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Hornchurch hockey player and 'lovely lad' dies after freak accident in training session

PUBLISHED: 11:07 11 December 2015 | UPDATED: 18:32 11 December 2015

Tom Wilson in action for Old Loughtonians against former club Havering at Campion School last month (pic: George Phillipou/TGSPHOTO)

Tom Wilson in action for Old Loughtonians against former club Havering at Campion School last month (pic: George Phillipou/TGSPHOTO)

©TGS Photo tgsphoto.co.uk +44 8450 946026

Tributes have been paid to a hockey player from Hornchurch who died following a "freak accident" at a training session on Tuesday.

Havering Hockey Club released a statement this morning announcing the death of Tom Wilson, 22, who played for Old Loughtonians Hockey Club, Luxborough Lane, Chigwell.

Mr Wilson, a former pupil of Coopers’ Company and Coborn School, St Mary’s Lane, Upminster, died on Wednesday after a freak accident during a training session at Old Loughtonians Hockey Club the night before.

Mark Menear, who coached Mr Wilson at Old Loughtonians Hockey Club, said: “It’s ridiculous, he’s such a nice kid. It was just a freak accident. It’s unbelievably sad.”

Havering Hockey Club’s statement says: “Many of our members had known Tom since he was born, several of his school friends are past and current players and this tragedy has hit us all hard.

“He was such a lovely lad, a credit to his family who were so proud of him.”

Mr Wilson started playing hockey at the age of five. He went on to play for Beeston Hockey Club, Belper Hockey Club, Old Loughtonians Hockey Club, and Havering Hockey Club.

England Hockey has also released a statement describing Mr Wilson as a “very popular young man”.

It says: “Tom was a key member of the Old Loughtonians Men’s 1st XI team, had come up through the club junior sides and was a very popular young man who was a much admired role model for younger players at the club.

“Incidents such as this one are almost unprecedented in hockey – our thoughts, and those of the club and wider hockey community are with Tom’s family and friends.”

Mr Wilson had completed a week’s work experience with the Recorder sports desk while he was a pupil at Coopers’ Company and Coborn School.

Recorder group sports editor, Lee Power, said: “It is truly heartbreaking news. Tom was such a fine, young man, polite, talented and a credit to his family, Havering, Coopers and Old Loughts.

“My sincerest condolences go to Lisa, Graham, Pippa and the rest of the family at this tragic time.”

Members and friends have been invited to pay their respects at Old Loughtonian Hockey Club between 12.30pm and 3pm tomorrow (Saturday).

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