Doncaster HC have paid tribute to a “true giant of the sport” following the passing of Andrew ‘Gibbo’ Gibson last week, writes Richard Bright.
Andrew was driving driving home from coaching at a school last Tuesday when he was involved in a fatal car accident. He was 31.
“The sense of disbelief and the outpouring of sadness and grief are a true mark of the man and the impact he had on so many lives in his far too short life,” said Alan Stoves, Doncaster HC’s president.
Hockey was an integral part of Andrew’s life – and especially at Doncaster. His father, Graeme, was a long-serving player, manager, benefactor and chairman while his brother, Matt, is the current’s men’s 1s player and coach.
Andrew started out in the South Yorkshire single system before he took over as Doncaster women’s 1s head coach aged 23, before fronting the club’s junior programme.
He coached at Alderley Edge Women and assisted with the men’s 1st Team at Brooklands, while opportunities with the EH Performance Centres, Wales under-21’s and English Universities also came to fruition. His latest role came with Loughborough Students women’s programme.
“It is safe to say that Andy was one of the leading young coaches in the country and destined for bigger and brighter things,” added Stoves.
“Andy had a huge circle of friends, it was inevitable given the type of man he was. He could talk to anyone about anything. His encyclopaedic knowledge of sport meant he was the lifeblood of the sports club.
“Whether it was talking about his beloved Leeds United or what would win the 2.30 at Newmarket, his sharp wit had everybody in his presence smiling.”