In March 2015 Sheldon Rostron was appointed head coach of the South African Women’s Hockey Team on a contract until the end of the 2018 Hockey World Cup, in line with the policies and procedures of the South African Hockey Association of appointing coaches on a world cup cycle. Following the completion of the 2018 FIH Vitality Hockey Women’s World Cup Rostron’s contract has come to an end and the process to appoint a coach for the next World Cup cycle is due to begin. Sheldon has elected not to reapply for the position going forward and thus ending his 3 and a half years as the National Head Coach.
Sheldon was first brought into the national structure as a specialist trainer and goalkeeper coach in 2010 under head coach Giles Bonnet. In this time, he also performed various roles including stand-in assistant coach and team manager. Notable events amongst others under his belt with the national team are the 2012 Olympics, the 2014 Commonwealth Games, the 2014 FIH Hockey Women’s World Cup, the 2015 African Cup for Nations, the 2017 Hockey World League Semi Finals and the 2018 Vitality Hockey World Cup.
As head coach Rostron got 57 caps, winning 22 and drawing 10 (as per the FIH TMS). The fifth placed finish at the FIH World League Semi-Final in Johannesburg that qualified South Africa for the 2018 World Cup was the outstanding performance in his time, where South Africa were desperately unlucky not to beat Germany in the Quarter-Finals. The South African coach also completed the remarkable double in 2017 when he coached the Men and Women to the African Cup of Nations titles, a double feat rarely achieved by a coach.
Sheldon will now focus on his new role within the Sports Department at North West University, while a newly appointed coach will guide South Africa to the Hockey Series Finals in a quest to qualify for the 2020 Olympic Games.
SA Hockey CEO Marissa Langeni thanked Sheldon for his service to South African Hockey.
“The South African Hockey Association would like to thank Sheldon for his remarkable contribution to the national women’s hockey team. He has been a committed coach, engineering and implementing a dedicated program with limited resources. Sheldon’s tenacity ensured that the team always came first. We would like to wish Sheldon well for his future endeavours.”
Photo: Sean Burke