Download our AGM Annual Report below
Dear DHC members, supporters and fans,
Time flies when you are having fun and I can’t believe this fantastic hockey season (both on and off the field) is already coming to an end. All of this fun wouldn’t have been possible without the great voluntarily work done by our committee members and captains, so a special thanks to them! In this newsletter they reflect back on this season and share some funny insights on how they experienced this season.
Personally, I look back with pride on this season. With a dropping number of players joining our club last season, we knew we had to turn things around and that is exactly what we did! With much support from Kelly Ann and Sarah Noonan on our online presence we attracted over 40 new players from all over the world in our kids club, men and women divisions! It was great to welcome these new players to the Happy Valley training pitch again, where under the guidance from Ali we had some excellent training sessions and drinks afterwards.
With these great numbers came great results. Halfway through the season our ladies A team was promoted to the Premier Division and with some great wins they secured a solid fifth position at the end of the season. Our men’s A team continued their winning streak in the second half of the season and secured their promotion back to the first division. Our men and ladies’ B teams also did a great job and with some good coaching from Ali they transformed their strategies throughout the season resulting in excellent teamwork.
But as many of you already know it is not only the great sportsmanship which makes DHC the most fun to play for. DHC has always been a club for hockey enthusiasts who enjoy the game and meeting new people and for that there were many occasions outside of the hockey pitch such as the start of season BBQ, the Octoberfest, Christmas dinner in Tung Po market, the horse race event, the sixes, not to forget the various Friday night drinks and even now more to follow (junk & summer hockey).
With high attendance rates during the matches, the training and all social events I feel the club is fully ready for a next season. I hope that you enjoyed this season as much as I did and that we will see you again on the pitch in a DHC outfit after the summer!
On behalf of the whole DHC committee,
Read more from our Ladies, Mens, Juniors, Socials and Treasurer by clicking the link below if you are on our main blog page.
Ladies A – written by Charlotte Brearley
What a season it’s been for the Ladies As in 2017-18! A mid season promotion to the premier league, a whole host of new players, socials galore, but most importantly infinite positivity, enthusiasm and fun.
The first half of the season saw us lose only one game and as a result we were called up to the premier league. What initially seemed a daunting leap has given the team a new challenge and one that everyone has taken in their stride. The team has approached all the games and training (including additional fitness training!) with such commitment and it’s safe to say as a result we’ve surprised some of the ‘old timer’ prem teams with our skills and drive on the pitch. At the time of writing, we’re mid table with 2 wins, a draw and 3 losses so we’ll have to see where we finish the season but I think the Dutch have really demonstrated that we deserve to be in this league. Huge thanks must go to Ali and our part time coaches, Julian and Marius, for their excellent guidance, support and constant drive for improvements. We’ve really grown as a team and have so much to take forward into our remaining games and next season.
The thing I think we can be most proud of this season though is not just our promotion, but our team spirit. It’s rare to find a group of people that no matter what keep fighting until the end, stay positive and have so much fun on and off the field. It’s our greatest strength and something that has not gone unnoticed by other teams. Countless times opposition have commented on what a pleasure it’s been to play against us which is a joy to hear. Thank you to every single one of the team for bringing your energy and enthusiasm to every situation. It really has made the season. Special thanks must go to Sarah who we’ve missed on the pitch but have loved having you on the sideline as our chief supporter.
The final thing to say is really well done ladies. You’ve nailed every aspect of being part of a great hockey team. I already can’t wait for next season - bring on more of the boom box, the beers and the competition. We got this.
Ladies B team – written by Tiffany Lo
This season was a year of many “firsts” for the Ladies B Team: we welcomed many girls in their first years in Hong Kong, we fought hard again this year in the First Division, Bonnie scored her first field hockey goal in a game, Jolijn (still a member of our team in spirit of course!) and Ali welcomed the first child into their family, all in my first year as a team captain and my first full season of field hockey!
The season did not come without its challenges. While Liesbeth and Pleuni did a massive job at recruiting a lot of bright and spritely new players to join our team, the lack of familiarity with each other showed on the field. Nonetheless, each game was full of fun, energy and heart regardless of the result, especially with team mom Conny always at the ready with the kit and boxes dextro candy to recharge us!
It wasn’t just restricted to the hockey field either; with Janis sharing a local hotpot experience for all the newcomers far and wide, Jorinde, Leonie and Elzemieke coming up with the idea of a rooftop barbecue for the team to bond together over some drinking, and chitchat - all while attempting to cook something edible and relatively unburnt.
Throughout the season, we had some great games showing some great hockey potential, and even recently coming third in the 5 a-side tournament. I’m definitely excited about next year, when we will continue to improve and build on our team cohesiveness in the next season. I´m confident that that we will continue to flourish and achieve more great wins as a team, and hope everyone else is looking forward to it as much as I am!
Men’s A team – written by Michael Koppert
Col. John 'Hannibal' Smith: “I love it when a plan comes together.”
With a dropping number of players last season, we knew had to turn things around this year. Therefore, the decision was made to drop down to the 2nd division, rebuild the team and its Dutch spirit (celebrate each training, match or social event with a drink afterwards) and ensure we get promoted back to the 1st division at the end of the season!
During the summer break some aggressive recruitment campaigns were initiated and many new talented hockey players were flown in to Hong Kong. With high attendance rates, excellent coaching by Ali and a hyperactive captain Sjoerd we ended on top of the league at mid-season.
All this success was celebrated in abundance after the matches and at all the other great events organized by the club such as the yearly held Octoberfest, the ugly Christmas sweater dinner in Tung Po Kitchen (yes Alex you won the price!) and the New Years drinks in Knead. Our number of good looking supporters rose drastically and our fan mail increased to such high levels that some players didn’t even have time to come to training anymore…
Rumors of our success spread quickly all over the globe and the second half of the season we welcomed a couple of talented new players from England, Germany and the Netherlands. With such a strong foundation the rest of the season was an ‘egg’ or as the English like to call it a piece of cake and resulted in a well-earned promotion to the first division next year.
What a great season it was! A special thanks to Sjoerd and Ali for leading our team to the first division, To Alex, Dorus and Thomas for their contributions to the club as committee members, Gareth and Mark for their support to the kids club and of course you all for making this season a season to never forget!
Men’s B team – written by Bas Fransen
Dutch B Men ended the 2017-2018 season at the fourth place in a league with 12 teams, a great achievement! We certainly ended the 3rd half of all matches in the first place!
Dutch B this season was blessed with the coming of the “Local Gang of 5”: Alex Chan, Gavin Ma, Tom Tong, Eric Yuen and Angus Wong. This Gang has not only greatly contributed to the results, also probably halved the average age of the team!
Although called Dutch B Men, we ended up having 8 nationalities in the team; we have to adjust the naming next season! Last but not least, a word of “Thank You” to Ali, who besides the awesome trainings also coached the B team to results.
DHC Junior Hockey Season
It is with great happiness, that I get to write the 2017-2018 Kids Junior Hockey Report for the Dutch Hockey Club (DHC). In 2016-2017, the Junior club was without a Convener, simply relying on Ali our amazing coach to run the entire season, having seen the amount of effort required to run and grow a Junior Club, I can’t imagine how hard this must have been, particularly as we were without a field in the previous Hockey year.
But onwards and upwards! For 2017-2018 we regained access to the Happy Valley Hockey Fields for the Season running from September through to April, and we grew from around 15 kids to 30+ from ages 4-10 years old. Our kids participated in Competitions run by KCC, Valley RFC, Shaheen, Khalsa, HKFC and the Hong Kong Hockey Association. We also arranged a friendly on one of our Saturday training sessions between Valley and HKCC.
Some highlights of the junior year:
We also commenced a summer program for 8 weeks from May through June, which is open to the public and our existing members. This is a strong way for our kids to stay engaged throughout the off-season. The larger clubs get the benefit of indoor facilities, so it is important for our kids to feel like they are still getting the training they would like for the next year.
Lastly, the “thankyous’”. I’d like to thank the parents for their strong contributions on the side-line of training and games this year, we had a strong nit group of parents who were always there, many of which stepped up at different times of the season to co-ordinate the age-groups and to be the coach of the day.
To our club students & coaches who each week volunteered their time to help Ali with coaching either at training or at tournaments. It isn’t easy to try and co-ordinate a bunk of under 8-year olds to do the same activity (unless it is ‘Octopus’), we couldn’t do it without you, so thank you! Especially thanks to Sjoerd, Gareth, Amelie, Tiffany, Mike, Jayson, Liesbeth, Tessa, Sarah, Alex dH, Eric, Bonnie, Angus.
Lastly, Ali, thank you for co-ordinating your helpers throughout the season (Popaye, Jimmy) and providing a solid foundation for our kids. It says a lot about your coaching that the parents and kids wanted to continue into the summer. We heard a lot about how the parents were so happy by the end of the season with our strong tournament games, going from losses, to being runner-up in our last U10 competition! Your great coaching skills didn’t go unnoticed with every parent wanting to nominate you for the Hong Kong Hockey Association awards, and of course you won Junior Performance Coach of the Year.
Hears to a great 2018-2019 Junior Hockey season.
Socials – written by Dorus Reuwer
On the socials side there have been many successful events with tremendous help from fellow club members. With lots enthusiastic input from many members we managed to put together more events than ever!
This season started off with a bang! The club BBQ was the big kick-off to the 2017-2018 season. With Caro from Ladies A indulging us with delicious Argentinian meat and copious amount of drinks it set the tone for a great start. The sun was out, the BBQ was hot and the turnout was very high.
Christmas came early this year; on the 2nd of December no less! In 2018 we forget about racist Sinterklaas and his army of slaves and went straight over to Christmas. Our own treasurer Alexander was in such a drunk state that even Bas Fransen finally showed his true colors by making a move on him! Obviously he got shot down immediately, later on the group went into town and many stayed out until the next morning trying to forget about this embarrassing turn of events.
The regular club socials are always the steady core of the clubs events. With my personal favorite the New Years drinks at Knead. The place was packed, bitterballen were being served and it was a good chance to get learn some of our new players. While some people were referring to the sandwiches as Sheba (T. Uiterwaal), some people could also not stop eating them (T. Uiterwaal). For some the night finished in Wan Chai, since serial goal misser Floris Evers had "never been there".
Many more of these nights have enriched our hockey lives like team BBQ's, Octoberfest, Horse Races and Hong Kong 6's. Here the Dutch team was well represented with horrible Dutch music provided by Ali. The drinking games were (probably) instigated by terrorchild Thomas Kluijtmans.
As a big finish to the season we are organizing our biggest event yet; The DHC Junk with 2 junk boats! All inclusive with drinks, food, music, awards and a big (literally) surprise from our chairman! All are welcome, friends, family. It was a great success last year and this time it will be bigger than ever. Everybody is going to be there and so should you! June 2nd!
Special thanks to Caro, Kelly-Ann, Liesbeth, Tiffany, Alexander, Michael and Koene for helping put together all these festivities. Here's to next season with many more events to come.
Enjoy the Junk!
Finance update – written by Alex de Haseth
DHC is currently in an economically healthy position and has approximately three seasons of costs as reserves. The club has made a small profit this year of HKD30.000, but we are awaiting some final costs from the junk and summer hockey.
This year the amount of sponsorship received decreased, but savings were realized by re-using the kits and asking members to contribute more to social events. In addition, we attracted more new players, which resulted in an increase of collected contribution.
The financial report 2017 / 2018 has been signed off by the chairman. For any financial related questions you can reach out to either Michael Koppert or Alex de Haseth. Next year Alex de Haseth will continue in his role as treasurer, he is looking for support so please reach out to Alex if you are interested in helping with the finances!
The DHC Committee unites the club with a series of social events, co-ordination of the season. Hear more about what the Dutch Hockey Club in Hong Kong is up to. Remember all welcome!