New Delhi: Hockey India (HI) has nominated its president, Narinder Batra, for the top job of the International Hockey Federation (FIH), elections for which will be held in November, it was announced here Wednesday. Batra, one of the most powerful members of the world hockey fraternity, will stand against Australia’s Ken Read and Ireland’s David Balbirnie for the vote that will take place on November 12 in Dubai. (Former hockey players protest, demand Bharat Ratna for Dhyan Chand)
Batra became the HI Treasurer in 2009 and its Secretary General in 2010 followed by the top job in 2014. “Hockey India has recommended by name and I have filed my nomination with an aim to serve the sport that I am deeply passionate about. I feel there is more that we can do at a global level to garner the kind of support hockey requires and deserves,” Batra said.
“I would see this opportunity to bring in fresh ideas that could change the way the sport is positioned and perceived world over.” FIH also said that on the Executive Board, Members Mary Cicinelli from Canada and England’s Sue Catton will be standing for re-election while the Netherlands’ Jan Albers and Pakistan’s Qasim Zia have chosen not to stand for another term in office.
This means that four positions as Ordinary Members of the FIH Executive Board will be elected at the Congress, or five if current Board Member Batra is elected as President. The female candidates in addition to Sue Catton and Mary Cicinelli are Danae Andrada from Uruguay and Hazel Kennedy from Zambia whilst male nominees are Eric Cornelissen from the Netherlands; Spain’s Santiago Deo; outgoing Athletes’ Committee Chair Michael Green from Germany; United States’ Shawn Hindy and Tayyab Ikram from Macau.
Continental federation presidents — Egypt’s Seif Ahmed (Africa), HRH Prince Abdullah Shah of Malaysia (Asia), Netherlands Marijke Fleuren (Europe), New Zealand’s Pam Elgar (Oceania) and Argentina’s Coco Budeisky (Pan America) — will remain on the Board until their next continental elections.
They are supported by the Ordinary Members of the Executive Board, all of whom have another two years in office to complete their existing terms – Batra (India), Marc Coudron (Belgium), Maureen Craig-Rousseau (Trinidad and Tobago) and Pamela Stuper (US).
The FIH Athletes’ Committee is also represented on the Board, ensuring that athletes play an important role in determining the future of hockey. Departing Chair Michael Green from Germany will be replaced on the Board by incoming Joint-Chair Annie Panter from England. The election of the FIH Executive Board will be part of the 45th FIH Congress on 12 November following several days of action packed activity in Dubai.
Executive Board and Continental Federation meetings will take place between November 9-10 in addition to the inaugural Turf and Field Forum for organisations involved in the FIH Quality Programme for Hockey Turf.