The Future of Hong Kong Ice Hockey lies in the hands of Generation Next
The opening ceremony for the Jockey Club Ice Hockey Generation Next Program, supported by the Hong Kong Jockey Club, was one to remember. With a light show introduction and a full house surrounding the rink, fans of ice hockey and supporters of the development of the sport in Hong Kong made their presence known.
The ceremony kicked off with remarks from the chairman of the Hong Kong Amateur Hockey Club, Mr. Thomas Wu and a speech by Mr. Rhoda Chan, representative of the Hong Kong Jockey Club Charities Trust. After the ceremonial souvenir presentation and puck drop, the real fun began through three on-ice demonstrations which brought viewers to their feet.
The demonstrations began with a skating drill which displayed the player’s technical footwork and their ability to stop and start on a dime both laterally and forwards and backwards. Next came the stick handling which was shown through a one on one puck protection drill. Here defenders were dazzled by deceptive moves which saw pucks being pulled in between their legs. And last but not least the most exciting demonstration of all, the trick shot. Players came in one on one against the goaltender trying different ways to score while being creative. We saw everything from a glove thrown at the goalies face, flipping the stick over and using the opposite to slide the puck in, diving at the goalie as distraction and many other highlight reel moves.
The response from the audience and supporters were great and this exciting ceremony was just the beginning for a fresh new start for Hong Kong ice hockey. With this program catered to the elite and higher end of hockey for youth hockey players in Hong Kong, it gives aspiring players a distinct direction and goal for them to strive for. Not only will this program focus on enhancing ones skill and teach team tactics and positioning but is built on the foundation of the team first attitude.
This has already been seen not too long after the opening ceremony at the first dry land training session where 95% of the players attended early Sunday morning to work on their athleticism while simultaneously engaging in team activity to further the bond between teammates.
“It was awesome to see the player’s efforts at that first dry land training session. Improving one’s athleticism and strength not only takes hard work but more importantly takes immense focus, commitment and the willingness to put their body through hell knowing that it will benefit their game and benefit the team. The energy and atmosphere was great and players were not only pushing themselves to the limit but were also pushing each other and encouraging others. This positive attitude and mentality is crucial once we hit the ice to begin team training and games.” said coach Robert Kang.
The Generation Next program is off to an exciting and intense start and many wait in great anticipation to watch the high skill level and competitive edge that this program will bring to Hong Kong hockey. Stop by Mega Ice during the coming months to watch some great hockey which will be showcased by the future of Hong Kong hockey players.