The popular sports media brand Off The Ball has teamed up with Irish ParaHockey ID as its new sponsor.
This partnership will see the Irish ParaHockey ID team wearing Off The Ball sponsored shirts at the next 2 European ParaHockey ID events. The first of these will take place later this month in Barcelona from June 22 to 24.
The partnership will run through until the next Euro ParaHockey Championships that will be held in Antwerp, August 2019.
Commenting on the partnership, Managing Director of Off The Ball, Ger Gilroy, said: “These athletes are an inspiration and we are delighted to announce our association with them, as they prepare for their upcoming European events and European Championships, next year.
“It’s only right that the Irish ParaHockey ID team receive the exposure they deserve, for their ongoing dedication and passion for the game. We are very happy to play our role in supporting their campaign and we wish them every success, over the coming months.”
Jerome Pels, CEO of Irish Hockey said “It is great to have Off The Ball supporting our ParaHockey ID team. The team has gone from strength to strength since its establishment just over 18 months ago and we are very proud of our athletes’ achievements at the European Championships last summer.
“They have another big summer coming up in Barcelona and we have ambitions to grow the game further, and get more people involved.”
Irish Men’s captain, David Harte added “It’s fantastic to see Irish Hockey being so proactive and embracing inclusivity.
“The introduction of Irish ParaHockey ID is a fantastic opportunity for these enthusiastic hockey players to get involved and share the game we all love. I wish them all the best of luck in their upcoming European ParaHockey event in Barcelona this June!”
Siobhán Madeley, spokesperson for the Irish ParaHockey ID team thanked Off The Ball: “We are delighted to have such a perfect partner in Off The Ball. The enthusiasm of the Off The Ball team is incredible.
“ParaHockey ID is, as Jerome has mentioned, a new sport in Ireland. We have three hockey clubs represented in the team travelling to Barcelona in June and we are working hard with our athletes to prepare them for the games against Spain, England, The Netherlands and Germany.
“We have 20 players, a mixed team of men and women, travelling, some have only just started playing hockey in the past year and the level of skill that they have developed has blown us away to be honest.”
Talking more generally about ParaHockey ID, Siobhán said “ParaHockey ID is for people who want to play hockey and have an intellectual disability.
“Mostly the players are starting with us at about 14 and there is no upper age limit. We are working hard to encourage more people with intellectual disabilities to try hockey. Having a media partner is vital as showcasing what our players can do rather than what they can’t.
“We are very grateful to Off The Ball for giving our players a platform and a voice which we hope will encourage more people to join the hockey family.”