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Hockey chiefs push U18 Euros back a year

 

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The European Under-18 Championship for boys and girls has become the latest hockey event to be postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic. (stock photo)

The European Under-18 Championship for boys and girls has become the latest hockey event to be postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic. (stock photo)

©INPHO/Cathal Noonan

The European Under-18 Championship for boys and girls has become the latest hockey event to be postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic. (stock photo)

The European Under-18 Championship for boys and girls has become the latest hockey event to be postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic.

A total of 16 Ulster players - 10 girls and six boys - were in the respective training squads for the tournament which was due to have taken place in Russia in July.

However, the competition will now be staged next summer with the precise dates and venue yet to be confirmed.

The European Hockey Federation have decided that all of this year's players will still be eligible for what will now be an Under-19 event.

Niamh McIvor, a Belfast Telegraph Ulster Senior Cup winner with BRA last month, while happy that the Euros have not been cancelled altogether, says that there are more important things in life than sport although she is missing her hockey at the moment.

Last week she was due to represent her school at the All-Ireland Championship and, on Sunday, play for Pegasus against UCD in the Irish Senior Cup final but both events were cancelled.

The 17-year-old striker said: "Training, strength and conditioning, hockey drills, playing in the cold and wet, winning, losing, always learning, having a laugh with the other players - all of that has suddenly stopped and it leaves a huge void. I really miss it and cannot wait until we can get going again," she said.

"Until that happens, of course, my thoughts are with all those on the front line in the health service, including my two aunts and uncle, who are putting their lives at risk every day to provide us with the critical care that is needed."

Belfast Telegraph