Six Oundle hockey scholars recently attended the sixth MT13 OSAKA annual hockey conference at Repton School, which attracted one of the best line-ups for a number of years, including Florian Fuchs (International Hockey Federation Young Player of the Year 2012), Christopher Ruhr, a fellow German international and Toon Siepman, a leading expert in drag flicking who has worked with some of the world’s top drag flickers.
The day started with an intensive warm-up. Players then participated in a series of drills that incorporated game-like scenarios as well as more technical skills such as drag flicking and 3D skills. The second half of the day involved indoor hockey (the modern game) and breaking the defensive line, which will be helpful for the players over the coming weekends.
Scholars with Florian Fuchs, the world player of the year and Christopher Ruhr another German international
Oundle player, Georgie Pringle (13) was lucky enough to have a one on one session with Toon Siepman. As well as leading international stars, players from local clubs were also involving in the coaching of the players.
Pupil, Anna Granville (13) commented, “It was an incredible day and I feel very privileged to be coached by world leading players and experts. It gave us a chance to learn new skills and practice skills we hadn't had the chance to try yet."
The participating coaches attended lectures by Adam Commens, who is currently the Australian women's senior hockey coach, and by Toon Siepman, who talked about the technical side of the drag flick as well as demonstrating examples.
Background Information on Oundle School
Oundle School is situated in the quintessentially English market town of Oundle, about 90 miles north of London. The School’s buildings, dating from the 17th to the 21st centuries, are dispersed throughout the town, which is, to a large extent, its campus.
The School’s history dates back to 1556, when Sir William Laxton, Master of the Worshipful Company of Grocers and Lord Mayor of London, endowed and re-founded the original Oundle Grammar School, of which he was a former pupil. In 1876, the Grocer’s Company divided the School into two parts; Laxton Grammar School, primarily for the inhabitants of the town, and Oundle School, primarily for pupils from further afield. In 2000, the Grocers’ Company reunited the two schools under the common name of Oundle School and retained the name of Laxton for the day House.
At the beginning of the 20th century, Oundle was put firmly on the map of leading English public schools by its most famous headmaster, F W Sanderson, who established Oundle’s reputation as one of the great science and engineering schools, a reputation still renowned today. In 2007, SciTec - a major and ground-breaking new science complex - opened, housing 16 state-of-the-art laboratories. The School is now embarking on a large SciTec Campus development project which will see a new Mathematics department constructed adjacent to SciTec as well as a significant upgrade to the Design and Technology department within the Patrick Engineering Centre. Due for completion in September 2016, the development will unite Science, Mathematics, Design, Technology and Engineering both physically and philosophically, enabling pupils to move seamlessly from theory to practice and from pure science to the achievement of a workable technology. A concurrent Sports MasterPlan will upgrade sporting facilities across the School over the next few years, including a new 1st XI cricket pavilion which opened in April 2015 and new astroturfs due to be completed this year.
There are currently 1110 pupils on roll at Oundle School, with 860 boarders and 250 day pupils. Also within the Corporation of Oundle School is Laxton Junior School, a day School for children aged 4 to 11.