Olympic biographies – John Jackson

Debut: vs England, July 2006 (5-0 loss)
Age: 30
Caps: 208
International goals: 8
Current club: Reading (England)
Previous clubs: Mossley, Loughborough University (England), Braxgata (Belgium)
School: RBAI
Position: defender, midfield

John Jackson. Pic: Adrian Boehm

John Jackson. Pic: Adrian Boehm

A tenacious defender usually found at left or right back, John Jackson was a key component of the Olympic qualifying campaign when they agonisingly fell just short of at the London Games.

He is a man to lead by example, captaining the side 43 times. This was typified in his brilliant equaliser against the Czech Republic in the 2013 European Cup, ultimately keeping Ireland’s place in the top tier of the continental competition. It meant Ireland stayed up and were in position to win bronze in 2015 in London.

Jackson grew up with the Mossley club in north Belfast and with Ballyclare High and then RBAI at schools level before moving to Loughborough University in England where he played from 2004 to 2010.

There, he won player of the year twice. He returned to Mossley before spending a year with Braxgata in Belgium before moving back to England with Reading, combining his hockey with a job as the Head of Hockey at Marlborough College.

His father Peter is a long-time Irish manager, being part of the backroom staff over 100 times while his mother acted as the team doctor at the World League semi-finals in Antwerp last summer, too.

Twitter: @JohnHJackson3

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