The national men’s and women’s teams may not have been competing on the field, but tremendous honour and respect still came out of the Olympic Games for South African hockey thanks to the outstanding efforts of their officials.

That South African umpires are at the very top of the game was confirmed by John Wright and Michelle Joubert being appointed to handle the respective men’s and women’s finals.

For Wright, it capped a stellar career as it was the fifth Olympic Games he has officiated in and the second time he has been awarded the final, on what is likely to be his last umpiring stint at the global sporting showpiece.

“I was very pleased with the way things went, the Olympic Games has been the pinnacle of my career and it was a lovely way to end off. I’m very grateful that I have been given all the opportunity I could ever have wanted,” Wright said.

“It was a wonderful experience and I’m just so grateful for all the kind words and support from back home,” Joubert said. “It was a dream come true, just so exciting and I had a perfect time in Rio with so many happy memories.”

The experienced Wright had some kind words to say about his colleague as well.

“I believe Michelle is by far the best women’s umpire in the world and she had an exceptional tournament, even though she was battling injury. It did not hamper her in the final though, where she had a 26-year-old co-umpire, and she made a 100% correct call on the penalty stroke. Michelle has really come on leaps and bounds,” Wright said.

Joubert, the International Hockey Federation’s (FIH)’s 2015 Women’s Umpire of the Year, and Wright weren’t the only South Africans to feature in an Olympic hockey final as Deon Nel was the men’s video umpire.

Behind the scenes, Sheila Brown was the women’s tournament director and Marelize de Klerk the umpires’ manager.

A former umpire herself who was ranked number one in the world and was the first woman to officiate in 200 internationals, De Klerk blew in three Olympic Games from 2000-2008 before retiring in 2011 and becoming an umpires coach and recently a manager.

Brown is a stalwart of South African hockey and a veteran technical official and leading administrator. Her appointment was one of the highest honours in hockey and an enormous responsibility as the final authority at the event.

Brown, a colonel in crime intelligence, made her international debut as a judge in 1996 and was tournament director of the All-Africa Games in 2003. Since then she has been in charge of two World Cups. Brown was the assistant tournament director at both the Beijing and London Olympic Games.

Former national captain Marsha Cox nee Marescia may no longer be active as a player, but she was in Rio de Janeiro bringing over 300 international caps worth of experience to her new roles as a member of the appeal jury and the FIH’s athletes’ commission.




Sadly, the passing of another fantastic hockey person has gone virtually unnoticed by the hockey fraternity.

Dr Peter Turner passed away in May of this year leaving behind a legacy of a selfless and massive contribution to the game of hockey, especially in Southern Africa.

After a very successful all-round school career at the famous Jeppe High School for Boys in Johannesburg, Peter attended the University of the Witwatersrand where he graduated as a dentist.

After a stint in London, where he married Penny he returned to South Africa in 1967 where he continued to practice as a dentist whilst Penny and he raised their 4 children.  He later branched out and enjoyed a very successful career developing hospitals.

But it was his role as a hockey umpire, coach, umpires’ manager and administrator where he made a profound contribution to South Africa’s growth as a hockey nation.

He was able to impart his knowledge and experience as an international umpire to aspirant umpires and together with many of his friends including Bobby Gagel, Fred Zackey and Dave Metter – laid the foundations for South African hockey umpires rising to the top of world hockey.

Many of the world’s mightiest hockey nations marvel at the fact that we have produced umpires of the calibre of John Wright, Gary Simmonds, Marelize de Klerk and Michelle Joubert to name but a few of those who have graced the local and international scene.

When it comes to umpiring and officiating, South African hockey “punches well above its weight” and that’s due to the foundations laid by the likes of Peter Turner.

As an umpires coach and manager Peter’s excellent inter-personal skills and humour benefitted so many of our young umpires whilst setting the very highest standards.  I can recall the All Africa Games in Zimbabwe in 1995 where these incredible skills benefitted a crop of Africa’s finest umpiring prospects.

Peter served on the SA Hockey Executive for a number of years where he held the “Umpiring” portfolio which he handled with vision, wisdom and aplomb.

We will always cherish our time serving hockey with this wonderful, self-effacing man.

A generation of hockey umpires may never quite know the work Peter put in to set the sound foundations for their glittering careers.


Peter – rest in peace, friend – you epitomised all that is great in hockey and what volunteerism is all about!


5th August 2016

With less than 24 hours to go to the first ever Premier Hockey League player draft, the PHL has unveiled two of the playing squads that will be playing in the 2016 event.

While 10 of the 12 playing squads will be selected via Saturday’s draft, the South African Hockey Association has decided that both the SA men’s and women’s U21 national squads will play in the new event as franchise teams.  The men’s U21 team will play as the Golden Gate Gladiators and the women’s U21 team will play as the Lip Ice Namaqualand Daisies.

This is in order to help them to prepare for their respective Hockey Junior World Cups that take place in India (men) and Chile (women) towards the end of the year.

“We decided to allow our national U21 team’s to participate as franchise teams to give them as much quality game time as possible in the build up to their two Junior World Cup’s. If the U21 team experiment proves a success then we may make these age group national teams a permanent fixture in future PHLs,” said Marissa Langeni, the CEO of SAHA.

“Not only is the PHL good practice for the upcoming Junior World Cup but the U21 men’s team plans to be really competitive. The team has had great practice and they know each other well. As such, we have a competitive edge that the rest of the teams don’t. With star players such as Rob McKinley, Ryan Crowe, Ryan Julius and Alex Stewart, the squad has already proved that they are equipped to take the team to the next level,” commented Garreth Ewing, Coach of the Golden Gate Gladiators men’s team.

“With the U21 women’s team only recently been announced, the ladies will be using the PHL as a form of preparation for the Junior World Cup. The PHL is going to give us the platform to get the team together and really build camaraderie. The core group are good sportswoman and I am positive that with players such as Tarryn Glasby, Marizen Marais, Marilize van Tonder, Tegan Fourie and Sandi Tabata we will be victorious,” added Patrick Tshushani, Head Coach of the Lip Ice Namaqualand Daisies women’s team.

The 10 other PHL teams (five men’s and five women’s) will be selected via a unique player draft that takes place this Saturday (6th August 2016). The draft commences at 10am on Saturday morning and interested parties will be able to follow it live online, via the new PHL website ( which launches late tonight.

The draft, which has been inspired by American sports leagues, such as the National Basketball Association (NBA) and the National Football League (NFL), is a squad selection process that sees the coaches of each PHL team take turns, based on an order sequence drawn out of a hat, to choose from a pool of eligible players.

Golden Gate Gladiators Playing Squad (Men’s Team):

1          Charles Bowren
2          Ryan Crowe
3          Matthew De Sousa
4          Tyson Dlungwana
5          Courtney Halle
6          Ryan Julius
7          Tevin Kok
8          Nduduzo Lembethe
9          Amkelwe Letuka
10        Kyle Lion-Cachet
11        Rob McKinley
12        Steve McManus
13        Khumo Mokale
14        Siya Nolutshungu
15        Bili Ntuli
16        Walter Pfaff
17        Jayson Reed
18        Tylo Remke
19        Bjorn Sorensen
20        Alex Stewart


Golden Gate Gladiators Coaching Team:

Head Coach




Garreth Ewing


Neville Rothman &
Devon van der Merwe


Lindsay De Kock

The Lip Ice Namaqualand Daisies (Women’s Team):

1          Danni Cairns
2          Gretchin Davids
3          Alegra Dijkstra
4          Natalie Esteves
5          Amy Etherington
6          Tegan Fourie
7          Tarryn Glasby
8          Antoinette Louw
9          Sisipho Magwaza
10        Nthabi Maine
11        Ongi Mali
12        Marizen Marais
13        Kirsten Paton
14        Marissa Poolman
15        Christine Seggie
16        Shindre-Lee Simmons
17        Donna Small
18        Sandi Tabata
19        Marilize van Tonder
20        Margeruite Van Wyk

The Lip Ice Namaqualand Daisies Coaching Team:

Head Coach




Patrick Tshushani


Gregg Hesom & Inky Zondi


Bridget Kee


The inaugural South African Premier Hockey League (PHL) has taken a step closer to becoming reality today, with the announcement that the official player draft will take place this Saturday (6th August 2016).

The draft, which has been inspired by American sports leagues, such as the National Basketball Association (NBA) and the National Football League (NFL), is a squad selection process that sees the coaches of each PHL team take turns, based on an order sequence drawn out of a hat, to choose from a pool of eligible players.

The draft commences at 10am on Saturday morning and interested parties will be able to follow it live online, via the new PHL website ( which launches late on Friday evening.

Thanks to support from the Department of Sport & Recreation, the inaugural PHL will consist of both a men’s and women’s competition and will run over four weekend’s - from Saturday 3rd September to Sunday 25th September 2016 (inclusive). More information about the draft and the 2016 PHL event structure is contained at the end of this media release.

“The player draft system is an exciting new innovation for the PHL and we are sure it will generate much talk-ability and debate amongst hockey fans in this country”, said Mike Du Plessis, the President of the South African Hockey Association (SAHA).

“The PHL forms a key part of SAHA’s high performance pipeline which is aimed at better equipping our national teams for international competition. We are especially grateful to the support and investment from the Department of Sport & Recreation, as well as the belief they have shown in the future of hockey in this country”, added Marissa Langeni, the CEO of SAHA.

Meanwhile, the PHL has also revealed the head coaches for the 2016 PHL teams. The immediate priority of these coaches will be to select their playing squads during Saturday’s draft.

Men’s PHL Teams

Women’s PHL Teams





Every Sun Addo Elephants

Cheslyn Gie

Blyde River Bunters

Lindsey Wright

Drakensberg Dragons

Sihle Ntuli

Madikwe Rangers

Robin van Ginkel

Garden Route Gazelles

Steve Evans

The Lip Ice Namaqualand Daisies

Patrick Tshushani

Golden Gate Gladiators

Gareth Ewing

Orange River Rafters

Pietie Coetzee-Turner

Mapungubwe Mambas

Krinesan Moodley

The Young Solutions

St Lucia Lakers

Lenise Marias

Maropeng Cavemen

Mark Saunders

Winelands Wings

Ryan Pillay

Note to media:
Selected coaches and players will be made available for interview post the draft on Saturday afternoon – from 3.30pm onwards. Interviews can be done telephonically or in person at the draft venue. Please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. if you would like further details about the media arrangements for Saturday’s draft.

More about the 2016 Premier Hockey League:

· The 2016 event consists of six men’s teams and six women’s teams, respectively,

· All matches will be played at the Randburg Astro in Johannesburg.

· Both the SA men’s and women’s U21 national teams will be playing in the PHL as franchise teams. This is to help them prepare for the Junior World Cup that takes place later this year. The men’s U21 team will play as the Golden Gate Gladiators and the women’s U21 team will play as the Lip Ice Namaqualand Daisies.

· Squads will consist of 18 players. The two U21 teams will, however be allowed to select a squad of 20 players.

· Both the men’s and women’s PHL competitions will consist of a league stage and a play-off stage:

o Each team will play each other once in the league stage. This means each team will play five games in the league stage.

o The teams who finish fifth and sixth respectively in the log, at the end of the league stage, will play-off to determine who finishes fifth and sixth.

o The top four teams in the log will progress to the semi-finals. The losing semi-finalists will play-off for third and fourth respectively and the winning semi-finalists will progress to the finals of the men’s and women’s competitions.

More about Saturday’s Premier Hockey League Draft:

· The players for these two national U21 teams will be pre-selected and will not enter the draft.

· It has further been decided that the respective coaches of the senior men’s and women’s national teams will allocate four marquee players to each of these remaining ten teams (20 men and 20 women).

· The list of marquee players, and their designated teams, will be announced on Saturday at the beginning of the draft.

· Thereafter a list of eligible players, who have expressed an interest in participating in the event, will be entered into the draft on Saturday.

· There will be two drafts – a men’s draft and a women’s draft. They will each follow the same process.

· The coach of each team will need to select 14 players to fill his or her squad of 18 players. The other four players are of course the pre-selected marquee players.

· Round one of the men’s draft will take place first, followed by round one of the women’s draft. Round two of the men’s draft will then commence and the overall draft will conclude with round two of the women’s draft.

· In each round, each coach will have the chance to select seven players.

Round 1:

· Each coach will draw a number out of a hat.

o Number one = first pick in round one of the draft.

o Number two = second pick in round one of the draft.

o Number three = third pick in round one of the draft.

o Number four = fourth pick in round one of the draft.

o Number five = fifth pick in round one of the draft.

· The coach with number one will pick a player first, followed by the four other coaches in their number sequence.

· This will continue for seven selections. Each time the coach with number one will go first.

· Once all five coaches have made seven selections then round one will end.

Round 2:

· The picking order will be reversed and the coach with number five will have first pick and the coach with number one will have last pick. The coach who had pick number two in the first round will have the fourth pick and the coach who had pick number four in the first round will have the second pick. The coach with the third pick will stay third.

· Each coach will make seven final selections based on the above order sequence.

Reserve players:

All players not selected for the draft will be automatically entered in a reserve pool of players that can be utilised by the teams, in the event of injury or player unavailability.

Read more ...

The South African Hockey Association (SAHA) has officially unveiled Grays as its exclusive technical apparel partner for the next five years.

The Grays apparel sponsorship, which runs until the end of 2020, covers all SAHA outdoor representative teams - from under 18 through to the senior men’s and women’s international squads, all teams participating in the forthcoming SA National Hockey League, as well as SAHA coaches and match officials.

As part of the partnership, Grays has the exclusive right to produce official SA Hockey replica wear, supporters wear, fashion wear and other key hockey products and will also be launching an official SA Hockey endorsed e-commerce platform later this year. SAHA will earn a percentage of all revenue generated from these new revenue streams.

“It gives me great pleasure to welcome Grays on board as our official apparel partner. Grays is an iconic and global hockey brand and their partnership is a massive endorsement of our vision and strategy for hockey in South Africa. We are especially excited by their plans for the e-commerce platform, which is due to launch towards the end of this year,” said Marissa Langeni, CEO of SAHA.

Grays and its South African distribution partner, Leisure Holdings, are equally optimistic about the new partnership.

“Everyone at Grays is delighted to have secured South African hockey. Grays is the world’s leading hockey brand and as such is perfectly placed to support the exciting growth of hockey in South Africa.” added Richard Gray, Sales and Marketing Director at Grays.

“We really believe in the South African hockey revolution and see a sport that is on an upwards curve, from an interest and participation perspective. This is a true business partnership, with SAHA incentivised to help us grow the Grays brands in South Africa. We look forward to a very productive long term relationship,” concluded Brett Burnill, Director of Leisure Holdings.

About SAHA:
The South Africa Hockey Association is the national governing body of field hockey in South Africa. SAHA focuses on the administration, development and co-ordination of all activities of the game within South Africa, in areas such as coaching umpiring and playing - at International, Provincial, Club and School level. SAHA is a member of the South African Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee (SASCOC), the Africa Hockey Federation (AHF) and the International Hockey Federation (FIH).

About Grays:
Grays was founded in Cambridge by world rackets champion H.J. Gray in 1855 and have built a worldwide reputation for supplying quality sports equipment; notably for hockey, racquets and cricket (under the Gray-Nicolls brand).  The company has remained in family hands ever since and is now owned and controlled by 5th generation of Grays.

About Leisure Holdings:
Leisure Holdings is one of South Africa’s top distributors of sporting goods, with a significant warehouse and distribution network. Leisure Holdings currently supplies and has excellent working relationships with most the major retailers in South Africa and has extensive experience in managing the following brands: Arena, Grays, Gray Nicolls, Prince and Gilbert.

Things may not have gone to plan for Western Province hockey in the A-section at this year’s Greenfields Senior Interprovincial Nationals there was some reason for the Cape teams to cheer as WP Peninsula claimed gold in the women’s B-section of the tournament on Saturday.


As expected, the draw worked out in such a way that Pens met KZN Mynahs in the final - played at an alternate venue given the tournament’s expansion to include both men’s and women’s tournaments for the first time - and the result went the Cape side’s way.


The Pens would eventually claim the B-section title with a 2-1 win in a fixture that only really came to life after the halftime break.


The scores remained locked at nil all at the changeover but a Kayde Miller strike from a short corner in the 40th corner handed Pens the lead but the advantage only lasted nine minutes as Mynahs hit back through Stacey Hiron.


But the game was sealed with eight minutes to play as Robyn Pinder converted from a short corner and Pens were able to hang onto their advantage to claim the B-section crown for another year.


That victory made up for the misgivings of the Western Province side assembled for the A-section of the tournament after they failed to progress past the quarterfinal stages.


As far as the rest of the placing in the women’s B-section went, Zimbabwe rounded off a very good tournament with a 4-0 win over KZN Inland to finish third in the B-section. Two goals in the first quarter, one by Michelle Williams and the other by Michelle Mollins, set the tone for Zimbabwe.


Milliams added a second in the 33rd minute before Mollins completed her brace, the result leaving Inland to finish in fourth in the B-section.


As far as the play-off for fifth and sixth went, Mpumalanga made sure that they did enough to finish ahead of the Southern Gauteng Nuggets, coming back from a goal down to eventually end on top at 2-1.



The South Africa Country Districts side were excellent in their quest to avoid the wooden spoon in the women’s B-section by claiming a 5-3 win over Northerns Blues B with two goals inside the first minute of the game setting the tone.

The Tuffy Western Province men’s side got their Greenfields Senior Interprovincial Nationals campaign back to winning ways as they downed a plucky Witsies side 5-2 at the Randburg Hockey Stadium on Friday.


In a strange turn of event for the Province hockey sides neither their men’s or women’s side were able to advance past the quarterfinal stage and instead the men’s side will now go into the play-off for fifth and sixth.


After losing to Northerns in the quarters it was crucial for Province to restore some parity, coming out strongly and openign the scoring in the ninth minute through a well-worked Roagnib Fredericks field goal.


But Witsies cancelled that strike out with a Gerald Mpopo goal in the 18th minute, the result of a good run on the baseline by Kyle Marks to leave the sides 1-1.


Province then extended their lead midway through the second chukka as Pierre de Voux netted and they took that advantage into the break.


There was no real action to speak of in the third chukka until Keenan Horne won a penalty stroke which was duly converted by Lloyd Norris-Jones.


The game sparked to life in the 45th minute as Witsies, who pushed the SA Under-21 side to a shootout in their quarterfinal, pulled one back through a Nic Gonsalves short-corner to cut it to 3-2 but Province were having none of it, winning a short corner after the restart.


The penalty corner attempt was successful with Daniel Bell slotting home a drag-flick to double the advantage at 4-2 and then James Drummond took advantage of some space in the circle to score on the stroke of fulltime.


In some of the other matches played today, WP Peninsula continued their run in the men’s B-section with a 4-1 win over Zimbabwe with three goals in the second half killing off the opposition fightback.


There was a comfortable 5-0 win for the Northerns Blues B side in their game against KZN Inland. Their efforts were made much easier by the fact that Inland had their ranks seriously depleted through injuries and at one stage only had eight players on the field.


In the women’s B-section, Southern Gauteng Nuggets were able to get the better of the SA Country Districts in their play-off game, winning 2-0 in a shootout after the sides were locked at 2-2 at the final hooter.



That result means that they will take on Mpumalanga in the game for fifth position on Saturday after their 2-1 win, which was something of an upset, over Northerns Blue B earlier in the morning.

The picture got a lot clearer with regards to the women’s B-section at the Greenfields Senior Interprovincial Nationals at the Randburg Hockey Stadium on Thursday as KZN Inland, WP Peninsula, Zimbabwe and KZN Mynahs advanced.


For Peninsula and both Kwa-Zulu Natal sides the task was relatively easy with comfortable wins but Zimababwe were made to work hard in their encounter against Northerns Blues B and managed to win by a slim 1-0 margin.


The game, played on the top field, ebbed and flowed and both sides were guilty of squandering chances - especially when it came to their penalty corners - and the sides were locked at nil all at halftime.


The best chance of taking the lead fell to Northerns four minutes after the changeover but a heroic stick save off the line by defender Nicolle Grant cleared danger from the short corner. The deadlock was eventually broken two minutes from time as Kendal Revolta netted a field goal to ensure her side’s progress.


It means that Zimbabwe will meet Mynahs in Friday’s semifinal after the KZN outfit claimed a comfortable 3-0 victory over Mpumalanga earlier in the morning.


For Pens, the road to the semifinal in the B-section was slightly easier as they swept past Southern Gauteng Nuggets with an emphatic 7-0 victory.


First half goals from Aimee Pote, who netted twice, and captain Rosanne Lombard had them up 3-0 at halftime and the Cape side hammered home their advantage after the break.


Danielle Cairns netted a field goal in the 34th minute before Kayde Miller followed up four minutes later with another score from open play. 


A strike from a penalty corner by Gabriella de Kock extended the lead and the rout was completed in the 50th minute as Pote rounded off her hat-trick.


In the day’s first game, KZN Inland ran out 4-1 winners over SA Country Districts.


They opened the scoring in the third minute through Tiffany Jones and then doubled up soon after as Stefania Collette netted before SACD pulled one back  in the 22nd minute through Marelie Devereux.


The gap was extended to two goals a minute later as Amy Greaves slotted home to make it 3-1 and then Silindile Mbhele added a strike of her own in the 29th minute from a well-worked penalty corner that saw her sneak in a deflection on the back post.


The scoreline didn’t change for the next half hour although SACD pressed hard they couldn’t find a way through a resolute Inland defence.




The South Africa U21 men’s and women’s hockey teams have been named to compete in the Junior World Cup Africa Qualifier tournaments in Windhoek, Namibia from March 18 to 28.

Both SA U21 men’s team head coach Garreth Ewing and SA U21 women’s head coach Patrick Tshutshani said the door was still open for players who didn’t make the 18-player cut, as the Junior World Cup re-selection awaits later next year, should the SA teams qualify through the Africa continent event.

“Congratulations to the players who have made the team, the whole squad competed hard for a place and it was a difficult decision to narrow it down to the final 18,” said Ewing.

“There are players that I believe are unlucky not to make the team and I expect them to come back strongly to challenge for a place in the Junior World Cup side.”

The SA men’s and women’s teams need to qualify for the JWC "finals" at the Windhoek event.

“I'm satisfied with the process we followed and I believe we have selected the strongest possible team at this stage,” said Ewing. “Thank you to the selection convenor and my fellow selectors for their input.”

"Earning qualification for the Junior World Cup is our next challenge, and the team will be working very hard to prepare over the next three months.

“This is a talented team and I am confident they will do the country proud,” Ewing added.

Tshutshani said he would like to thank the 36 players who attended the national U21 selection camp for this JWC Africa Qualifier tournament. 

“The selection process was tough but exciting as numerous players put their hands up and challenged for a spot in the final team of 18 players,” said Tshutshani. “However the door is still open to those players who have not made the African Qualifier as there are opportunities to still make the [JWC] final team.

"I am pleased with the team chosen to represent South Africa in March in Namibia. We are still in the early phases of our preparation. The next couple of months are key to our quest in securing a spot in Namibia for the Junior World Cup.

“I would also like to thank the selection committee, the management team and Menlo Park for accommodating us during the camp,” Tshutshani added.


Men: Robert McKinley, Jacques Bleekers, Ryan Julius, Matt de Sousa, Charlie Bowren, Alex Stewart, Ryan Crowe, Nqobile Ntuli (Western Province); Siya Nolutshungu, Jayson Reed (KZN Coastal); Kyle Lion-Cachet, Walter Pfaff (Southern Gauteng); Courtney Hallé, Tyson Dlungwana, Ndoduzo Lembethe, Tevin Kok, Amkelwa Letuka (KZN Inland); Khumo Mokale (Northern Blues).

Women: Alegra Dijkstra, Priscilla Esterhuyze, Tarryn Glasby (Western Province); Amy Etherington, Marguerite van Wyk, Marlise van Tonder, Natalie Esteves, Sulize de Klerk (Northern Blues); Antonette Louw, Shidre-Lee Simmonds (Free State); Carmen Smith, Cheneal Raubenheimer, Kristen Paton, Marizen Marais (Southern Gauteng); Nicky Veto, Sandy Tabata, Zimasa Dunywa (Eastern Province); Tegan Fourie (KZN Coastal).