24 January 2007

JHF aims at boosting professionalism this year

With no major international qualifiers this year, the Jamaica Hockey Federation (JHF) will be active in establishing a financial base and running its competitions in a more professional manner, said president Victor Tomlinson.

Over the years the JHF has been wracked by discord, with the men and women lacking unanimity in vision, on the one hand, and infighting among executives on the other hand.
There has never been a working together for a common goal, with the various egos getting in the way.

"Persons in the federation were not in full agreement on many issues, for example, development, operational, and as a consequence, inadequate numbers of persons coming forward to serve," said Tomlinson, a former national player.
But Tomlinson, a Munro College old boy, has somehow been able to build a bridge and select persons able to work together on the seven or eight committees of the JHF.

With the federation just under $2 million in debt and needing another $3 million to train and send teams to major tournaments, the 51-year-old Tomlinson admits that financing is the greatest challenge.

"The concept that we're looking at is to get a sponsor on board for five years," said Tomlinson, who has been involved in the sport for some 35 years.

The funding is not only for national teams but for "domestic competitions and development programmes".
"We need to expand the critical mass of players (more active schools) and there is need for a paid secretariat," he said.
"The ability to get big sponsors depends on how popular the sport is and the popularity of the sport increases with big sponsors, so it's a chicken-and-egg situation.

"We're starting more competitions and asking for smaller sponsorship dollars to build the visibility of the sport, then raise the stakes to sponsors. And there are other challenges.
"We are also organising ourselves along more professional lines by adopting wherever possible all the FIH (International Hockey Federation) rules in our activities."

For the development of the sport, Tomlinson said "youth development programmes in Kingston, May Pen and Mandeville are being organised for the summer, and we're preparing more coaches - great work being done at GC Foster - to get more schools involved".

He said the outlook for the year looks positive.
"We are moving closer to a consensus on the development needs and direction of the federation."

As the JHF looks forward to the Pan American Cup early next year, it will use the remainder of the year to prepare by "selectively attending tournaments in the region to give our team the requisite playing experience for 2008," Tomlinson said.

The hockey boss said he would like to achieve this year "the rekindling of the competitive spirit that exists with all hockey players and an expansion of the number of players".
He believes that "having foreign teams playing on home surf with our teams putting up credible performances" would capture the imagination of Jamaicans and attract premier sponsorship. (bron: ://www.jamaicahockeyfed.org)

23 January 2007

Dutch take out second test 3-0

The Dutch Men’s hockey team stepped up tonight at Lloyd Elsmore Hockey Stadium to put the Black Sticks under pressure from the opening whistle, running out well deserved 3 – 0 winners.

The match, the second in a three match series, started at a furious pace, the Dutch giving an early indication they had come out to play after going down 2 – 1 last Sunday in the first test.

The first goal came in just the sixth minute when Ronald Brouwer picked up a clearance at close range to set up a simple tap home for Roderick Weusthof.

Matthijs Brouwer touched through a beautiful ball 10 minutes later to Timme Hoyng at the edge of the circle. He passed on to Laurence Docherty for another simple finish and a 2 – 0 half time lead.

After the Dutch goals New Zealand struggled to maintain possession for a period but were awarded their first corner with around eight minutes to go in the half. The Dutch defence worked hard to disrupt drag flick exponent Hayden Shaw’s rhythm and he was forced to replay the corner several times, and was unsuccessful on his final attempt.

A nice foray led by Lloyd Stephenson got the crowd excited in the dying stages of the half, but some stiff Dutch defence denied the Black Sticks going into the break. A stunning cross from Casey Henwood also found Simon Child on the left post, but he was unable to capitalise.

In the second half New Zealand went close to scoring again several times, but it was the Dutch who once again prevailed, when Mattijs Brouwer finished off a nice run by Roderick Huber in 53rd minute.

The increase in pace and improved defence of the Dutch was evident throughout the match, making it difficult for the New Zealanders to link successfully. Casey Henwood had a good game for the Black Sticks, as did Bryce Collins

The Netherlands 3 New Zealand 0

Half time score 2 – 0 Netherlands

Goal scorers- Netherlands – Roderick Weusthof, Laurence Docherty, Mattijs Brouwer.
(bron: www.hockeynz.co.nz)

22 January 2007

Netherlands claim 2007 BDO Champions Trophy title

Netherlands claimed the 2007 BDO Hockey Champions Trophy, women title after defeating host Argentina here in Quilmes on Sunday. An early goal of Maartje Paumen was enough for the World Champion to take another title home (1-0). Germany claimed the bronze medal after a 2-0 victory over Australia.

World Champion Netherlands was just stronger than Argentina in the grand final of the tournament. And the undefeated Dutch team quickly made their intention clear to stay undefeated here in Quilmes, shocking the stadium that today accommodated even more enthusiastic fans than on any previous day with an early goal after only three minutes as Maartje Paumen converted a penalty corner.

The match continued with the Leonas doing a bigger part of the legwork but they, like the Hockeyroos before them, had trouble finding their form and suffered from the many individual mistakes that broke down their play time and again. The Dutch on the other hand boldly emphasized why they are considered the best women’s team in the world at the moment, playing disciplined, tactical, and efficient hockey.

The early Dutch goal remained the only one in the first half and the teams went into halftime with the World Champions one step ahead.

In the second half, Argentina dominated field play with a much bigger percentage in ball possession, attacking again and again, but again and again they hit the Dutch defense like a wall. Ten minutes from the end, the Netherlands changed gear and showed some offensive action of their own again, but to no avail.

One goal was once more enough for the Netherlands however, and with a 1:0 win over hosts Argentina, they took the title in this BDO Hockey Champions Trophy Women, Quilmes 2007.

The final day of the BDO Champions Trophy Women, Quilmes 2007, started with Japan and Spain playing out the relegation match, with the defeated team to be excluded from the 2008 edition of the top annual tournament in hockey.

Japan did not start as strong as in yesterday’s encounter between the two, but still had slight advantages in the field. Spain had the better opportunities however, in the form of a total 11 penalty corners in the first half, none of which could be converted. The somewhat uneventful first 35 minutes ended with the scoreboard still at 0:0.

When the two teams returned for the second half, the atmosphere of the match gradually changed, with Japan improving continuously and taking charge of the match, producing a number of excellent shots on goal which might well have taken the tally to four or five. As it was, there were only two goals for Japan however, with a double hit at the hands of Rika Komazawa, first deflecting a penalty corner hit by Keiko Miura, then skilfully hitting a bouncy ball across into the roof of the goal.

Spain meanwhile were increasingly caught up in combating their desperation rather than playing the game. This development was epitomized by a yellow card awarded to Rocio Ybarra after she clubbed the goalpost in frustration when Japan were awarded a penalty corner in the 63rd minute.

With the clock ticking down, Spain no longer offered much resistance, and Japan pushed the game up into the Spanish half for almost the entire last ten minutes. With a 2:0 win, the Asians end their first Champions Trophy appearance on a high note and push Spain out of the next Champions Trophy, denying them a prime opportunity for preparing for the Beijing Olympic Games, should they qualify.
(bron: euro-hockey.org)

Hockeyroos finish fourth

The Hockeyroos' Champions Trophy campaign ran out of puff today as the exhausted team battled valiantly but went down 2-0 to Germany in the play-off for third.

Coming into the tournament underdone, with the scheduling suiting the other teams who'd just finished their national leagues, the Hockeyroos again had their chances, but couldn't convert.

While tired, the young side fought hard but failed to capitalise and continually turned the ball over under Germany's pressure.

While fourth is a disappointment for the Hockeyroos they went into the tournament missing over 1400 games of experience, without the likes of Halliday, Hudson, Skirving, Imison, Faulkner, Patrick and Munro.

That experience was sorely missed in the latter stages of the week but giving game time to a number of the younger Hockeyroos has been a positive of the tour for national coach, Frank Murray.

In fact, exposing these players had broadened Murray's net resulting in some real competition for spots on the team, a positive with Beijing now less than a year and a half away.

The Hockeyroos will now return to Australia where they'll break up into their respective state teams for the Australian Hockey League (AHL) which runs from 24 February to 8 April.

Hockeyroos 0 Germany 2(Half time 0-1)
Germany - Janine Beermann 9m FG, Silja Lorenzen 51m FG.
(bron: www.hockey.org.au)

Black sticks upset Dutch men in First test of home series

The Black Sticks got their 2007 season off to a stunning start today with an outstanding 2 – 1 win over the highly rated Dutch Men’s Hockey team, at Lloyd Elsmore Hockey Stadium, Pakuranga.

New Zealand made the most of their attacking opportunities and were composed on defence to hold out one of the world’s superpowers after going into half time 2 -1.

The win was New Zealand’s first over the Dutch since January 2002 when they prevailed at the Six Nations tournament in Malaysia

The Dutch were actually first on the scoreboard in the 19th minute, when unluckily for the New Zealanders, the Dutch were awarded a stroke after a well saved ball from keeper Kyle Pontifex deflected onto the foot of fullback Dean Couzins. Hugely experienced Teun de Nooijer, duly slotted.

Thirteen minutes later New Zealand responded with the first of two brilliant goals. Ben Collier put a nicely weighted ball through from defence to new cap striker Jan Peterson, who in turn pushed through a well placed ball from the 25 to the reverse stick of a diving Bevan Hari, for a perfectly executed goal.

New Zealand went into the lead two minutes from half time, this time through the stick of Simon Child, who collected a pass from James Nation skilfully on the right flank before driving into the circle and firing the ball over the approaching keeper.

The goal gave the Black Sticks a well earned half team lead, after making the better of their scoring opportunities than the Dutch had been able to.

Possession was evenly shared in the second half with the Black Sticks close to scoring again on several occasions. A second phase reverse stick penalty scorner strike by Phil Burrows was well saved midway through the half and Hari went close to spectacularly touching home a solid drive into the circle by Bryce Collins.

Three of the new caps were given game time during the match. Jan Peterson, Nick Haig and Andy Hayward all did well to step up a level into the pace of international hockey.

New Zealand’s win was a truly team effort, but standouts included captain Ryan Archibald in the midfield, Simon Child up front and James Nation and Hayden Shaw on defence.

New Zealand 2 The Netherlands 1

Half time score 2 – 1

Goal scorers- New Zealand - Simon Child, Bevan Hari. Netherlands – Teun de Nooijer
(bron: www.hockeynz.co.nz)

Strong Irish Draw Three All With South African

A strong Irish team took South Africa on for the third time in six days. After an intense and gruelling game it closed out three all.

Ireland took an early lead when schoolgirl Rachel Mulligan scored her second international goal. Cregan made a superb pass to be picked up by the school girl just inside the circle where she managed to squeeze the shot in at an acute angle to find the back of the South African net.

It didn't take the South African's long to respond and within seven minutes they found their equaliser when they capitalised on a free from outside the Irish circle to pull back to one all.

Ireland began to feel the pressure but maintained composure at the back, however, ten minutes before half time the South Africans found the back of the Irish net once again with a penalty corner which was switched to the left post and slipped passed the Irish keeper. Ireland again stepped up the pace and only five minutes later worked a penalty corner, which was converted by Irish captain, Linda Caulfield, to close out the first half two all.

Ireland were quick off the mark in the second half and played some strong attacking play. In the sixtieth minute they finally manage to convert again from a turnover ball in midfield which was switched to Roisin Flinn down the right whose excellent cross was reverse flicked into the goal by young Julia O'Halloran to earn her first international goal, giving Ireland a 3-2 lead.

Six minutes from the end South Africa found themselves awarded with another penalty corner which was converted through a strong strike from the top of the circle. The game closed out three all.

After a long and tough ten days tour and five matches under the belt so far Ireland will no doubt be going out to beat the Canadians in their final match tomorrow afternoon.

Newly appointed assistant coach, Denis Pritchard "What has been particularly satisfying about the trip is the progression made by the players. It is great to see the younger members making great strides forward."
(bron: www.hockey.ie)

20 January 2007

Mr. Michiel van der Struijk appointed Head Coach of Netherlands Antilles men's field hockey team

The Netherlands Antilles Hockey Association (NAHA) is pleased to announce the appointment of Mr. Michiel van der Struijk as head coach of the Netherlands Antilles men's field hockey team. After winning the bronze medal at the Central American & Caribbean Games last July in the Dominican Republic, the national team is now preparing for the Pan American Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, coming July. After the C.A.C. Games the position as coach was vacated by Mr. Henk Pepping, who will take on the position of delegation leader in Brazil.

“We have been looking for a coach, who could bring the team to the next level and are convinced, that Michiel is just the right person for the job" says team manager Janpaul Dennert. "Besides the obvious technical and tactical qualities, he has the right personality to take on the challenge. He understands the identity of the team and the limitations of being the coach of a small hockey community".

That the coach needed to be found in the Netherlands was evident to Mr. Robert Paul van Bilderbeek, President of the Netherlands Antilles Hockey Association. "The Netherlands are one of the top hockey nations in the world and have the strongest competition. If we want to make use of the latest developments in field hockey, it makes a lot of sense". A lot of players of the Netherlands Antilles selection play in the Dutch competition and will be entering a thorough training phase under the guidance of the new coach, to prepare for the Pan American Games.

Besides his regular job as physical education teacher Mr. Michiel van der Struijk is the assistant coach of the first men's team of Dutch top club Bloemendaal. He has also four years of experience as assistant coach with the Dutch U16 and U18 teams. After a long and successful career as goalie for the Amsterdam club Hurley in the highest division, he decided to make the switch to coaching. Coaching the Antilles men's team will be his first coaching job outside of the Netherlands.

With the appointment of Mr. Michiel van der Struijk the NAHA is making her next step in developing field hockey in the Netherlands Antilles. A good result during the Pan American Games in Rio will definitely give the sport a push in the right direction.
(bron: http://www.nahahockey.com)

Dutch too strong for Hockeyroos in World Cup rematch

The Hockeyroos have lost their first game of the Champions Trophy, going down 1-0 to the Netherlands in a repeat of last year's World Cup final.

In a battle of defences the Dutch side came out on top but, as was the case in the World Cup final, the Hockeyroos had their chances but just couldn't convert them.

"The game was similar to the World Cup final, it was a game we could have won," said Hockeyroos coach, Frank Murray.

"They were on top of us for most of the game but we still could have won. We were too soft today, nowhere near hard enough. We've got to be stronger than that, we were intimidated by them. They're a very strong and disciplined side but they're not unbeatable."

The Hockeyroos were on the back foot early when Eva de Goede scored in the 18th minute after Moreira De Melo brought the ball into the circle and dished off a pass close to goal, de Goede having no problems deflecting it in.

Australia stepped up their challenge but found the going difficult against the well-drilled Dutch side. Continually forced wide the Hockeyroos struggled to control the midfield which resulted in a number of turnovers.

While unable to break the Dutch defence, the Australian backline stood strong, continually thwarting the Netherlands' drive.

In the 37th minute the Hockeyroos had a very good chance to level the scores through a penalty corner but a mishit resulted in an easy save and the score line remained unchanged at full time.

With the Netherlands securing the first final spot, their competitors in Sunday's final won't be known until the last match of the tournament, between the Hockeyroos and Argentina.

It's a simple equation for the Hockeyroos, win and they're in the final, lose or draw and they're playing for third.

"We'll be looking to improve on our execution, determination and physical presence on Saturday," said Murray.

"It will be a much quicker game, Argentina's technical skill level is very good. We'll need to shut down their class players and control the midfield and make the most of our opportunities if we're to win.

Australia 0 Netherlands 1(Half time 0-1)
Netherlands - Eva de Goede 18m FG
(bron: www.hockey.org.au)

Former USA Field Hockey President Sharon Taylor Resigns from Board of Directors

Long-time USA Field Hockey President Sharon Taylor today announced her resignation from the USA Field Hockey Board of Directors as the organization moves forward with a new governance model.

“I’ve certainly enjoyed my more than 40 years of involvement with USA Field Hockey and wish the association and our national teams all of the best as they continue working toward their goals,” said Taylor. “As things change, you have to consider those changes and their compatibility with your own philosophies. Strong leadership of the association - and its direct connection with the membership - has always been a hallmark of our organization and I hope we don’t lose sight of that.”

In December, USA Field Hockey’s Board of Directors approved revised bylaws allowing for a more streamlined structure as well as the elimination of the Board’s executive offices. Taylor would have remained on the Board as a director through the conclusion of her term in 2008. Under the new bylaws, the Board of Directors will elect a chair at its next meeting.

The restructuring follows the philosophy adopted by most national governing bodies and adheres to guidelines suggested by the United States Olympic Committee.

“Sharon Taylor has been a tireless advocate for women’s sport and a devoted leader for field hockey throughout her entire career,” said USA Field Hockey Executive Director Sheila Walker. “Her efforts are most clearly seen in her support for the athletes whose performance she has championed as well as in her support of the coaches and staff that help these athletes reach their highest potential. Her leadership mark is clearly imprinted on the future success of our national teams and the structure that leads the USA to success. We wish her every success and offer our great thanks for her service to USA Field Hockey. “

Elected by the organization’s membership in 2000, Taylor was in her second term as the association’s president. During her tenure, USA Field Hockey saw a surge in participation at the grassroots level as well as a revival in international competitions in the United States. Under Taylor, USA Field Hockey hosted international tournaments each year since 2001 including the Rabobank Champions Challenge in 2005. The Champions Challenge represented the first major International Hockey Federation event in the United States since the 1996 Olympic Games.

An advocate for increased opportunities for women, Taylor lobbied for an increase in the number of women’s field hockey teams at the Olympic Games. In 2005, the International Olympic Committee approved an increase in the number of women’s teams at the Games from 10 teams to 12 teams, matching the number of men’s teams at the Olympic tournament.

As president, Taylor was instrumental in USA Field Hockey’s partnership with the City of Virginia Beach in establishing the USA Field Hockey National Training Center. The Training Center opened in the fall of 2001 and serves as the home of the USA women’s national team and USA Field Hockey events including the National Futures Championship and USA Club Championship.

Taylor’s resignation comes at a time of rising success and promise for the USA national teams. The USA women equaled their second-best World Cup finish ever with a sixth place showing in 2006 while the USA men continue to make strides with the establishment of regional training opportunities, increased participation and the successful introduction of an annual National Championship tournament.

Under the new bylaws, Taylor will be the last of USA Field Hockey’s member-elected officers. She was the 18th president of USA Field Hockey in a succession that dates back to the founding of the organization in 1922.

The Director of Athletics at Lock Haven (Pa.) University, Taylor served as head field hockey coach for the Lady Eagles from 1973-95. She compiled a 333-96-27 record while guiding Lock Haven to six national championships. She was named NCAA II Field Hockey Coach of the Year in 1993, '94 and '95.

Taylor previously served as USA Field Hockey’s representative to the USOC Board of Directors in addition to serving as chair of the NCAA Division II Field Hockey Committee. She served terms as president of the National Association of Collegiate Women Athletic Administrators (NACWAA), College Field Hockey Coaches Association (CFHCA) and Eastern Association of Intercollegiate Athletics for Women (EAIAW).

USA Field Hockey is the National Governing Body for the sport of field hockey in the United States and is responsible for the promotion and development of the sport throughout the country. USA Field Hockey trains and prepares teams to participate in international competitions such as the Olympic Games, Pan American Games and International Hockey Federation World Cup.
(bron: www.usfieldhockey.com)

The Hill prepare the champagne

Complacency on the part of Menzieshill, or perhaps a spark of brilliance by the chasing pack of Grange, Dundee Wanderers or Kelburne - these are the unlikely ingredients for an upset as the `Hill move relentlessly towards their third championship in a row.

The omens for an upset are certainly not so good. Bruce Cuthill`s charges have a seven-point lead over Grange in second place. They have yet to drop even a single point, and have a massive goal difference. Should the present trend continue in this weekend`s penultimate round of matches in the top four, the Taysiders could even uncork the champagne bottles by Saturday evening.

Even more encouraging for Cuthill was his team’s results in the recent Wasa tournament in Copenhagen. Certainly, heavy defeats at the hands of the crack German outfit Berliner and the Swiss national side preparing for the World Cup were to be expected, but victories over Orient Lyngby (Denmark) and Weiner (Austria) were impressive.

For a second year, Grange are the closest challengers, but the wheels came off in the last couple of matches before the festive break. The Edinburgh outfit were thoroughly whipped 11-2 by the clinical power play of Rennie Milne, Kenny Stibbles, Ross McPherson and the rest of the Cuthill men. A hangover then took control, and Grange dropped further points in a 5-5 draw with lowly Greaves Clydesdale in the last match.

Despite these reverses, Grange are still capable to holding on to second spot, if they have the inclination. Dundee Wanderers are only a point adrift, after all, but coach Kevin Farnan will remember his side`s abject collapse in the earlier fixture between the sides. Having taken a two-goal lead in the opening 13 minutes, a hat-trick by Phil Sulley and then a procession of goals saw off the Taysiders 8-3 at the end. Farnan would certainly wish to exact revenge in the return fixture this weekend, and restore a bit of pride in his charges.

But, just as importantly, Farnan would like to put one over on Menzieshill in the Dundee derby, the first game of the day. It has been quite a while since Wanderers emerged victorious in this enticing fixture. The last meeting saw Menzieshill win by 8-5, but Farnan`s men gave as good as they got in a rousing contest. Four-each at half time, it was a double strike inside a minute by Rennie Milne just after the interval that gave Wanderers a mountain to climb. But the return to goal-scoring form of the arch-poacher Paul Dailly - he got four in the recent derby match - will give Farnan a glimmer of hope for this weekend.

Kelburne, the final member of the top-four, is a bit of a wildcard. The Buddies have the biggest handicap, with so many players unavailable due to various Great Britain commitments. Yet the rump, with Gareth Hall, Chris Nelson and Ross Stott, and youngsters Adam Bain and Josh Cairns, are still capable of upsetting somebody`s applecart. Wanderers found that out when they were held to a 4-4 draw earlier in the campaign.

In the bottom half of the division, the Wildcats did a bit of mauling last week against Hillhead (14-0) and Inverleith (12-4), Douglas Simpson the chief mauler with nine goals. If they play with the same vigour this week, both the Hornets and Clydesdale could feel the brunt. The Dale also continued their good progress with two victories last Saturday, and have virtually secured their status in the top flight for next winter. But not so Inverleith, with only seven points to their credit, whose encounter with Hillhead could yet be crucial to survival. A win for the Edinburgh outfit will almost certainly seal Hillhead`s fate, but if the Hornets were to pick up the three points, there could yet be a sting in the tail for the final week`s encounters.
(bron: www.scottish-hockey.org.uk)

18 January 2007

Canadian Women defeat Ireland in South Africa

Canada commenced their 3 Nations series in Cape Town today with an emphatic win over Ireland. The Canadian team controlled the tempo throughout the first half with ball speed, strong leading and constant pressure. The Irish had no answer for the fast Canadian attack, which repeatedly penetrated the 25yd area. Tiffany Michaluk, Philippa Kedgley and Stephanie Hume had a strong game up front for Canada. The first goal of the game came in the 29th minute when Philippa Kedgley slotted a rebound from goalkeeper Shauna Frey. The Canadian team generated several attack penalty corners but a second goal evaded them.

The Irish team rebounded in the second half and increased their ball possession. The strong Canadian defense of Andy Rushton, Clare Linton, Megan Anderson and Katie Rushton however were outstanding and limited the Irish to only one shot on goal and no attack penalty corners for the game. Canada's second goal came in the 41st minute when Christine Depape deflected the ball on an attack penalty corner into the roof of the net.

Cailie O'Hara received her first cap for Canada. Strong performances by all the Canadian team resulted in the 2-0 victory over the inexperienced Irish squad. Canada plays the South African team tomorrow who on the first few days of play, defeated Ireland 2-1.

Canada - Ireland 2:0

Canada 29th min. Philippa Kedgley-FG
Canada 41st min. Christine DePape-PC

(bron: www.fihockey.com)

Black sticks men's team to meet the Netherlands announced

Four new caps have been named in the Black Sticks Men’s team announced today to meet the Netherlands in a three test series, beginning in Auckland this Sunday.

Three of the newcomers named following the conclusion of National trials at Pakuranga are from Canterbury: They are midfielder Nick Haig (19), defender Andy Hayward (21), and striker Jan Petersen (22). The fourth newcomer is Central goalkeeper Stephen Graham (21).

Interim Black Sticks Coach Shane McLeod said that two of the new caps, Haig and Hayward, had been included as part of an ongoing quest to develop mobility in the side’s central defence. Like new keeper Stephen Graham, the pair had shown potential during the 2006 National Hockey League.

Jan Petersen is the only attacker added to the team. He was included, McLeod said, for his strong running and ability in front of goal. “He is the type of player who will complement our other forwards because he is prepared to work hard not only for himself, but to set up other players.”

Players who were unavailable for selection included keeper Paul Woolford who is taking a break, plus midfielder Mitesh Patel and striker Gareth Brooks who are both working and playing overseas.

Two 2006 World Cup Black Sticks, defenders Richard Petherick and Shea McAleese, were not named in the team, to allow for newcomers to be given an opportunity. They do however remain strongly in the mix for future selections, McLeod said.

The 18-strong team remains highly experienced and includes 13 of the 2006 World Cup side.

The team will remain in Auckland until Sunday to prepare for the first match of the Dutch series test, which will be played at Lloyd Elsmore Hockey Stadium, Pakuranga, on Sunday 21 January .

The second test will be played on Tuesday 23 January at 7pm, also at Lloyd Elsmore, with the third test at Tauranga Hockey Centre on Friday 26 January at 7pm.

The series promises to provide an exciting start to the hockey New Year. The Dutch are recognised as one of the world’s premier Men’s hockey sides. They created history in 2006 when they won the Champions Trophy for a record eighth time. The side’s attack will be spearheaded by midfield leader Teun de Nooijer, who also created another milestone for the Netherlands last year when he was named WorldHockey Player of the Year for a record third time.
(bron: www.hockeynz.co.nz)

17 January 2007

Ireland's Confidence Grows

Although Ireland lost their second match against South Africa earlier this evening two nil, the ten day training camp is starting to prove its worth as they displayed more confidence and structure than they had in their two games last weekend.

Coach Gene Muller, spoke with us earlier "I am pleased with the way we played tonight we improved from the first two matches. We played with more confidence and structure but still have not attended to some details that often determine the outcome in internationals."

Although Ireland started with more purpose they failed to hold the South Africans out and seven minutes before the half time whistle South Africa's second penalty corner found the back of the net. (Half time one nil to South Africa.)

The South African's didn't waste much time before they again mounted attack on the Irish defence and won themselves a short corner which was converted six minutes into the second half.

The remainder of the game saw no more scores and the home side took the win with two goals to nil.

Ireland again made a large number of rotations and substitutions on the pitch a strategy that Gene has adopted for these early tour games in order to "..ensure that all players on tour have a good chance to get international match experience."

The Irish women are playing a total of six matches during their ten day tour, and while they had a 'non-match' day yesterday they didn't have much time to put up their feet. The squad were involved in intense training sessions, video analysis, physio sessions and core strength and conditioning.

will take on Canada again tomorrow evening before they play South Africa for the third time next Saturday.
(bron: www.hockey.ie)

World Champions a Class of Their Own

Day three of the BDO Champions Trophy in Quilmes, Argentina started with a mile stone as the first match of the day was also the 250th match in women’s Champions Trophy history.

In this first match, Australia met up with Spain, Australia having won their first two matches while Spain had been defeated twice, and it soon seemed like the match would stay true to these pre-conditions, with Australia pulling away with two goals from Peta Gallagher early in the encounter.

Gallagher first took advantage of a good pass from Kim Walker for a field goal, then converted a penalty corner laid off to her by Kobie McGurk.

But Spain was not about to give up just yet, and managed to stay in touch with a penalty corner goal from Rocio Ybarra who scored with a straight hit from the top of the circle. Despite Australia having been the better team for much of the first half, the teams thus went into the break with Spain only one goal down.

When they returned, Australia looked increasingly tired while Spain became more and more aggressive as time wore on. Pilar Sanchez finally scored the equalizer from a penalty corner, hitting the ball wide of the goal but benefitting from an Australian defender’s stick that guided the ball into the net.

The match subsequently deteriorated and soon was quite literally a struggle for both teams – as well as the spectators. Towards the end, Australia pushed for a winning goal but were denied by Spain going all out to hold on to their first point in their first Champions Trophy appearance since 2001, and the match ended in a tie.

The second match of day three had Germany take on Japan, both teams previously without points and keen to win an advantage in the race to avoid the relegation match next Sunday.

Japan worked hard and fought Germany tooth and nail for those elusive points but while their defense looked well disposed, they throughout the game found the offense their Achilles heel. The Japanese forwards just could not create any real danger, and true to the saying, if you can’t score them, you concede them, the goal eventually happened.

It came from veteran Nadine Ernsting-Krienke, who is disputing her 10th Champions Trophy here in Quilmes – a record she holds together with Argentine captain Magdalena Aicega. With this goal, 32-year-old Ernsting-Krienke, with more than 330 caps to her name, is also only one goal away from tying the record for most goals scored in Champions Trophy tournaments, currently held by Australian Jacqueline Pereira with 21 goals.

Germany thus moves into fourth place in the pool table, for the moment leaving Spain and Japan behind at the bottom of the table.

The top act of the day followed at 21:15, with hosts Argentina locking horns with World Champions Netherlands. Anxiously anticipated, the match between the two tournament favourites turned out to be the heated battle that had been expected.

Much to the dismay of the sizeable crowd that filled every seat in the stadium plus sitting and standing space not originally designed to house spectators, with several hundred people having been turned away at the gates, the Leonas today could not overcome the compact and coherent Dutch team.

While the home team managed to keep the World Champions at bay for long stretches of the match, the playing field was slated today, and the Dutch victory was never in jeopardy.

The Netherlands got on the scoreboard as early as the 12th minute with a goal from Fatima Moreira de Melo, from a penalty corner hit to the left of the goal and deflected in by her, but then fought through the rest of the first half in an open and rather appealing match to keep Argentina from equalizing.

A goal at the beginning of the second half, Kim Lammers’ first of a double hit that takes her to the top of the topscorer list at the end of day 3, however tipped the balance in favour of the Oranje squad, and they had a number of further opportunities. Only one more resulted in a goal, but Holland could easily have caused more damage and scored 2 or 3 more goals.

With the 3:0 win they still lead the table alone, the only team to have made it through their first three matches with a perfect record.

Play continues on Thursday after another rest day tomorrow with matches between Germany and Spain, Australia and the Netherlands, and the home team and Japan

BDO Hockey Champions Trophy, Women
Results day 3: Tuesday 16 January 2007
Spectators: 5’500

Spain : Australia 2:2 (1:2)
10. Peta Gallagher 0:1; 18.
Peta Gallagher 0:2; 30. Rocio Ybarra 1:2; 47. Pilar Sachez 2:2

Germany : Japan 1:0 (0:0)
Nadine Ernsting-Krienke 1:0

Argentina : Netherlands 0:3 (0:1)
12. Fatima Moreira de Melo 0:1; 38. Kim Lammers 0:2; 56. Kim Lammers 0:3

Connery Honoured At Irish Sportswomen's Awards

Ireland's hockey star Fiona Connery was honoured on Friday 12 January 2007 at the 2006 The Irish Times Vhi Healthcare Sportswoman of the Year Awards.

The Award, which is the first of its kind in Ireland, is aimed specifically at women in sport, recognising their achievements and creating greater awareness of their sports. The cream of the crop of Irish sportswomen were honoured and the overall winner announced as Dervala O'Rourke last Friday. Fiona is pictured receiving her award for Sportswoman of the Month for May from Minister for Education and Science Mary Hanafin T.D at the Awards ceremony hosted by Des Cahill of RTE.

This year's nominees were some of the very best competitors Irish sport has to offer, covering a wide variety of disciplines including, hockey, boxing, athletics, golf, rowing and squash.

Malachy Logan, Sports Editor of The Irish Times, said: ''It's quite remarkable how quickly these awards have become the standard bearer for Irish sportswomen. The depth and quality of achievement by all the monthly award winners speaks volumes for the strides women's sport has made in recent years.

This year's award winners are really an exceptional and diverse group of athletes. They are rightly being acknowledged for the huge contribution they make to Irish society and the vital function they serve as outstanding role models for both girls and boys who want to follow in their footsteps.''

Commenting on this years nominees, Vincent Sheridan, Chief Executive, Vhi Healthcare said; "National recognition is a tribute hard earned, and each of our thirteen nominees have travelled the hard road required to achieve the type of sporting excellence exemplified in this years nominees.

Sheridan continued, "Vhi Healthcare would like to take this opportunity to applaud each of the nominees and wish them the best of luck for 2007 in their various sporting fields. They each play a pivotal role for the younger generations of aspiring sportswomen who in turn may one day be recognised like their heroes."

The Award was launched in 2004, with each nominee a monthly award winner selected by a panel of three independent judges. This year sees thirteen nominees put forward for the National Award as rowers Sinad Jennings and Niamh Ni Cheilleachair were both selected for the Sportswoman Award for June. The list also contains the 2005 Sportswoman of the Year Briege Corkery.

The 2006 Irish Times Vhi Healthcare Sportswoman of the Year nominees were:

Jessica Kurten; Equestrian January
Derval O'Rourke; Athletics February
Madeline Perry; Squash March
Nina Carberry; Horse Racing April
Fiona Connery; Hockey May
ad Jennings & Niamh Ni Cheilleachair; Rowing June
Joanne Cuddihy Athletics; July
Kelly Liggan Tennis; August
Briege Corkery; Camogie & Gaelic Football
Katie Taylor; Boxing October
Claire Coughlan; Golf November

(bron: http://www.hockey.ie)

Inexperience costs Hockeyroos

Inexperience proved the difference in the Hockeyroos' third match of the Champions Trophy when they let a two-goal lead slip against Spain, the match ending in a 2-all draw.

Costly turnovers, due to a lack of experience and confidence, cost the Hockeyroos dearly in a game they should have won to consolidate top spot on the table.

They now face the daunting task of getting points from their last two matches, against the World Champion Dutch side and the Argentineans in front of their home crowd, to qualify for Sunday's final.

"Today was a disappointing result. It's certainly going to be tough from here but there's no reason why we can't win one, or both of them," said Murray.

The Hockeyroos began well, scoring twice in the first 18 minutes, with Peta Gallagher getting both, the first a field goal in the eleventh minute, the second from a penalty corner play in the 18th.

With a two goal deficit though, Spain picked up their game and began pressing the young Hockeyroos side, causing costly turnovers.

"We made some poor decisions during the match," said Murray.

"This all relates back to our experience and confidence in our decision making. We were punished for poor decision making."

While turnovers were costly, so were missed opportunities for the Hockeyroos who had 15 shots on goal to Spain's 13.

"It was a pretty scrappy game but there were three or four really good opportunities that we just didn't take advantage of and that we're going to have to improve on for our next two matches."

All teams will enjoy a rest day tomorrow before getting down to the business end of the tournament with the last two matches, plus finals.

Australia 2 Spain 2(Half time 2-1)
Australia - Peta Gallagher 11m FG/18m PC; Spain - Rocio Ybarra 29m PC, Pilar Sanchez 48m PC.
(Bron: http://www.hockey.org.au)

16 January 2007

Ireland's Women lose Two Nil Against Canada.

Ireland suffered a defeat against Canada, earlier this evening, in the second match of their South African Tour.

Gene Muller is obviously intent on using the full squad throughout this tour as three more new caps were awarded this evening. Shona Frey, Cliodhna Sargent and Shirley McKay all made their first appearance in the green jersey.

Despite the new blood on the pitch Ireland failed to hold off Canada's attack when five minutes before half time Canada's attackers found the back of the Irish net from some good open play to draw first blood and close out the first half one nil.

Only five minutes into the second half Canada capitalised on a short corner and again put one passed the Irish defence to seal their victory.

Commenting after the game was Coach Gene Muller, "This tour is a baseline performance event for us. I wanted to play these matches to get an idea of where we need to focus our preparation. We are rotating players on a substitution schedule to ensure that all players on tour have a good chance to get international match experience." Despite making sixteen substitutions in total it was apparent there were aspects he was disappointed with "In our game today we did not create enough chances and I was disappointed in our ball retention."

Ireland will get a second bite of the Cherry against Canada when they play them again next Thursday.

(Bron: www.hockey.ie)

Facilities the Future for Scottish Hockey

Scottish Hockey has taken a huge leap forward in building a future for the sport in Scotland by producing a comprehensive Facilities Strategy to define and develop the facilities required to support the hockey at every level.

Hockey benefits from a wealth of suitable facilities around Scotland and though some are becoming dated a programme of refurbishment and the construction of new facilities is encouraging. These continual developments have led Scottish Hockey to redraft their facility strategy to encourage the development of facilities that meet the needs of hockey now and in the future.

Scottish Hockey first drafted a facility strategy in 1999 which outlined the needs and priorities of hockey at the time. It focused on the need for a national facility and a network of regional facilities to meet the increasing training and competition needs of athletes. This strategy has since been updated once to reflect the development of new facilities.

Over the past 12 months the strategy has been completely redrafted to provide much greater detail to both the hockey community and those who finance, build and run facilities. The strategy comes in two parts, an executive summary giving an overview of the strategy and the full strategy providing detailed information on hockey requirements.

The strategy sets out the need and justification for national, regional and local facilities. Detail is provided on the requirements at each level in terms of surface, surroundings and additional infrastructure. It provides details for both indoor and outdoor facilities, recognising the need for both to develop hockey in Scotland. In addition the strategy covers other areas such as different surface types, hosting options and other issues such as maintenance and user groups.

Hockey will distribute the strategy as widely as possible to ensure all current and potential partners are aware of the needs of hockey. We will also support developments that meet the needs of hockey on a case by case basis. To do this there is a call for the hockey community to inform the SHU of any new developments as they become aware of them. This way we are able to try to influence the facilities at an early stage in the process.

This strategy sets out hockey facility needs moving forwards. Scottish Hockey President Jackie Burnett said; “This strategy is an important tool in hockey’s framework. It provides guidance for a network of facilities that support hockey at every level and will be key to the future development of the sport in Scotland.”

(bron: http://www.scottish-hockey.org.uk)

15 January 2007

The Pan American Hockey Federation the 15th Pan American Games

The Pan American Hockey Federation has announced that the 15th Pan American Games are being held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, from July 15 to July 25, 2007.

The men's competition will feature 8 countries, namely Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Cuba, Netherlands Antilles, Trinidad & Tobago and the winner of a three-game series between Mexico and USA (to be played in Bermuda on March 8, 10 and 11, 2007).

The women's competition will feature 8 countries, namely Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Cuba, Netherlands Antilles, Uruguay and USA.

The Pan American Games are a qualifier for the Olympic Games, with the two winners in Rio de Janeiro earning an automatic berth for the 2008 Games in Beijing.
(Bron: www.panamhockey.org)

Hockeyroos make it two from two

The Hockeyroos have ended the second day of the Champions Trophy in a strong position, winning their second game of the tournament after coming from behind to down Germany 2-1.

Australia began slowly and struggled to penetrate the German defence, particularly through the midfield where Germany dominated possession. Late in the half though the Hockeyroos started turning things around, finding their feet in front of another strong Argentinean crowd.

The match looked like going into half time with a nil-all score line until Australia was penalised for some sloppy defence during a penalty corner play, the resulting penalty stroke no problem for Tina Schuetze to convert.

After the break the Hockeyroos came out firing, drawing two penalty corners in the first four minutes. On the second play, Madonna Blyth equalised, finding the back of the net from a well worked variation.

At 1-1 the match became a scramble as both teams, once again, battled to get on top in the midfield. With both defences dominating the victor was going to be the one that was able to make the most of their opportunities.

Germany had a couple of penalty corners late in the half but weren't able to convert. Soon after, the Hockeyroos drew two corners and on the second attempt Rebecca Sanders sent one into the net to give Australia a 2-1 lead.

With four minutes left on the clock the Germans threw everything at the Hockeyroos, but the young Australians held strong for their second win from two games, setting up a great position for the rest of the tournament.

"It was a reasonable game today," said national coach, Frank Murray.

"We started to get on top at the end of the first half and then again in the second half but wasted some really good opportunities that we must take at this level."

"There was a better performance from some of our players which was pleasing. The restructuring of the team has taken some time but the whole group have just been fantastic. I'm happy with the effort but there's still a long way to go."

"Sitting on six points will get us somewhere between fourth and first on the table at the end of the tournament. Another four points will see us get first or second and a shot at the final. It will be tough but we'll be doing the best we can and we'll see what happens."

The Hockeyroos will enjoy a rest day tomorrow, before taking on Spain on Wednesday morning.

Australia : Germany 2:1(0:1)
Madonna Blyth 39m PC, Rebecca Sanders 65m PC; Germany - Tina Schuetze 35m PS.
(bron: http://www.hockey.org.au)

Favorites win opening matches

The opening day of the BDO Hockey Champions Trophy, women turned out to be a great day for the favorites here in Quilmes, Argentina. In Saturday’s action, the three medalist of the 2006 Samsung World Cup succeeded to win their match. World Champion Netherlands nailed Spain 3-1, Vice World Champion Australia booked a 3-0 victory over Japan and World Cup bronze medalist Argentina clinched a 2-0 win against Germany.

Netherlands did exactly what it had to do against Spain. The World Champion and WorldHockey World Ranking leader took advantage of an early goal of Carlijn Welten, who put the 1-0 on the scoreboard after just more than ten minutes.

The Dutch kept dominating, but only scored for the second time in the first part of the second half when Naomi van As put her team at 2-0. Although Spain came back to 2-1, Netherlands finally clinched the 3-1 victory.

Australia, the team that lost to Netherlands in the Samsung World Cup final last October, followed the World Champion. The Australian team, here in Quilmes with a selection of young players, overcame the tough defense of Japan. An early goal of Renee Trost followed by two Australian goals in the second half gave the ‘Hockeyroos’ the 3-0 victory.

Host Argentina had no problems defeating Germany, the defending Champions Trophy champion. Supported by almost 5’000 fans, Argentina played extremely concentrated and was able to put pressure on the German team the entire match.

Only in the first part of the second half, Germany was ‘dangerous’ when the German team was looking to get back in the match. Germany had some chances, but even the best shots of captain Fanny Rinne were saved by the Argentine goal keeper Paola Vukojicic. Argentina kept control over the match and finally won this important clash 2-0 with great attacking play in the first half and excellent defensive skills in the second half.

Action here in Quilmes, Argentina continues on Sunday with three more matches scheduled. Netherlands will meet Japan, Australia will face Germany and Argentina will play against Spain.

BDO Hockey Champions Trophy, women
Results day 1: Saturday 13 January 2007:
Spectators: 4’800

Netherlands : Spain 3:1 (1:0)
12. Carlijn Welten 1:0; 40. Naomi van As 2:0; 47. Maria Romagosa 2:1; 64. Kim Lammers 3:1.

Japan : Australia 0:3 (0:1)
4. Renee Trost 0:1; 47. Amy Korner 0:2; 65. Peta Gallagher 0:3.

Argentina : Germany 2:0 (2:0)
9. Noel Barrionuevo 1:0; 29. Daniela Maloberti 2:0

(bron: www.fihockey.com)