FIH PRO LEAGUE Season 5, India



February 25, India: Ireland went into their eighth and final match of the India series against the hosts at the Bursa Munda International Hockey stadium in Rourkela. They went into this game on the back of a 7-0 defeat against Spain the night before still in search of their first points of the series. Having run the hosts India close to a 0-1 defeat hopes were high of possibly gaining that elusive point on this occasion.

Ireland dominated the exchanges in the first quarter and Jeremy Duncan created a chance which was deflected into the air, Peter McKibbin forced the ball over the line, but the umpire had already awarded them a penalty corner. The first one resulted in a second and that got deflected behind for a long corner. Ireland not taking at least one of those chances came back to bite them as India got two goals within 90 seconds.

Matthew Nelson was penalised in the 14th minute and from the resultant penalty corner India took the lead through Nilikanta Sharma. A minute later India were further ahead when a field goal by Akashdeep made it 2-0. It was 2-0 at the end of the quarter. Ireland had two penalty corners in a row overturned on appeal to the video umpire, there was no further scoring in the second quarter, and it was still 2-0 to India at half-time.

Manpreet set up Gurjant for a goal to put India 3-0 up in the 38th minute. India were close to getting a fourth in the 45th minute but Carr saved at point blank range. Ireland trailed 3-0 at the end of the third quarter. There was no further scoring until the final seconds when Jugraj Singh scored from a retaken penalty corner in the final minute 4-0 to India. Ireland notched up the eighth defeat after eight games.

After the game Ireland Head Coach Mark Tumilty said: “Good response from the players today. We created numerous opportunities which we couldn’t capitalise on while India proved to be clinical in our circle. While the result is not what we want it was a pleasing performance to end this block. Overall, it has been an excellent experience in our build up to Paris and the players deserve credit for how they have applied themselves against the world’s best teams.”

INDIA: Sreejesh PARATTU RAVEEN PRAV (GK), Jarmanpreet SINGH, Manpreet SINGH, Hardik SINGH, Gurjant SINGH, Madeep SINGH, Harmanpreet SINGH ( C), Sukhreet SINGH, Sanjay. Raj Kumar PAL, Amit ROHIDAS. SUBS USED: Amir ALI (5 mins), Rabichanrdra MOIRANGTHEM (5 mins) Akashdeep SINGH (4 mins), Jugraj SINGH (4 mins), Upadhyay Lalit Kumar (5 mins) Nilikanta SHUMAR (4 mins)

IRELAND: Jamie Carr (GK), Luke Witherow, Daragh Walsh, Kevin O’Dea, O’Donoghue, Sean Murray (C), Peter McKibbin, Jeremy Duncan, Michael Robson, Sam Hyland, Ben Johnson SUBS USED: James Milliken (GK) mins, Charlie Rowe (6 mins), John McKee (4 mins) Matthew Nelson (4 mins), Peter Brown (6 mins), Lee Cole (5 mins), Nicholas Page (4 mins)

IRL Indoor Women beat Luthuania in thrilling finish to take Gold at EuroHockey Indoor Championship II in Galway 


Sunday February 11, Galway: Day 3 began in Galway with a pool game between Croatia and Sweden.



These two teams produced an 11-goal thriller for the early arrivals at the Kingfisher Centre in Galway. Iskra Bedenko opened the scoring for Croatia after 12 minutes to put them 1-0 up. Dora Jelcic  added a second a minute later to leave them 2-0 up but Sweden responded through Laetitia Schrader who converted a penalty stroke in the 17th minute, 2-1 Croatia heading to half time. Lucija Buzjak converted a penalty corner in the 19th minute to make it 3-1 and Martina Petretic converted another penalty corner to leave the half time score Croatia 4 Sweden 1. Petra Hrupec scored again for Croatia in the 22nd minute to make it 5-1 and then Sweden got awarded a penalty stroke which Klara Moberg converted in the 29th minute to make it 5-2. Croatia responded through Sasha Abramovic in the 30th minute to make it 6-2 but Sweden converted a penalty corner by Emilia Kalling-Smith in the 31st minute to reduce the deficit to 6-3. Klara Moberg converted another penalty corner for the Swedes in the 38th minute and Iskra Bedenko rounded off the scoring in the final minute for Croatia to leave the final score Croatia 7 Sweden 4.


Portugal picked up their first point of the Pool II A of the European Indoor Championship in Galway by holding Slovakia to a 3-3 draw. The Slovaks had surprisingly held Ireland to a 5-5 draw in the final game of Saturday’s action. Portugal were awarded a penalty stroke in the 8th minute converted by Ana Nogueira. Slovakia responded in the 9th minute through Barbora Pucherova from open play to make it 1-1. Slovakia made it 2-1 when Karolina Vyskocova  got the first of her two goals on the day converting a 13th minute penalty corner. Portugal equalised in the 15th minute through Duianiela Nunes from open play. Ana Nogueira got her second goal of the game for Portugal in the 15th minute when she converted a penalty corner to give Portugal a 3-2 lead.  Slovakia secured a share of the spoils in the 39th minute  when Karoline Vyskocova converted a penalty corner to leave the final score Portugal 3 Slovakia 3


Ireland went into their final pool match of the tournament trailing leaders Lithuania by 2 points with a simple mission. Nothing less than a win over Lithuania would be good enough to secure promotion to the top tier of European Indoor Hockey. There was no scoring at all in the first quarter. All the goals in this game came in the hectic final 10 minutes. Dovile Juraite opened the scoring for Lithuania in the 20th minute and Lithuania led 1-0 at half time. Orla Fox converted a penalty corner to get Ireland on level terms in the 31st minute. 1-1 a final result like this would have given Lithuania the title, however.

Lithuania’s hero  Dovile Juraite quickly became a villain. She was yellow carded in 32nd minute and Ireland fired in a few goals while her team were shorthanded. Chloe Brown converted the penalty corner in the 32nd minute to make it 2-1 to Ireland. Milla Fulton scored from open play in the 34th minute to make it 3-1 to Ireland. Chloe Brown converted her second penalty corner of the day to make it 4-1 to Ireland in the 35th minute and in the 39th minute Ireland were awarded a penalty stroke which Orla Fox converted to make the final score 5-1. This put Ireland in first place by one point and secured the gold medal in this tournament plus the right to play in the higher echelon of European Indoor Hockey in the next tournament.

IRELAND:- Emma Buckley (GK ) ; Sarah Patton, Mikayla Power, Chloe Brown, Orla Fox , Milla Fulton

SUBS USED : Kate Hora [39 mins GK] ;  Laura Graham [4 mins]  Orla Patton (C) [ 4  mins] Orla Macken [22 mins]  Ellen Robinson [ 7  mins]


IRELAND 1st place  13 points +21 Goal difference

LITHUANIA 2nd place 12 points +12 goal difference

CROATIA 3rd place  9 points +5 goal difference

SLOVAKIA  4th place 5 points -4 goal difference

SWEDEN 5th place 3 points -10 goal difference

PORTUGAL 6th place 1 point -24 goal difference

Images courtesy of: Alwyn Robinson Photography




Valencia, Jan 20: In 2015 Ireland suffered Olympic heartbreak in Valencia and in2024 suffered heartbreak yet again. Great Britain went into this game having qualified for every Olympics except 2004. Ireland’s women on the other hand had only ever qualified for the Olympics in Tokyo which were deferred until 2021due to the Covid 19 pandemic. Ireland’s most recent victory over Great Britain going into this match was an unofficial international warm up match ahead of the Tokyo Olympics in Belfast during 2020 when travel was restricted. In major tournaments where the caps counted as did the ranking points Great Britain always enjoyed the upper hand. This was the history as Ireland entered the bronze medal win or bust final this afternoon in Valencia.

Ireland started well but Great Britain were dangerous on the counterattack. Indeed, the first clear cut scoring opportunity fell to the 2016 Gold medallists. Katie Robertson almost opened the scoring for Great Britain. She lobbed McFerren but Charlotte Beggs cleared it off the line. Her second effort was hit away by McFerren’s block in the 8th minute. Ireland dominated possession in the closing stages of the first quarter, Ireland 0 Great Britain 0. Great Britain took the lead in the 18th minute after a counterattack into the Irish D they were awarded a penalty corner. Sarah Jones deflected the ball past Ayeisha McFerren, Ireland 0 Great Britain 1.

Great Britain had the better of the possession for the rest of the half save for a breakaway by Katie Mullan whose cross deflected skywards was deemed dangerous and ended up with a free hit out of their own D for Great Britain half time score was Ireland 0 Great Britain 1.  The main feature of the third quarter from an Irish point of view was that Deirdre Duke left the field through injury.

Sarah Jones crossed a ball later in the quarter which Ayeisha McFerren had to kick clear. Ireland were awarded a penalty corner in the 41st minute. Ireland were only able to win a long corner from the penalty corner. Ireland had a reasonable amount of possession in the third quarter and were on the attack when the end of third quarter hooter sounded. Score remained Ireland 0Great Britain 1.

Katie Robertson got the first Great Britain goal of her career to put Great Britain 2-0 ahead in the 46th minute. Ireland withdrew goalkeeper McFerren in favour of an extra outfield player with 6minutes to go.

Best chance fell to Sarah Torrans who shot wide. Ireland were awarded a penalty corner which Great Britain referred to the video umpire. The umpire upheld the decision, and they lost their video referral. Heesh saved from McLoughlin. Ireland were looking for another penalty corner which was referred to the video umpire by Ireland, the penalty corner was awarded and Heesh saved and also blocked the rebound from Niamh Carey .

In the final minute Ireland tried to get on the scoreboard. In the last seconds Ireland looked for a penalty corner and it was referred to the video umpire. Ireland were awarded the penalty corner. McLoughlin’s first effort hit a foot and Ireland were awarded another penalty corner. Ireland scored through Hannah McLoughlin with the last hit of the game to make it Ireland 1 Great Britain 2,  but the clock had run out and so did our Olympic hopes.

IRELAND:  Ayeisha McFerren, Róisín Upton, Niamh Carey, Sarah Hawkshaw, Katie Mullan (C), Hannah McLoughlin, Naomi Carroll, Ellen  Curran, Charlotte Beggs, Katie McKee, Beth Harper

SUBS USED: Sarah McAuley, Michelle Carey, Sarah Torrans, Elena Neill,  Chloe Watkins, Deirdre Duke, Liz Murphy (GK)

GREAT BRITAIN: Sabbie Heesh (GK), Lily Owsley, Anna Toman, Hannah French, Sarah Jones, Sarah Robertson, Isabelle Petter, Giselle Ansley, Hollie Pearne-Webb (C), Fiona Crackles, Sophie Hamilton

SUBS USED: Amy Costello, Elena Rayer, Tessa Howard, Katie Robertson, Laura Roper,  Lily Walker

IRELAND:    Ayeisha McFerren, Róisín Upton, Niamh Carey, Sarah Hawkshaw, Katie Mullan (C), Hannah McLoughlin, Naomi Carroll, Ellen  Curran, Charlotte Beggs, Katie McKee, Beth Harper

SUBS USED: Sarah McAuley, Michelle Carey, Sarah Torrans, Elena Neill,  Chloe Watkins, Deirdre Duke, Liz Murphy (GK)


GREAT BRITAIN:  Sabbie Heesh (GK), Lily Owsley, Anna Toman, Hannah French, Sarah Jones, Sarah Robertson, Isabelle Petter, Giselle Ansley, Hollie Pearne-Webb (C), Fiona Crackles, Sophie Hamilton

SUBS USED: Amy Costello, Elena Rayer, Tessa Howard, Katie Robertson, Laura Roper,  Lily Walker


Players in front of fans after the match.

The task for Ireland going into tonight’s last pool match of these Olympic Qualifiers was simple. A win and second place in the pool and a spot in the semi-finals would be secure. In fact, a draw given Ireland’s superior goal difference to the Koreans might also have been enough. Belgium went on from their 0-0 draw with Ireland to beat Korea 10-1 and Ukraine 13-0 and win the Group. Ireland would have needed to beat Korea 15-0 to win the group and that outcome was highly unlikely. to secure a semi-final tilt with Great Britain.

Hannah McLoughlin had an early penalty corner attempt saved by Eunji KIM. McFerren made a good save from a circle entry by the Koreans. The ball struck her on the lower arm, and she needed a little attention from the physio before continuing in action. Korea forced a number of corners both long and penalty in the 10th minute without really testing McFerren.

Ireland finished the quarter strongly 0-0 at the end of the first quarter. The Korean defended well in numbers and having shipped 10 goals against the Belgians in their previous outing were determined there would not be a repeat. Jeogihn Kim was green carded for Korea in the 19th minute Sarah Hawkshaw got green carded in the 22nd minute but neither Ireland or  Korea were unable to put their temporary numerical advantages to productive use. Korea and Ireland were taking it in turns to attack as the quarter drew to a close. Sarah Torrans dived in to intercept a pass across goal by a Korean player, but her interception didn’t go on target. It was 0-0 at half time.

The third quarter began and Roisín Upton was green carded in the 32nd minute. Ireland got their second penalty corner of the match in the 34th minute while shorthanded. Sarah Hawkshaw diving in at the far post converted the penalty corner from Hannah McLoughlin’s initial goal bound shot. Ireland 1-0. Korea didn’t see the ball while Ireland were shorthanded as the girls in green defended well.

Sarah Torrans was green carded in the 41st minute and again Ireland had the better of times during her absence. Deirdre Duke was unlucky not to score diving effort saved by Eunji KIM and while on the ground she attempted another which the keeper batted away with her blocker. Deirdre Duke had gone on a run and shot the ball in the net in the 45th minute .

The Koreans referred it to the video referral. But the goal stood, and the Koreans lost their video referral. Ireland led 2-0 at the end of the third quarter.  Eunbi Cheon, the Korean captain almost got them on the score sheet in the fourth quarter forcing a save from Ayeisha McFerren. From the resultant long corner, Korea did score the ball was sent to Cho Hyejin at the far post and she scored to make it 2-1. This was the first goal Ireland had conceded in the tournament. Michelle Carey was yellow carded and Ireland were shot handed for Ireland were awarded a penalty stroke in the 55th minute which Roisin Upton converted with aplomb to make it 3-1 to Ireland. The Koreans withdrew their goalkeeper with five minutes to go. Ireland failed to convert a penalty corner when Korea had no keeper, and they also had the ball in the net, but the whistle had already blown for a free hit to Korea in the closing minutes. The Koreans forced a penalty corner in the 58th minute but were unable to convert it and Ireland held out to win 3-1. They will face Spain the winners of Pool B in their semi-final.


After the match, we spoke with Captain Katie Mullan and Player of the Match, Sarah Hawkshaw

To Katie Mullan: 

Q.1 Katie, a place in the semi-finals secured an important first step?

“It feels great we are very excited. This is the place we wanted to be in. I’m really proud of the girls tonight. It was another game and another job done. And we put in a brilliant performance. Everyone did their job and we are ready to go for the semi-final”

Q2. Is it good to have a familiar opponent  in the semi-finals?

“Yeah we’ve played Spain a lot and we have lot of experience of playing against them , and on this pitch. I’ve no doubt that it will be a good battle but we’ll be ready for it.”


To Sarah Hawkshaw:  

Q.1 Tell us about the first goal of the game. Was that one from the training ground?

“Yeah most certainly is. Look , for that to come off , all the basics have to be right . Hannah McLoughlin delivered a great ball. So I just had the small matter of touching it in.” 

Q.2  Sarah there were a number of green and yellow cards awarded against Ireland today and we played much of the second half down to 10 players , were you under increased pressure short handed?

“We always like to make it a little bit more exciting don’t we?  It is a bit more pressure, but we practice those scenarios though. We know what it’s like to be down (players) because of cards. Cards come freely in the game. We have to be used to it. We showed a lot of resilience I think to hold them out.” 


IRELAND: Ayeisha Mc Ferren, Róisín Upton, Hannah McLoughlin, Ellen Curran, Beth Harper,  Katie McKee, Sarah Hawkshaw, Katie Mullan (C ), Charlotte Beggs, Naomi Carroll, Niamh Carey

SUBS USED:  Sarah McAuley (5 mins), Michelle Carey (6 mins), Sarah Torrans (6 mins), Elena Neill (5 mins), Chloe Watkins (6 mins), Deirdre Duke (5 mins), Liz Murphy (GK) (not used)


KOREA: Eunji KIM (GK), Jungeun SEO, Hynju AN, Eunbi CHEON (C), Hyejin CHO,  Minjeong KIM, Eunji CHO, Yuri LEE, Seungae PARK, Suyoung SEO, Sujin AN

SUBS USED: Juyeon LEE (6 mins), Yujin LEE (3 mins), Soyeong KWON (9 mins), Jina KANG (7 mins), Eunji KIM (4 mins), Jeongihn KIM (3 mins), Seoyeon LEE  (GK) (not used)



Ireland Men began their Olympic qualification Pool A campaign this evening with a game against Ukraine. The two sides had faced each other twice during the European Championships II finals in Dublin last summer so were familiar with each other.

Ireland dominated possession early on but as the game wore on, Ukraine grew into the game. Roman Bludov was the busier of the two goalkeepers as Ireland forced numerous penalty corners. Ireland opened the scoring when Ben Johnson scored from a penalty corner in the twenty fifth minute. Darragh Walsh almost added a second three minutes later. He was the creator of the second goal when it did arrive teeing up Lee Cole to score following some good approach play.

Ukraine’s attacking efforts were rewarded a minute later when they were awarded a penalty corner and drag flicker Viacheslav Paziuk got them on the scoreboard. Ireland went straight up the other end and forced a penalty corner which was the final play of the first half. Ukraine successfully repelled it to leave the half-time score Ireland 2 Ukraine 1.

Lee Cole was yellow carded near the end of the half and a Ukrainian player Miahilo Yasinskyi was green carded. Ukraine started strongly in the third quarter and forced a series of long corners in the thirty ninth minute and again in the forty third minute they had a promising move snuffed out by Ireland. Jeremy Duncan managed to turnover the ball and launched a counter-attack which Bludov blocked. End of third quarter still 2-1.

The fourth quarter was a different story entirely. Ireland broke from defence and Jeremy Duncan and Ben Johnson had an interchange of passes. Ireland were awarded a penalty corner and Ukraine asked for a video referral. The video umpire supported the original decision and Ukraine lost their referral. Lee Cole got his second of the game from the penalty corner to make it 3-1 in the 50th minute.

Jeremy Duncan caps off an historic day when he gets his 100th cap by scoring to make it 4-1 to Ireland. This was his 20th international goal. The victory was sealed when Darragh Walsh made it 5-1 with five minutes remaining.

Speaking after the game Jeremy Duncan said

“It’s a very proud day for my family and myself to play 100th game for my country. It’s always good to score a goal but the 5-1 was the most important thing. We have things to work on ahead of tomorrow’s game against Belgium the #2 ranked team in the world. It’s going to be a tough task, as will be the final group game against Japan. If we can keep a clean sheet against Belgium (as our women did) we’ll be in a very good place.”

Luke Madeley said after the game

“We’re just happy to get the first win on the board. Happy that the front six managed to break down Ukraine in that fourth quarter and get the goals. It’s going to be a huge challenge tomorrow against Belgium. We’ve got good experience in the team and we know we have to put this match tonight behind us and focus on the next one. We know that they (Belgium) are world class players so we have to be on top of our game, otherwise we as a team, will be doing a lot of ball chasing tomorrow.”

Earlier today in group A Belgium enjoyed a big 7-0 win over Japan to top the table after one round of games, this makes it vital that Ireland follow up today’s result with a win in game 3 against Japan and hopefully get a decent result against World Ranked #2 Belgium tomorrow evening.

Meanwhile in Group B Spain and Korea played out a 2-2 draw which puts Spain on four points following their 4-1 win over Austria on day 1. Austria are on three points in second spot in that table following their 2-0 win over Egypt in Sunday afternoon’s match. Korea are in third with 2 points, after today’s draw with Spain and Egypt are in fourth place with one point. Egypt had played out a 4-4 draw on day 1.


IRELAND: David Harte, Tim Cross, Shane O’Donoghue, Luke Madeley, John McKee, Matthew Nelson, Peter McKibbin, Sean Murray (C),  Jeremy Duncan, Michael Robson, Nicholas Page

SUBS USED:  Ben Johnson , Lee Cole,  Kyle Marshall, Jonathan Lynch, Darragh Walsh, Sam Hyland

UKRAINE:- Roman Bludov,  Mykhailo Yasinskyi , Viacheslav Paziuk, Dmytro Luppa (C), Vitalii Shevchuk, Maksym Onofriiuk, Bohdan Kovalenko,  Andrii Koshlenko, Olksandr Solomianyi, Oleksandr Boiko, Volodymyr Kaplinskyi

SUBS USED: Bohdan Tovstolytkin (GK), Dmytro Hrubyi,  Iurii Moroz, Oleksii Popov, Volodymyr Zhmereniuk, Volodymy Kostechko, Oleksandr Yasinskyi


Ireland who are World ranked #13, began their Olympic qualification Pool A campaign with a defiant ‘backs to the wall’ performance against the European Silver medallists from 2023 and World Ranked #4 Belgium.

Charlotte Engelbert forced a penalty corner after only 20 seconds. It was the first of nine such corners awarded against Ireland in the first half. But the Irish defense marshalled by Lena Neill, Hannah McLoughlin and Roisín Upton and backstopped by player of the match Ayeisha McFerren were able to hold out not only in quarter one but quarter’s two and three as well.

Ireland were up against it for most of the first half.  It was scoreless at half-time. McFerren made several saves including a double save from a penalty corner to keep Ireland in the match.

The third quarter saw Ireland gain a fair bit of possession, but they seemed to be unable to carve out too many clear-cut opportunities turning over the ball at times. It wasn’t until the fortieth minute that the first penalty corner for Ireland was awarded but Belgian substitute goalkeeper Elode Picard wasn’t troubled by Chloe Watkins’ effort nor Beth Harper’s attempt on the rebound.

Ireland had made good use of video referrals early on in the game getting two penalty corner awards overturned in the process. Neither side seemed capable of captilising on having an extra player. Belgium had one player green carded in the thirty fourth minute and Ireland had three players green carded at different stages in the second quarter.

The drama didn’t end there. In the final six seconds Belgium looked for a video referral as they claimed the ball hit an Irish foot inside the semi-circle. The video referral was inconclusive so Belgium had to face a free out and lost their video referral. The final blew soon afterwards and the score stood as it had at the first whistle, Ireland 0 Belgium 0.

This point which must be looked at as a bonus at this stage, is an excellent start and must be followed up strongly by a win on Monday morning against Ukraine. Then there will be the final pool match against Japan but a point against the pre-tournament favourites is a very good start indeed but must be followed up on.

Sean Dancer Ireland Head Coach said after the game:

“Belgium dominated the game, particularly the first half and are an excellent team. But we came into it a bit more in the third quarter and created a few chances. Ireland performed better in the second half.”

The final match of the day was the second Pool A game between Korea and Ukraine. Elsewhere in Pool A Great Britain defeated Canada 2-0 and Spain had a comfortable win over Malaysia by 7-0.

IRELAND:  Ayeisha Mc Ferren, Bethany Harper, Elena Neill, Hannah McLoughlin, Katie McKee, Sarah Hawkshaw, Charlotte Beggs, Katie Mullan (c), Deirdre Duke, Naomi Carroll SUBS USED: Niamh Carey (3 mins), Chloe Watkins (3 mins), Sarah McAuley (4 mins), Michelle Carey (7 mins),  Sarah Torrans (7 mins), Róisín Upton (7 mins)

BELGIUM: Aisling D’Hooghe, Justine Rasir, Alix Gerniers, Judith Vandermeiren, Emma Puvrez, Louise Versavel, Vanessa Blockmans, Michelle Struijk, Héléne Brasseur, Stephanie Vandenborre, Charlotte Engelbert, SUBS USED: Elodie Picard (GK) [31 mins], Ambre Ballenghen (3 mins), Barbara Nelen, Camille Belis (4 mins), Lien Hillewaart (5 mins). Abi Raye (5 mins)

First game starts Jan 13 as IRL Women take on world ranked #4 Belgium

Ireland’s International Hockey Men and Women are now in Valencia ahead of the start of their Olympic Qualifications. With games starting Jan 13, this is the last chance for both sides to qualify for the Paris Olympics this summer.



Katie Mullan, Ireland Women’s Captain


In the women’s competition, Ireland (World Ranked #13) are drawn in Pool A alongside Belgium (#4) whom they play on January 13th (start time is 5.30PM IRL). Also in the pool are Ukraine (#28) and Korea (#12).

Belgium are the highest ranked team in the pool, currently placed 4th in the world rankings. Their performances over the past year in the FIH Hockey Women’s World Cup and the FIH Hockey Pro League have been outstanding, which makes them the favourites to progress out of the pool.

Korea and Ireland are neck-and-neck in the world rankings in12th and 13th positions respectively, and the head-to-head matchup between the two sides might end up being crucial in deciding who qualifies for the semi-finals.

Ukraine’s star has been on the rise in international hockey over the past couple of years and it’ll come as no surprise to see them get the better of their higher ranked opponents and finish in the top-2 positions in Pool A.

A second placed group finish is essential to proceed further and then a further win in the knockout stages either in the semi-final (both finalists qualify automatically for Paris) or a win in the 3rd place play off will be required to get to the Olympic Games themselves in the summer.

The Belgians present a real challenge for the Irish as they are one of the strongest teams in the World who have not already qualified for the Summer Olympic games. Their key players include captain Barbara Mallen, Astrid Bonami, Stephanie Van Den Boore, Charlotte Engelbert and goalkeeper Aisling De Hooghe who has played at two World Cups and FIH Pro League.


The matches are available to view on TNT Sports and also online on and for fans based in Northern Ireland BBCNI Sport i-Player will have coverage online.



Sean Murray, Ireland Men’s Captain


In the men’s competition, Ireland (World Ranked #13) are drawn in Pool A alongside Ukraine (#28), Belgium (#2) and Japan (#15). They open their campaign against Ukraine on Sunday January 14th at 7:45pm IRL.

Ukraine are familiar opposition to Ireland as they played each other twice at last summer’s B Europeans, facing each other once in the pool stage and also in the finals at the Sport Ireland Campus last July. On both occasions Ireland won.

As we know from that tournament, Ukraine tend to start tournaments slowly and improve as the tournament wears on. So, to have Ukraine in the first match is probably ideal.

A second placed group finish is essential to proceed further and then a further win in the knockout stages either in the semi-final (both finalists qualify automatically for Paris) or a win in the 3rd place play off will be required to get to the Olympic Games themselves in the summer.

Ukraine’s standout players from the B European’s last summer included drag flicker Viacheslav Paziuk, Andrii Koshelenko, Maksym Onofiiuk, Oleksii Popov, and Oleksandr Boiko (who scored in the final match against Ireland.)


The matches are available to view on TNT Sports and also online on and for fans based in Northern Ireland BBCNI Sport i -Player will have coverage online.


U16 (Rise) Girls

Anna Butler St Andrew’s College Monkstown
Nieve Caldwell Coleraine Grammar Ulster Elks
Kate Collins Bandon Grammar Bandon
Emma Considine Seamount, Kinvara Kinvara
Daisy Costello Muckross Park Muckross
Caoimhe Dalton Muckross Park Muckross
Juliette Duffy St Gerard’s Three Rock Rovers
Holly Farrell Mount Anville Pembroke Wanderers
Lucy Fox Wesley College YMCA
Leah Galbraith Portadown College Portadown
Evie Girvan Dungannon Royal Portadown
Caitlin Gribbin Rainey Endowed Rainey
Ruby Johnston Banbridge Academy Dromore
Lily May Kelleher Scoil Mhuire Cork Harlequins
Kyah Kelly Newtown Waterford
Lucy McCaffrey Wallace High School South Antrim
Emma McEntee Friends School Lisburn Lurgan
Anna McRoberts Larne Grammar Larne
Aisling Meehan Holy Child Killiney Monkstown
Laiose Nelson Kent College, Pembury Sevenoaks
Hollai Quinn The High School Corinthians
Alyssa Somerville Banbridge Academy Banbridge
Sophie Tate Banbridge Academy Portadown
Evie Thompson Portadown College Portadown
Lara Wilson Wallace High School Lisnagarvey
Stella Wylie Methodist College Belfast Belfast Harlequins

The following players will be invited to regional training sessions.

Anna Rose Benson Laurel Hill Colaiste FCJ Limerick
Lily Burke St Augustine’s College Dungarvan
Leah Callaghan Belfast Royal Academy Mossley
Bonnie Conor Boyd Dalriada Coleraine
Orla Costello Salerno, Galway Galway
Roise Flynn Colaiste Iognaid, Galway Greenfields
Sally Hannon Newbridge College Naas
Grace Kelly Seamount, Kinvara Kinvara
Grace McKenna Muckross Park Muckross
Mia O’Donnell Colaiste Iognaid, Galway Greenfields
Zoe Poole Kilkenny College Gorey
Sarah Richardson Kilkenny College Kilkenny
Rachel Sweetnam Midleton College Midleton
Ella Tosh Loreto Beaufort Loreto
Poppy Williams Kilkenny College Kilkenny
Yana Yoakley Newpark Comprehensive Monkstown
Siofra Garavaglia Drion Newbridge Villiers

U18 (Accelerate) Girls

Emily Adamson Portadown College Portadown
Isla Allen Larne Grammar Mossley
Charlie Bowman Wallace High School Lisnagarvey
Sarah Byrne Loreto Foxrock Old Alex
Eabha Curran Regina Mundi Ashton
Aliya Davis Holy Child Killiney Monkstown
Eva Doyle St Gerards’ School Three Rock Rovers
Evie Duncan Rainey Endowed Rainey
Matilde Errico Mt Anville Railway Union
Isobel Field Loreto Beaufort Pembroke Wanderers
Amy Handcock Kilkenny College Naas
Lola Henderson Rainey Endowed Ulster Elks
Katie Herron Banbridge High Portadown
Millie Jerman Holy Child Killiney Monkstown
Aoife Kavanagh Ursuline, Thurles Cashel/New Inn
Mollie Lennon Loreto Beaufort Loreto
Rebekah Lennon Portadown College Portadown
Kia McCartney Coleraine Grammar Coleraine
Lucy McGoldrick St Conleth’s College Avoca
Maebh McLoughlin Institute of Education Pembroke Wanderers
Grainne Molloy Temple Carrig Wicklow
Sophie Naughton Kilkenny College Kilkenny
Amy Noonan Scoil Mhuire Cork Ashton
Erin Pim Methodist College Pegasus
Darcy Shields Clifton College Clifton
Scarlett Taylor Royal School Armagh Armagh
Orla Young Hughes Rathdown Monkstown

The following players will be invited to regional training sessions.

Holly Beckinsale Belfast High School Mossley
Annie Cunningham Royal School Armagh Banbridge
Honor Rowell Muckross Park Muckross
Julie Potter Cogan Holy Child Killiney Monkstown
Kate Byrnes Mount Anville Pembroke Wanderers
Sophie Maxwell Loreto Beaufort Loreto
Sophie Kennedy Mount Anville Railway Union
Lucy Hannon Newbridge College Newbridge
Molly Finlay Kilkenny College
Kate Stuart Trainor Our Lady’s Bower Greenfields
Roisin Heaney Yeats College Galway Galway
Sophie Swann Sligo Grammar Yeats County
Aoife Purtill Our Lady’s Bower Athlone
Kate Toomey Regina Mundi Ashton
Lucy Nixon Scoil Mhuire Cork Cork Harlequins
Sofie Moloney Scoil Mhuire Cork Cork Harlequins
Anna Campbell Crescent College Catholic Institute
Maia McCourt Bandon Grammar Bandon

U16 (Rise) Boys

Riagan Dunne Colaiste Eanna Glennane
Dylan Evans Temple Carrig Bray
Jake Fulton Wesley College Pembroke Wanderers
Oliver Graham Nord Anglia YMCA
Seb Holley Bangor High School Bangor
Sam Holmes RBAI Instonians
Ed Irwin Cookstown High School Cookstown
Hayden Jones Newtown Waterford
Isaac Kelso Cookstown High School Cookstown
Alfie Le Quesne Temple Carrig YMCA
Robbie McAreavey RBAI Instonians
Louis McDaid Ashton Cork C of I
Simon Montgomery Wesley College Three Rock Rovers
Noa Mulvey Skerries CC Portrane
Cian Nelson Sutton Valence Sevenoaks
Robert O’Brien The High School Railway Union
Alfie O’Shea Newtown Waterford
Benjamin Patterson Cookstown High School Cookstown
David Rankin Newpark Comprehensive Avoca
Louis Rothwell Wesley Three Rock Rovers
Sam Rothwell Wesley Three Rock Rovers
Toby Slye O’Connell St Andrew’s College Railway Union
Finn Thompson Wallace High School Lisnagarvey
Harry Thompson Sullivan Upper Annadale
Oliver Tumilty Wallace High School Lisnagarvey
Liam Walsh Sutton Park Portrane
Johnny Woods Wesley College YMCA
Daniel McKee Banbridge Academy Banbridge

The following players will be invited to regional training sessions.

James Barbour Cookstown High School Cookstown
Matt Barrett Cookstown High School Cookstown
William Black Ashton Cork Harlequins
Hugo Casey Flodman Ashton Cork Harlequins
Diarmuid Coffey Colaiste An Spioraid Naoimh Cork Harlequins
Charlie Costelloe Cookstown High School Cookstown
Conor Fox Wesley College YMCA
Kayden Kennedy Mount Sion CBS Waterford
Ollie Killeen Midleton College Midleton
Toby Lyons RBAI Instonians
Harry McCourt Bandon Grammar Bandon
Luke McKiernan Wesley College YMCA
Luke Murphy Sandford Park Railway Union
Ethan Redford Cookstown High School Cookstown
Charlie Taylor Banbridge Academy
Cuan Twomey Midleton CBS Midleton

U18 (Accelerate) Boys

Tom Archbold Friends Lisnagarvey
Harvey Begg Wallace High School Lisnagarvey
Max Caulwell Wesley College Corinthians
James Coffey Wesley College Three Rock Rovers
John Cunningham RBAI Lisnagarvey
Sean Curtin Midleton College Cork Harlequins
Oisin Gavin Newtown Waterford
Michael Girvin Sullivan Upper Annadale
Denver Golbey Banbridge Academy Banbridge
Michael Hollway RBAI Instonians
Jamie Horgan Bandon Grammar Cork C of I
Scott Kenny The Kings Hospital School Corinthians
Ben Law Campbell College Bangor
Zac Moloney Villiers Catholic Institute
Matthew McAreavey RBAI Instonians
Matthew McLearnon Wallace High School Lisnagarvey
Lukas Moles Banbridge Academy Banbridge
Peter Montgomery Wesley College Three Rock Rovers
Max Nicholson Banbridge Academy Banbridge
Oskar Nielson Glendalough School Avoca
Robert Olden Midleton College Cork C of I
George Palmer RBAI Instonians
Oscar Pasley The High School Three Rock Rovers
Zach Silverman St Andrew’s College Three Rock Rovers
Harry St Leger St Columba’s College Corinthians
Milo Thompson Wallace High School Lisnagarvey
Ryan Williams Newtown Waterford

The following players will be invited to regional training sessions.

JJ Holley Bangor Grammar Bangor
Gearoid Cashman CBC Cork Cork C of I
Sean Landy Bandon Grammar Cork Harlequins
Alan Buttimer Bandon Grammar Bandon
Matthew Carry Ashton Midleton
William McInerney Newtown Waterford

Dublin, Oct 3: Hockey Ireland is pleased to announce the initial training panels for its National Performance Pathway for the upcoming season for the following teams, U16 Men (Rise) U18 Men (Accelerate

The panel selections follow Hockey Ireland’s reclassifying of its pathway teams with the underlying ethos being to place players in the best environments to suit their personal development. These national panels will be supported by regional training panels and these groups will train regularly and include players both from the national panel and regionally identified players.


There will be three national panels:

  • U16 (Rise)
  • U18 (Accelerate)
  • U21 (Breakthrough)


Players in each group may be out of the age range but Hockey Ireland has identified them as having the potential to progress to the next level and feel that their development would be best suited in this panel.

There are multiple strands to selection, and these are detailed below.

  1. Pathway recommendation: Players may be selected due to their performances in the previous Hockey Ireland cycle. This means that due to prior performance with Hockey Ireland that they have been identified as having significant potential and will be kept in the pathway for continued development, without the necessity to be identified during the Interpro tournament
  2. Interpro Performance: National staff will liaise with provincial coaches concerning the selection of a national and regional training groups. National staff will observe interprovincial matches.
  1. Observation in school and club hockey: We are establishing a network of scouts that will keep an eye on players who are demonstrating the required attributes outside of our programme. Should a player be recommended through this manner they will be observed and may be invited into a training panel.


After an initial assessment the following panels have been selected

  • U16 (Rise) Men
  • U18 (Accelerate) Men


U16 (Rise) Men


The following have been selected for a Training/assessment camp on October 15. The Session will be at Abbotstown from 1200-1645


William Black Munster
Hugo Casey-Flodman Munster
Diarmuid Coffey Munster
Riagan Dunne Leinster
Dylan Evans Leinster
Jake Fulton Leinster
Oliver Graham Leinster
Seb Holley Ulster
Sam Holmes Ulster
Edward Irwin Ulster
Hayden Jones Munster
Isaac Kelso Ulster
Alfie Le Quesne Leinster
Toby Lyons Ulster
Robbie McAreavey Ulster
Harry McCourt Munster
Noa Mulvey Leinster
Robert O’Brien Leinster
Alfie O Shea Munster
Benjamin Patterson Ulster
David Rankin Leinster
Ethan Redford Ulster
Toby Slye O’Connell Leinster
Charlie Taylor Ulster
Finn Thompson Ulster
Oliver Tumilty Ulster
Johnny Woods Leinster


This panel will be reviewed after the Interpro competition, and a new panel will be issued along with regional training groups. These groups will provide an opportunity for those not in the national panel to break through.

The Panels will be reviewed on a regular basis.

If you have any queries on any of the above information, please contact


U18 (Accelerate) Men


The following have been selected for a Training/assessment camp on October 15. The Session will be at Abbotstown from 1330-1815


Tom Archbold Ulster
Harvey Begg Ulster
Alan Buttimer Munster
Matthew Carry Munster
Gearoid Cashman Munster
Max Caulwell Leinster
James Coffey Leinster
John Cunningham Ulster
Sean Curtin Munster
Oisin Gavin Munster
Michael Girvin Ulster
Denver Golbey Ulster
Michael Hollway Ulster
Jaime Horgan Munster
Scott Kenny Leinster
Sean Landy Munster
Matthew McAreavey Ulster
Matthew McLearnon Ulster
Louis McDaid Munster
Lukas Moles Ulster
Peter Montgomery Leinster
Max Nicholson Ulster
Oskar Nielsen Leinster
Rob Olden Munster
George Palmer Ulster
Oscar Pasley Leinster
Zach Silverman Leinster
Milo Thompson Ulster
Liam Walsh Leinster

This panel will be reviewed after the Interpro competition, and a new panel will be issued along with regional training groups. These groups will provide an opportunity for those not in the national panel to break through.


If you have any queries on any of the above information, please contact