Ireland men jet out to China
06 Apr 2006 07:20
Irish Hockey Association: Ireland’s men departed for Changzhou, China early this morning in a bid to qualify for their first World Cup since 1990 at the BDO Hockey World Cup Qualifier.
Ireland coach Dave Passmore has a healthy squad to choose from after defender Karl Burns came through the Munster Peard Cup Final for his club Cork Church of Ireland at the weekend with no problems to his hamstring injury.
The squad touch down in Changzhou and have five days to acclimatise and prepare for their first pool match against old rivals England on 12 April. There are two pools of six teams in the qualifier, following the round robin stage the top two teams in each pool automatically qualify for the BDO Hockey World Cup in September, with the remaining teams battling it out for the final qualifying spot.
“The final five days in China are a crucial part of our long preparation,” Passmore said.
“The athletes will be carefully monitored as they recover from the flight and resultant jet lag and it will be an opportunity to get used to the surroundings, pitch and sharpen our penalty corners.
“There will be some down time for the players to relax and spend some time together whilst preparing mentally for the tough 12 days ahead.
“They will have had nearly a week without picking up their sticks will help bring the hunger required to start the tournament at full steam.”
Andy Barbour (50 Caps), Jason Black (95), Mark Black (64), Paddy Brown, (102), Karl Burns (41), Stephen Butler (90), Timothy Cockram (25), Mark Gleghorne (34), Ronan Gormley (17), Charlie Henderson (21), David Hobbs (65), Mark Irwin (86), John Jermyn (31), Iain Lewers (37), Phelie Maguire (21), Mark Ruddle (7), Graham Shaw (76), Justin Sherriff (83), Coach: Dave Passmore, Assistant Coaches: Denis Pritchard, Craig Fulton, Manager: Steven Hiles