Northern Irish team?

Discussion in 'Ireland' started by goalie88, Jul 3, 2008.

  1. goalie88

    goalie88 FHF Starter

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  2. Grumpy

    Grumpy FHF Legend

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    I know that several MP's have actually called for a Northern Irish Team and if you look at some club blog sites it would have a lot of support.
    I think that it is not really going to happen as most are happy with the present set up which pleases me.
     
  3. Grumpy

    Grumpy FHF Legend

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    I do know of players who have opted to play for Scotland, Wales and England so players opting out has happened and probably will continue to happen. It will be interesting if a player does get picked for thier adopted country and then plays for GB. They might get more recruits and i feel that would be bad for hockey and its future in Ireland.
     
  4. CoachTaff

    CoachTaff FHF All Time Great

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    Just read that blog and its very interesting... just a quick question, Is Northern Ireland a recognised country??

    After reading some of the Wiki information below... I think that Northern Ireland should be given the right to have its own team as due to the fact that the other countries within Great Britain can, i dont understand why NI can't have its own team at all... according to the information on NI below it is a constituent country within the United Kingdom, just like Wales, Wales has its own team!!

    It would only be a good thing for hockey in general if we could have another International team competing in competitions the world over and show that it is a rapidly growing sport as most of us know anyway.

    The GB calling for all players is a great honour for all the players involved, as it shows that they are in essence the best of the best from the UK... All the other countries in the UK cope with National calling and still send players out to GB as well and i think that NI could cope with that too.

    :eek:oh: Just My hubble opinion please dont kill me. :sorry:

    Wiki Information for UK countries
    Northern Ireland
    Wales
    Scotland
    England
    Ireland

    Your Thoughts!! :baffled:
     
  5. Moody_Git

    Moody_Git FHF Regular Player

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    Oh look, an open can of worms! :baffled: Just as well it's in the Ireland section rather than in chit-chat...

    Honestly, with the growing success of the Ireland teams I don't see why anyone on the island involved in hockey would want this (apart from the usual guilty parties who are only concerned with their own political agendas) would Ireland's rugby or cricket teams do the same?

    The concept of national calling, as you put it, gets a bit foggy when half the players in the North want to play for GB and the other half Ireland. Maybe its just easier to have these players represent the national association that they play under?
     
  6. Craggsy

    Craggsy Beikou Hockey founder
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    I agree in a way that players from NI could play for GB at the olympics, and a NI team at commonwealth games would help improve the level of play in NI. However it would most likely damage the Ireland team. I guess its down to whether individual players feel they are Irish or British.
     
  7. CoachTaff

    CoachTaff FHF All Time Great

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    That was what I was trying to say probably didn’t come out well sorry... thanks Craggsy...
    NI for Commonwealth and other tournaments and GB when it comes to the Olympics

    I think this is a very difficult decision for some if not all of the NI players and I wouldn’t really want to be in there shoes its difficult enough playing for your national side anyway without the pressures of deciding

    As I said only my hubble Opinion do not want to offend anyone at all and what ever I just hope they get what they want out of the game.
     
  8. nathan06

    nathan06 FHF Regular Player

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    i dont think a northern ireland hockey team is such a great idea. i know 3 or 4 guys from NI who play for ireland, at U16, U18 and full international. i think the standard of hockey will remain higher if players ALL over ireland and NI are competing for a spot on the national team. this will obviously benefit the sport with higher quality teams etc. that said, they do find it a bit annoying having to travel to dublin for training & matches etc.

    technically, northern ireland isnt actually part of GB so i dont know if players can play for GB at olympic level. Whether they consider themselves british or irish gets into a whole big political arguement which nobody likes.

    but i do think the current system works quite well and havent heard of any major complaints about it, which is good. :)
     
  9. Grumpy

    Grumpy FHF Legend

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    The Olympic team if i remeber rightly is Great Britain and Northern Ireland.
    Up until about 10 years ago you could play for Ireland and GB and many players did.
    Jimmy Kirkwood, Stephen Martin, Billy Mc Connell, Terry Graig and the list goes on.
    It changed when the FIH said you could only play for one country which is correct i feel.
    Though if a player wants to he can if he does not have a full international cap for Ireland decide to play for Scotland, England or Wales and thus GB.
    Recently i know of one player who has decided to play in England and if good enough he will eventually get selected for GB.
    Weather this will start a trend i do not know all i know it will make Ireland a weaker at Senior International level.
     
  10. nathan06

    nathan06 FHF Regular Player

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    didnt know players could choose which country to represent, that's quite interesting. i would like to see irish / northern irish players playing for ireland though. keep the quality of the team up.
    im not sure about this, are there currently any players form northern ireland on the GB team?
     
  11. goalie88

    goalie88 FHF Starter

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    So you can play for any country in GB if you're from NI but don't have a full Irish cap? I suppose in the eyes of some we're as eligible to play for any UK country as the republic of Ireland? It sounds a bit weird that one could just play for Scotland, Wales or England for the banter! ???
     
  12. Grumpy

    Grumpy FHF Legend

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    Hot of the press today, another male player from Northern Ireland has taken the GB route. This time a full international has decided to wait the three years required and then play for his adopted country if selected.
    This could be very worrying for Ireland if this trend continues.
     
  13. Bulsara

    Bulsara FHF Regular Player

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    This is the press release announced today that Grumpy is talking about:

    Thursday, 17th July 2008 The Irish Hockey Association has announced that player, Iain Lewers, has withdrawn himself from the Senior Irish Men’s Hockey team, effective immediately. Lewers has made his decision in order to make himself available for future selection on the Great British hockey team. Lewers will now be ineligible to play any international hockey for the next three years but will continue to play his club hockey with top Dutch club HGC in Holland. For Further Information please contact: Katie Roche Irish Hockey Association Katie.roche@hockey.

    I hope that this is a one off and I am intrigued what country does he qualify for because if he continues to play in Holland he will not qualify for any of the other home nations through residency, unless he has a relative which qualifies him. Anyone any wiser as to which of the home nations, iain is planning to play for?
     
  14. Grumpy

    Grumpy FHF Legend

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    Unfortunately he is not the first this year. Plus several have decided to play in Scotland or Wales over the last number of years.
     
  15. Craggsy

    Craggsy Beikou Hockey founder
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    Well if he is good enough to play for England or Scotland then fair play to him. No offence to Irish hockey but he has more chance of winning something with GB than Ireland.
     
  16. Bulsara

    Bulsara FHF Regular Player

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    Did you say the same about Laurence Docherty over GB and Holland?

    What is the point in having International Hockey if all you need to do is just decide which is the best team you can play for and then go an live there!

    How does Irish hockey improve if their better players keep on moving on? I would argue that Ireland are a better team than Scotland and are not far off England so actually he is moving for a team which plays every four years and in the interim he will be playing roughly the same standard of competitive hockey as he was before.

    In saying that I wish him all the best in the decision that he has made and I hope it works out for him.
     
  17. Grumpy

    Grumpy FHF Legend

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    Hi, actually i hhave seen Laurence grow up throught the ranks at Scotland and over the years i felt he was in the top 4 or 5 underage players i had come across. I do think it is sad that he is not playing for Scotland and GB rather than Holland. I am not sure why he moved but i am sure many Scots and GB people do move.
    Maybe all the players feel they have no future in the country that they started out with. Change in coaches or style of play or just they felt they could play at a higher level. it would be interesting to know but i am sure i/we will probably never get the complete story.
     
  18. gazhay

    gazhay FHF Newbie

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    Ireland has a unified Rugby Union team.

    To be honest, as with most things this is a political issue. IMO teams spreading unity, like the rugby team are far more useful in the modern world.
     
  19. gazhay

    gazhay FHF Newbie

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    Lawerence made no excuses that he was going to Holland to earn money from hockey and he has been successful at that. He also was very unlucky to be overlooked for the GB squad in 2000 and decided that he would switch to a (arguably) better nation and compete for his place. (In other words he felt the GB selection policy lacking)

    Had it not been for a snafu he would have played for the dutch in 2004, but managed this year.
    As the Dutch are the better side, you cannot argue with his logic - he was good enough for Dutch teams in 2004 and 2008, but not GB in 2000.

    I think a ruling allowing you to switch nations in the face of such bigotry is only fair.
     
  20. Grumpy

    Grumpy FHF Legend

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    Well it seems Mr Lewers is playing for GB in the Olympics, all power to him.
    I was talking to a player or two and asked them why they had not really wanted to play for Ireland. They stated that playing for their province was their aim and they did not worry about Ireland. That if they had it all to do again they would play a sport that let them play for GB only. One especially said that they had been born in Northern Ireland and thats who they would want to represent. It was a very interesting discussion and this young person felt that 'old people' had made a decision on their behalf and that all hockey players in N.I. should be allowed a free vote on the future of their game.

    This will never happen, but I do feel that hockey is loosing players to soccer as the players have the option of representing Ireland or N.I..
     

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