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Friday, 11 February 2011

BLOG: England's Simon Mantell reports on the team's progress at the 2011 Indoor Hockey World Cup

The Indoor Hockey World Cup is currently taking place in Poland and England’s Simon Mantell, who has scored an impressive 28 goals in 56 caps for the National side, sends us this report.

“We are now approaching the end of the group stages here at the Indoor World Cup in Poznan, Poland. It has been a mixed start to the tournament for us. We opened with a good win over the Czech Republic on day one but followed up with a 2-3 defeat to the Russians, a well established indoor hockey nation. Today saw our best performance in the tournament to date with a convincing 6-4 win over Iran (a new force to be reckoned with on the indoor hockey scene).

We now look forward to our encounter with the current European Champions, Austria, in our final pool match. This will be a crunch game in determining who will go through to the semi-finals from our group.

Indoor hockey tournaments pose a different physical and mental challenge compared to the regular Hockey competitions we play in, mainly because we play at least one game every day. We take our rest whenever we have the opportunity and try not to waste too much energy when we've got down time...with the exception of some corridor cricket in the hotel.

Provided we don't have an early game, we will do an active recovery session (normally in the pool) in the morning. Our physio is always kept busy, especially at indoor tournaments, where the need to be low to the ground for the whole match means our lower backs, glutes and hamstrings take a hammering!

Now that the tournament has begun, we no longer train on the court as we need to preserve our energy as much as possible. However, we do spend a fair amount of time going through video analysis in groups and as individuals with the coaches.”

England currently sit top of their pool having defeated the Czech Republic and Iran. Their fate is now in their own hands - beat Austria and they qualify.
The ENS team would like to wish Simon and his teammates the best of luck for the rest of the tournament.

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