Hockey: England recall five Olympians

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A strengthened England squad arrived here yesterday and immediately held a practice session for today's televised game against Germany, the European champions.

Five members of the Great Britain Olympic squad who missed the recent Five Nations Golden Jubilee tournament in Karachi, where England finished a disappointing fifth, have been recalled. That brings the number of Olympians in the team to eight.

Goalkeeper Simon Mason, recovered from a back operation, and Reading's young captain, Jon Wyatt, were expected to be brought back, with the call also going out for the specialist penalty-corner striker and leading goal scorer at the Olympics, Calum Giles.

Surprise recalls have gone to Southgate's 31-year-old defender Soma Singh, who made only a limited number of appearances for his club last season, and Teddington's Phil McGuire. Coach Sean Kerly has indicated that McGuire will be used as a striker. The only uncapped player in the team is Reading's 24-year-old striker Scott Ashdown.

The Germans, who won the gold medal in Karachi, have an experienced squad and looked sharp in training. The front-runners Oliver Domke and Christoph Bechmann look likely to pose problems for England's defence.

The German coach Paul Lissek, well-known for bringing players out of retirement with success, persuaded his Atlanta captain, Christian Blunck, to return for the Karachi tournament. He is again likely to be Germany's playmaker.

ENGLAND SQUAD (v Germany, Duisberg, today): J Wyatt, S Mason, S Ashdown (Reading), J Wallis, P McGuire (Teddington), D Luckes (East Grinstead), C Giles (Laren), G Fordham (Hounslow), A Humphrey, B Crutchley, B Sharpe, J Pidcock (Cannock), S Singh, B Waugh (Southgate), J Lee (Old Loughtonians), D Hall (Guildford).

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