On Saturday 22nd April our Primary Nicholls Sports Captain, Jake Coughlan, travelled to Hong Kong to be part of Asia’s largest ice hockey tournament.This annual tournament hosts many different youth and adult teams with players attending from all over the world. The tournament is held in an international sized rink located within a huge shopping centre, ‘Mega Box’.
Jake played, together with 4 other Qld boys, in a team called the Bangkok Warriors (Bangkok). He actually played up an age level (PeeWee level) skating with and against kids a couple of years older than him.
The team made a great start, winning their first game 2-1 (playing at 11pm at night!). With 2 other games won and another one ending 1-1 (goal against in final minute), the team got through to the semi-finals on Saturday morning. They played against last year’s Champions and after a very exciting game, finishing 0-0 after extra time, the winning team was to be decided by penalty shootouts. Unfortunately Jake’s team lost these and in the end placed 3rd out of the PeeWee category (6 teams in total).
To have been part of this tournament has been a wonderful experience for Jake. Being part of an international team, with a coach who could not speak English (a translator was used throughout the tournament), meeting players from different countries and seeing the high level of skills displayed.
The 5 Queensland boys, together with their families, also had time for sightseeing to experience the Hong Kong culture. From going up to “Victoria Peak” lookout, a ferry ride on the harbour, to visiting huge night markets and even getting on a train to cross the border into China for the day.
It has been an amazing 8-day trip, returning to Oz with great memories and an amazing experience to play ice hockey in a foreign country. Jake plays for his local club, the Grizzly’s Ice Hockey Club (Bundall, Gold Coast) where he trains once a week and competes against teams from Brisbane. He also trains once a week in Brisbane with the Southern Stars Ice Hockey Club.