Horsham have appointed the prolific National League goalscorer Tejinder Hanspal as their new coach for the 2017-18 season.
Following the semi-retirement of Dom Male, who took the first team to two promotions over five seasons, the club have moved swiftly to capture their new man.
Affectionately known as Titch throughout the hockey community, Hanspal is one of the all-time top scorers in the National League, last season helping Sevenoaks win promotion to the Premiership.
Now 39, he will remain as a player for the Kent club who play on Sundays, but devote his Saturdays to Horsham in South Premier Division 1, run coaching and plan overall strategy starting with pre-season fixtures.
Skipper Andrew Isaacs is delighted to have secured the services of such a notable forward and said: “Last year we had one of the best defences in the league, but scored the second lowest number of goals.
“We hope that having a mentor of Titch’s calibre will galvanise our front line and the goals will start to flow.”
Manager Al Campbell still hopes to be able to call on Male’s services as a player, but explains that the ex-coach is feeling the years. ‘
He said: “Dom went through a lot of pain last winter with various niggles and injuries, he wants to spend more time with his young family, and also feels that he had taken the side as far as he could.
“The club will be forever grateful to him for his spectacular achievements, and we respect his decision.”
The new season starts on September 30 and there is a new look about the division that now includes Winchester and Oxford University, who gained promotion last term, and Indian Gymkhana who dropped down from the National Conference.
“We see 2017-18 as a season for consolidation,” says Campbell. “A couple of stalwarts have retired, we’re hoping to announce a few new signings, and a mid-table finish would nicely position us for a charge in 18-19.”