Mike Corby, the president of the England Hockey Association, was "totally and utterly optimistic for the future of English hockey," following the Council meeting held to discuss losses of approximately £750,000.
Corby, who met with the Association's auditors yesterday, confirmed that the 2001 audit was now under way and that the Council approved a positive financial plan which set to deliver a profit on the current year's operations. The plan incorporated stringent cut-backs in the Association's operations while limiting affiliation fee increases to five per cent.
Corby added that the Council had been reassured by the robust nature and detail of the forward plans and that strict controls and measurable targets were being given to Richard Wyatt, the Association's Chief Executive. Corby emphasised that the problem was one of "paper losses" which had presented a cash flow problem and confirmed that plans for staging the 2003 Champions Trophy at Milton Keynes were going ahead.
The row following remarks made by the Fyffes Leicester manager Kevin Blanks concerning umpiring, and the threat of an umpire boycott of Leicester's women's Premier League game at Clifton today was resolved yesterday with an apology from the Leicester club and confirmation that Blanks would be suspended pending further enquiries.
The men's Premier Division returns to full action tomorrow following the break for the World Cup with the day's top encounter being at second-placed Surbiton, who entertain Cannock, while the leaders Reading visit Teddington.