Ipswich on alert for TigerTurf Cup

IPSWICH will be represented by three teams in this month's revamped TigerTurf Cup hockey tournament.

Defending Ipswich A-grade men's premiers Easts will take on other leading club sides from south east Queensland at Carina starting on October 21.

The Ipswich-based Tigers contested last year's highly-competitive series.

The Hancock Brothers women's side, which finished runners-up to Swifts, is playing for the first time.

Ipswich has also nominated a junior side being coached by stalwart Ken McCoombes.

The junior competition is a new addition to the intercity format.

Easts coach Nathan Hooper said his team would tackle the hotly-contested series with a similar approach that secured them every Ipswich title for the past few years.

"It's just a good reward for a great season," he said. "It reflects positively, not only on our club, but also on our association.

"All the boys will be keen to put in a big effort."

Although he will be overseas, Hooper expects Easts to field a near premiership-strength side.

Paul Malcolm will coach the Easts team, assisted by regional coaching director Neil Shearer.

Other leading sides in the men's competition are TigerTurf Cup holders Queensland Academy of Sport, Pine Rivers St Andrews, Bulimba, United, host Brisbane club Easts, Sunshine Coast premiers Buderim Rebels and Gold Coast heavyweights Labrador.

Building on the success of last year's inaugural competition, this year's TigerTurf Cup has adopted the new attacking format developed by Australian men's coach Ric Charlesworth for this month's International Super Series in Perth.

Teams will be reduced from 11 players to nine-a-side, two of whom must remain in the attacking half of the field at all times. Matches will be played over two action-packed 15-minute halves.

Joining Hancocks in the inaugural six-team women's competition will be Easts (Brisbane), Valley (Brisbane), Commercial (Brisbane), Labrador (Gold Coast) and Rangeville (Toowoomba).

Matches will be played at the Clem Jones Sports Centre, Stanley Road, Carina, over two consecutive weekends - October 21 and 28. Tournament finals will be on October 30.

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