Hockey: Dancer leaves Giles out of England squad

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The Independent Online
Calum Giles has not been included in the England squad announced for the Six Nations Sultan Aslan Shah Cup in Ipoh next month, which England's new Australian coach, Barry Dancer, announced yesterday. However, it seems extremely unlikely that the 25-year-old Klein Zwitserland specialist penalty corner striker has made his last international appearance.

Giles has scored 32 goals in his 38 England appearances, which means he has been more prolific than Sean Kerly, who scored 45 in 99 games. He seems certain to be back for England's World Cup challenge in the Netherlands in May. As a goalscorer at set-pieces he is world class.

There is something of an old familiar and disappointing look about Dancer's selection. Nine of the players were in Britain's 1996 Olympic squad and several could be on a make or break trip. More encouraging is the selection of three of England's Under-21 World Cup squad - the captain Brett Garrard, Manpreet Kochar and Mark Pearn. The England captaincy has been given to Bill Waugh.

If there are to be changes after Malaysia, there are several players waiting in the wings for a call-up in addition to Giles. Jason Lee, another surprise omission, Mike Johnson and Adrian Simons from the Under-21s, and Duncan Woods.

India have withdrawn from the event and have been replaced by South Korea.

ENGLAND SQUAD (for Six Nations Sultan Aslan Shah Cup, Ipoh, Malaysia, next month): B Waugh (capt; Southgate), S Mason, J Wyatt, M Pearn, Manpreet Kochar (Reading), A Humphrey, C Mayer, J Pidcock, Kalbir Takher, B Crutchley, B Sharpe (all Cannock), B Garrard (Teddington), J Halls, R Garcia (HDM, The Hague), N Thompson (Old Loughtonians), D Luckes (East Grinstead).

- Bill Colwill

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