Fareham youngster ditches XBox for roller hockey

(l-r) Jack Griffiths, rink owner and coach Setti Mulari and Thomas Jeffrey pictured at the Solent Arena in Fareham. ''Picture: Paul Jacobs (141775-1)
(l-r) Jack Griffiths, rink owner and coach Setti Mulari and Thomas Jeffrey pictured at the Solent Arena in Fareham. ''Picture: Paul Jacobs (141775-1)

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THERE’S an XBox gathering dust in the bedroom of 12-year-old Jack Griffiths.

For the Year 7 Cams Hill School pupil has found a new passion — roller hockey.

Jack has fallen for the sport, which he practises at Solent Arena in Fareham, and is appealing for help to set up his own team to encourage other boys to put down their console controllers and put on a pair of skates.

Jack, from Fareham, who started playing roller hockey earlier this year, said: ‘A lot of my friends have started roller skating and we want to start a hockey team for kids.

‘Hockey equipment is expensive and we are trying to raise money to buy some sticks and pucks to get started.

‘We want to get the community up and active.’

The determined youngster has researched what it takes to set up a team and has put together a presentation of how much money is needed.

Kits are expensive and Jack has estimated that he needs at least £1,000 to get started, of which he hopes to raise half from a donation from his school, sponsorship and fundraising activities.

He would like to raise £3,000 in total to make sure he can get the top-of-the-range kit for all the 10 players and full pads for the goalie.

Jack has already signed up at least six boys from his school and wants to encourage more people his age to get involved. Jack said: ‘I don’t play any other sports, I’m not interested in any of them but roller hockey is really good.

‘It is the determination and the adrenaline rush.

‘We wear a lot of protection but it is a thrilling game.

‘It keeps you fit and we learn a lot of skills.

‘It’s a good opportunity as you get off the sofa and get to do something active. I used to go on my XBox all the time, now rather than playing that, I go out and roller skate.’

Jack has written to councillors and MPs in the hope of them backing him.

Setti Mulari, who set up Solent Arena last year, lets the team use the rink for free, so everything they raise can buy the kit.

Jack’s mother Elaine said that his XBox was lying unused and any help to set up Jack’s team would be appreciated.

If you can help Jack email waterboy@solent-arena.co.uk