Clubhouse: Winter transfers

Southgate's Simeon Bird in action

With all the teams in the NOW: Pensions Men’s Hockey League set to resume action this weekend, attention turns to the outdoor season and the those pushing for glory or to avoid the agony of relegation. The winter break has allowed coaches to take stock of what they have and decide if fresh faces and new blood are the way to go to get them the points they need. There have been plenty of comings and goings within the NOW: Pensions Men’s League with some notable names cropping up.

Canterbury, currently bottom of the Premier Division have been busy, bringing in no less than four players over the break. Former striker David Mathews returns to the fold along with one time Pakistan international Adnan Zakir. They have also brought in Mexican striker Francisco Montoya and perhaps most eye-catching of all, Australian international Craig Boyne. Goals have been hard to come by at Polo Farm this season but with Zakir, Boyne and Montoya on target last week in friendly action they will be hoping their new recruits can fire them to safety.

As well as Boyne, heading here from Down Under, is Blake Govers, who joins Wimbledon. The surname will be familiar to some as he is the younger brother of Australian World Cup winner Kieran Govers. An under-21 international, he too knows where the goal is and will surely add some quality at SW19.

Busiest of all the teams in the top flight seems to have been Brooklands MU with six new faces joining them. Matthew Gough, Rory Capper, Sam Perrin, Matt Smith, Darius Virabi and Ross Hall have all joined up as they aim to move away from the bottom of the Premier Division.

Southgate, another side looking over their shoulders at the wrong end of the table have bolstered their ranks with the re-registration of the talismanic Simeon Bird and the signing of Fergus Dunn from Surbiton. Having beaten East Grinstead last weekend, they will hope those two can help to continue their good run and move them away from the drop zone.

Outside the Premier Division there have plenty of moves, too. Shakeel Abassi has signed for Barford Tigers, Goalkeeper Ashley Watson has left Beeston to play for Doncaster and Prabhjot Singh is a headline signing from the new recruits at Indian Gymkhana. He joins Polish duo Mateusz Stotko and Sebastian Wladysiak. Bowdon, currently top of the North Conference seem to be leaving nothing to chance as they fight to gain promotion back to the top division. They have gone abroad to bring back Alex Humphreys and Mike Shaw from SC1880 Frankfurt, added Ole Keusgen from Mulheim and Liam Alexander from Norwest Strikers in Australia.

You can take a look at all the transfers and registrations by clicking here.

There is a full programme of NOW: Pensions Men’s Hockey League fixtures as well as the Men’s Cup this weekend. For all the fixtures click here.

Want to be there to watch the culmination of the season’s hard work for all the top teams? Book your tickets to the league finals weekend, and earn some cash for your club by clicking here.

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