Maddie Hinch was hailed as a “real presence” on Thursday after being named world goalkeeper of the year for a third year in succession – with the annual awards dominated by Belgium.
Hinch, 30, is currently taking an international break from the sport but can be proud of picking up the award she has made her own in recent years, since first being recognised on the shortlist in 2014.
However, the public voting was a close run affair as she just pipped Ayeisha McFerran, Ireland’s rising goalkeeper who stood out during Ireland’s World Cup to remember.
This year’s awards predictably saw Belgium, as the world men’s champions, pick up four awards, led by Arthur van Doren, who won the male player of the year award for a second year running, while Kiwi Shane McLeod won coach of the year.
Meanwhile, eight of the 10 awards were won by European-born players.
Great Britain’s Performance Director Ed Barney said: “Over the past 10+ years Maddie has been a real presence, a dynamic goal keeper and a hugely respected international player by her teammates and the opposition.
“Maddie has made a phenomenal contribution to the achievements of England and Great Britain Hockey, not only in the women’s programme, but also across the sport in Great Britain.”
Hinch only recently returned to the Netherlands after a hockey hiatus where she will resume Hoofdklasse duties, while she has yet to reveal when she will return on the international scene.
Barney added: “Her passion and commitment for the sport and goal keeping is something very special and valued by all. The award is thoroughly deserved and a mark of a very special contribution to the sport.”
The Dutch were the other award winners following the successful defence of their women’s world title last summer. Eva de Goede won women’s player of the year, while Alyson Annan was voted female coach of the year.
FIH Hockey Stars Awards 2018
Female Player of the Year 2018
Winner: Eva de Goede (NED – 28.7%)
Fellow nominees: Lidewij Welten (NED – 23.5%), Stacey Michelsen (NZL – 17.1%), Xan de Waard (NED – 16.5%), Georgina Oliva (ESP – 14.2%)
Male Player of the Year 2018
Winner: Arthur van Doren (BEL – 28.1%)
Fellow nominees: Simon Gougnard (BEL – 27.3%), Barry Middleton (ENG – 24.7%), Billy Bakker (NED – 13.9%), Jake Whetton (AUS – 6%)
Female Rising Star of the Year 2018
Winner: Lucina von der Heyde (ARG – 26.4%)
Fellow nominees: Lena Tice (IRL – 22%), Marijn Veen (NED – 22%), Nike Lorenz (GER – 16.6%), Ambrosia Malone (AUS – 13%)
Male Rising Star of the Year 2018
Winner: Arthur de Sloover (BEL – 34.2%)
Fellow nominees: Thijs van Dam (NED – 33.1%), Timm Herzbruch (GER – 15.6%), Tim Brand (AUS – 11.2%), Jake Harvie (AUS – 5.9%)
Female Goalkeeper of the Year 2018
Winner: Maddie Hinch (ENG – 39.9%)
Fellow nominees: Ayeisha McFerran (IRL – 37.7%), Rachael Lynch (AUS – 8.1%), Maria Ruiz (ESP – 7.9%), Ye Jiao (CHN – 6.4%)
Male Goalkeeper of the Year 2018
Winner: Vincent Vanasch (BEL – 46%)
Fellow nominees: Pirmin Blaak (NED – 18.7%), George Pinner (ENG – 14.9%), Tobias Walter (GER – 12.4%), Tyler Lovell (AUS – 8%)
Female Umpire of the Year 2018
Michelle Meister (GER)
Male Umpire of the Year 2018
Marcin Grochal (POL)
Female Coach of the Year 2018
Alyson Annan (AUS) – Head Coach, Netherlands Women
Male Coach of the Year 2018
Shane McLeod (NZL) – Head Coach, Belgium Men
Keep your eyes peeled to The Hockey Paper this week as we reveal exciting details of our plans in 2019.