Welsh ‘underdogs’ put in bid for Olympic hockey pitch

[img_assist|nid=6160|title=|desc=|link=none|align=right|width=100|height=88]TYWYN, September 25 – Dysynni Hockey Club must be one of the lowest profile clubs bidding for the Olympic ‘smurfturf’ hockey pitch which is being removed from Olympic Park, Stratford. 

But the Welsh club believes the relocation of the surface to a small but growing community-based club in a rural area could send a powerful message about the legacy of the London Olympic Games.Clwb Hoci Dysynni is based in Tywyn, on the Cardigan Bay coast. If their bid were successful the blue Olympic surface would be used to replace the club’s existing artificial pitch.

The club’s bid states: “Awarding the pitch to a small, unheard of, rural club would be a leap of faith. There are clubs who will express an interest in the pitch who are larger, more accomplished perhaps, but there are no clubs making this expression to you with more passion, pride or love for their community than our family here in Dysynni.“

Francesca Pridding from the club told Push that with the nearest water-based pitches in Wrexam to the east, then Cardiff and Swansea in south Wales, an upgrade to the Dysynni pitch would be a great boost to hockey in mid-Wales.

“We are definitely the underdogs,” she said. “There are bound to be much bigger clubs putting in bids. But relocating the pitch here could make the area into a real hub for Welsh Hockey.

“There is no way in a million years we would be able to afford a pitch like this on our own.” 

Dysynni has been chosen as one of Hockey Wales new 360° development centres helping to deliver their programme to develop potential future Olympic players. 

The club has more than 150 members and the junior section currently has eight U18 internationals, four U16 internationals and three U13 Welsh Dragons. The club also boasts six international veteran players. 

We hear that 33 clubs have put in bids for the pitch. Six have been shortlisted, with a decision due soon. Other bidders we know of include England men’s hockey league premier division club Beeston.