Monday, December 11, 2023

Harry Gibson retires as England and GB goalkeeper

A new era of goalkeepers in the England set-up will be ushered in following the news that Harry Gibson has retired from international hockey.

Gibson made 77 international appearances for GB and England but after six years vying for the No 1 jersey with George Pinner, both have now retired. It leaves Ollie Payne as the only goalkeeper in the national men’s programme, with one, possibly two more, to be selected for the Paris cycle.

Gibson made his GB debut in 2015 and England debut two years later. He won European and Commonwealth Games bronze medals while also claiming bronze at the 2017 Hockey World League Semi-Finals in London. He also helped GB win the Azlan Shah title in 2017.

“To think this list of milestones is the same 12-year-old boy who first picked up a stick in Devon over 16 years ago is rather mind blowing,” Gibson said.

“Of course, when you get there you realise it’s more about the people around you, the team and the relationships you build, the growth you experience as an individual testing yourself in an elite performance environment.

“For those relationships, those memories and those lessons, I’ll be forever grateful.”

Gibson retires at 28 and although he admitted that he had a few years left “in the tank”, he had been contemplating the decision for a few years.

He added: “I have not accomplished everything I set out to achieve in the sport, but the time has come where my passion for life off the pitch has outgrown that of life on it, and I’m excited about what this next chapter will hold.

“I will long treasure my time as an England and Great Britain international; the friends and memories I’ve made; the one, lonely gold medal I managed to win and the opportunities this brilliant sport has afforded me over the years.”

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