HOCKEY: Youngsters learn from ex-England star Taylor

George Halgarth, Lucy Simpson and Grace Hodgett
George Halgarth, Lucy Simpson and Grace Hodgett
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Spalding Hockey Club hosted the fifth annual Matt Taylor Summer Camp at Glen Park.

Just over 50 young players, mainly from the club, enjoyed two full days of outstanding coaching from the former England international.

Summer camp

Summer camp

Taylor’s coaching team included USA international Mo Gandi, Scotland’s James Cachia and Great Britain under-23 player Kathryn Lane.

Beeston players James Albery and Jonny Wilkinson, who were both considered unlucky not to have been in the GB men’s squad at the Rio Olympics, also came along.

The young players on the camp, whose ages ranged from eight to 17 years, thrived on the high level of coaching provided.

They were taught the latest skills techniques being developed in the game and played many small-sided and innovative games, interspersed with light-hearted challenges throughout the two days.

Taylor, who coaches at many camps throughout the country, was impressed by the high level of basic skills, the attitude and willingness to learn from those attending the camp.

He selected three players who he considered had made an outstanding contribution to the camp.

The chosen three were all Spalding players – Grace Hodgett, Lucy Simpson and George Halgarth.

Meanwhile, the club’s taster sessions on Wednesday mornings throughout August proved to be a great success with around 80 youngsters having a try, many for the first time.

The popular Saturday morning sessions get under way this weekend with the autumn programme from 9.15am to 10.45am.

The club welcomes boys and girls aged five to 14 of all abilities to these sessions and sticks can be provided if required.

This is an ideal time to start for any youngsters who were inspired by the gold medal winning GB women and would like to have a go at hockey.

The sessions will run weekly until the Christmas break on December 10.

The club asks for £3 per week to cover pitch hire and equipment costs but also offers an attractive termly rate of £30 for the 15-week programme. All payable on the day.

For more information or any opportunities to play hockey at Spalding, visit www.spaldinghockeyclub.co.uk or contact Fred Morris on fredricmorris@yahoo.co.uk or 01775 724832.