East Grinstead's Glenn Kirkham hopes for Euro Hockey boost

East Grinstead midfielder Glenn Kirkham says that hosting the first round of the Euro Hockey League is an opportunity to showcase the sport.

The club and 11 other European sides will take part in the group stage of the competition this weekend.

Kirkham told BBC South East Today: "After the Olympic Games there's quite a bit of hype about hockey.

"A top European club tournament gives an opportunity to showcase the sport again on home soil."

East Grinstead to host European hockey

The 30-year-old, who represented Great Britain at London 2012, added: "We were really lucky with the crowds at the Olympics, which were unbelievable.

"It can be the same for the club team as well and we can really show what we are about as a club and how we can compete on a European level.

"East Grinstead are one of the biggest and best clubs in England and we're starting to show that on the European scene."

Matt Jones, head coach of East Grinstead, said the Sussex club were "immensely proud" to be the first English side to host the competition.

"It's fabulous," he said. "We're proud to host it and be the first club to have it on English soil.

"There's a lot of talk about legacy from the Olympics and we're trying to build on that.

"We feel we should have a huge crowd here to welcome the other 11 top European sides."

East Grinstead Hockey Club hosts 12 matches in the pool stages of the Euro Hockey League from Friday, 26 October to Sunday, 28 October.