OM and senior international hockey player for Great Britain, Ed Horler (2008-2009; MPS/2009-2014; Butleigh), has spoken to us about being a part of the hockey Premier League in Belgium.
Ed joined Millfield when he was 12 and had a keen interest in sport, particularly hockey, throughout his years at school. He left Millfield in 2014 and, by 2017, he had been selected to represent Great Britain.
Ed decided to play in Belgium after being offered a contract from Royal Racing Club de Bruxelles in July following the postponement of the Olympics. He said that “after visiting the club, meeting the Head Coach, Ned Fulton, and some of the senior players, I thought it would be a fantastic opportunity! I had previously looked at playing abroad in both Holland and Belgium, but everything worked out this time.”
In Belgium, Ed found that hockey was considered a much more full-time profession than in England, with only one person in the team employed outside of the sport. This was a real luxury for Ed and his team as they were able to spend a lot of time together training, having video meetings, playing every Sunday, and enjoying social time together. As well as this, Ed found the different approach to training in Belgium challenging but a great learning experience, with the added confusion that everything was in French!
We asked Ed what his goals are for this season and he said that, due to the uncertainty of our current situation, him and his team are just trying to play one game at a time and work on their tactics in order to be the strongest squad they can, whilst also being prepared for cancellations and competing in back-to-back games.
In the long-term, Ed hopes to continue to improve during his time in Belgium in preparation for the Paris 2024 Olympics.
Excitingly, Ed has also recently set up his new venture, '5-Yards', here at Millfield! Ed and his Wimbledon HC and GB teammate, Ian Sloan, are hoping to run another camp for students, which will be an amazing experience for our aspiring hockey players here at Millfield, and an opportunity for them to access the world of hockey! '5-Yards' are currently running online sessions every Sunday.
If you have any questions, please get in touch: firstname.lastname@example.org or visit: https://www.5-yards.co.uk.
Photo credits: PHDPH.com