Banbridge set to host EuroHockey Trophy II

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Banbridge Hockey Club are set to host the men’s Euro Hockey Club Trophy II this weekend with the tournament finally coming to Ulster after being cancelled in 2020.

The hosts will be joining some of the top clubs in Europe, playing against teams from Wales, Italy and Croatia.

Banbridge have already had a very successful season, winning the EYHL, Irish Senior Cup and Champions Trophy as well as reaching the finals of both The Anderson Cup and Millar McCall Wylie Kirk Cup.

Speaking to Ulster Hockey ahead of the tournament, Bann Coach Scott McCandless admitted he was looking forward to the event.

“It is going to be a really nice tournament to end the season.” He said.

“There are seven good sides to coming to Havelock Park, we will be playing the Welsh side first who will provide strong opposition before we go on to play the Italians and the Croatians so if we apply ourselves, I believe we can do very well in this tournament and it should be a good weekend.”

The first team Bann are to face, is Swansea Hockey Club– who describe themselves as the top club in Wales. However, McCandless and his side have put a lot of work into their preparation for the competition and are raring to go.

“I think we are coming into this tournament in good shape, we had a good friendly against the Irish Senior Men last week and we felt good.

We are also in the position to be able to take a fully fit squad into the tournament so we are hoping everything goes well for us in our matches.”

SG Amsicora are the team from Italy with the most Italian championships and this will be their third time travelling to Banbridge. The final team the hosts will face in the group stage will be HAHK Mladost from Croatia.

The 2022-23 Ulster Hockey Umpire of the year Russell Donaldson is also set to feature in the competition. The 33-year-old has been umpiring for 14 years at all levels of hockey, including international and also umpired in last years tournament in Geneva.

“I am very much looking forward to being a part of the tournament, it is something that is an honour to be involved in.

You meet all sorts of people who that you would never otherwise meet and become friends with.

It was particularly nice to umpire the final of that tournament with a Ukrainian umpire too, which was a fairly remarkable thing given all the sorts of things that were going on in his world at the time.”

Points will be allocated to teams toward next season’s competition, with the top teams in each pool winning promotion to Euro Hockey Club Trophy I for 2024. Banbridge are set to play their first match against Swansea at 18:45 tonight at Havelock Park.


By Lili Busby

Photo courtesy of Front Row Union (

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