Former Wits Men’s Hockey coach,Mark Hopkins, has been appointed as the new coach for the South Africa Men’s Hockey team.
Former Wits Men’s Hockey coach, Mark Hopkins, is expected to take on the role of national head coach leading up to the 2018 International Hockey Federation (FIH) world cup in India. The competition will take place from November 28 to December 16. The vastly experienced coach headed up the Wits Men’s Hockey team in 2015.
Wits head of sport, Adrian Carter, said that Hopkins’ appointment comes as no surprise. “He implemented a high performance culture and changed the paradigm of the players while he was at Wits,” said Carter.
Hopkins has had a long and successful career in hockey including coaching at the South African College School in Cape Town in 1997 and at the University of Wales in Cardiff.
“I am expecting to provide an environment that will allow players to reach their potential and for the team to hopefully make it to the finals of the FIH World Cup.”Hopkins said.
“He really laid the foundation for the strong men’s hockey system that they are today. He plays hockey at a very high level and was born to coach. He put wonderful systems in play during the one year that he was here. He laid a wonderful foundation for the current Wits Hockey coach, Ricky West, who is also a national hockey player,” Carter said.
On coaching the national team, Hopkins said, “It’s the role of the coach to understand what the players want from you and you also need to be honest about what you expect from them [players].”