Worthing Hockey Club is run by a large team of volunteers. We would like to introduce you to our committee starting with Mens Club Captain John Massie Jnr and Ladies Club Captain Michelle Payne (aka Bob).
John Massie Jnr
Men’s Club Captain, John Massie Jnr, has recently represented the club with great distinction at the England O50’s trials.
Unfortunately, ‘Junior’ narrowly missed out on selection to the final squad, which reads as a who’s who of 1990’s National League legends!
‘Junior’ was introduced to hockey by his father, John Massie Snr, himself a player of some distinction. They arrived at Worthing Hockey Club in the early 1980’s after a family move from Maidstone. Junior was part of the WHC mini hockey set up, on grass, including a number of other youngsters with fathers within the senior teams…Lock, Collins, Edmondson & Neil-Smith. Some of those went on to be decent players!
Johnnie quickly moved through the teams as a young player, from 5’s, to 3’s and eventually into his debut for the 1st XI in the late 80’s. From there he has gone on to be the 1st XI’s record appearance holder. He is the only player in the clubs history to have represented the 1st XI in five separate decades! An incredible stat brought about when he was called up to a game in 2020 and despite being in his late 40’s turned in his usual authoritative display.
He is the current South East O50 captain, midfield dynamo for WHC O50’s and part time 2nd XI player. An incredible amount of service to our great club, we salute you Junior and hope to see you at the England O60’s trials in a few years’ time!
And one of the nicest people you will meet. Legend.
Michelle Payne (aka Bob)
Michelle’s second reign as Ladies Club Captain.
Michelle grew up in a very sporty family with a love of badminton, cricket & hockey.
Michelle began playing hockey at college joining the local team playing mixed and ladies’ hockey for the University of Loughborough.
After joining Penguin Hockey Club with her sister Julie, the pair moved to Worthing Hockey Club.
Michelle’s Love of hockey saw her touring all over the country and overseas.
Her loyalty and commitment to Worthing Hockey Club means she quickly became involved in roles throughout the club.
We thank her for all the hard work, time, and effort she continues to put into our club.
As we reach the end of Q1 2023/24 season – it’s a great time to reflect on what has already been a super busy period for WHC with lots of successes both on and off the pitch.
Mens 1s sit 3rd in the league after 4 wins and 1 loss, just 1 point off top spot – whilst similarly with just 1 loss, Ladies 1s are 4th in the Martlets Division 1, great to see both teams having such a strong start to the season.
Ladies 2s are 3rd in the Martlets Division 3 league with a great record of 2 wins from their first 4 games.
On the Mens side, Men 2s who had a tough start in Martlets Division 1 playing the top 2 unbeaten teams are getting stronger week by week and the results are showing this. Mens 3s sit mid table in Div 2 recording 2 wins whilst Mens 4s are 2nd in Div 3 losing just 1 game so far. The Mens 5s are mid table in the same league with 2 wins and 2 losses (including the 4s v 5s local derby !). Mens 6s have also played some of the top teams in their league and lost a couple of games by 1 goal, so the results are just around the corner.
Overall, a very positive start to the Mens and Ladies season as we move into the cup period with Mens O50s and Mixed teams in action during November.
On the juniors side, the Wolves Boys Development team have a record of 2 wins, 2 draws and 1 defeat so far, with each game being close and competitive, bringing out the best in all of the players.
The Girls U10s had a great start to the season winning their first tournament in Burgess Hill, whilst the Boys U12s had a fantastic first tournament of the season, improving in every game. Both teams are looking forward to more matches in November.
Sunday Comets junior training has been growing each week, starting with 17 players in week 1 and growing to 42 by the end of October which is brilliant – the highlight was an amazing hockey Halloween party held during the half term holiday.
The new boys U14s team in combination with Horsham drew their first game in the South East Tier 3 league with more games to come along with the Boys U16s who have matches lined up before Christmas.
Off the pitch, the club hosted a great Halloween party as well as Rugby World Cup screenings and birthday celebrations.
All in all – a great first quarter and looking forward to more to come before Christmas.
What a game ! Worthing HC Mixed XI took on the FireFighters in a charity match on Sunday. The Firefighters opened the scoring with Worthing coming back to pinch a 3-2 win in a really close, exciting match. A quick hose down and the Firefighters were back on duty – all in a days work ! Most importantly, the event raised £185 for the Firefighters charity. Awesome work everyone !
Ten teams took part in our annual golf day in memory of our dear friend Andie and to raise an incredible £2400 for St.Barnabas House – this fantastic event gets bigger and better each year – thank you to all who attended and supported the day.
The day started at the clubhouse with breakfast, before the short journey to Rustington Golf Centre for the main event of the day ! 10 teams all keen to win, teed up in a Texas Scramble format where each player drives off and then the team must use the ball of each player in the team on at least 4 holes around the course to take their next shot – making it a true team game.
With prizes for longest drive and nearest pin – coupled with the traditional cocktail at the 11th hole, it was a true club event enjoyed by everyone. Then it was back to the clubhouse for a fantastic curry, charity raffle and some celebration drinks as the sun set on a great day – same again next year – already booked for Saturday 29th June 2024 !
Tinsel, baubles, fairy lights and Mariah Carey… not usually things you’d associate with Summer, but due to frozen pitches preventing play at Christmas, Worthing Hockey Club were finally able to hold their Reindeer Fun Family Club Day at the start of June!
Players of all ages from across the club took part in the fun and inclusive festive tournament, with some of the younger members getting their first taste of proper hockey. With festive tunes pumping across the pitch, players donned their reindeer antlers in the glorious sunshine and were able to celebrate Worthing HC raising £500 for Chestnut Tree House
What a season! We are so proud of our league teams across Mens, Ladies and Juniors – they have had a fantastic season.
Ladies Teams : Final league standings: In their first promoted season, Ladies 1s finished 9th in South East Women’s Division 1 Martlets, whilst the Ladies 2s won the South East Women’s Division 4 Martlets gaining promotion, with the Ladies 3s, just behind in 3rd place. The Llamas U16 team won the Sussex Development League with an undefeated season – congratulations to all.
Mens Teams : Final league standings : The Mens 1s finished 6th in the highly competitive South East Men’s Division 1 West, with the Mens 2s and 3s ending 9th and 8th respectively in the South East Men’s Division 1 Martlets. Mens 4s were 10th in Martlets Division 2, Mens 5s 5th in Division 3 and Mens M6 8th in Division 4. The Wolves U16 team finished 1st in the ‘original 12’ league, 4th in the subsequent ‘split top / bottom league’ and 2nd overall. Again congratulations to all.
Our U10 / U12 boys and girls had a great season with many playing their first matches. The boys U10s were Runners Up in the In2 Hockey Vase tournaments with the U12 Boys and Girls both 3rd at the Ron Easton West tournament – brilliant season !
Our girls U16 development team – The Llamas has won the Sussex Junior Development league in style. The league season had 2 parts. The first part was the whole league with 12 teams, where Llamas recorded 9 wins and 2 draws – finishing top by a clear 8 points and the only unbeaten team in the league.
The league then split into Top 6 and Bottom 6 with 5 more games played between the teams. Llamas won all 5 matches with a perfect points finish of 15 to round of the season in style. Congratulations to the whole squad of players, coaches, parents, guardians and supporters – fantastic achievement by you all !
January has been an incredibly busy month for the junior section with our U10s, U12s, Boys Development and Girls Development all in action. WHC proudly hosted an U10 Girls mini festival on a frosty 22nd January. After a delayed start to allow the pitch to thaw, our girls took on teams from Burgess Hill, Lewes and East Grinstead. It was a fantastic afternoon topped off with sausage and beans in the warm clubhouse. A week later, we repeated the format for the U12 Girls, hosting Burgess Hill, Horsham and Eastbourne – winning 3 out of the 4 matches which was a great achievement.
The U10 boys lost out to the frost, but will have their matches re-arranged. Meanwhile the U12 boys took 2 teams to Christs Hospital on 29th January to play in another mini festival including Horsham, Lewes, Eastbourne and Brighton. It was great to see so many players involved and putting their training skills into action on the matchday pitch.
The U16 Girls Development team continued their unbeaten record in the Sussex league with 2 wins and a draw whilst the U16 Boys Development sit within the top 3 in the Sussex league with 3 wins and 1 loss during the month of January – completing a busy few weeks for all of our juniors. Keep up the good work !
WHC members found the best way to celebrate the new year by having a fun day of mixed family hockey on New Years Day. After the cheese, wine and christmas chocolates, it was a joy to see so many smiling faces back on the hockey pitch. Looking forward to the matches in 2023 !
The mid December cold snap has frozen up the Angmering pitch. In common with the hockey community across most of the country – this has forced an early start to the christmas holidays.
Have a fantastic christmas everyone and all best wishes for some great hockey in 2023 !
The end of year is fast approaching as is the halfway point of our season.
We thought it would be a good idea to give you all a brief overview from the different sections of the club of their performances and achievements so far this season.
As the first half of the season draws to a close, we can take pride in a strong start across the Ladies section. The Ladies 3s currently sit in 3rd place in South East Women’s Division 4 Martlets, and the Ladies 2s are currently at the top of the same league, sitting four points clear of 2nd place. The Ladies 1s are currently in 8th place in South East Women’s Division 1 Martlets, after securing promotion last season.
The end of the summer saw the very quick and exciting creation of a 3rd team, and after initial uncertainty as to whether the timing was right, the team has gone from strength to strength under the guidance of Michelle Payne. As we approach the second half of the season, we will begin to ensure that the Ladies 3s are sustainable as a stand-alone squad, with the ultimate aim of having three competitive Ladies teams, each playing in their own league next season, to enable a pathway for players (both junior and adult) who want to develop their hockey further, as well as those who want to play more social hockey with their friends.
At half time in the season, it’s a mixed bag for Worthing’s six men’s teams. The 1’s are currently 6th in their league having recently risen up the table with 4 wins in a row. Their hard work implementing the sessions from their new coach is really starting to pay off. The two’s are not getting the points that their match play and training efforts deserve and will need some decent results in the second half of the season. Men’s 3’s are looking solid in mid table, but like the two’s the fours also need results soon to get them up the league. Men’s fives are mid table and have had some very good wins in recent weeks, and the sixes are also mid table which is fantastic considering how many personnel they have had so far, and how hard it has been to get squads together. It’s a real team effort for the 6’s and Mark Spiller, Ant Fuest and others have really done a good job.
The highlight of the season so far is the arrival of so many new players. It’s always sad to see another club wind up, but the six lads who have come across from Littlehampton Hockey Club have dived straight in and had an impact across the board. Welcome to you all.
Training is also well attended with Matt and Jez running energetic and engaging sessions, thanks to you both.
The goal for next year is to ensure that the teams that need points are supported and there are plans in place to achieve that. Thanks to all the captains, vice captains, pitch side managers, and coaches for all your help so far.
Junior Section Llamas & Girl’s Comets
Llamas have had an outstanding first half of the season and are currently top of the Sussex U16 development league by a clear 5 points (played 9, 8 wins, 1 draw). We also entered for the first time the EH U14 national cup beating East Grinstead in the first round.
With a squad of over 20 players ranging from 11 through to 15 years managed by Rex Fuller, Llamas have had a strong pool of players to choose from so far this season giving some of the younger players match time and experience. The introduction of our new younger players to our Tuesday evening Llamas training sessions is proving successful in providing a clear pathway for the comets to integrate and experience hockey at an older level making it a potential possibility run a second development league girls side next season.
Our U12 girls are a new team this season and are rapidly improving with the increased number of match fixtures we have arranged. Likewise, our U10 girls are a new side who had their first outing playing matches against other clubs only a week ago, these 2 young sides represent the future of our girl’s hockey.
Junior Section Wolves & Boy’s Comets
The boys have had a strong first half of the season. Worthing Wolves are joint 3rd in the Sussex U16 Development League having played 7 with 6 wins and only 1 defeat up now. With 2 games in hand over those above, it leaves all to play for after Christmas.
The Wolves have 4 new players this season who have moved up from the U12 Sunday Comets training – while 5 older Wolves are starting to play Men’s hockey with the 6th XI showing the pathway from U12 right through to adult hockey is working well. The Wolves squad is currently 17 players ranging from 11 through to 15 who train regularly with Dave Matthews (Twinkle) every Wednesday, rain or shine !
For the first time, we entered the U14 Boys National Cup. A narrow defeat in the first round and a tough plate draw, gave fantastic experience and a good measure of how far our new team has come in a short time. The Sunday U12 boys played matches at Crawley and at home to St. Francis & Brighton, whilst the U10s hosted EG and St. Francis – giving almost all of the Sunday Comets valuable match experience which is essential to put all the new skills into practice. More U12 / U10 matches to come in the new year.
We are now well into the new season, and it is extremely encouraging to see all our teams back playing regular hockey.
After 5 games, the Mens 1s are currently mid table in the South East Men’s Division 1 West, whilst following promotion last year, the Ladies 1s are also mid table in South East Women’s Division 1 Martlets. The Ladies 2s and the newly formed Ladies 3s are having fantastic starts to the season both with unbeaten starts in South East Women’s Division 4 Martlets division.
The Mens 2s and Mens 3s are playing together in the Mens Division 1 Martlets with the 3s winning a close inter club league match earlier in October after their promotion in the previous season. The Mens 4s, 5s, 6s, are playing in the South East Men’s Divisions 2,3 and 4 Martlets respectively with the 5s currently mid table with 2 wins and the 6s recording their first victory of the season with a team featuring many of our junior players moving up into adult hockey which is fantastic for the future of the club.
In the run up to christmas, there will be lots to look forward to with Mixed Games, Over 50s England Hockey Games and the continuation of the South East leagues – exciting times for all of our teams.