All the news for Thursday 15 April 2010
GB Women lose first test to China
Penalty corners proved the difference between Great Britain and China in the first test at Bisham Abbey on Wednesday afternoon as China came out 2-1 on top, scoring both of their corners while Great Britain netted one of their six.
Having gone two goals behind early in the second half Great Britain rallied but could only find the net once, from a Cullen flick seven minutes from time, although Kate Walsh did hit the post ten minutes prior to Cullen’s goal.
Playing without their three Scottish players who have joined their home nation squad ahead of the forthcoming World Cup Qualifying tournament in Santiago, Chile, Great Britain Head Coach Danny Kerry handed starts to a number of his less experienced players including a competitive Great Britain debut for Slough defender Chloe Strong.
Great Britain’s first attack began with Cullen as she broke forward in the fourth minute before threading the ball through to Loughborough Students’ Nicola White who won a corner off the Chinese stick.
Soon after, University of Birmingham midfielder Susie Gilbert had Great Britain’s first shot on goal when the ball broke to her at the top of the circle and with a low reverse stick effort she forced Yimeng Zhang to make a good save with her right foot at full stretch.
China’s first real foray forward came five minutes later with Yudiao Zhao and Jiaojiao De combined well inside the British 23m area but the umpire’s whistle went for an infringement before they could fire off a shot.
With nearly quarter of an hour on the clock a Crista Cullen stick tackle on the edge of the circle was penalised with a penalty corner, the first of the match. The slip left to Chinese captain Baorong Fu gave the Chinese number eight the space to get a powerful shot off to give China the lead although GB goalkeeper Beth Storry will have been disappointed to be beaten low to her right.
The same player, Baorong Fu, then saw a snap shot deflected wide as she looked to extend China’s lead.
With ten minutes of the first half remaining Olton & West Warwickshire’s Rachel Walker managed to get a deflection on goal after good Great Britain pressure but the ball stayed out and China broke upfield. Breaking towards the British circle, Baorong Fu was again at the centre of things for the Olympic silver medalists. Her pass from the edge of the circle towards the back post was cleared by Cullen who swung a stick at the ball to take it clear of the waiting forward.
Contentiously, GB won their first penalty corner four minutes from half time. The Chinese were aggrieved that the corner was awarded after a stick tackle just inside the 23m area. From the corner, Cullen took the ball right and fired off a shot, which Yimeng Zhang smothered and the defence cleared as Reading’s Alex Danson advanced on the rebound.
The final five minutes of the first half were busy for umpire Frances Block who, having given the penalty corner award, was then forced to show the green card to two Chinese players in the space of as many minutes before following up with a yellow for Qiuling Zheng in the final minute. The number 15 had already spent two minutes off the pitch as one of the green carded players and after returning to the pitch, her first involvement was a badly mistimed stick tackle right under the nose of Block.
One nil down at the break, Great Britain returned for the second half looking to grab an early equaliser but it was the Chinese who created the first real opportunity of the half. Hongxia Li robbed Chloe Strong on the halfway line and, supported by her teammates in red, broke forward with pace. She played a one-two off the high forward in the circle but with China bearing down on Beth Storry’s goal the Reading goalkeeper was smartly off her line to block the shot with her legs.
The visitors did not have to wait long though to extend their lead, which they did in the 42nd minute from their second penalty corner. Ye Ren’s swinging flick from the top of the circle crossed the line just inside the left upright to give China a 2-0 lead.
Throughout the match, Great Britain had enjoyed a good amount of territorial midfield possession but without truly troubling China’s back line.
With just over 15 second half minutes played, an inexplicable mistake from Ye Ren handed Alex Danson the ball at the top of the Chinese circle. In complete freedom, Reading’s England forward took the ball into the circle but with the goal at her mercy and the adrenalin pumping she sliced her shot wide of the net.
The hosts did not have to wait long for their pressure to count though as they won a series of three penalty corners in succession. From the first, Cullen’s shot came off the leg of the first runner resulting in another corner. At the second, the slip sideways to Kate Walsh opened up the goal for the British captain but she could only watch in frustration as her flick came back off the inside of the far post, landing at the stick of a Chinese defender in front of goal.
The five minute spell had been the best of GB’s performance so far and they won another corner a minute later, which Cullen narrowly put past the left hand post.
At the other end, Yudiao Zhao kept Beth Storry alert with a snap reverse stick shot that the goalkeeper cleared equally quickly.
With 12 minutes remaining Great Britain won their fourth penalty corner after Zhen Sun put the ball off the back line intentionally after a cross from Britain’s youngest female Olympic hockey player Charlotte Craddock. This time Cullen’s low flick was saved by Yimeng Zhang low to her right and after Leicester’s Hannah Macleod prevented a defender from clearing the ball, her deflection on Kate Walsh’s effort was guided wide by the goalkeeper’s stick.
Entering the final ten minutes Great Britain injected more pace to their game, forcing China onto the back foot and winning yet another brace of penalty corners. The first came off a Chinese foot inside the circle after Great Britain had failed to execute their plan at the top of the circle but the second went exactly to plan as the ever-involved Cullen found her range, flighting a flick inside the right post to make it 2-1.
As the match came to its conclusion with GB pressing hard for an equaliser Qiuling Zheng saw yellow for the second time as she plucked the ball out of the air high above her shoulder. Looking to press home their numerical advantage Britain fired two passes right across the China circle but there was nobody in a position to capitalise and the match ended 2-1 to China.
Afterwards, Great Britain Head Coach Danny Kerry said, “I’m disappointed in some ways. We didn’t execute our penalty corners very well. While they scored two from two for us to score one from six was disappointing. China played half court today and against that you have to be patient and penetrative – we only really displayed patience today.”
With a second test on Friday morning and looking forward to the London Olympic Games in 2012, Kerry added: “We’re using 24 players here this week which will allow us to see who can play at this level.”
The two sides will meet again at 11:00am on Friday at Bisham Abbey National Sports Centre.
GREAT BRITAIN (women) 1 (0)
Crista Cullen 63 (PC)
CHINA 2 (1)
Barong Fu 14 (PC)
Ye Ren 42 (PC)
Date - Time - Fixture - Score
Wednesday 14 April 2010 - 1400 hrs - Great Britain (w) v China - 1-2
Friday 16 April 2010 - 1100 hrs - Great Britain (w) v China
Great Britain Hockey media release
Great Britain fail to capitalise on penalty corners against China
By Emily Benammar
Great Britain coach Danny Kerry and his squad were left ruing a match of missed opportunities yesterday after losing 2-1 to China in the first of a two-match test series at Bisham Abbey.
Despite starting out the stronger side, Great Britain only managed to convert one of the six penalty corners awarded in their favour while China scored from both of theirs either side of the half-time break.
Baorong Fu opened the scoring for the 2008 Olympic silver medallists beating GB goalkeeper Beth Storry on her lower right side before Ye Ren struck to double their lead.
Great Britain’s lone goal came from Crista Cullen seven minutes from time but the home side were unlucky not to have drawn level 10 minutes earlier when Kate Walsh hit the post.
Frustrated by the result, Kerry said: “I’m a bit disappointed. I think China played a lot better today and a few of our players struggled to cope with the pace of the game and we didn’t execute the large number of penalty corner which is annoying given how much time we spend working on them.
“The positives however were that in the last 10 minutes we really tried to claw our way back into the game but overall, all I can say is disappointing.”
Britain will get their chance to level the series on Friday, and Kerry is aware that changes need to be made in order to succeed.
“Thursday is a recovery day and Friday will really be about trying to play intelligently when China play fast,” he continued. “We can’t allow them to turn over quite so easily.
“We need to be both patient and penetrative – today we were just patient.”
China take chances to defeat Great Britain's women
Great Britain goal scorer Crista Cullen comes under pressure from China’s Hongxia Li. Cullen (right) was on target for Great Britain's goal
Great Britain's failure to convert their penalty corners proved costly as they lost the first Test against China 2-1 at Bisham Abbey on Wednesday.
China scored both of theirs, with captain Baorong Fu opening their account inside 15 minutes.
The visitors extended their lead in the 42nd minute through Ye Ren's swinging flick from the top of the circle.
Britain got one back through Crista Cullen when she converted a penalty corner seven minutes from time.
Great Britain head coach Danny Kerry said: "I'm disappointed in some ways. We didn't execute our penalty corners very well.
"While they scored two from two for us to score one from six was disappointing.
"China played half court today and against that you have to be patient and penetrative - we only really displayed patience today."
Kerry handed starts to a number of his less experienced players, including a competitive Great Britain debut for Slough defender Chloe Strong.
The home side threatened early on through Susie Gilbert but the visitors went ahead after Cullen was penalised for a stick tackle on the edge of the circle.
The slip gave Fu the space to fire in a powerful shot, although goalkeeper Beth Storry will be disappointed to have been beaten low to her right.
Britain had chances, with Rachel Walker and Cullen both trying their luck, while the visitors, who had already had two green cards, then saw Qiuling Zheng given a yellow card.
However, China started the second half the brighter and, after Beth Storry saved well from Hongxia Li, Ren converted their second penalty corner to make it 2-0.
The hosts forced three short corners in a row with just over 15 minutes to go and from the second Kate Walsh saw her flick come back off the inside of the far post.
Entering the final 10 minutes Great Britain injected more pace into their game, forcing their opponents on to the back foot and winning yet another brace of penalty corners.
From the second the ever-involved Cullen found her range and she reduced the deficit to 2-1 with a flick inside the right post.
With the home side pressing hard for an equaliser Zheng saw yellow for the second time as she plucked the ball out of the air high above her shoulder.
And looking to make the most of their numerical advantage Britain fired two passes right across the China circle but there was nobody in a position to capitalise and the visitors held on.
The two teams will meet for a second time at 1100 BST on Friday morning at Bisham Abbey National Sports Centre.
Pakistan's hockey legends want PHF secretary sacked
KARACHI: Pakistan's hockey crisis that was triggered by the national team's disastrous last-place finish in the World Cup in New Delhi continues unabated with former greats renewing their demand for the sacking of top Pakistan Hockey Federation officials.
Pakistan's Sports Minister Aijaz Jakhrani, who met the former national players in Islamabad on Wednesday, has said that he needs a week to take a call on the issue. He told The News on Wednesday that there wasn't really any outcome from a meeting with PHF president Qasim Zia and three former stalwarts - Islahuddin Siddiqui, Shahnaz Sheikh and Shahbaz Ahmed.
"We had a meeting with the stakeholders today and it went fine," said Jakhrani, who has been asked by Prime Minister Yosuf Raza Gilani to resolve the crisis as soon as possible.
Little was achieved by the minister through the meeting in which the Olympians refused to budge on their demand for the sacking of PHF secretary Asif Bajwa, who they have singled out as the main culprit behind Pakistan's humiliating last-place finish in the World Cup in New Delhi in March.
Zia, too, was unwilling to change his stance on the issue and once again made it clear that he will not take the "unconstitutional" decision of dismissing Bajwa as PHF secretary.
Jakhrani sounded a bit displeased on the rigidity shown by both the parties and said that he has asked Secretary Sports and his staff to carry out a thorough research on whether an elected secretary of a national sports federation can be sacked by the sports minister.
"I've asked the secretary (sports), to check the constitution and the notifications issued by the sports ministry to dismiss elected officials of sports federations in the past," said Jakhrani.
"I've given them a week to conduct all research and hope to make a call on the issue once I've gone through all relevant details," he added.
"I won't say that I would sack the PHF secretary or not because I don't have anything concrete so far," he stressed.
Olympians, however, are convinced that Jakhrani has the authority to sack 'incompetent' officials with Islah stressing that as sports minister it is his duty to set things right in Pakistan hockey.
"We have given the minister enough proof that he is authorized to take any kind of action against incompetent officials," Islah said. "In fact we have told him that he can sack both the PHF president and secretary. The secretary should be dismissed because he is responsible for the World Cup humiliation and the president because he is shielding Bajwa for some unknown reason," added Islah, a former Pakistan captain.
Islah said that the meeting with Jakhrani was "inconclusive" and once again renewed his call for Gilani's intervention to save Pakistan hockey. "We appeal to him (Gilani) not as the prime minister but as chief patron of PHF to save our hockey," he said.
Qasim Zia, also a former Olympian, took a swipe at the former greats, saying that he doesn't consider them as "stakeholders" of Pakistan hockey.
"They don't want to do anything positive for hockey," he said. They are not even among the stake-holders because they have never taken part in the elections. They are just standing outside and trying to get changes in the PHF which is unacceptable," he said.
The Times of India
Naeem hat-trick propels NBP to victory
By Shazad Ali
KARACHI: Naeem Akbar slammed a dazzling hat-trick in National Bank's (NBP) 5-2 victory over SSGC in the national hockey championship at Hockey Club of Pakistan on Thursday.
The bankers, who have 18 points and trailing three points behind Wapda, opened their account in the 18th minute when Naeem slotted home his first before SSGC leveled the scores three minutes later through Shakeel Abbasi.
Naeem got his double in the 27th minute, while SSGC gave a fright to the bankers when they once again restored parity, this time via Shahzad Aslam two minutes before halftime.
NBP heaved a sigh of relief when Naeem helped his side move 3-2 ahead, completing his treble in style in the 39th minute. Muhammad Taufeeq made it 4-2 in the 41st minute, while Khurram Shahzad completed the tally in the 57th minute.
Wapda maintain their top position with 21 points when they outplayed Port Qasim Authority (PQA) 4-2.
The match was, however, marred by blatant violation of International Hockey Federation (FIH) rules by tournament director Iftikhar Syed as he cut a cake near sidelines to celebrate marriage of Pakistan cricketer Shoaib Malik with Indian tennis star Sania Mirza.
While Iftikhar is responsible for enforcing FIH rules and ensuring that they are not being violated, he himself gathered a crowd of technical officials and organisers during second half of Wapda-PQA match near the sidelines to celebrate the marriage. The celebration on the marriage was on behalf of Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF).
According to FIH rules, nobody except tournament director can enter the ground or go near the sidelines. Ironically, one can see every unauthorised person watching the match sitting on the sidelines except tournament director who sits in his air-conditioned office.
The winners took an early start with an Asif Michael goal when the game was barely five minutes old only to see effort cancelled out by PQA three minutes later through Owais Khan.
Wapda were 3-1 up at the break when Waqas Sharif was on target in the 13th minute, while Sohail Abbas converted a penalty corner in the 18th minute.
Sohail completed his double in the 44th minute before PQAs Maznoor Ahmad reduced the margin for PQA three minutes before the final whistle.
Two-goal Imran Hafeez helped PAF hold formidable Habib Bank (HBL) 2-2.
After a barren first half, the bankers, at fourth place with 13 points, started with a Shahbaz Ali goal two minutes into second session, while discarded Pakistan junior forward Adeel Hussain found the cage in the 42nd minute.
The airmen, however, staged a comeback when they reduced the margin through a penalty stroke by Imran in the 59th minute. PAF put the game on an even keel when Imran converted yet another penalty stroke in the 63rd minute.
Wapda, enjoying top position, seem to have a better chance of winning the championship as they have relatively an easier match to play against SSGC. PIA, with 16 points, are also in contention as they have two more matches to play against NBP and HBL. PIA can win only if Wapda lose against SSGC and the national carriers win both their matches.
Thursday will be the rest day. Remaining matches of the championship start on Friday.
Army v KESC at 1.30pm; Navy v PAF at 3.00pm; PIA v HBL at 4.45pm.
Hat-trick hero Naeem too good for SSGC
KARACHI: Naeem Akbar scored three goals and helped NBP record a formidable 5-2 win over SSGC in 57th National Hockey Championship here Wednesday at Hockey Club of Pakistan.
Naeem scored his first goal in the 18th minute. But three minutes later SSGC’s captain Shakeel Abbas leveled the score-line.
Naeem scored again to put NBP on top again before SSGC’s Shahzad Aslam pulled the equaliser in the 33rd minute after he converted a penalty-corner.
Four minutes into the second half, Naeem completed his hat-trick. Two minutes later, Muhammad Taufeeq strengthened NBP’s position through his field goal. Finally, Khurram Shehzad sealed the victory for NBP after he scored in the 57th minute to round off the 5-2 tally.
Earlier in the first match, Air Force made a strong come-back to hold HBL to a 2-2 tie. After a barren first half, HBL took a 2-0 lead over the tournament minnows with Shahbaz Ali and skipper Adeel Hussain scoring in the 37th and 42nd minute respectively.
However, Air Force who have not won a single match from their six outings, turned the tide in their favour as HBL were twice penalised in the danger area and Imran Hafeez converted the resulting penalty strokes.
In the last match of the day, WAPDA captain and world’s most successful penalty corner specialist Sohail Abbas braced to record a convincing 4-2 win over Port Qasim and increased his tally to seven goals in the tournament.
Asif Michal scored early in the 5th minute of the match to put WAPDA ahead. But Port Qasim managed to produce the equaliser through Owais Khan only three minutes later.
However, WAPDA took the reigns of the match in their hands with Waqas Sharif scoring his sixth goal of the tournament in the 13th minute and Sohail Abbas converted a penalty-corner in the 18th minute.
In the second half, Sohail knocked another goal in the 44th minute to make in 4-1. Port Qasim pulled one in the dying minutes of the match through Manzoor Ahmed.
The News International
Sohail’s double helps WAPDA sink PQA
PAF-HBL play 2-2 draw, NBP thrash SSGC 5-2
KARACHI: Olympian Sohail Abbas struck twice in 18th and 44th minutes as Pakistan WAPDA defeated Port Qasim Authority (PQA) 4-2 in the 57th National Hockey Championship at Hockey Club of Pakistan Stadium here on Wednesday. WAPDA were leading first half 3-1. Asif Michael (5th minute) and Waqas Sharif (13th minute) netted other two goals for the winners. Owais Khan (8th minute) and Manzoor Ahmad (67th minute) scored one goal apiece for the losers. With this win, WAPDA maintained their top position on table with 21 points.
In the first tie of the day, Pakistan Air Force (PAF) and Habib Bank Limited (HBL) played a 2-2 drawn game. The first session remained goalless. For HBL, the scorers were Shahbaz Ali (37th minute) and Adeel Hussain (42nd minute). Imran Hafeez (59th and 63rd minute) netted two goals for PAF.
National Bank of Pakistan (NBP) outplayed Sui Southern Gas Company (SSGC) 5-2 in the second contest of the day. Both teams were levelled 2-2 at lemon break. Naeem Akbar was the star for the winners with his hat trick: 18th, 27th, 39th minutes. Muhammad Taufeeq (41st minute) and Khurram Shahzad (57th minute) were the other scorers for NBP. Shakeel Abbasi (21st minute) and Shahzad Aslam (33rd minute) sparkled for the losers. Thursday (today) will be the rest day.
TEAM M W L D GF GA PTS
WAPDA 8 7 1 0 29 13 21
PIA 7 5 1 1 27 10 16
NBP 8 6 2 0 38 20 18
HBL 7 4 2 1 14 8 13
SSGC 7 3 4 0 18 19 9
PQA 7 3 4 0 18 22 9
ARMY 7 3 3 1 17 15 10
NAVY 7 2 5 0 19 25 6
KESC 7 1 6 0 17 40 3
PAF 7 0 6 1 10 35 1
The Daily Times
PHF to announce new team management
By Our Sports Reporter
LAHORE: The Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF) Executive Board will be meeting with the agenda of appointing a new team management for the national team at the National Hockey Stadium here on April 17.
The E/B will finalise the new management for the national team after the previous one failed miserably taking the bottom 12th position, for the first time, in the last World Cup held in India.
The PHF is likely to hire a foreign coach in place of sacked Shahid Ali Khan. Paul Lissek, a seasoned German coach has also been interviewed in Lahore. The PHF has already changed the national selection committee with new chairman Olympian Hanif Khan in place of Hasan Sardar.
The new manager will also be decided on the occasion. It is learnt that the PHF had also offered Khawaja Junaid to work as an assistant to a foreign coach. But Junaid refused while preferring his independent job as head coach of the national junior team. However, he was ready to coach the national team as head coach.
President PHF Qasim Zia, Vice Presidents Nawab Lashkari Raisani, Saeed Khan, Barrister Shahida Jamil, Secretary Asif Bajwa, Associate Secretary Rana Mujahid Ali, Treasurer Khalid Rasool, Provincial Secretaries Rana Mujahid (Punjab), Syed Zahir Shah (NWFP), Rao Saleem (Sindh), Farooq Ahmad (Balochistan), President PHF Women’s Wing Khushbakht Shujaat, Technocrats/experts Olympian Manzoor Jr., Asad Malik and Col Zafar Ahmad Zafri, Collector Customs Preventive Fateh Mohammad and Director Army Sports Brig Iqtidar Tasneem will attend the meeting.
Anderson's fabulous start continues
ANDERSON chalked up their third straight win in Division One of the MHF-Milo-NSC Junior Hockey League when they overwhelmed Bukit Jalil Juniors 4-1 at the Sultan Azlan Shah Stadium in Ipoh yesterday.
Anderson led 3-0 at half-time through Azril Misron (eighth minute), Mohd Firdaus Sidek (26th) and Jasdev Singh (34th) before Mohd Soffian Kamaruddin added their fourth in the 53rd minute.
Thung Wei Chia replied for the visitors in the 38th minute.
Anderson now lead Division One with nine points from three matches.
In another match, the national women's hockey team (MWHA) suffered their third defeat when they went down 3-1 to Bandar Penawar Juniors in Seremban.
Muhd Shahril Saabah scored in the 42nd and 61st minutes after Muhd Sufi Ismat Rohulamin had levelled proceedings for Bandar Penawar Juniors in the 36th minute.
MWHA took the lead through Nuraini Abdul Rashid's penalty corner set-piece in the 29th minute.
RESULTS -- Division One: MWHA 1 Bandar Penawar Juniors 3, Anderson 4 Bukit Jalil Juniors 1.
TOMORROW -- Division One: Bukit Jalil Juniors v Kelantan (Tun Razak, 7pm), UniKL v Anderson (KLHA Stadium, 5pm).
Division Two: Penang Free School v Tunku Besar Secondary School (Universiti Sains Malaysia, 5pm), Ipoh City Council v Johor (Azlan Shah Stadium, 5pm).
New Straits Times
Anderson surge to the top of Div One with huge victory
KUALA LUMPUR: Anderson chalked up an impressive 4-1 win over Bukit Jalil Sports School (BJSS) Juniors to top the Division One standings of the MHF-Milo-NSC Junior Hockey League (MJHL) at the Azlan Shah Stadium in Ipoh yesterday.
The Ipoh school have maximum points from three matches, scoring nine goals and conceding three. For BJSS Juniors, it was their second defeat in the league.
Anderson started off well by taking an early lead in the eight minute with a field goal by Azril Misron. They stretched their lead in the 26th minute with a penalty corner goal by Mohd Firdaus Sidek.
Eight minutes later, Jasvinder Singh scored from another penalty corner goal.
BJSS Juniors pulled a goal back in the 38th minute through Thung Wei Chia. Mohd Soffian Kamaruddin completed the scoring for Anderson with a field goal in the 53rd minute.
Bandar Penawar Sports School (BPSS) Juniors came back from a goal down to beat the national women’s team (MWHA) 3-1 for their first win.
Nuraini Abdul Rashid gave MWHA the lead in the 29th minute and Mohd Sufi Ismat equalised for BPSS Juniors in the 36th minute. Mohd Shahril Saabah was the toast for BPSS Juniors, scoring a brace in the 42nd and 61st minutes.
The Star of Malaysia
Vale – Margaret Murray
It is with regret that Hockey Australia advises of the passing of Life Member Margaret Murray.
Hockey Victoria received the advice of Marg's passing on Thursday March 25th.
A private ceremony was held on Tuesday March 30th attended by friends and family.
Margaret Murray, fondly called M.M. had a long association with women’s hockey in Victoria. Her love of the game saw her involved in many aspects of hockey both on and off the field - as a player, an umpire, a technical official, administrator and office-bearer.
Margaret’s particular love was with umpiring – as an Australian umpire and umpire coach, she has mentored and advised a great many of today’s umpires.
Margaret was an icon in Women's and Men's hockey in Australia. She personified the art of umpiring, umpire coaching and later technical officiating.
Her enthusiasm to assist and nurture young umpires was recognised in Country Victoria and all levels of Women's Hockey Australia. Never one to mince words, she was always concise, specific with feedback and set a high standard of dress and presence.
She will be sadly missed by many Senior Members of the Hockey community, but also remembered for her dedication, energy and zeal within the sport.
Margaret was a Life Member of Hockey Geelong, Hockey Victoria and Hockey Australia.
Hockey Victoria and Hockey Australia sends it condolences to all of her family and friends.
Hockey Australia media release