African Hockey Federation
AHF President deceased
The AHF records with great sadness the death in Nairobi, Kenya of AHF President Hardial Singh Khular, one of the great personalities of African and World Hockey.
This esteemed gentleman played for Kenya's national team in two Olymimages, coached, managed and umpired at international level before becoming a top administrator. President of the AHF for the past 10 years and an FIH Vice-President for the same period, he was awarded the highest supporting honours in Kenya, and by the IOC and FIH. He will be deeply missed by his friends, many admirers and World and African hockey. We extend our deepest sympathies to his family.
The AHF held its Council meeting in late October, with AHF Senior Vice-President, Steve Jaspan, serving as Chairman. Steve, who is the Acting President of the AHF, stepped into that role following the untimely death of AHF President, Hardial Singh. Elections for AHF President will be held in September 1999 during the All Africa Games in September in Johannesburg, RSA. Development
Ghana awaits FIH/IOC Development Pitch
The Ghana Hockey Association is anxiously awaiting completion of their new artificial hockey surface in Accra this December. This should be a great boost to Ghana Hockey whose Echequer Men's side impressed tremendously in winning the bronze medal in Windhoek.
Development Award for RSA
South Africa was awarded the AHF Development Award for development work in Ghana, Uganda, Tanzania and assistance to other nations. The first recipient was Namibia in 1997.
Africa Cup for Club Champions
A very successful 11th Africa Cup for Club Champions (men) and 3rd Cup Women was held in Windhoek Namibia in October with Kenya's Armed Forces shocking the long standing Africa men's Champions, Sharkla from Egypt 3-0 in a tense final game.
Kenya's Post and Telecom (Women's) Team made it a historic double for Kenya by convincingly clinching the Women's Cup. This bodes very well for Kenya hockey and it is certain the Kenyan delegation would dedicate their win to their late President Hardial Singh. A minute's silence was held before all games following the sad news of the latter's death. The Namibia Hockey Union deserves great praise for their organisation of the tournament and some of the best natural grass fields for many years.
Umpires Seminars, coaching course held
An umpires seminar was run concurrently with the Namibia tournament under the guidance of Ray O'Connor (Ireland) who umpired the 1996 Olympic final. The presence of Horacio Servetto (Argentina) as umpires manager was a great boost to umpiring in Africa. This very popular former Olympic and World Cup umpire did a wonderful job.
An Umpiring course was conducted by Gavin Cullen (South Africa) from 3 - 13 September 1998 in Malawi.
A coaching course was conducted by Gill Taylor (South Africa) from 10-12 September 1998 in Kampala Uganda which was an outstanding success.
African Hockey sides made strong showings during the Commonwealth Games in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, but were unable to win medals. Closest were South Africa's sides, which narrowly missed semi-final spots.
Asian Hockey Federation
The Congress of the Asian Hockey Federation was held on 15 December 1998 in Bangkok, Thailand, in conjunction with the 13th Asian Games.
The revised AHF Constitution adopted at the AGM held on18th September 1998 was forwarded to FIH and ratified during the November Council meeting. The AHF Constitution and revised Bye-laws were to be implemented at the December Congress.
The AHF Development Plan for 1998 and 1999 was submitted to the FIH in October. The main features of the Plan are:
European Hockey Federation
Regulations in line
The EHF completed a full review of its Regulations to ensure that they are in line with the new FIH Regulations. These regulations have been published and distributed to all Member Associations during the month of August and will come into effect for the 1999 tournaments.
The following projects have taken place:
The EHF Competitions Committee met in September in Brussels, Belgium, at the FIH Offices The Committee decided the venues for the 1999 Club Competitions and completed a review of the 1998 tournaments. A Working Party also met and made proposals to the Committee with regard to the European Youth Trophy which will take place for the first time at Easter 1999. During this meeting, a presentation was made to Robert Lycke, who has resigned as Chairman of this Committee following his election as Hon. Treasurer of the FIH.
The EHF Appointments Committee also met in September, and made the proposed appointments for the 1998 Outdoor events. Subsequent to this meeting the FIH has approved these appointments and the officials have been informed of their posts.
Again in September, the EHF Executive Board met in Kiev, Ukraine. The Executive Board also held meetings with representatives from the following Member Associations, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Bulgaria, Moldova, Romania, Russia and Ukraine.
Oceania Hockey Federation
The annual congress was held in October in Suva, Fiji. For the first time in many years, representation came from American Samoa, Papua New Guinea, Fiji, New Zealand and the Australian Federations. It was a valuable experience for all present. Workshops were organised so as to enable a cross fertilisation of ideas in order to develop a realistic development plan.
Elections for office bearers of the Federation will be conducted in February.
The plan to adopt a mentor approach to assist in the development in Papua New Guinea and Fiji was further developed and adjusted to suit the needs of the island countries. Australian Hockey will assist Papua New Guinea; New Zealand will assist Fiji and Australian women's Hockey will assists Western and American Samoas.
Fiji has begun to establish an administrative structure and is being assisted by New Zealand in the development of a synthetic pitch.
Marshall elected President Recent elections in New Zealand have resulted in the election of Alan Marshall as the new President, replacing Derek Wilshere who has had a very successful three years being responsible for the implementation of a number of hockey initiatives.
Coaching Clinics Regional Coaching clinics continue to provide opportunities for numbers of young players in the age groups under 13, 15 and under 18, the under 18 teams having the experience of competing regularly with Australia. In addition to this, the National Hockey Academy plays an important role in the development area.
Artificial surfaces There are now 38 artificial pitches, scattered throughout the two islands, eight of these being water pitches.
Competition The Commonwealth Games provided a great opportunity for teams from New Zealand to gain international experience leading up to Olymimages 2000.
The National Academy Squads assembled for development and to play against international teams and Australian State sides. The U 18 girls toured Australia in June the Australian girls winning the series. The U 18 boys had a very successful tour of New Zealand.
The National Hockey League will commence in 1999. It will be held over six weekends from mid-April to the end of May 1999. The top six men's and women's teams will take part.
Developmental activities and growth in the junior ranks are somewhat hindered by the lack of an artificial pitch. Numbers in the men's division are slowly increasing, while in the women's division, numbers are decreasing.
The OHF's Annual Congress is being held in Suva this year. This will assist in the further understanding of the structure of hockey in Fiji, and the need to support the nations' involvement in the South Pacific Games.
There is still a small amount of hockey being played, the largest growth being in the schools.
Papua New Guinea
Technical support for the development in this area is limited by geographical and social factors, which require maximum assistance from Oceania. Developing qualified coaches is a high priority in the future development of hockey.
The current executive seeks to embark on encouraging the development of hockey with special focus on junior and piccaninny grade sections. In addition, there is considerable support for establishing an artificial surface, without which hockey will not achieve its full potential. It is possible that it could be used as a multi-sport facility.
The amalgamation process for the two national bodies governing men's and women's hockey is progressing well using the services of a consultant. Regular workshops are held and the process is providing a positive working environment, which should lead to a successful merger by October 2000.
Preparations for the Champions Trophy in Brisbane are progressing well with huge support coming from the Queensland government and the hockey world. The management team is continually seeking commercial support.
Women - After the success in the Commonwealth Games, the squad has been preparing for a trip to Argentina in December, during which less experienced players will gain international experience. 1999 will be a very busy year on the international scene leading up to 2000 Olymimages.
Men - The Commonwealth Games brought with it great success, and while this was not evident to the same degree at the Champions' Trophy in Lahore, the CT team was a younger and less experienced. Once again, 1999 promises to be a developing year for the squad as it has a busy schedule leading up to the Olymimages.
Pan American Hockey Federation
18th Central American and Caribbean games - Caracas, Venezuela, August 10-20.
After a period of uncertainty concerning the site, the CAC Games hockey competition was successfully held in Caracas with the Venezuelan Hockey federation as hosts. Hockey was held at a sub-site from the main site of the Games held in Maracaibo. By special permission, the competition was held on grass.
Pan American games - Winnipeg, Canada - July 24-August 8 199 (TBC)
Base on the PAHF Qualification process, the following eight men's and women's teams, subject to the approval of their respective Olympic Committees, will take part in the Pan American Games in Winnipeg next summer:
Reserve teams are as follows:
It is proposed that the competition format be a one pool round robin with play-offs for the top six places.