also asked us to look for an alternative name of the merged body which should be neither HI nor IHF," said Mathur.
"Tomorrow we will be discussing the procedure of merger in details. Today's meeting was a positive one and we are looking forward to an amicable solution to the issue."
Hockey has been mired in controversies over the past few years, as there has been a bitter war going on between HI and the de-recognised IHF over the management of sportspersons.
The Times of India
Hockey is the only thing I knew, says Tirkey
Harpreet Kaur Lamba
Much like his shy, quiet persona, former India hockey skipper Dilip Tirkey finds it hard to "deliver his dialogues" as he is set to debut in an Oriya film, scheduled to release in a few days.
Ever the poster boy of Indian hockey, Tirkey’s fierce determination would erupt on the field, against his opponents. Nicknamed ‘The Wall’ for his brilliant defensive skills, he is the world’s second-most capped player with 412 matches — a record that he continues to hold even after a year of his retirement.
The 33-year old has taken to new roles and is handling them with equal responsibility. He is now a selector and a government observer, and is also trying his hand in films.
A peep into the little-known facts of the Padma Shri and Arjuna Awardee’s life:
Earliest sporting memory: Is of SAI Calcutta, when I was adjudged the man of the match during a tournament in 1991. My award was a table lamp, and I still smile when I remember it.
Sports played: Football, kabbadi, handball, volleyball, kho kho
Most memorable sporting moment: The 1998 Asian Games when we won the gold and the 2003 Afro-Asian Games
Worst sporting moment: 2000 Sydney Olympics, when we played out a draw against Poland to crash out of the tournament, and obviously the 2008 Olympic Qualifiers in Chile.
Questions most asked by the press: "Dilip, kahan kami reh gayi is tournament mein" (Dilip, where did we wrong this time?)
Sporting heroes: Shahbaz Ahmed and Diego Maradona
Favourite venues: National Stadium, Delhi. I played my first international match at the venue in 1995, in front of a 35,000 crowd.
Other sport you would pay to see: Brazil playing football. I would also like to see teams from Ghana and Columbia.
On acting vs playing hockey: I think hockey is easier! I find it very difficult to deliver dialogues that require a lot of aggression.
A change you would like to see in the running of your sport: I think it is high time that all international hockey matches are televised. The public need to see the players, for the sport to grow.
Sporting motto: I never give up.
Who would you most like to invite to dinner and why? Sachin Tendulkar and Diego Maradona. Sachin is an epitome of will power, concentration and humility. I would like to ask him his secret.
Biggest regret: I scored a lot of goals through penalty corners hits. I think I should have tried the drag-flick too.
The person you learnt most from: Hockey coach A.K. Bansal. I used to play as a forward as a kid when he first came to Orissa to teach us. He shifted me to the half-line and then to the defence. I wonder if I would have played international hockey for long if I was a forward. T.S. Grewal also had a strong influence on me.
How will you like to be remembered? As a defender who gave his all for Indian hockey.
Other interests in life: Everything relating to sport.
Your best trait: My will-power
A habit you wish you could get rid of: I think I should start speaking more. Everyone complains about it!
Favourite actor/Favourite actress: Madhuri Dixit, Shah Rukh Khan, Amitabh Bachchan.
Your superstition: During my playing days, I was very particular about not having any cut or a bruise on my body on a match day.
Funniest fan letter/proposal: No one has proposed to me ever! There was a young boy from a village in Bihar, who sent a detailed letter, saying I was an inspiration to him. I cherish such things.
What if not a hockey player? I wouldn’t have been able to do anything else.
The Asian Age
Pakistan series against Egypt
National junior hockey camp from July 20
LAHORE: A national junior hockey training camp for upcoming five-match series against an Egyptian hockey team is starting from July 20 here at National Hockey Stadium. “The series will be played from August 6-12 in Egypt,” said a spokesman for the Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF) on Thursday. Chief selector Abdul Hanif Khan has approved the names of thirty probables for the camp.
The PHF has appointed a panel of team officials comprising Rana Mujahid Ali as manager-chief coach, Danish Kaleem, Ahmed Alam and Anjum Saeed as coaches. Dr. Asad Abbas Shah will be the team doctor.
Mazhar Abbas, Muhammad Safian, Waseem Abbas, Usman Tanveer, Hafiz Rizwan Ali, Asad Bashir, Arslan Qadir, Muhammad Irfan, Sultan Aamir, Muhammad Sohaib, Zohaib Ashraf, Muhammad Suleman, Bilal Qadir, Khurram Shehzad, Ali Shan, Hassan Mansoor, Rizwan Junior, Muhammad Dilber, Mohammad Adnan Anwar, Aleem Bilal, Khalid Bhatti, Mushtaq, Kashif Javed, Usman Rafique, Umar Bhutta, Ahmad Zubair, Mohammad Bilal Khan, Abdul Karim, Muhammad Umair and Abdul Zohaib Khan.
The Daily Times
Top clubs to play in RSC tournament
KUALA Lumpur Hockey Club (KLHC), the Malaysian Hockey League (MHL) double champions, are among 24 clubs who will play in the 10th Royal Selangor Club (RSC) nine-a-side hockey tournament starting tomorrow at the Sports Annexe, Bukit Kiara.
The other top clubs in the two-day tournament are defending champions Universiti Kuala Lumpur (UniKL) and Sapura.
However, no national players will feature for any of the three clubs who will instead be represented by former players.
In the women's tournament, six teams have confirmed the entries. Today, the fifth RSC Junior competition, which is for Under-12 boys' and girls', will be held at the same venue.
Twenty teams will feature in the boys' category and 12 in the girls'.
KL Juniors will be defending the boys title while Sekolah Rendah Taman Gembira are the reigning girls champions.
New Straits Times
Faizal pledges to keep his temper in check and stay out of trouble in Razak Cup
By AFTAR SINGH
KUALA LUMPUR: National forward Faizal Saari was lucky to have escaped punishment after receiving a red card in the Razak Cup hockey tournament in Kuantan last year.
The Terengganu player was giving the marching orders for using foul language against umpire Ravinderpal Singh in the Division Two semi-final against Singapore.
The Malaysian Hockey Federation (MHF) decided not to take any action against Faizal after he apologised to the national team management.
Having learnt his lesson, the 20-year-old Faizal has pledged to keep his temper in check in this year’s tournament, which will be held at the Bukit Serendit Stadium in Malacca from July 23-29.
“I regret my action and I promise I won’t repeat it,” said Faizal, who has 55 international caps to his credit.
“I just want to focus on helping Terengganu do well in the tournament.
“I am happy that Terengganu will be featuring in Division One this year, after finishing as runners-up in the East zone qualifying tournament last weekend.”
He now aims to help Terengganu qualify for the semi-finals of the Razak Cup competition.
Terengganu are in Group B with last year’s runners-up Perak, Malacca and Pahang while 18-time champions Kuala Lumpur, Johor, Armed Forces and Penang are in Group A.
Faizal has hit a rich vein of form since featuring in the Australian Hockey League (AHL) last month.
He is enjoying a great run in the AHL, having scored three goals for Southern Hotshots in five matches.
At the state-level Adelaide League, he has seven goals to his credit from three matches for Forestville.
In the East zone qualifying round, he scored seven goals in two matches – two against Pahang and five against Kelantan.
Faizal is happy with his scoring ability and wants to score in every match to be the top score in the tournament.
But Faizal knows this is a team game and it’s not all about him.
“We also have a reliable team with the presence of two other national players – midfielder Mohd Shahrun (Nabil) and forward Mohd Firhan (Ashaari),” said Faizal, who will return to Sydney on July 29 to play in the knockout stage of the AHL.
“My younger brother Mohd Fitri, who is on a playing tour of Europe with the Project 2013 squad, will add steel to the midfield.”
The Star of Malaysia
Christiane Asselman – 1950-2011
Sad news as top Belgian umpire passes away
Former Olympic Umpire Christiane Asselman. (Photo: FIH / Royal Belgian Hockey Association)
The FIH regrets to announce the passing away of Christiane Asselman, the Belgian former FIH World Cup and Olympic Umpire.
Christiane became an International Umpire in 1978 and achieved Grade 1 status the following year. She umpired in three Olympic Games in Los Angeles (USA) in 1984, Seoul (KOR) in 1988 and Barcelona (ESP) in 1992. In 1990 she became one of a select group of International Umpires to receive a Golden Whistle, awarded for umpiring 100 Senior International matches. She was the first female Belgian and the third Women's Umpire to achieve this milestone. Christiane also umpired in three World Cups, Buenos Aires (ARG) in 1981, Amsterdam (NED) in 1986 and Sydney (AUS) in 1990.
Also an accomplished Indoor International Umpire, Christiane achieved Grade 1 status in 1989, and eventually retired from International Outdoor and Indoor umpiring in 1996. She was active within Belgium, serving on various ARBH Committees.
Christiane will be missed by all of her many friends from within the world of hockey. She will be remembered for her warm welcome, energy, and in particular her sense of fun. Our thoughts are with her family and friends at this sad time.