Ireland's David Harte has been named as the World Hockey Goalkeeper of the Year for the second year in a row. Harte, who captained Ireland to their first Olympic Games in 108 years at the Rio Olympic Games is the only Irish player to have achieved this distinction since the awards began.
The 28-year-old, who plays in The Netherlands and India, has won a number Goalkeeper of the Tournament awards at international and club level, is an integral part of the Irish team and also current European Hockey League champions, Dutch team Kampong.
Harte beat a number of outstanding nominees to the award including Juan Vivaldi (ARG), Jaap Stockmann (NED), Vincent Vanasch (BEL), Parattu Raveendran Sreejesh (IND).
Vivaldi and Vanasch won gold and silver respectively at the Olympic Games in Rio this past summer.
“To win this award truly is an incredible honour and one which I am very proud to receive. Even to be nominated for a second time was more than I could have hoped for, especially given the world class goalkeepers involved such as Juan Vivaldi, Vincent Vanasch, Jaap Stockmann and PR Sreejesh, all of whom are deserving of the title,” said Harte.
“On the back of 2016 and overcoming a 108 year wait to compete in an Olympic Games the team is busy preparing for the first step on our quest to compete in a World Cup in 2018. We start by hosting the World League 2 in Belfast which is incredibly exciting for the Irish hockey community and players alike.”
“Having reached an all-time high of 10 in the world rankings, we are all determined to push on from here and hopefully, having inspired the future Irish hockey generations.”
Harte, from Kinsale in county Cork, plays alongside his twin brother, defender Conor, on the Irish team.