Monday, February 22, 2010

Black Sticks minus Child

PULLING OUT: Simon Child said the heightened security did not create an ideal high performance environment. PHIL REID/Dominion Post

Hockey New Zealand has confirmed it will send the Black Sticks Men’s team to the Hero Honda FIH World Cup in Delhi, India.
Hockey New Zealand has assessed advice received from the New Zealand Government and an independent security advisor, with regard to the security arrangements that will be in place for the team for the entire time they are in India.
“The detail we have received has reassured us that the required level of security is in place, therefore we have kept the team in the tournament” says Hilary Poole, CEO, Hockey New Zealand.
The responsibility for security of the teams while they are in India is provided by the ISLG (International Services Liaison Group which are responsible for both Hockey World Cup and Commonwealth Games security arrangements).
Hockey New Zealand has been closely liaising with the other participating nations with regard to their own security assessment and travel arrangements, all of whom still plan to participate in the World Cup.
“We have been working diligently with the Black Sticks Team over the past few days to give each player enough information to make their own informed decision,” says Poole.
All players from the current World Cup Black Sticks Team will travel to Delhi, apart from Simon Child, who has made a personal decision to return to New Zealand, a decision that is fully respected by Hockey New Zealand. A replacement for Simon is being worked on, but cannot be confirmed yet.
Black Sticks Men’s Coach, Shane McLeod, says his focus is to keep the team on track for the World Cup.
“Our build up has been comprehensive, and we’ve tested our strengths and weaknesses against Australia in Perth. While the past few days have been trying for the players, they’ve come through it and they are hungry to take on the best in the world next week,” says McLeod.

Hockey New Zealand Media release