* Continuing Ireland’s recent trend of supplying top umpires and officials to major competitions, a wealth of Irish whistle-blowers are involved in the various European competitions in action this weekend.
Carol Metchette is in Den Bosch for the Women’s EuroHockey Club Champions Cup – and will also be involved at the Europeans in August – while Julie Beamish travels with Hermes to Wettingen. Zenia Howe will be in Vienna for the Club Champions Challenge. On the men’s side, Nigel McCullough will be a judge for the Club Challenge I event in Prague.
On the international scene later this summer, Kieran Bolger and Gail Taylor have been appointed to umpire the Celtic Cup in Edinburgh in June. Robert Johnston will be in Vienna for the Boy’s Youth Nations Trophy; Crawford Tipping is the TD at the Youth Nations Challenge in Prague; Catriona Hassey umpires as the Girl’s Youth Nations Championships in Nivelles.
Martin Canniffe and Colin Hutchinson will be involved in the senior Europeans in Amsterdam with David Stewart going to Wrexham for the Nations Trophy. Douglas Grey (TD), Geoff Conn (umpire) and Gavin Cullen (umpire’s manager) make their way to Zagreb for the Nations Challenge I.
Chris McConkey will be in Bratislava for the Challenge II while Paula Jenkins goes to Rome as a Technical Official for the women’s Nation’s trophy.
* Ireland’s U-16 boys and girls teams will travel to Barcelona in July 2010 for their respective European Championships.
The boys have been drawn in a group to face Holland, Russia and Austria wh
ile the girls will play Russia, Spain and Ukraine between July 12 and 20 of next year.
* Should you be chained to a computer all weekend, there is still plenty of hockey action available to you this weekend with the final’s weekend of the EuroHockey League going on all weekend. The EHL website will have live streaming of every game. Uhlenhorst get the action underway against Three Rock’s conquerors Leuven on Saturday at 11am with the all-Dutch semi-final between Bloemendaal and hosts Rotterdam tipping off at 1.30pm Irish time.
* To see if your question for world player-of-the-year Pol Amat (left) made the cut, you can read about his thoughts now on the EHF website.