Having previously announced a 15 man squad for the FIH Indoor Hockey World Cup next year, today SA Hockey is pleased to announce the final 12 players for the SA Indoor Hockey BlitzStoks, powered by Tops at SPAR, which will head to Germany in February to take on the World.
Matthew Fairweather, who has captained the team since the last Indoor Hockey World Cup, will once again be the man asked to lead the team. This will be Fairweather’s second World Cup after featuring at Leipzig in 2015.
In 2015 the BlitzStoks finished in 11th place at the World Cup, after defeating Canada in the playoffs, but featured a largely inexperienced squad with most players only having a handful of caps from the African Indoor Hockey Cup of Nations. For 2018 the BlitzStoks will have significantly more experience at their disposal with Chris McCathie, Richard Curtis, Justin Domleo, Jarryd Jones and Mo Mea all joining Fairweather at a second World Cup. The experience of having played at the previous World Cup will be a massive benefit for the squad and something that coach Pierre le Roux has put immense confidence in.
Experience will also be provided in the form of Wade Paton, a man who counts the Olympic Games on his hockey resume and further complimented by Jethro Eustice, who featured for South Africa at the Commonwealth Games and the FIH Hockey World Cup. The consistent Robin Jones, a man who has won the African Cup of Nations in both Indoor and Outdoor Hockey alongside another teammate Reza Rosenberg, also add to a team with an incredible bond with one another.
Ryan Julius and Rusten Abrahams were also part of the South African Men’s side that just won the African Hockey Indoor Cup of Nations in Namibia and the two youngest members of the squad offer an exciting offensive prospect for the BlitzStoks to utilise in Germany.
The South African Indoor Hockey BlitzStoks are currently 12th in the World Indoor Hockey rankings, but with a good showing at the World Cup could set a realistic goal to move into the Top 10 of the Indoor rankings
The group of players assembled has the right makeup to achieve South Africa’s best ever finish at an Indoor Hockey World Cup. They have all been part of the SA Indoor Hockey structure over the past three years and have been exposed to many opportunities with each other at the various PSi Nationals. They will also have a further opportunity together when they play in the PSi Showdowns on 9, 10, 12 and 13 December in Cape Town.
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