Team with sky-blue jerseys rewarded with spots

Cambridge's solid start to the South Canterbury senior men's hockey competition has seen them rewarded with nine players in the 16-man South Canterbury squad for the Ian Smith Trophy regional tournament in Oamaru over Queen's Birthday Weekend.

The team with the sky-blue jerseys find themselves in the top four, having had the best start to a season in some time.

New coach Bruce Rayner said with just Northern Hearts, Cambridge and Timaru Boys' High School making up the squad, it was important to get the right balance.

"Cambridge may have lost to Hearts in their match this season, I think they played some strong hockey.

"We've only got the three teams to pick from, and those that missed out can consider themselves a bit unlucky."

The team has plenty of experience, with Cambridge veteran Andrew Brunton and Heart's Cooper brothers Matt and Simon.

Rayner said TBHS player Campbell Ross was a sign of a strong presence of youth in the team. "Campbell more than held his own at the trials - put it this way, he certainly won't be a bench player."

He will join former TBHS team-mates BJ Mason and Cameron Gray in the squad, while former Excelsior lynchpin Jeremy Smallridge also gets a callup after impressing for Northern Hearts.

"It all comes down to having the right attitude," Rayner said. "If we turn up and play like we can then we'll match anyone."

Mid-Canterbury are defending champions of the regional tournament that also involves Invercargill, Eastern Southland, North Otago and Central Otago.

South Canterbury men's hockey team: George Boyd (Cambridge), Andrew Brunton (Cambridge), Tim Butler (Northern Hearts), Logan Callow (Cambridge), William Ching (Cambridge), Matt Cooper (Northern Hearts), Simon Cooper (Northern Hearts), Cameron Gray (Cambridge), Tim Greenall (Northern Hearts), Josh Mcarthur (Northern Hearts), Ivan McAuley (Cambridge), BJ Mason (Cambridge), Tom Nation (Cambridge), Jared Parmenter (Cambridge), Campbell Ross (TBHS), Jeremy Smallridge (Northern Hearts)

The Timaru Herald