How we came to have ice hockey

• By Michael Uugwanga

THE Namibia Ice and Inline Hockey Association says it had plans in the past to build an ice rink to host ice hockey in the country, but that did not materialise due to lack of funds.

In Africa, Ice hockey is only practiced in South Africa, Morocco, Algeria, Egypt, Tunisia and Kenya.

Ice hockey  is a team sport played on an ice skating rink with lines and markings specific to the sport.

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It belongs to a family of sports called hockey.

In ice hockey, two opposing teams use ice hockey sticks to control, advance and shoot a closed, vulcanised, rubber disc called a “puck” into the other team’s goal.

In a formal game, each team has six skaters on the ice at a time, barring any penalties, one of whom is the goaltender and the sport is a full contact game.

Speaking to Confidente this week, NIIHA spokesperson, Martie Bajorat said the association was affiliated to the World skate that comprises of skateboarding, rink hockey, artistic skating.

“When NIIHA was established back in 2005, they had plans to build an ice rink in Windhoek. So the founders thought it might be a good idea to include ice into this, so when we eventually get ice hockey we don’t have to register a separate federation.

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This did not happen as there were never enough funds to do this, but the name stuck – so we still have ice in our name.