As the excitement in Kumasi prior to the epic Africa Cup Winners Cup final match between Ghana’s Asante Kotoko and their Moroccan counterparts biulds up, the hockey fraternity in Accra prepare for the biggest program on the domestic calendar of the Ghana Hockey Association (GHA), the KN Owusu Memorial Invitational Hockey Tournament scheduled to push-off on Wednesday December 11, 2002.
The Events and Competitions Committee of the Association has been busy putting things in place to ensure a successful tournament. Similarly, the Greater Accra Hockey Association has selected its teams to face the challenge of the Ashanti, Brong Ahafo, Central and Eastern Regions. The teams consist mainly of the younger players playing in the high profile Pepsi Hockey League competition. This perhaps is an indication of the GAHA’s determination to keep faith with the players from their youth development program. The two teams have plunged into serious training to blend the individual talents and attain some degree cohesion in their play. The two teams will be managed by Ebo Arthur and ‘MC’ Armah for team A and Eddie Odamettey and Thomas Tettey for team B.
Information reaching us from the Regions indicate that the coaches have put their teams in place to call off the bluff of the Accra teams. A technical team member of the Eastern Region, Mr. Frank Asiedu, indicated in a telephone conversation that their men were ready to sweep aside any opposition from any of the competing Regions to buttress their claim for the construction of a state-of-the-art artificial turf for hockey in their Region. Though Ashanti and Brong Ahafo have maintained a low profile, sources have indicated that the Ashanti Region team trains three times a week under the eagle eyes of coach Sosu and inspirational Lawyer Boafo, son of the Ashanti Regional Minister. The Central Region is also gearing up for the showdown with John Nyarko of Golden Sticks fame, directing affairs. Coach Osei has virtually placed an embargo on information coming out of the hockey camp in Brong Ahafo, but there are indications that his team is tying the loose ends and come the tournament, they will assert their position as perhaps a stronger team than they are rated on paper.
The hockey fever is building up to a crescendo, and come the passing of the ‘soccermania’ that has gripped the country, the stage will be set for the clash of the Regions for the ultimate prize in this SSB Bank, COCOBOD co-sponsored tournament in memory of one of the greatest Administrators (sports and corporate) in our era.