Player Pathway 2017


Player Pathway 2016-17

Last update: 09 September 16

There are major changes to the Single System for season 2016-17. This page shows the current plans and will be updated as things change.

The bulk of the changes affect the performance level but there are changes elsewhere too. The main drivers are England Hockey's wishes to have:

  - the right players playing in the right environment

  - frequent high quality contact time with the best players, the aim is two contact points a month

On a more practical front over the last few years there have been an increasing number of conflicts in the programme with more field trips and university visits on top of the existing Duke of Edinburgh camps, School Speech Day and summer holidays. This was making the current dates less tenable, especially at U16 and above.

The 2015-16 programme finished as scheduled with Futures' Cup in October 2016. As the new programme is designed to be season long, the first full running will be in 2017-18. For the 2016-17 season there will be a reduced programme staring in January 2017. As part of the change the Single System will be rebranded as the 'Player Pathway' with slight changes of nomenclature at all levels.

Performance Centres

The Performance Centres will be the new name for JRPC. They will run from October to July with the Futures' Cup over the August bank holiday weekend. For the 2016-17 season, the start will be delayed to January 2017 so as not to conflict with the 2016 Futures' Cup.

The number of contact hours will be increased to 40 with a mixture of two-hour evening sessions (generally Mondays) and all day sessions (both Sunday and also midweek during half term and school holidays).

There are currently 17 centres planned with six in the South and two near our borders which will be the natural centre for some South based players. A nominal area for each of the centres has been decided though the actual venue of the centre may not have been agreed. The nominal areas are:

  - Caterham (North Downs)

  - Haslemere

  - Northwood

  - Reading

  - South Midlands

  - Southampton

  - Tonbridge

  - Weybridge

For the 2016-17 cycle the primary entry route to the Performance Centres will be from the 2016 JRPC.

There will be two age groups at the Performance Centres, U17 (containing U16 and U17 players) and U15 (mainly U15 players, a few U14 who show outstanding talent). Ages will be based on the date in the middle of the season. For the 2016-17 season this will be age as at 01 Jan 17, so the new U17 will be those who are U16 and U17 in the 2016 JRPC and the new U15 will be U15 at the 2016 JRPC and potentially a few U14 from JAC 2016 not at 2016 JRPC. The group size will be fixed at 24.

The cycle mixes training and competition throughout the programme. As currently the centres will be clustered so that we can form teams for Futures' Cup. The existing Cluster Competition will be replaced by three full day competition play sessions during the season between the centres in the cluster. All members will be scheduled to play two out of the three sessions.

The Cluster Competition leads to Futures' Cup. HiPac has been discontinued.

We aim to maintain the same hourly fees, subject to an inflationary increase. However, as the number of hours is increasing the total fees will increase proportionately.

There will be stages during the year at which players may transition between levels. If there is a need to bring a player up from the Academy Centres, then a player may be released from the Performance Centres.

Performance and Academy Centres will run at the same time of the year. Players may choose whether to both or just one. Players at the Performance Centres will automatically be part of the selection process for the Performance Centre the following year.

NAG Squad Players

All NAG Squad players will be part of the Performance Centre. Those who are U18 and too old for the U18 England Squad the following year will attend for training only and will not be part of the main competition element. Younger NAG Squad players will be full participants as they will be competing for places in the NAG Squads at the end of the cycle.


The AASE programme will continue to run. Those on the programme will be selected from the Performance Centre and will usually be those in their Lower Sixth year at school. There will be additional sessions for AASE.

NAGS Academy

This will be discontinued. The Performance Centre will provide everything that the NAGS Academy used to provide.

Academy Centres

This is the new name for JAC. It is to be recognised as an achievement in its own right. The programme here will focus on the needs of the athletes at this level and will offer appropriate competition. This competition is to run throughout the season. At U17 there may be a national final.

Academies will run from September to May, though in 2016-17 the start will be slightly later. As with the Performance Centres, competition and training will run throughout the programme. The nature of the competition will be discussed at national level during June and July. The South are keen to maintain some form of league format. The other regions currently have different competition structures.

At the end of an academy cycle, academies will be able to offer selected players places at the Academy Assessment session the following season. These players will not be required to return to a Development Centre.

There will be some differences between academies. Additional general information will appear here. However, your county administrator will keep you informed of any details particular to your county.

Development Centres

This is the new name for JDC. It is the entry level to the pathway and all players will be expected to enter the pathway through a Development Centre. Players in their second and subsequent seasons in the pathway may not be required to attend a Development Centre to be considered for an Academy Centre. It will be up to the Academy Centre to decide who is eligible to attend the selection days without having attended a Development Centre that season.

Given constraints put on by both geography and the number of players in an area, Development Centres will continue to be run in such a way as to satisfy the local need. As such there will be significant differences between counties and county administrators will be responsible for communicating the way that Development Centres will be run in their area. From 2017 they are expected to run over the summer months.


South News

Whitgift Storm Nationals Whitgift won the Boys' titles at U14, U16 and U18, with Cranleigh second at U14, Reed's second at U16 and Kingston third at U18.

Masters Mens' O60, Ladies' O40, O55 and O60 have all won their national competition. Photo gallery