Ben Butler-Felton MJP (England U18s) and Guy Butler-Felton MJP (England U16s) have been selected to play for England v Netherlands in the Test Series that starts on the 4th of April.
Ben Butler-Felton started playing hockey as an 8 year old for his local club, Marden Russets. Ben was largely coached by his father who is an ex-International hockey player himself. Ben went on to play county hockey for Kent for two years and for Berkshire for three years following that.
In the U16s, Ben captained the Saxon Tigers in an England Trial tournament called Futures Cup and experienced huge disappointment when he was not selected. After much thought, he decided not to give up on his dream of playing for England and sought out regular high level hockey to help develop the skills and ability he needed to play at the highest level. Throughout his two years in the Sixth Form, Ben has consistently travelled to Richmond to train and play for the 1st team. It is a big commitment, leaving school at 6:00 and not returning until 23:30. In addition to developing his hockey skills, Ben has also learnt to manage his time and balance his work and hockey commitments to make it work.
Ben was selected for the High Performance Assessment Centre (HiPAC) as an U17, which led him into a programme called AASE (Advanced Apprenticeship in Sporting Excellence). It is a 12 month long programme in which young athletes are taught to balance sporting commitments with the rest of their life. This gave Ben the opportunity to be selected and captain one of three England U17 sides vs Scotland and Ulster at the School Games in Loughborough in the Summer last year. Ben also attended Futures Cup, this time at U18 level. After his performance in these two summer tournaments he was selected for the England U18s. Ben has been training with England since September 2017 and in January 2018 he was one of two England U18 athletes to go to Lisbon for three days with the Great Britain Elite Development Programme.
Guy Butler-Felton first played hockey when he was 5 years old but didn’t play every week until he was 10. Guy also started at his local club, Marden Russets, and still plays for them when he can.
Guy played for Kent in the U13 and went on to play for Berkshire. While playing for his club, Marden Russets, they made the National Club Finals for U14s and came 3rd in the country.
In the summer Guy attended regional training and was selected for HiPAC in Leeds, playing for the Saxon Tigers as an U15. He went through the process again, this time at the right age group for England U16s. Unfortunately, Guy got injured before one of the trials so wasn’t selected to go to the England trial (Futures Cup). The England U16 coach, however, decided to give Guy a chance and invited him to one of the England camps for observation. Following Guy’s performance at the camp, the coach decided to keep him in the England squad.
Ben and Guy will play against each other in a warm up game on Good Friday, ahead of the test series, when the U18s play the U16s.
Ben and Guy would like to thank their House Master, Mr Marcus Polglase and the boys of MJP, for all their support.
We wish them both the very best of luck for the test series against the Netherlands in a few weeks’ time.