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Luciana Aymar (ARG) and Jamie Dwyer (AUS) won the 2004 Player of the Year Awards

Luciana wins again

The WorldHockey Women’s Players of the Year for 2004 were announced yesterday evening by International Hockey Federation at the Jockey Club, Rosario. 

Soledad Garcia was awarded the WorldHockey Young Women’s Player of the Year 2004 and Luciana Aymar the WorldHockey Women’s Player of the Year 2004. 

With nearly 50% of all the votes cast, Soledad Garcia was the overwhelming choice of the players in the Young Player category. Though still only 23 years old, Soledad Garcia has continually caught the eye on the international stage, since winning her first Young Player of the Year award in 2002. She has played hockey since she was six years old and was also part of the ‘Leonas’ (Argentina) team which won bronze at the Athens Olympics, and gold at the 2002 Hockey World Cup in Perth. Soledad wins her second WorldHockey Young Player of the Year award, having already been selected in 2002. 

A similar majority of 50% of all the votes cast shows the domination on the world stage of Luciana Aymar. Luciana has been a key figure in 'Las Leonas' team at the above events, also winning silver at the previous Olympic Games in Sydney. Like Soledad, this is also Luciana’s second WorldHockey Player of the Year Award, following her first in 2001. 

FIH Vice President, Tony von Ondarza, commented, 'The international players’ choices of Soledad Garcia and Luciana Aymar are a tribute to Argentina’s passion for hockey which we have seen demonstrated so clearly by the sell-out crowds here at the BDO Hockey Champions Trophy at the Jockey Club in Rosario.'

Jamie's golden year capped with WorldHockey Award
Australia’s Jamie Dwyer has been voted WorldHockey Player of the Year for 2004 in a vote by players competing at the Samsung Men’s Champions Trophy tournament in Lahore. 

Dwyer, who won the WorldHockey Young Player of the Year award in 2002, was not present to receive his award in Lahore but said in an interview that he was deeply honoured to have been chosen by his peers. 

For the first time, in 2004, WorldHockey Player of the Year Awards have been voted by the players at their respective men’s and women’s Champions Trophy tournaments, guided by a panel of judges who nominated a short list of players taking into account performances at the Olympic Qualifying tournaments; the Olympic Games and the Champions Trophy events. 

Dwyer was the runaway winner, gaining more than 47% of the total number of votes. 

The 25 year old striker was the hero of Australia’s breakthrough win in Athens, scoring the golden goal that gave the Kookaburras their first Olympic gold medal. 

Dwyer has played 93 games for Australia, scoring 60 goals including seven at the Athens Games and completing a hat-trick in his first Olympic appearance. 

He had recovered from a serious knee injury suffered at the Champions Trophy in Amstelveen last year to hold his place in the Kookaburras squad. 

The WorldHockey Young Player of the Year for 2004 is Santiago Freixa from Spain. 

The 21 year old has played 82 games for Spain and is not only a key striker in their national squad but also a feared penalty corner expert. 

FIH President Els Van Breda Vriesman said both players were worthy winners. 

“From the list of nominations it is obvious that our winners are wonderful ambassadors for their respective nations and also for our sport,” she said. 

“I congratulate all those who were nominated. That in itself is a tribute to their abilities and their value to our sport.”

WorldHockey Men’s Player of the Year
1. Sohail Abbas (PAK)
2. Gagan Ajit Singh (IND)
3. Ronald Brouwer (NED)
4. Jeroen Delmee (NED)
5. Jamie Dwyer (AUS)
6. Bevan George (AUS)
7. Craig Jackson (RSA)
8. Muhammad Nadeem (PAK)
9. Dilip Tirkey (IND)
10. Xavier Ribas (ESP)

WorldHockey Men’s Young Player of the Year
(under 23 age limit, as of 1 January, 2004)
1. Salman Akbar (PAK)
2. Adrian D'Souza (IND)
3. Floris Evers (NED)
4. Santi Freixa (ESP)
5. Rob Hammond (AUS)
6. Mark Knowles (AUS)
7. Matias Paredes (ARG)
8. Edi Tubau (ESP)
9. Matthias Witthaus (GER)
10. Christoph Zeller (GER)

 WorldHockey Women’s Player of the Year
1. Luciana Aymar (ARG)
2. Fu Baorong (CHN)
3. Rachel Imison (AUS)
4. Natascha Keller (GER)
5. Tetyana Kobzenko (UKR)
6. Kim Yun Mi (KOR)
7. Sakae Morimoto (JAP)
8. Fanny Rinne (GER)
9. Maartje Scheepstra (NED)
10. Janneke Schopman (NED)

WorldHockey Women’s Young Player of the Year
(under 23 age limit, as of 1 January, 2004)
1. Soledad Garcia (ARG)
2. Miek van Geenhuizen (NED)
3. Anke Kuhn (GER)
4. Emily Naylor (NZL)
5. Esther Termens (ESP)

Young Men
2001 Tibor Weissenborn (GER)
2002 Jamie Dwyer (AUS)
2003 Grant Schubert (AUS)
2004 Santi Freixa (ESP)
2005 Robert van der Horst (NED)
2006 Christopher Zeller (GER)
2007 Mark Knowles

Young Women
2001 Angie Skirving (AUS)
2002 Soledad Garcia (ARG)
2003 Maartje Scheepstra (NED)
2004 Soledad Garcia (ARG)
2005 Maartje Goderie (NED)
2006 Mi Hyun Park (KOR)
2007 Maike Stockel (GER)
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