The management of the national male hockey team has made a passionate appeal to corporate bodies and individuals to provide adequate sponsorship to the sport to enable it to be favourably competitive at the international level.
“We have a team with the zeal, commitment and competitive spirit, but lack of exposure, techniques and tactics have robbed us of major trophies in international tournaments.”
“That is why we need corporate bodies to come to our aid with sponsorship packages that could propel us to be more competitive at the elite level,” the team manager of the national male hockey team, Mr Stephen Tenkorang, made the appeal in an exclusive interview with Daily Graphic on Team Ghana’s return from the recent Commonwealth Games in Birmingham, UK.
Ghana’s male hockey team lost 0-6 to England in their first group match, fell heavily to India with a 0-11 margin, held Canada to a 1-1 draw in their third game, before succumbing 2-7 to Scotland in their last match.
“The tournament was amazing and an eye-opener for Team Ghana. This is because before leaving for the tournament, we indicated that we would not be pushovers, and I can confirm that we proved just that.”
“However, to the ordinary hockey fan, our chain of defeats were signals that we were whipping boys and only formed part of the participating teams,” he noted.
Cause of defeats
“However, as the team manager, I am not considering the margin of defeats, but my focus is on the output, dedication and commitment of the team, which I can say were splendid.
“In our match against England, regarded as one of the top-ranked teams in the world, we competed very well and proved that given the same opportunity in terms of exposure, facilities, technical expertise and techniques, we can also excel and carry hockey to another level,” Mr Tenkorang observed.
According to him, the Ghanaian players lacked technology development and only used their natural talents to compete against opponents who relied solely on analysers, techniques and experience.
“They analysed our game plan, positions, movements and techniques and quickly used them to their advantage to counter-attack. In effect, as we attempted correcting errors committed on the field of play, their analysers used their techniques to pile so much pressure on us, leading to our defeats,” he explained further.
“Strength and commitment we had in tonnes, but experience and exposure we lacked, hence the need for corporate bodies and individuals to join hands with the Ghana Hockey Association (GHA) to provide sponsorship to help transform the team,” he stressed.