Hockey: Garcia brings strength to Olympic qualification bid
Tuesday 02 March 2004
Four years ago Great Britain's hope of qualification for the Sydney Olympics just about evaporated when they were beaten 5-2 by Poland in Osaka, postman Piotr Mikula scoring all five goals. Fortunately, with a 4-3 victory against Belgium and a 3-1 win over Argentina, Great Britain salvaged the situation and made the trip to Sydney.
Today in Madrid they open their qualifying campaign for Athens against Poland who, in addition to Mikula making his 150th international appearance, will include Tomasz Dulkiewicz who scored a hat-trick in a game which England eventually won 4-3 in Barcelona last year.
Making his 300th international appearance for Great Britain will be Russel Garcia, who was missing in Osaka after his flirtation with cocaine. He will greatly strengthen Britain's midfield. With just seven of the teams from the 12 nations tournament to qualify, a good start today is important, particularly as Britain face the Dutch Olympic champions tomorrow.
Britain then face Japan, the European silver medallists Spain and South Africa. While the national coach, Jason Lee, is quietly confident of qualifying, he was quick to point out that there is not a team in the tournament that Britain has not lost to at one time or another.
Latest in Sport
QPR vs Arsenal match report: Olivier Giroud and Alexis Sanchez on the scoresheet for the Gunners
Newcastle 0 Manchester United 1: Louis van Gaal describes performance as 'maybe our best match of the season'
Cristiano Ronaldo: Real Madrid superstar 'sends his hair stylist to look after his waxwork once a month'
Newcastle vs Manchester United match report: Ashley Young scores late winner as Angel Di Maria fails to shine yet again
Brooklyn Beckham to be released: Why Arsenal could regret letting David Beckham's son depart
- 1 What happens to your body when you give up sugar?
- 2 Drugs Live cannabis trial: Hash is less harmful than any other drug, expert claims
- 3 Turkish Airlines flight TK 726 crash-lands on Nepal runway in dense fog
- 4 Have sex with your iPad thanks to the new sex toy no-one asked for
- 5 The majority of sex workers enjoy their job - why should we find that surprising?
Nearly 100,000 of Britain's poorest children go hungry after parents' benefits are cut
Durham Free School: 'Creationism taught at' free school facing closure
Ukip would cut billions from Scottish budget to fund English tax cuts
End of the licence fee: BBC to back radical overhaul of how it is funded
Ukraine crisis: Top Chinese diplomat backs Putin and says West should 'abandon zero-sum mentality'
Boris Nemtsov shot dead: Outspoken Putin critic who had expressed fears for his life is killed near the Kremlin
Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: A leading Leicestershire based chilled food ma...
£45000 - £50000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: Senior Accountant (ACCA, ...
£16000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company has an exciting op...
£17000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This European market leader for security...