Belfast Telegraph

UK Website Of The Year

Home Sport Hockey

Gene Muller gives outsiders chance to grab Ireland berth

Published 15/12/2010

National coach Gene Muller insisted the door is open for players to make the Ireland women's hockey squad for next year's European Nations Cup in Germany.

The tournament will double as an Olympic qualifier as the top three finishers will book an automatic place at London 2012.

Muller is currently working with a panel of 20 players, who are training full-time and are centralised in Dublin, but the South African says places are still up for grabs which is a boost to players who might have felt disadvantaged by their inability to commit to the centralisation programme.

“The squad is very flexible and players could come in and out at various stages.” said Muller.

“I will be taking a look at all our options and I will be watching the interprovincial tournament with interest.

“I may bring in players on a probationary basis from time to time as well so the door is open.”

The number of build up matches ahead of the Europeans could be fewer than usual.

“We have the Champions Challenge which will give us six good games in Dublin before we go to Germany,” said Muller.

“Normally teams are looking for friendly games in the build up to major tournaments, but there might be fewer of these now.”

Meanwhile this weekend's domestic programme looks to be in doubt due to the continuing cold snap.

If the games do fall clubs will have gone five weeks without fixtures as December 25th and January 1st are 'free dates.'

The Ulster Shield final between Ballymoney and the Ulster Elks is scheduled for Tuesday December 28th.

FIXTURES: Saturday: Premier League: Ards v Harlequins, Ballymoney v Knock, Lurgan v Pegasus, Queen's v Armagh, Randalstown v Ulster Elks.

Senior One: Cookstown v Lisnagarvey, Dromore v Omagh, North Down v Greenisland, Priorians v Ballymena, Victorians v Portadown.

Belfast Telegraph

How to Complain

If you have a complaint about the editorial content of the Belfast Telegraph or Sunday Life then contact the Editor here. If you are not satisfied with the response provided then you can contact the Independent Press Standards Organisation here

Your Comments

COMMENT RULES: Comments that are judged to be defamatory, abusive or in bad taste are not acceptable and contributors who consistently fall below certain criteria will be permanently blacklisted. The moderator will not enter into debate with individual contributors and the moderator’s decision is final. It is Belfast Telegraph policy to close comments on court cases, tribunals and active legal investigations. We may also close comments on articles which are being targeted for abuse. Problems with commenting?

Read More

From Belfast Telegraph