UDP Groups 8, 9 and 10 held a joint seminar this past weekend at the FIH Hockey Champions Trophy in Lee Valley Hockey and Tennis Centre in London, England. This was a unique opportunity not only for group 10 to officially meet the other groups but also to experience top level hockey and umpiring.

Shane O’Donnell, from Group 10, sent us a report on his first experience at a UDP seminar.

UDP touch down in London Town

The weekend began in exciting fashion as the groups met on Friday evening at the final of the Men’s Champions Trophy. After introductions, the groups enjoyed a thrilling game with a great atmosphere and some late drama.

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Saturday began early with a breakfast introduction from our Mentors, Carol Metchette, Michiel Bruning, Stella Bartlema and Andy Mair. We formed groups and reviewed each match with a particular management aspect in mind. Working with the other UDP groups and mentors was great as it provided a different perspective on each topic and after each game we had a good discussion on the issues. After three games of hockey, we had a special treat at dinner where Umpire Claire Adenot joined us after her game earlier in the day. It was a great opportunity to get to know Claire and especially her thoughts on her game and how it went.

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On Sunday morning, we had another early start and we were welcomed to Loughborough University’s London Campus where we kicked off with a review of Saturday’s action and what we observed and took from the games. This was followed by an amazing opportunity to learn from none other than the one of the Rio Olympic Games Umpires Manager, Craig Gribble. Craig provided some fascinating insight into his view of how the game of hockey has changed over the years and shared some of his thoughts on how umpires can evolve with the game to ensure they are continually developing. The session was concluded with specific video clips to highlight areas for umpire improvement.

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We then departed for Lee Valley  to watch the last two games of the day. The focus for the groups was “Umpire Anticipation” and how it could take different forms depending on the type of game. Through group discussions and input from the mentors, it was again another hugely beneficial day.

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The EHF would like to thank the mentors, Claire Adenot and Craig Gribble for giving of their time and sharing their knowledge with the UDP groups.

Source: EHF/Shane O’Donnell