The Guyana Hockey Board (GHB) opens its 2011 hockey season on Friday May 20 with the premiere outdoor competition of season in the Farfan and Mendes men’s first division hockey league. The opening match will be held at the GCC ground from 4:45PM and will test the skills of a resurgent Old Fort hockey team featuring several new faces against the traditional GCC line-up of nationals and former national players.
Old Fort’s superstar midfield player Aderemi ‘Dove’ Simon will be on show once again along with teammates Dwight Sullivan, Dwayne Allen and Chris Low-Koan. While these form the cornerstone of the team, they will be joined by the youthful legs of Kevin Melville and Richard Heyliger, both promising stars in the making.
GCC’s Dwayne Scott, Orlando Semple and Kevin Spencer are determined to restore the club to its former dominant days in the early 2000s when GCC was a regular feature in the winner’s row.
The tournament will continue the following week with a clash between recent in-form side the Hikers against the youthful under-21 national squad who will be making their first appearance in the tournament.
The GHB decided to include the under-21s in this year’s competition in order to provide them with the much needed match practice as they prepare for the Pan American Hockey Championships in 2012. This has been done in the past and the junior sides have enjoyed solid performances against their senior rivals.
This year’s edition of youths intends to better their predecessors with a tournament victory when all the dust has settled. Young Stephen Xavier, Shaquille Assanah and Eric Hing are the three remaining players who made the last junior national team in 2008 and together with recent national debutant Reon Brandford will be eager to showcase their skills.
Nationals Shane Samuels, Robert Fernandes and Robert France however will spearhead a Hikers side which has a wealth of experience being the most travelled team in the past several years and remain favourites to take the trophy.
Apart from the coveted Farfan & Mendes Trophy, the winning team of this competition earns the opportunity to represent Guyana at Pan American Club Championships in Jamaica this coming November which features the top club teams in the Americas.
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