Kelly Fairweather named new world hockey boss

2010-08-02 00:00

A MAN with strong Pietermaritzburg connections was named CEO of the International Hockey Federation (FIH) at the weekend.

The PMB Varsity and Stellenbosch-educated Kelly Fairweather (49) has been appointed to world hockey’s governing body following a distinguished career in the top echelons of sports administration

He joins Danny Jordaan of Fifa, the vice president of the world swimming authority, Fina, Sam Ramsamy, and International Cricket Council president Haroon Lorgat to form a quartet of South Africans making sports decisions at international level.

The Bloemfontein boy played with distinction as central defender/middle man for the PMB Varsity and PMB Collegians first teams in the eighties, as well as for Natal (now separate provinces KZN Coastals and KZN Inland) in indoor and field hockey.

The likeable Fairweather, who was also a former SA women’s head coach, was popular inside and outside hockey circles during his time in the KZN capital.

He had the company of his siblings in Pietermaritzburg, in particular older brother Keith, an educator who spent 20-plus years at Maritzburg College, Hilton and Michaelhouse before his current position at St Albans College in Pretoria.

Fairweather told The Witness yesterday he had accepted the FIH offer with confidence, given his extensive background in hockey and sports administration.

“Although every job brings its own challenges, the experience I have gained should equip me to handle whatever comes along, bearing in mind the support I will have from the FIH executive and the various national hockey federations,” Fairweather said from his home in Lausanne, Switzerland, yesterday.

Among other top positions, he spent almost a decade in an executive role with the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and was chief executive of Stellenbosch University’s Sports Performance Institute before being head-hunted for his most recent job as director of the World Anti-Doping agency’s European office.

He holds a masters degree in human movement studies from Maties as well as numerous management qualifications,

With Fairweather at the helm, world hockey appears to be in good hands.

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