Paul Revington was dealt a huge blow on the eve of Ireland’s World Cup Qualifying campaign as both Joe Brennan (below, right) and David Hobbs (left) were ruled out of the trip to Argentina.
The Irish team flew out to South America this morning without the duo as they both lost their race against time to be fit for the competition and have been replaced by David Ames and Peter Caruth.
Speaking about the late changes, Revington said: “The team will miss David’s power in midfield and the experience he brings to the Team, and will also miss the presence and quality that Joe Brennan has added to our Team throughout 2009.
“The squad has, however, developed a good degree of depth in strength over the past few months and weare very fortunate to announce David Ames as the replacement for David Hobbs and Peter Caruth as the replacement for Joe Brennan.
“David Ames returned to the squad over the Summer (Celtic Cup) after a tough start to 2009 filled with injury and he has progressively built up the form that makes him such an exciting prospect for Irish Hockey.
“Ames brings a terrific skill set, a strong physical engine, a penalty corner injection and a youthful energy that will benefit the Ireland Team immensely in Argentina. Peter Caruth has improved consistently throughout 2009 and will be a player going to Argentina with form and confidence on his side.”
The squad finished their build-up last week with two fixtures against England, something which Revington believes was of huge benefit, especially in light of cancellations earlier in the warm-up schedule.
“The games against England mid week were of great benefit to the players attending as well as for our efforts to improve the depth of the Irish Squad in general.
“England offered an extremely high tempo opportunity to all players and this will have massive benefit for our Team traveling to Argentina. It was also great to have the full team together in Banbridge on Saturday evening and I know the guys are all excited to be together again and continue the friendship and locker room spirit that has been the foundation for their performances in 2009.”
Ireland tip off their campaign against the world number 19’s when they play USA on day Saturday.