Recipients named for the 2019 Contribution to Coaching Award

To continue our recognition of the award winners for the 2019 Hockey New Zealand Annual Awards, today we are highlighting those who have made an impact, particularly in the coaching space.

The Contribution to Coaching award acknowledges the contribution coaches have made across the community, performance and high-performance space. It takes into consideration a coach’s demonstration of leadership, continuous learning, understanding of the game, ability to build meaningful relationships and be an effect communicator.

We are excited to announce four recipients of the 2019 Contribution to Coaching Award; Sunjay Ganda (Canterbury Hockey), Dave Ross (Otago Hockey), Geoff McNaughton (North Harbour Hockey) and Angeline Waetford (Northland Hockey).

Angeline Waetford was the Head Coach of the Mark Cromie Motor Group Northland Women winning a silver medal at the 2019 National Hockey League as well as the Springfield Hockey Club Premier Women who took out the grand final for the 2019 season.

2019 would also see Waetford coach the U18 Northland Women’s Development team and was heavily involved in the U18 New Zealand Women’s Camp.  She was instrumental in leading the Northland NHL Women to a silver medal for the third time. Angeline is never a stranger to helping out, stepping in to coach the Northland U18 Women’s Development team when they had no coach.

Angeline has been a phenomenal coach and asset to Northland hockey for an extended period of time.

Dave Ross has been coaching in the Otago region for as long as many of the Otago Hockey Association can remember. There are several Vantage Black Sticks players who grew up with Dave as their coach. In 2019 Dave was the Head Coach of the Kings High School who won their first-ever Rankin Cup defeating Timaru Boys in the final. The Rankin Cup Win defied the odds as Kings High School would defeat several traditional powerhouse hockey schools on their way to the title.

Dave was also the coach of the Southern U21 Men where he guided the side to a Bronze medal at the national championships; this was the best result for the Southern side in several years.

Dave is referred to in the community by those that he coaches as the “Oracle”, a highly respected hockey coach who has given an incredible amount of time and effort over a large number of years.

Geoff McNaughton has been coaching at Westlake Girls for eight years now. Initially coaching the 3rd XI side and now developing their 2nd XI team. Geoff has continued to coach in the secondary school even though he no longer has any children at the school.

Geoff has an outstanding philosophy with the team and teaches them the value of playing as a team and not being afraid to make mistakes on the turf.  The Westlake 2nd XI Girls play in the top division at North Harbour and are one of the strong sides despite having to compete against other schools 1st XI teams. McNaughton places a great emphasis on the development and cultural aspects of any of the teams that he is involved in and this has been reflected in the strong basics and team centred approach that the Westlake 2nd XI play with.

Understanding the importance of continuous learning Geoff puts everything he has into his coaching and in 2019 attended three North Harbour coach development opportunities.

A parent from his Westlake Girls team commented, “Geoff puts his heart and soul into our young girls. He sets them up to love the game, respect each other, umpires and organizes, as well as play quality hockey”.

Sunjay Ganda is heavily engaged in the Canterbury hockey community, coaching for his club Hornby as well as St Margarets and the Canterbury Senior Men. Not stopping at supporting players, Sunjay also supports the development of other coaches as a Mentor. Furthermore, Sunjay has been instrumental in implementing a coach mentoring programme at St Margaret’s working with secondary school-aged kids that are coaching school teams.

Sunjay guided the Canterbury Beavers to the National Senior title in 2019 and was a selector for the 2019 National Hockey League Canterbury sides as well. Sunjay is the head coach of the St Margaret’s team which finished 3rd at the 2019 Federation Cup.

Sunjay’s ability to relate to athletes and read situations during a game is a strength and his knowledge is an invaluable asset to Canterbury Hockey.


Posted on Monday, 12 October, 2020 | CommunityFeature