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Hoci Cymru CEO Update

Dear Members,

As we approach the end of the financial year and the conclusion of another thrilling season, it's a perfect time to reflect on the vast array of activity that we've completed in recent months.

Firstly, a heartfelt thank you to all the clubs and volunteers who participated in the club forums. Your presence, ideas, challenges, and support have been invaluable to us. The opportunity to listen to your feedback and share our upcoming plans has strengthened our link to the membership.

Celebrations were in order last week as we witnessed a historic achievement by Wales and GB star Jacob Draper, who became the first Welsh individual to triumph in the EHL, delivering a stellar man of the match performance in the final. Let's extend our best wishes to Jacob and the rest of our GB athletes as they aim for further success, potentially heading to Paris this summer.

The National Centre was abuzz with excitement as multiple schools clinched the prestigious title of Inspire Sport National Champions, showcasing an exceptional standard of play across all finals. Congratulations also go out to Cardiff & Met Men for retaining their Premier League status, marking another significant milestone in our hockey journey. Furthermore, we were delighted to hear about the 2 medals secured by Masters age group sides at the recent indoors competition.

I would also like to note other medal winning performances by Cardiff & Met Men at the Euro Trophy, as well as James Carson and Leah Wilkinson picking up medals at EHL. It’s fantastic to see so many Welsh athletes continuing to perform on the European stage and keeping Wales on the map.

As we gear up for the upcoming Cup finals, we encourage everyone to come out and support your clubs, fostering a vibrant atmosphere down in Swansea.

Our Easter Series was a resounding success, with over 1800 enthusiastic spectators cheering on the national teams. A special thank you to all who attended, volunteered, and to our dedicated staff who worked tirelessly to deliver a memorable event over the four days. The launch of our new Welsh kit added to the excitement, symbolising our commitment to Welsh heritage and movement to becoming a sports business.

Additionally, the weekend's streaming success, with nearly 10k people viewing from homes and phones, underlines the growing demand for our international teams and diverse sports consumption. Looking ahead, our aim is to host a thrilling 4 nations tournament in August, so stay tuned for more details.

We are also thrilled to announce our new commercial partnership with VEO as our technology partner, further enhancing our sport's profile and opportunities to develop coaching expertise. Clubs interested in crowdfunding for a system can reach out to their Hockey Development Officer for more information.

Further detail can be found here.

Our recent announcement has seen us partner with the Charity RALPHH to offer clubs the opportunity to benefit from a free defib that can be kept pitch side and improve the safety of our sport for both players and spectators. A hugely valuable community resource that I would encourage all clubs to make use of. More information can be found here.

In the coming weeks, we'll be sending out relevant paperwork ahead of our general meeting on July 11th. Please keep an eye on our website and social media for updates and details.

As the Olympics draw near, we'll be unveiling plans on how clubs can contribute to maximizing the opportunities that this grand event offers in inspiring future players, coaches, and volunteers. Stay tuned for more exciting announcements.

Post Olympics we have a busy international tournament calendar with European 5s, U21s and Senior qualification coming up, with all teams looking to move up the rankings and gain success.

Thank you for being an integral part of our hockey family. Let's continue to work together towards greater achievements and memorable experiences on and off the field.

Warm regards,

Paul Whapham

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