Monday, August 25, 2008

Rajan to lead 2009 World Cup team

THE Malaysian Hockey Federation (MHF) council recently endorsed K. Rajan as the new National Juniors coach following the resignation of V. Muraleedharan.
Rajan has been entrusted to whip up a team for the 2009 Junior World Cup, which Malaysia and Singapore will be co-hosting.
“I have selected eight new faces from the Razak Cup, including Negri Sembilan’s (G. Kavin Kartik) 16-year-old boy who played very well in the tournament,” said Rajan.
“We have started training, and I will continue even during the fasting month to build their fitness which was lacking during the Razak Cup.”
Rajan also plans to blood the juniors in the Malaysia Hockey League (MHL) which starts on Oct 10. “It will be good for the juniors to play in the tough MHL, I believe they will pick up some valuable pointers.”
The Junior World Cup will be held on June 7-21 with 20 teams competing in four groups.
Meanwhile, MHF secretary Sgt Hashim Yusoff confirmed yesterday that the parent body is still interested in hiring Korean Kim Sang Ryul as a consultant for the juniors and seniors.
“Kim is now free (after coaching China men’s team for the Beijing Olympics) and we have approached him to train our players on a consultant basis,” said Hashim.
“He has yet to reply, but we hope he can come and help (seniors coach) Sarjit Singh and Rajan as a consultant because both the sides have major assignments next year.” While the juniors will be involved in the World Cup, the seniors will play in the Asia Cup, which is a qualifier for the 2010 New Delhi World Cup.
THE MHF will hold its next council meeting on Sept 20 to submit its accounts and prepare for elections.
Nominations for the biennial elections open on Oct 3 and will close on Oct 25.


Germany hockey players with the Beijing Olympic gold medal.
Spain hockey players with the Beijing Olympics silver. Come on guys, smile! You earned it.

Super Women ........

GERMAN Women celebrate their Beijing Olympics Gold Medal.
China finished second, but nothing to cry here, as they are the team to watch from now.

Germany snatch Olympic history




An early penalty corner goal from Christopher Zeller was enough to take the German men to a 1-0 win over Spain and put the Gold around their necks in the final match of the Olympic hockey tournament in Beijing.
Australia took the Bronze medal with a stunning 6:2 win over The Netherlands. Eddie OCKENDEN was the star of the show, scoring two and setting up another as The Kookaburras cruised to victory.
Earlier in the day, Great Britain surprisingly took fifth place by scoring five second half goals against Korea, with forward Jonty CLARKE scoring a brace of field goals. Other strikes came from the sticks of Barry MIDDLETON, Ashley JACKSON, and Glenn KIRKHAM. The Chinese team delighted the home crowd by grabbing a dramatic win over South Africa in extra-time to finish 11th in this Olympic competition.

Gold Medal Match
Germany defeat Spain 1:0 (1:0)

Emulating the Dutch women who took the Olympic Gold in Beijing as World Champions, the German men today wrestled victory in the final from rivals Spain to pronounce themselves Olympic Champions.
Both teams started by playing low intensity hockey, Germany knocking the ball around on risk-free trajectories while Spain was happy to leave them to it, patiently waiting for their opportunities.
A 16th minute penalty corner changed all that however, as Christopher Zeller powered a cracking flick under the crossbar to give his team the lead, putting all the pressure on Spain.
Spain coped well, shifting a gear up and gaining momentum as time progressed. They looked extremely threatening as the break approached but were unable to get on the scoreboard before halftime interrupted their efforts.
In the second half, Spain kept attacking but still failed to break down the rock solid German defence. Dominating open play for much of the second half, they were faced with a clock ticking down relentlessly, the pressure ever increasing, and a German wall that just didn't give way.
Late in the half, with Spain getting frustrated and desperate in equal measures, Germany even had more chances than Spain who seemed to be repelled by the German goal and circle, and losing Sergi Enrique to a yellow card didn't help the Iberians.
Germany held their lead down to the final whistle with an amazing effort in defence, while the Spanish played a great game but entirely lacked the finishing touch.
This win confirms Christopher Zeller as a big match player - taking Germany to Olympic glory with his one goal today, when two years ago, it was him as well who led the Germans to their World Cup title.
For German striker Florian Keller it is also a special moment: he adds his Gold to the four that are already in the family, with his grandfather, father, brother and sister all having been Olympic Gold medallists.