Pitch Perfect

League

Like in India, hockey assumes significance in an Olympic year for it's one of Australia's best bets for a gold medal. Dwyer excelled in cricket himself and says he would have played professional golf if not hockey. "Hockey is basically a family sport. You play it because you love it. And then, there's the lure of playing at the Olympics. Trust me, there's no better feeling than winning an Olympic gold."

'In Germany, hockey doesn't earn you a livelihood'

Oscar Deecke I 26 (German striker)

HIL team: Delhi Waveriders

Of the hunting trophies that Oscar Deecke's Burse a rifle with a very long barrel has collected, one that stands out is the head of a massive buck hanging in his parents' house in Hamburg. His most prized possession, however, is a much smaller item, earned in a significantly less violent manner, although perhaps a lot more sweat and blood went into it. It hung around his neck as he stood on the podium in London on August 12, 2012: an Olympic gold.

The 26-year-old's twin passions hockey and hunting might seem vastly different, but in Deecke's case, they are two sides of the same coin. For in order to be a good striker, one needs to have predatory instincts. Hunting is also an outlet for the stress of the sport in particular, and life in general. Stripped of all preoccupations, out there in the woods, it's man against nature. As he puts it succinctly, "hunting takes me away from the city's hectic life and helps me refocus."

The city that drives him away to the jungle nurtured his first love. "The hockey scene is very vibrant in Hamburg," Deecke says. "It is to German hockey what Jalandhar or Ranchi is to Indian hockey." And, therefore, almost everyone in his circle at some point has played hockey. "My father used to play hockey he still plays at an amateur level. When I was three, he took me to a local hockey club. I've been playing the game ever since. My two sisters are also club level hockey players. I'm the only one to have made it to the German national team, and now to the Hockey India League. So you can say that I have made my family proud," Deecke says.

... contd.

Please read our terms of use before posting comments
TERMS OF USE: The views, opinions and comments posted are your, and are not endorsed by this website. You shall be solely responsible for the comment posted here. The website reserves the right to delete, reject, or otherwise remove any views, opinions and comments posted or part thereof. You shall ensure that the comment is not inflammatory, abusive, derogatory, defamatory &/or obscene, or contain pornographic matter and/or does not constitute hate mail, or violate privacy of any person (s) or breach confidentiality or otherwise is illegal, immoral or contrary to public policy. Nor should it contain anything infringing copyright &/or intellectual property rights of any person(s).
comments powered by Disqus