Tony Ineson Known to his team-mates as Arnold, Tony Ineson was the captain of the 1976 gold medal-winning New Zealand hockey team. His brother, Chris, represented New Zealand for several years, including at the 1972 Olympics.
Tony Ineson was selected for two Olympics, but because of the American-led boycott, the team did not get the opportunity to play at Moscow in 1980 and defend the title won four years earlier in Montreal.
By 1976, there was a vast reservoir of experience in the New Zealand side. Several players were from the champion University club in Christchurch, where they had been well-tutored by one of New Zealand hockey’s best coaches, Cyril Walter. Of the team that went to Montreal, Paul Ackerley, Thur Borren, John Christensen and Ineson, plus the Selwyn and Barry Maister, played for University, though Ineson did have several seasons also with the Redcliffs club.
Besides the core of Christchurch players, others in the team with previous Olympic experience were Alan McIntyre, Trevor Manning, Greg Dayman, Ramesh Patel, Jeff Archibald and Arthur Parkin.
The New Zealanders caused a shock at Montreal by beating Australia 1-0 to win the gold medal. It was not a triumph easily achieved - they won a thrilling play-off match against Spain 1-0 just to squeeze into the semi-finals. There they caused an upset by beating the impressive Netherlands side 2-1 in the third period of extra time, with Ineson providing a crucial goal from a penalty corner.
The final, a torrid affair, tipped New Zealand’s way when Ineson smashed home a penalty corner shortly after halftime.
Ineson, who played at right back, was a strong leader, capable of offering blunt appraisal of his team-mates’ play if he felt it warranted.
He has had a variety of jobs, including running the Christchurch branch of Adidas, having a spell working for a furniture company and, more recently, selling solid fuels for fires.
Ineson is married to Jill. They have three children - two girls heavily involved in equestrian and a son playing hockey.
The 1976 Olympic hockey team that Ineson captained was inducted into the New Zealand Sports Hall of Fame in 1990.