Anjali Dayalji Thakker (born 20 August 1993)[1] is a New Zealand ice hockey forward and inline hockey player. She is a member of the New Zealand women's national ice hockey team[2] and the CHL Aranda de Duero of the Spanish Senior Women's Liga Elite.

Anjali Thakker
Anj-Bench-02.JPG
Born (1993-08-20) 20 August 1993 (age 25)
Christchurch, New Zealand
Height 5 ft 2 in (157 cm)
Weight 132 lb (60 kg; 9 st 6 lb)
Position Forward
Shoots Right
Liga Élite team
Former teams
Hamilton Devils
Aranda de Duero
National team  New Zealand
Playing career 2005–present
Website anjali.nz

Contents

Early lifeEdit

Thakker was born in Christchurch, New Zealand to a Kiwi mother and an Indian father, and grew up in Hamilton.[citation needed] She began playing inline hockey at the age of 11, when she attended Fairfield Intermediate School. She graduated from Hillcrest High School when she was 17 years old. Thakker was a Sir Edmund Hillary Scholar at the University of Waikato and graduated in 2014 with a Bachelor of Science major in Biochemistry. Her two-years-older brother Sanjay Thakker has also represented New Zealand in inline hockey, and studied at the same university.[3]

Inline hockey playing careerEdit

Hamilton DevilsEdit

She joined the Hamilton Devils in 2005 in the U12 programme and was selected as the team captain in 2006. Thakker led her team to the gold medal at the New Zealand National Championships. In 2011 aged 18 she was chosen as the alternate captain of the senior team and led her team to gold in the national championships, a feat repeated in 2012 and 2013[4] followed by a silver medal in 2014, with Thakker wearing the captain's C on her jersey. Still the Captain, Thakker led the Devils to yet another New Zealand Championship in 2016.[5]

Les Phénix Ris-OrangisEdit

Following a brief stay in England for the 2015–16 season, Thakker signed to play for Ris-Orangis in the French Women's Elite league playing two games in which she scored 12 points.[6][7]

CHL Aranda de DueroEdit

In December 2015 the Spanish Elite league's bottom club CHLAD from Aranda de Duero signed Thakker for an undisclosed sum.[8] After 4 games in CHLAD, Thakker has scored 10 goals making her the league's 2nd top scorer and CHLAD have climbed from the bottom spot and away from the relegation zone.

Köping InlineEdit

 
Anjali Thakker Swedish Inline Hockey Champion 2016

The Swedish Köping Inline declared their intention to win both men and women's Swedish Championship in 2016 and made a number of high-profile signings to reach that goal and Thakker joined Köping's women's team for the finals during SM-veckan inline hockey finals 2016 in Norrköping. Thakker scored all 3 goals in their first game securing a 3–1 win for Köping. In the championship final against Wermland, Thakker scored the fastest hat trick in Swedish history taking just 2 minutes and 9 seconds to net three unanswered goals at the start of the first period.[9] The game ended in an 8–4 Köping victory with Thakker scoring 7 out of the 8 Köping goals.[10][11]

Ice hockey playing careerEdit

Auckland Women's Representative TeamEdit

After just a few months of starting ice hockey, Thakker was selected in the Auckland women's representative team in 2010[12]. The team has since won four national titles from 2010 to 2013. In 2013 Thakker was alternate captain.

Thakker once again gained a leadership position in Auckland Steel for the 2016–17 season. She led Auckland to an undefeated season and broke all player records in the process with her 70 points[13] over the 12-game season.

Melbourne IceEdit

In August 2014 Thakker signed to Melbourne Ice for the 2014–15 season. Melbourne Ice compete in the Australian Women's Ice Hockey League (AWIHL). Thakker assisted the team in lifting the Joan McKowen Memorial Trophy for the third consecutive year in 2015. Thakker finished sixth in the scoring leaders for the league, with 8 goals and 8 assists from 12 games played.

InternationalEdit

Thakker began her international inline hockey career in 2008 with the New Zealand Junior Women's National Team in the Oceania Inline Hockey Championships and continued to impress at the AAU Junior Olympics in 2010 where Thakker was the top scorer. She has featured in the New Zealand women's national team[14] every year since she was 17 and captained the team at the 2015 NARCh tournament.

She was again chosen into the New Zealand national team in 2016[15]

Despite her young age, Thakker is one of the most capped female ice hockey players in New Zealand[16] having represented New Zealand Ice Fernz every year since 2011.[17]

IIHF Ice Hockey Women's World Championship 2016Edit

 
Anjali Thakker selected as the Best Player for Team NZL at the 2016 IIHF Ice Hockey Women's World Championship Division 2 Group B.

Selected early into the 2016 New Zealand women's national ice hockey team, Thakker had an international break-through tournament at the 2016 ice hockey world championship finals finishing second in goals and in points for the whole tournament scoring more than half of all New Zealand goals (7 out of 13)[18] and either scoring or assisting all New Zealand goals in all but one game in the tournament.[19][20][21][22] Her performance saw Thakker selected as the Best Player for Team New Zealand[23] and she was awarded the coveted IIHF Tissot watch.

IIHF Ice Hockey Women's World Championship 2017Edit

Following her break-through season in 2016, Thakker was selected as the Alternate Captain of the 2017 Ice Fernz at the IIHF Ice Hockey Women's World Championship 2017 tournament in Akureyri, Iceland. Thakker proved once again her value for Team New Zealand by scoring or assisting 15[24] of New Zealand's 20 goals in the tournament thus being responsible for 75% of the team's offensive output.

Thakker dominated the tournament in every key statistic for skaters. Thakker scored the most goals (7),[25] had the most assists (8),[26] most points (15)[27] and best +/- (+9)[28] record of all players in the tournament.

Thakker's dominance saw her win the top individual prize of the tournament, the Most Valuable Forward trophy.[29]

Awards and honoursEdit

  • Sir Peter Blake Trust Dream Team Leader[30]
  • Duffy Books in Homes Role Model[31]
  • Most Valuable Forward, IIHF World Championship 2017[32]
  • Top Scorer at Swedish Inline Hockey Championships 2016[33]
  • University of Auckland Blues Award 2016
  • Best Player Team New Zealand, IIHF World Championship 2016[34]
  • University of Waikato Sporting Blues Award 2011–14[35][36][37]
  • Sir Edmund Hillary Scholarship[38]
  • New Zealand University Blues Award 2012
  • NARCh Fastest Skater Award 2015[39]
  • Top Sniper New Zealand National Skills Competition 2014

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "Anjali Thakker Profile". Eurohockey.
  2. ^ "Ice Fernz 2016 announced" (PDF). New Zealand Ice Fernz. Retrieved 26 January 2016.
  3. ^ "Study, work and inline hockey too". Te Piringa Faculty of Law eNewsletter. The University of Waikato. June 2013. Retrieved 3 February 2016.
  4. ^ "Devils Claim National Title Hat Trick". Waikato Times. Retrieved 26 January 2016.
  5. ^ "Hamilton Hockey Team Devils on the Rink". Stuff.co.nz. Retrieved 18 August 2017.
  6. ^ "Official Gamesheet" (PDF). French Inline Hockey League. Retrieved 26 January 2016.
  7. ^ "Official Gamesheet" (PDF). French Inline Hockey League. Retrieved 26 January 2016.
  8. ^ "El hockey Aranda femenino se quedo a un pasito de su primer exito". Diario de la Ribera. Retrieved 26 January 2016.
  9. ^ Hellström, Oscar. "Köping Inline tog dubbla SM-guld!". Magazin25.se. Retrieved 17 July 2016.
  10. ^ "Thakker Skot SM Guldet till Köping". Bärglagsbladet Arboga Tidning. Retrieved 17 July 2016.
  11. ^ "SVT nobbade damernas SM-final: "Inte seriöst"". Aftonbladet. Retrieved 17 July 2016.
  12. ^ "Anjali in line for more gold". Stuff.co.nz. Retrieved 18 August 2017.
  13. ^ "Scoring Leaders" (PDF). International Ice Hockey Federation. Retrieved 18 August 2017.
  14. ^ "Local inline hockey players go to USA". The New Zealand Herald. Retrieved 26 January 2016.
  15. ^ "National Teams announced". New Zealand Inline Hockey Association. Retrieved 26 January 2016.
  16. ^ "Ice Fernz so close". Otago Daily Times. Retrieved 26 January 2016.
  17. ^ "Skating success for University of Waikato Student". Scoop Independent News. Retrieved 26 January 2016.
  18. ^ "Player Statistics by Team" (PDF). International Ice Hockey Federation. Retrieved 19 March 2016.
  19. ^ "Statistics". International Ice Hockey Federation. Retrieved 19 March 2016.
  20. ^ "Australia rising". International Ice Hockey Federation. Retrieved 19 March 2016.
  21. ^ "Scoring Leaders" (PDF). International Ice Hockey Federation. Retrieved 19 March 2016.
  22. ^ "Goal Scoring Leaders" (PDF). International Ice Hockey Federation. Retrieved 19 March 2016.
  23. ^ "Best Players in Each Team" (PDF). International Ice Hockey Federation. Retrieved 19 March 2016.
  24. ^ "Scoring Leaders" (PDF). International Ice Hockey Federation. Retrieved 6 March 2017.
  25. ^ "Goal Scoring Leaders" (PDF). International Ice Hockey Federation. Retrieved 6 March 2017.
  26. ^ "Assist Leaders" (PDF). International Ice Hockey Federation. Retrieved 6 March 2017.
  27. ^ "Scoring Leaders" (PDF). International Ice Hockey Federation. Retrieved 6 March 2017.
  28. ^ "Plus-Minus Leaders" (PDF). International Ice Hockey Federation. Retrieved 6 March 2017.
  29. ^ "Best Players Selected by the Directorate" (PDF). International Ice Hockey Federation. Retrieved 6 March 2017.
  30. ^ "Sir Peter Blake Trust Dream Team". Sir Peter Blake Trust Dream Team. Sir Peter Blake Trust. Retrieved 17 July 2016.
  31. ^ "Ice Fernz Star Visits Children to Deliver Duffy Books". Stuff.co.nz. Stuff.co.nz. Retrieved 17 August 2017.
  32. ^ "Best Players Selected by the Directorate" (PDF). International Ice Hockey Federation. Retrieved 6 March 2017.
  33. ^ Blomgren, Björn. "Thakker sköt SM-guldet till Köping". Bärgslagsbladet Arboga Tidning. Retrieved 17 July 2016.
  34. ^ "Best Players by Team" (PDF). International Ice Hockey Federation. Retrieved 19 March 2016.
  35. ^ "Waikato University Students Recognised with the Prestigious Blues Awards". University of Waikato. Retrieved 26 January 2016.
  36. ^ "Sports Students Get The Blues". The New Zealand Herald. Retrieved 26 January 2016.
  37. ^ "Blues Awards Recipients 2012–2022". University of Waikato. Retrieved 26 January 2016.
  38. ^ "Anjali Thakker – Sir Edmund Hillary Scholar". University of Waikato. Retrieved 26 January 2016.
  39. ^ "2015 West Coast Skills Winners" (PDF). NARCh North American Roller Hockey Championships. Retrieved 26 January 2016.

External linksEdit