Kyle Good has been rewarded for an excellent club season in Belgium with a return to the Irish panel for the Olympic qualifier – the World League 3 – in Antwerp which gets underway for Ireland on June 23.
Playing with Dragons, Good scored in the club’s Audi Hockey League final success against Royal Leopold as part of a productive campaign in which he also scored twice in a 5-2 win against European champions Harvestehuder THC.He is the one change from the panel that won World League 2 in San Diego in February, coming in for the injured Bruce McCandless who has not recovered from a broken bone sustained in the Irish Senior Cup final.
Otherwise, Craig Fulton has named a hugely experienced panel with plenty of tournament experience.
Ireland begin their campaign against Great Britain – who recently named former Irish international David Ames in their panel – in game one of a group phase that also includes Malaysia, China and the Belgian hosts. The target will be to finish in the top five from the ten-team tournament.
Speaking ahead of the tournament, Fulton said the recent battles with world number five side Belgium were “positive” and “showed that the team and players are on track.
“But we will need to add more detail to our performances in critical phases to get results, which we believe we can do.”
Despite the defeats, Eugene Magee concurred, telling the Banbridge Leader: “We didn’t play as well as we can at the weekend but we’re learning with every game,” he said. “If we can get a few things right going into World League Three, we will be fine.”
Speaking about the squad selection, meanwhile, Fulton added: “Final selection is never an easy situation for any coach or player and this was definitely the case for this group of players.
“We are all proud of the individual work done by the players to get as conditioned as they are right now and we look forward to World League 3 in Antwerp.”
Men’s World League 3 (Antwerp, June 20th to July 5th): Jonny Bell (Lisnagarvey), Drew Carlisle (Banbridge), Peter Caruth (Monkstown), Chris Cargo (Racing Club de Bruxelles), Mitch Darling (Three Rock Rovers), Stephen Dowds (Banbridge), David Fitzgerald (Monkstown), Paul Gleghorne (Lisnagarvey), Kyle Good (Dragons), Ronan Gormley (Krefeld), Conor Harte (Racing Club de Bruxelles), David Harte (Kampong), John Jackson (Reading), Eugene Magee (Banbridge), Shane O’Donoghue (Dragons), Kirk Shimmins (UCD), Alan Sothern (Racing Club de Bruxelles), Micheal Watt (Surbiton)
Reserves: Lee Cole (Monkstown), Neal Glassey (Lisnagarvey), Mark Ingram (Pembroke), Stu Loughrey (Cannock), Jonny Bruton (Three Rock Rovers), Michael Robson (Annadale)
Match Schedule (All times listed are Belgian local time)
June 23: Ireland vs Great Britain, 12pm
June 25: Ireland vs Malaysia, 2pm
June 26: Ireland vs China, 2pm
June 28: Ireland vs Belgium, 6pm