Hockey was introduced in Malta by the British Services in the late nineteenth century. The home of hockey was established at Kordin Complex, which originally consisted of two pitches as well as a cricket pitch and a pavilion. The complex was inaugurated on 17th October 1888 by the then Duke of Edinburgh.
As far back as 2nd January 1906 an advertisement appeared in the ‘Daily Malta Chronicle’ which read:
“Hockey Sticks to suit all buyers by 30 different makers. From 35 upwards. Apply at Muscat Athletic Outfitter, 270 Strada Reale, Valletta. Sports Catalogue free.”
Hockey competitions were held regularly in the 1930s and the game fell under the auspices of the Malta Sports’ Association, which organized league and knock-out tournaments, annually up to 1968.
During the fifties, a cavalier side used to play against foreign opposition or against pick British Services teams who happened to be stationed on the Island at the time. The team used unusual playing gear. They sported white shirts beneath waistcoats of various bright colours. The team called itself Zdieri (Maltese for waistcoats). They were the fore-runners of the Maltese National Side.
The Hockey Association Malta, as we know it today, was formed in 1968. Teams represented a cross section of the Maltese society at the time. These were members of the Civil Service, Banks, University students, the teaching profession besides other social clubs pertaining to major establishments. Over the years the league has transformed itself into teams hailing from specific towns and/or schools, and the Association has recently embarked on a campaign to promote girls’ hockey.
Currently there are five competitive teams in the Malta National League as well as four teams in the reserves League. The association is looking into building stronger youth systems and improving the game here in Malta through the implementation of the new Hockey 5s rules.
2015 is proving to be a big year for Maltese Hockey – The island will be hosting the EHF Mediterranean Cup Hockey5s Under 16 tournament between 26th and 28th June whilst the Senior National Team will be taking part in the EHF EuroHockey Championship IV in Vilnius between 19th and 25th July. At club level, Floriana Young Stars HC will be participating in the EHF EuroHockey Club Champions Challenge IV in Portugal between the 21st and 24th of May.