The women’s Trophy is also a battle for points to try and earn places in the top stream EuroHockey Club Champions Cup
(EHCCC), where the best 8 women’s teams compete for the Trophy and with €5,000 for the winner and €2,000 for the runner
up, the stakes are high!
The line-up in Loughborough is tough with 2 Russian, 2 Ukrainian, Irish, English, Spanish and Belgian teams here, all
with a top placing and top points in their sights.
We caught up with teams in advance and here’s their thoughts on the Tournament ahead:
The Leicester girls chose to get their message across via a short video! They are really excited about hosting the event and having dropped from the top tier last year will be looking for silverware at home as a thanks to their fans and to finish their season in some style! Initially the Tournament was to take place at their home venue, but Loughborough University stepped up to assist the club in making it a really special event…
Loreto HC, ranked 2nd in their pool here in Loughborough, they are without a few of their players due to school exams in Ireland and a wedding! However they are confident that they have a strong squad with ex-International keeper Louisa Healy marshaling her
defence. ‘Ones’ to watch’ are Internationals Ali Meeke and Niamh Small whose combination in the midfield and forward lines is sure to pose a serious threat along with Loreto’s top strikers Hayley Mulcahy and Ciara Vincent.
HC Metrostroy, are the Russian Cup winners. Their previous ventures into Europe have been successful, with a 4th place finish in the EuroHockey Club Trophy in 2012. They are an ambitious team and will aim to keep their team in the EuroHockey Trophy and of course to win games! As the regular championship is on in Russia they had no need of extra preparation so are in full match fitness mode. In additional to Russian national team players they have a Belorussian player Alesia Piotukh. Ones to watch? Olesia Petrova, captain and team leader and Nadezda Chegurdaeva of of the most experienced club players in Europe.
CSP Izmailovo from Moscow are the leaders of Russian hockey during the last 5 years. They have kept the title of champions of Russia from 2010. The national team of Russia mostly consists of players from CSP Izmailovo, indeed the Russian coach Oleg Potapov is also the main coach of CSP Izmailovo. The last time CSP Izmailovo took part in the EuroHockey Trophy was in Antwerp, Belgium and they took 4th place. Whilst their main ambition this year is to win the Russian Championships it would be great if they could improve their international standings!
Royal Antwerp, from Belgium who finished 5th last year when they hosted will be looking to consolidate that position and keep away from a possible relegation.
MSC Sumchanka, Municipal aka Sport Club for field hockey Sumchanka, eight times Champion of Ukraine. They have a very solid European pedigree competing comfortably in the EuroHockey Trophy for the past 3 years. They will be looking to use that experience here in Loughborough.
Complutence from Madrid last appeared in Europe in 1997! ‘Ones to watch this weekend are Lola Riera (#20) Spanish international player, part of the tournament team of FIH Champions Challenge Glasgow, is a strong defender and dragflick specialist, also Sol Parral (#11), international player for Argentina, was a “Leona” few years ago. Very experienced and strong and corageus player. This will be her last tournament, so she will looking to make an impact and finally Cristina González (#10), the team captain, the “survivor” of the last european competition for us in 1997, she has been international player u16-u18-u21 she too will play her last hockey game after 18years at the first team of our club.
Some cracking matches ahead in Loughborough, not forgetting that we have in fact 5 Women’s Tournaments this weekend, click links below for the Tournament you are interested in….
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Check out the Men’s preview here
Pictured: The team of Metrostroy with some of their Russian silverware…