History - International Womens
International Masters Hockey Tournaments - Background of Women's Participation
An Australian Women’s Veterans 35+ team was first selected in 1996 to go to Hong Kong to participate in the Pac Rim Tournament, which, until this time, had been a men’s competition. In 1997 the same team went to Seoul and in 1998 a team was selected to go to a Veterans World Cup Tournament in Utrecht (Netherlands) and Kuala Lumpur (Malaysia) for the Pac Rim. Since then teams have competed at this tournament which is now referred to as The International Masters Tournament (IMHT) – 1999 in Brunei, 2001 in Singapore, 2003 in Auckland, 2004 in Kuala Lumpur, 2005 in Melbourne and 2007 in BirminghamEngland. The tournament still remains small in relation to the number of Women’s teams participating.
Whilst the participation of women’s teams was limited in Birmingham in 2007, it was positive that a draft constitution of the International Masters Hockey Council was endorsed and presented to FIH with the aim of establishing recognition of Veterans at an International level.
In 2008 at the National Championships in Brisbane, 3 teams (35’s, 40’s, 45’s) were selected to attend the IMHT in Hong Kong in 2009. Unfortunately the Women’s division was unable to run due to lack of participants and cost effectiveness.
In July 2010, a 45’s Australian Women’s team competed at the Lady Masters Champions Trophy being held in conjunction with the FIH Women’s Champions Trophy in Nottingham England. This was a key development in our aim to develop and foster tournaments with Women’s Veterans teams from the UK, Europe and South Africa.
In 2011 Australia hosted an International Invitational Tournament on the Gold Coast with an England team participating in the Over 40’s division and New Zealand in 35’s, 40’s, 45’s 50’s and 55’s age groups.
Australian Masters teams toured Fiji April 21st – 28th 2012 for a development and promotion tour. A Women’s Over45’s and Men’s Over35’s team played matches against the Fiji Masters and High Performance Unit teams at the National Hockey Centre in Suva. The contingent showed their support of junior hockey development with donations of much needed hockey equipment to the Fiji Hockey Federation.
The inaugural Masters World Cup was held in Canterbury England in 2012 with Australian women competing in the 40’s and 50’s age divisions.
In 2013 the Australian 40’s and 50’s teams accepted an invitation to attend the European Masters Cup in Belfast, Northern Ireland and this event was a further expansion of our participation and exposure of women's masters hockey in the European area.
In 2014 the women's 45's team again travelled to Fiji for a development and promotion tour and the 35's and 55's teams toured to England for a series of games against England, Wales and Scotland women's masters teams. The 40's, 50's and 60's women's teams competed at the 2014 FIH Masters World Cup in Rotterdam in The Netherlands.
In 2016 Hockey Australia were the host for the FIH Masters World Cup that was held in Canberra. Australian women's teams competed in the 40's, 45's, 50's, 55's and 60's age divisions. To enable a viable competition for all teams Australian "Wattles" teams competed in the 40's, 50's and 60's age divisions.
An Australian Women's 35's team also competed in 2016 at the Hawkes Bay Affiliates Tournament in New Zealand.
The 2018 Masters World Cup will be held in Terrassa (Barcelona) Spain in July.
Sue Briggs and Peri Buckley from Australia Masters hold positions on the International Masters Hockey Association and Sue Briggs is also the IMHA representative to FIH.
Australian committee representatives continue to establish contacts and networks with our fellow masters women overseas to develop competitions and tournaments.
The Women’s Masters Committee focus is to foster that vision and dreams established in 1996 by a dedicated group of veteran hockey volunteers and provide our current and future players with the proud opportunity to represent their country.
The first Australian Women's Veterans Team (Hong Kong 1996) is pictured below.