After a highly successful 2016-17 season, Camberley and Farnborough Hockey Club have been including on the shortlist for this year’s England Hockey Awards.
The awards, which celebrate the achievements of volunteers, umpires, coaches and players over the past year, saw Camberley and Farnborough shortlisted for the Awards, with a nomination for the Ladies’ 1st XI in the Team of the Year – Women and Ladies’ 1st XI Captain Ali Gardner in the Unsung Hero category.
Speaking about the nominations, Ali Gardner said: “It is a huge honour to see the team nominated after achieving back-to-back promotions, moving from Surrey Division 5 up to Surrey Division 3 in the last two seasons. To see the hard work and efforts of everyone involved – not just the players, but coaches, umpires and those who volunteer their time to help and support the club – acknowledged and rewarded in this way is truly special.
“This year we finished the season top of our league, losing only one game – if we could walk away with as England Hockey’s Team of the Season that would be the icing on the cake!”
It was Hannah Rowe, Ladies’ Vice-Chairman for Camberley and Farnborough, who put forward the nominations, including that of Ali Gardner as the club’s Unsung Hero. Speaking about her decision she said: “Hockey is everything to Ali and she wants it to be everything to all those she coaches and plays with. Ali plays, coaches, umpires and is a champion in the community for hockey and our hockey club. None of this she does for payment or acclaim, but simply for the love of the game. Without her, there would be no club.
“Under her guidance, previously as Ladies’ Club Captain, and now less formally as the club linchpin, not only have the 1st XI been promoted in successive seasons, but the 2nd XI are now in Division 9, only narrowly missing out on promotion, and the 3rd XI achieved their aim of playing all their games with a full team and finishing a creditable mid table. All this is just five years on from having one ladies team, with 9 players.”
The glittering awards dinner will be held at the Athena in Leicester on May 20 and will see hockey lovers from across the country gather, with 13 awards to be handed out in total. The evening will see Camberley and Farnborough rubbing shoulders with some of the biggest names in the sport, with over 20 GB and England athletes set to attend.
While the league season may have ended there are still plenty of opportunities to play hockey at the club this summer, including Back To Hockey sessions. The Back To Hockey scheme is designed to offer lapsed players and first timers the chance to get out on the pitch, enjoy playing hockey and get fit all while have some fun.
The sessions run from 7.15pm to 8.15pm every Friday night until June 16th (excluding May 12th and June 2nd), and focus on core skills to provide players with the basics, followed by a small game. If people enjoy playing then they are welcome to become part of the club and keep playing throughout the season.
To get involved or to find out more, please contact Jacqui Boot.
Note to editors:
Camberley and Farnborough Hockey Club (CFHC) are a local community club, that have over 200 members and draws their membership from all around Surrey, Hampshire and London. They play at Kings International College
CFHC currently have three Ladies’ teams and four Men’s teams playing in the Surrey League, plus The Owls, a Veterans Team. They also run a Colts scheme with eight sides at various age ranges
The Men’s 1st XI Team play in Regional Division 2, having been promoted three times in five years, winning the EH National Vase in 2013-14 for the first time in the club’s history
The Men’s 2nd XI have also gained promotion to SOHL Premier League last season
For the last two seasons the Ladies’ squad fielded three sides. The Ladies’ 1st XI will be playing in Surrey Division 3 next season, the 2nd XI playing in Division 9 and the 3rd XI playing in Division 11
Photographs available on request