Located in Arambagh in the capital’s Motijheel area, Mariner Young’s Club are just beside the Bangladesh Football Federation House but they don’t have any football team. They have four sports in their roster – hockey, handball, table tennis and cricket.
Mariner women’s handball team became champions in the first division last year while the cricket team emerged as the champions twice in the second division - in 2005 and 2008. They had a renowned basketball team in the early 1990s when they boasted a number of national players at their disposal.
When everything’s said and done, the club’s main strength is their hockey team who were rewarded for their hard work in the last few years when they clinched the Premier Division National Hockey League title for the very first time in history. They did it in style, winning 13 consecutive matches, and finished top with a five-point lead over joint champions Abahani Limited and Usha Krira Chakra.
After being formed in 1972, Mariner’s maiden success came in 1988 through their hockey team when they won the second division title. Since then, 28 years have elapsed without any major success till last Friday.
Their credentials were visible from the beginning of the season when Mariner decided to form a stronger squad than the previous seasons and appointed former Bangladesh head coach Peter Gerhard to guide the team. Gerhard later admitted that their main attention was the league title as they failed to reach the final of the Club Cup Hockey.
“There has been a new excitement in the club following the hockey team’s success. We will try our best to continue this successful run in hockey,” said club general secretary Hasan Ullah Khan Rana yesterday.
“We are planning to form a new club for the second division hockey in order to make a pipeline for the future national stars. We want to take Mariner hockey team further forward,” he said.