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Tumilty eyes an Irish revival as head coach deal extended



Mark Tumilty

Mark Tumilty

©INPHO/Bryan Keane

Mark Tumilty

Mark Tumilty is to continue as Ireland men's head coach until the end of the year.

The former Banbridge boss took over the post on an interim basis six weeks before the ill-fated trip to Canada for their controversial unsuccessful Olympic qualifying bid.

Ireland were beaten in a shoot-out after the video umpire awarded a hotly-disputed penalty stroke in the last second which Canada converted to tie the scores on aggregate over the two legs.

However, following Ireland's agonising failure to book their tickets to Tokyo, Hockey Ireland has handed Tumilty a vote of confidence after he replaced Dutchman Alexander Cox, who quit after a disappointing European campaign last August.

Tumilty commented on the news: "I am delighted to be given the opportunity to continue in the role for 2020.

"I am really look forward to working with a very talented group of players and support staff.

"We need to grow the depth of our squad and to ensure all players fulfil their potential.

"I want to play an attacking and exciting brand of hockey, with our goal to get the Irish men moving up the world rankings again."

Hockey Ireland will advertise the full-time head coach position after the conclusion of this Olympic cycle and Tumilty has consistently said he wants the job on a permanent basis.

Meanwhile, it's back to domestic action for the bulk of the Irish internationals who were involved in the Olympic qualifying loss to Canada with the resumption of the EY Irish Hockey League tomorrow.

The big game is the top-of-the-table clash between leaders Lisnagarvey and Monkstown at Comber Road.

Garvey captain James Corry said: "We have had a good break since the Kirk Cup final on Boxing Day and the boys are really looking forward to getting the league restarted.

"Monkstown will be a difficult game like they all are and we will look to play to our strengths and hopefully do enough to get the win."

Elsewhere, Banbridge, who ended Garvey's unbeaten run in the Kirk final, are away to Dublin YMCA and basement side Annadale travel to face Pembroke.

Fixtures: EY IHL: Three Rock Rovers v Corinthian, YMCA v Banbridge (2.15pm); Glenanne v UCD, Lisnagarvey v Monkstown (3pm); Pembroke v Annadale (4pm).

Belfast Telegraph