The president of the Ghana Hockey Association (GHA), Mr Richard Akpokavie yesterday gave an assurance that despite the financial constraints facing the association, they were poised to host and win the World Hockey League Round 1 to be staged between September 9 and 11 2016.
The Minister of Youth and Sports, Nii Lante Vanderpuye, the vice president of the GHA, Mr James Amo Gotfried, the Greater Accra president of the GHA, George Hazel, as well as the chairpersons of the Local Organising Committee, Mr Kwame Owusu and Madam Elizabeth Safoah King, were among the dignitaries who attended the press conference.
Mr Akpokavie said media support would not only galvanise corporate bodies and individuals to develop interest in hockey and support them in diverse ways in their financial predicaments, but would also motivate the players to deliver.
“We are fortunate to be given this opportunity by the International Hockey Federation (FIH) to host this important tournament, hence the need for us to take full advantage to qualify for the Hockey World League Round 2,” he explained.
He contended that hosting the tournament would also offer the sports fraternity the opportunity to better appreciate the players and the infrastructure at their disposal
On sponsorship, he said the GHA needed GH¢100,000 to host the tournament successfully, but with only a few days to begin the competition only Vodafone had offered them limited sponsorship.
In his address, Nii Vanderpuye commended the GHA for their selflessness in sustainining the interest of hockey in the country and assured of government’s support in their endeavours.
“The sacrifices that people have made in the development of the lesser sports, especially hockey, should be a catalyst for the government to support you to achieve greater heights,” he noted.
While thanking corporate bodies that had supported sports in various ways, he said their effort would not go waste because the government would respond appropriately to offer them tax incentives to motivate them to do more.