HOCKEY: Southgate carry on building

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The Independent Online
SOUTHGATE HAVE added still further to their already formidable array of players with the arrival of Grant Von Mayer from Austria and James Davies, the England Under-18 international who played for Bloemendaal in the Dutch League last season, writes Bill Colwill.

Southgate's quest for success on the playing field, which has evaded them for the past 10 years, to match their impressive new facilities, appears to be well on course and if their Australian coach, Neil Hawgood, can mould them together they should be able to take Europe by storm.

The club also expects to have German international Eiko Rott, who played a couple of games for them last season, back next month, but there must be doubts as to whether the polarisation of players at two or three top clubs, those to be associated with the forthcoming hockey academies, is in the best interests of the game.

The young, talented players like Davies are hardly likely to get much senior exposure but only time will tell if the self-destruction of club hockey, on which Great Britain's Seoul Olympic gold medal was founded in 1988, is a real threat. Southgate visit East Grinstead tomorrow.

Hull, pointless and currently bottom of the 32 National League clubs, have signed the 46-year-old former Irish international Peter McCollum.