England’s women look to build on World Cup fourth place finish in Terrassa

England’s women’s EuroHockey U21 Championship squad will feature 10 of the players that helped them reach the final four of the 2023 Junior World Cup in Chile with Beth Alexander captaining the side.

Indeed, six of the panel are back for a second EuroHockey U21 championship – Sofia Martin, Tilly Butterworth, Bronte Bough, Georgie Gardens, Maddie Long and Marta Le Huray. As such, it is a side with a good amount of mutual understanding.

Holcombe’s Lottie Bingham is one to watch; she was named the England Hockey Women’s Junior Performance Player of the Year.

Liv Breed is one of the newcomers; she was part of the East Grinstead panel that impressed during the Euro Hockey League FINAL8 at Easter, finishing in fifth place. She is a former national cross-country runner, representing England’s schools.

Similarly multi-talented, Martin was part of the Tottenham Hotspur football academy before prioritising hockey at Under-16 level.

The squad mostly hails from university teams with two of their panel based in the United States – Daisy Ford at Stanford University and Bough with Harvard University.

In front of goal, Scarlett Spavin and Long’s trio of goals were vital in their World Cup run, defeating the likes of New Zealand, USA, Japan and Germany.

The side is coached by Simon Letchford with Lisa Letchford and Leigh Maasdorp assisting him. Simon previously worked with the Belgian senior and Under-21 programmes before returning to England while Lisa earned 99 caps for England and Great Britain. She was the first woman to coach a Belgian men’s Honor Division team.

They are looking to land their first medal since 2017 having previously won silver and bronze medals five times each.

Best performance: Silver – 5 times (1988, 2000, 2002, 2006, 2010)

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