Sunday, December 3, 2023

Olympic hockey qualifier: Great Britain’s Alan Forsyth sets sights on century

Forward Alan Forsyth will aim to take Surbiton’s sizzling goal form into Great Britain’s Tokyo or bust Olympic qualifier against Malaysia this weekend – and finish it by hitting a ton.

The Scot has been part of Surbiton’s brilliant start to the season which has seen the league champions rack up 50 goals in just eight games (six domestically and two in the EHL), with Forsyth accumulating 11 of them.

Forsyth is also two goals away from notching 100 international goals and is part of coach Danny Kerry’s 18-strong squad for the two matches on Saturday and Sunday.

Liam Sanford will make his first appearance on home soil in more than a year, while rising Welsh star Jacob Draper is also included for the first time after impressing at this summer’s EuroHockey Championships.

Sanford comes into the side in place of Brendan Creed, who has been ruled out with a serious knee injury, while Ashley Jackson and Chris Griffiths are also sidelined with injury.

Kerry said: “The lads have been excellent over the last six weeks in the way they have prepared for these matches. The team are very fit, powerful and fast. With some athletes unavailable through injury we have reshuffled our pack which is testimony to the depth and competition for places we have created over the last year.

“Jacob Draper is an exciting new inclusion to the team and he brings a tenacity, speed and agility to defence, plus excellent assuredness on the ball.”

Kerry anticipates Malaysia will play with “intelligence, tempo and purpose”, with GB looking to negate the Malaysian’s ploy of counter attacking from deep, PC and aerial threats.

All of the men’s and women’s FIH Olympic Qualifier matches will be shown on BT Sport.

GB squad

David Ames (Holcombe) – ENG Will Calnan (Hampstead & Westminster) – ENG Adam Dixon (C) (Beeston) – ENG Jacob Draper (Hampstead & Westminster) – WAL Alan Forsyth (Surbiton) – SCO James Gall (Surbiton) – ENG Harry Gibson (GK) (Surbiton) – ENG Harry Martin (Hampstead & Westminster) – ENG George Pinner (GK) (Old Georgians) – ENG Phil Roper (Wimbledon) – ENG Liam Sanford (Old Georgians) – ENG Ian Sloan (Wimbledon) – ENG Tom Sorsby (Surbiton) – ENG Zach Wallace (Surbiton) – ENG Jack Waller (Wimbledon) – ENG Sam Ward (Old Georgians) – ENG Henry Weir (Wimbledon) – ENG Ollie Willars (Beeston) – ENG

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