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South Delta native named new head coach of women’s national team

Tsawwassen's Rob Short came through Falcons program before decorated international playing career
Rob Short
New national women's field hockey team coach Rob Short learned the game in Tsawwassen before going on to enjoy a decorated international playing career.

One of the greatest players ever to come out of the Falcons Field Hockey Club is now in charge of Canada’s national women’s team.

Rob Short is the program’s new head coach following a decorated playing career then establishing himself as one of the country’s top mentors.

The South Delta native has 346 international caps to his name as a player — second on the Canadian all-time international caps list. He retired in 2013 and has since made coaching his priority, founding the Rob Short Coaching Academy, and coaching at the club, national, and international level.

Short’s most recent appointment was as an assistant coach and domestic trainer for the men’s national team in 2018 through until 2020, when Canada qualified for the 2020 Olympics. Short has worked as a coach for the Canadian national junior women’s team and had a brief stint as the senior women’s interim coach.

In addition to his on-field exploits, Short also holds an undergrad from the University of Victoria, and a master’s degree in international coaching, which he achieved while studying and playing hockey in the Netherlands.

The women’s national team is currently ranked 13th in the world, a decade-high ranking. They are coming off a Pan American silver and a narrow miss at the 2019 Olympic Qualifiers, dropping a heartbreaker final match to Ireland. According to Short, the immediate goal is clear: take this team to the 2022 World Cup. The Canadian roster includes veteran defender and Tsawwassen’s own Sara McManus.

“This team will be the first women’s team since 1994 to qualify for a major tournament,” Short said confidently. “This is an exciting time for this group. I took this position as head coach because of my confidence in this team to achieve special things. I will ensure that the athletes have no doubt in my confidence in them to reach our goal.”

The team’s significant progress the last few years have set up a golden opportunity to achieve international success.

“We will be successful because we have a perfect mix of youth and experience,” Short said. “We have committed and determined athletes. We have compiled an amazing staff around this group who have full confidence in their ability and will do all that it takes to win. I believe we also have a community that will gather around this team and support us where it’s needed.”

Susan Ahrens, Field Hockey Canada CEO, added that Short is an excellent fit at the helm of the Canadian Wolfpack. He has a working familiarity with many of the athletes and has a track record of success at the international level. Ahrens said she’s thrilled to have him on board.

“We are delighted to have Rob as our Women’s National Team Head Coach. Rob needs no introduction – he was quite simply, a playing legend for Canada with a successful international career spanning decades,” Ahrens said. “With many of the playing group already having worked with Rob in some capacity, we look forward to a successful period ahead – starting with qualification for the World Cup in 2022.”

Short’s international playing career spanned from 1994 until 2013. He retired as one of the most decorated players in Canadian hockey history. He was the team captain from 2001 until 2008. He is a two-time Olympian, he attended two world cups, four Commonwealth Games, Five Pan American Games and played professional hockey in the Netherlands for 14 years.