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Hockey New Zealand appoints Hockey Director
25 Mar 2022 20:37

© FIH / Gordon Morrison

Hockey New Zealand has restructured its operations to best reflect the future needs of the sport of hockey and its administration.

Hockey NZ Chairman Graham Child said that a strategic review had been undertaken in recent months, which focused on the present and future needs of the sport in New Zealand.  This included an independent High Performance Hockey Review, which was commissioned in conjunction with SPARC prior to the Olympic Games last August.

“The High Performance Hockey Review identified that development of hockey in New Zealand required greater emphasis on the management of people, programmes and activities associated with the playing, and coaching and development of the game.  This extends from grass roots level through to success on the international stage.”

“As a result, a new senior position of Hockey Director has been established.  Reporting to the Chief Executive, the role will oversee all aspects of the game in New Zealand, for players, coaches and umpires.”

The selection process was highly contested with strong local and international interest, and the selection panel included independent representation appointed by SPARC.

Mr Child said Hockey New Zealand was delighted to announce the appointment of incumbent Chief Executive Ramesh Patel as the first Hockey Director.

After 20 successful years at the helm of Hockey New Zealand, Ramesh has expressed his desire to take a new career direction.  With his passion for hockey undiminished, we were thrilled that he put his name forward to lead this critical area of developing and implementing the new frameworks and pathways for players, coaches and umpires.”

Ramesh Patel was equally excited about the new role: “After the position was advertised I looked at the role and felt this was the career direction for me.  I have always been passionate about the hockey side and over the last five years my position has not allowed me to be as close as I had been in the early years.  As the Hockey Director it gives me an opportunity to continue contributing to the sport I love.”

The search for a new Chief Executive is now underway.  Mr Child said the creation of the Hockey Director role had also enabled the board to reshape the role of the Chief Executive to be primarily commercially focused.

Mr Child said that Mr Patel would leave his role as CEO having made Hockey NZ a stronger and more effective national sport organisation.  “It’s excellent for hockey that someone with Ramesh’s knowledge and ability will continue to work with the sport in a key leadership role.”

Mr Patel will commence his new role on 30 March 2022 and the Chairman will oversee the CEO’s role until a permanent appointment is made.

Source: Hockey New Zealand

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