The Masters tournament in Johannesburg 2019 promises to be a very exciting event. We will be celebrating 40 years of Masters in South Africa. We have come a long way from the inaugural tournament in 1979 where only 6 teams participated in Bloemfontein. The first official tournament was held in Port Elizabeth in 1980, while Ladies teams only started participating in 1989.
Masters in South Africa has grown locally as well as Internationally. Teams from South Africa have competed in 4 World Cups, and last year we managed to send 6 teams to compete in Spain. We are also delighted that the World Cup in 2020 for the age categories of 45+, 50+ and 55+ for both genders will be hosted in Cape Town. In addition, we will be hosting the ladies’ tournament for the 60+ and 65+ age categories as well as the “Spirit of Masters” competition for the age groups. The 35+ and 40+ age groups have been awarded to England. This will be very exciting for the growth of Masters in South Africa.
Locally the tournament has grown over the years with more teams and more provinces attending. This year we have 73 teams attending and they will be competing on 8 Astros in and around the Randburg area. There will be 45 men’s sides and 28 ladies’ sides.
The pools are as follows:
We do have a comprehensive trial process in place to participate in International events and one of the criteria is that the trialists attend the local IPT tournament. Due to the World Cup being held in 2020, we have reduced the age of attendance at IPT to 34+ as at the 31st of December in the year of the local tournament. This is to allow participants who will be eligible to attend the world cup in 2020 to fulfill the criteria of participating in the local IPT.
We have introduced a Mustang Section in the Men’s Medal section for 2019 and hope to introduce an Impalas Section in 2020 for the Ladies Medal Section. We look forward to welcoming you all to Johannesburg in August for a fun filled weekend of hockey and a celebration of friendships made through hockey.