(Photo: © FIH / Gordon Morrison)

With less than two months to go until the crucial WorldHockey Olympic Qualifiers at the beginning of March, Great Britain men will travel to South Africa for warm weather training and a tri-nations tournament including the host nation and Canada. The squad will train in Potchefstroom before moving on to Durban from the 12 January for the games against South Africa and Canada.

22 of the 24 athletes who were selected in the Olympic Qualifier training squad in September 2007 will make the trip to South Africa.  Scott Cordon is currently unavailable as he recovers from surgery to repair a sportsman’s hernia and Michael Christie has withdrawn from the GB program.  Reading’s Nick Catlin will be joining the squad for the tour of South Africa because Head Coach Jason Lee says that he is considered as “one of Great Britain’s up and coming players” and thinks that “the experience will be excellent for him.” 

Lee commented “This trip to South Africa will be very important in our build up to the Olympic Qualifier in Chile in March. The weather is hot, like we are expecting in Chile, the training facilities are excellent and we are also lucky to be getting four internationals at the end of the trip. It is also hoped that selection for the Olympic Qualifier will be completed by the end of this tour.  We have invited Nick Catlin to travel to South Africa to provide us additional cover in case of injury or illness amongst the squad, especially in the light that Michael Christie recently withdrew from the squad and Scott Cordon is not travelling due to injury.”

GB Squad: Richard Alexander, Jon Bleby, Nick Catlin, Jonty Clarke, Matt Daly, Stephen Dick, James Fair, Brett Garrard, Ben Hawes, Ashley Jackson, Glenn Kirkham, Richard Mantell, Simon Mantell, Ben Marsden, Alistair McGregor (GK), Barry Middleton, Graham Moodie, Rob Moore, George Pinner, Mark Ralph, Niall Stott, James Tindall, Alastair Wilson,

Match Schedule:
Saturday 12 January (14:00 GMT) Great Britain v South Africa
Sunday 13 January (14:00 GMT) Great Britain v Canada
Tuesday 15 January (16:00 GMT) Great Britain v South Africa
Wednesday 16 January (16:00 GMT) Great Britain v Canada

Source: Great Britain Hockey ltd.