In July 2018 the biennial Masters Hockey World Cup was held again, this time hosted by Spain in Terrassa, Barcelona.
Teams in age groups of over 35s to over 75s were invited and more than 25 countries participated. Because of the enormous amount of fixtures this created, the competition for different age bands is split between Grandmasters (age 60 & above) & Masters (age 35s to 55s)
As previously reported, Belper’s Mike Christie and Alan Sutton were successful with their England Grandmasters 70 & 75’s teams & bought home medals in early July.
Late July saw the turn of the ‘youngsters’ when age categories of over 35s, 40s, 45s, 50s & 55s competed.
Belper Hockey Club’s ever growing International representation was met in this competition by Nick Morris (England 045s), Claire Duffin (England 045s), Monica Jones-Knowles (Wales 045s) and Matt Knowles (Manager Wales Women’s 040s).
Conditions in this tournament were tough, with 7 games over 10 days in temperatures of 35-40 degrees centigrade. Standards were extremely high. This is testament to how successful & popular International Masters hockey has become.
The set up in Terrassa was fantastic with 7 water based pitches being available for games over 3 sites. Teams had the ability to book ice baths and massages to help with recovery and there were numerous swimming pools that could be used at the sites. This was a well drilled and brilliantly organised tournament with both opening and closing ceremonies and everything an International athlete would want. It is worth noting that playing in the Masters World Cup is completely self-funded and there is an awareness that this can prove a barrier to some people being able to play.
After a hard fought competition, England Men’s 045s secured the Bronze medal. England Women’s 045s secured the Silver medal.
A fantastic experience for all players (and supporters) and something we will never forget. As the logo for the tournament states: