Bobby Crutchley names squad for Unibet EuroHockey Championships

Bobby Crutchley England Head Coach

Head Coach Bobby Crutchley has named the 18 athletes to compete at the Unibet EuroHockey Championships 2015 in London. With a strong finish to the World League Semi-Finals in Antwerp and Olympic qualification secured, Crutchley’s men turn their attention to seeing off the best in Europe in front of a home crowd at the Lee Valley Hockey and Tennis Centre. The squad includes one change, a recall for Reading’s Dan Shingles who missed the World League through injury. The rest of the group is the same as the squad who took that Olympic berth as Great Britain in June.

The England squad has just one change from the Great Britain squad that finished third at the World league semi-final in Antwerp. Dan Shingles comes in for Tim Whiteman. Shingles had originally been selected to go to Antwerp but the Reading player was ruled out through injury. He has since recovered and takes his place in the squad for the Unibet EuroHockey Championships, where he is set to win his 50th England cap, currently he has 48.

Two stalwarts of the side will be aiming to reach personal milestones during the competition in London. Captain Barry Middleton has scored 97 times for England and Great Britain and so could reach the century mark should he find the net three times in the tournament.

Lewers and Middleton celebrate

Holcombe defender Dan Fox, currently on 95 England caps will reach 100 in the final game if he features in every match.

The squad contains 13 of the group who finished fourth at the 2013 EuroHockey Championships in Boom with Captain Barry Middleton joined by Harry Martin, Alastair Brogdon, Nick Catlin, David Condon, George Pinner, Adam Dixon, Dan Fox, Iain Lewers, Michael Hoare, Dan Shingles, Henry Weir and James Bailey. In addition, the squad contains four players who won this tournament back in 2009: Middleton, Brogdon, Jackson and Dixon.

Beeston’s David Ames, who has impressed for Great Britain is set to make his tournament bow for England. The No30 has three England caps and ten Great Britain caps so far.

England Head Coach Bobby Crutchley:

“The squad is largely unchanged from the Great Britain squad that competed in Antwerp, Dan Shingles has come in.

We’re really excited about playing in front of a home crowd. The warm up tournament in Hamburg has given us some great preparation and now we’re down to the last few sessions before we start the competition. There won’t be huge changes to the way we play or approach games. We’re in good shape and we’re looking forward to what will be a tough tournament. The European Championships is one of the hardest competitions there is. You have four of the top five sides in the world and then some really talented teams in Ireland and Spain. France, too have improved a lot in recent times.

We’d love to win the tournament, of course. We have some players left from 2009 when England won the competition and their experience and the belief that it is possible will be a big help, but of course it is an extremely difficult competition to win. We’re playing well and we’re confident so fingers crossed we can emulate 2009.”

England Squad for the Unibet EuroHockey Championships 2015

Name

Club

David Ames

Beeston

James Bailey

Wimbledon

Alastair Brogdon

Wimbledon

Nick Catlin

Holcombe

David Condon

East Grinstead

Adam Dixon

Beeston

Dan Fox

Holcombe

Mark Gleghorne

Beeston

Chris Griffiths

East Grinstead

Michael Hoare

Wimbledon

Ashley Jackson

Holcombe

Iain Lewers

Holcombe

Harry Martin

Beeston

Barry Middleton

Holcombe

George Pinner

Holcombe

Dan Shingles

Reading

Sam Ward

Holcombe

Henry Weir

Wimbledon

The Unibet EuroHockey Championships 2015 showcases the best eight men’s and women’s teams in Europe, including both England teams. England’s men narrowly missed out on a medal in 2013, finishing fourth after defeat to the Netherlands in the bronze medal match. Bobby Crutchely’s side will be aiming to get on the podium in front of a home crowd this time out. The event will offer entertainment both on and off the pitch with a large fan park, including a fun zone for children. The stadium capacity has been expanded to cater for demand for tickets, with some sessions on the verge of selling out again at the increased capacity. Tickets are still available at www.eurohockey2015.co.uk/tickets.