Andalusian hockey selections cancels visit to Gibraltar at last minute
The scheduled matches between Gibraltar mens and women’s selections against their respective Andalusian selection has been cancelled at the last minute. The notice from the visiting sides received via a midnight WhatsApp message on the eve of the matches, immediately after Gibraltar’s squad had travelled to San Fernando and played in the Copa Iberica against the same selections.
In a communique issued by the Gibraltar Hockey Association officials announced this morning, “due to the extreme unprofessionalism of our opponents, Gibraltar Hockey have had no choice but to cancel the Men and Women National Selection matches today. We apologise sincerely to all for the inconvenience, especially to all our players who have been training hard to play at home in front of our supporters.
“Our opponents had officially confirmed that they would be attending Gibraltar today to play against our National Selections and it was reconfirmed to us once again during the course of the day yesterday.
“Our players, whom have played with some of our opponents, found out last night, when communicating with these players, that they had no idea whatsoever about today’s matches.
“We were officially informed by the President of Federación Andaluza Hockey at 01:41 hours, via a WhatsApp Message, that they would not be attending today.
“We are shocked at the unprofessionalism of Federación Andaluza Hockey. Not everyone can hold their heads up high and act in a respectful and profesional manner.
“We will only come back stronger and hope we can soon play in front of our supporters.
“We once again apologise for the inconvenience and appreciate all your support.”
There was deep disappointment among Gibraltar officials and players who this Sunday morning have had to quickly disseminate the news to ensure players and supporters were made aware of the cancellation.
Gibraltar who had played on Saturday against the Andalusian selections in San Fernando, losing 3-2 against the men’s side and 4-0 against the women’s side, had prepared a day of hockey, food and music for their scheduled visitors. The day had been expected to see Gibraltar provide a welcome reception for its guests, with all plans now scuppered and the association having to count the cost of the cancellation.
Importantly the cancellation also disrupts preparations for the men’s team as they prepare for their Euro Hockey campaign. With some players reserved for the match in Gibraltar, head coach Christian Zammit will have to wait for the next chance to play a friendly to assess players under a competitive match scenario.
The decision to cancel is not believed to have been political in nature.