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National Call-up for Student Ice Hockey Star

Published by Brentwood School on Monday 12th of December 2022

One of the most dangerous places in sport is in front of an ice hockey goal, but for Brentwood School boarder and national team goalie, Amor Šačić, ‘all the pain goes away once victory is achieved.’

Amor, a Year 12 Scholar, is part of the Bosnia and Herzegovina national team and will represent his country at the 2023 International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) U20 World Championships in Istanbul in January.

And it won’t be the first time 16-year-old Amor has represented his country. He has been part of the national team of Bosnia and Herzegovina in previous U18 and U20 World Championships, and in 2021, he went to the senior World Championship as a reserve goaltender for the men's senior team.

“Ice hockey is a rough sport, and being a goalie adds an additional level of danger to the game. We have a lot of protective equipment, but injuries can still happen, and the pain is just a part of the game”, he explained.

“I have been playing hockey practically forever, and I believe it was one of the major factors that made me the person I am today. I learned many lessons through it and I experienced many things that I wouldn't otherwise. Also, my teammates are a very important factor since every injury, loss or pain is much easier when you are surrounded with good people. Being hit by a puck often hurts, but just as every sportsman ever will say, all the pain goes away once victory is achieved.”

Amor started playing ice hockey when he was just four years old. “Of course, I did not start playing the real game right away, but after a month or two of working strictly on skating, we started training with sticks and pucks.

“In the last couple of years, I have trained for a minimum of four times a week. Of course, in countries that do not invest a lot in such sport, like Bosnia and Herzegovina, we do not have ice the whole year, so we need to practise as much as possible during the ice season. When I started playing ice hockey the season lasted around one month and for the majority of the year we trained with roller skates on concrete. As the years went by, the parents, coaches and investors managed to get us an independent ice rink and now the season lasts about eight months.”

Amor joined Brentwood School’s Lower Sixth in September and took a two-month training break in order to settle into school and UK life. Now, with the World Championship looming, he has reached out to multiple clubs close to Brentwood in order to possibly find a way to practise.

He has also started to play rugby for the School which is keeping him fit as well as teaching him a new sport. “When I first came to the UK, I wanted to try as many new things as possible, and since rugby is nowhere to be found in Bosnia and Herzegovina, I wanted to try it. I soon realised how similar it is to ice hockey in many aspects, and now I quite enjoy playing it. Naturally, my skills are still on quite a low level, but I look forward to becoming a better player.”

Amor is not daunted by the prospect of facing a much older opposition. In fact most of the Bosnia and Herzegovina national team are the same age; have come from the same club ‘HK Vukovi’, and have played together for a long time, which all bodes well for the future. “This generation of hockey players is, in my opinion, the best generation so far as we compete with much older teams”, Amor explained. “We were always the youngest team in competitions, and this is a great benefit since when the time comes when we are the same age as our competitors, we are going to have more experience.”

Amor’s ice hockey pedigree is already pretty impressive: The U18 World Championship in Sarajevo in 2022; U20 World Championship in Mexico in 2022 and as reserve for the men's ice hockey World Championship in South Africa in 2021. He has also played in the Bosnian Hockey League, Serbian Hockey League, EuroAsian Ice Hockey Cup 2022 and the list goes on.

Headmaster Michael Bond said: “We were delighted to welcome Amor onto our IB Diploma programme in September. The attributes that have taken him so far so quickly in ice hockey have helped him make a flying start to life in Brentwood. He is an unfailingly polite young man whose thirst for learning and development has been seen within and beyond the classroom. Academically, he holds himself to the highest standards but he's also willing to move out of his comfort zone, not least on the rugby pitch, where he is enjoying his introduction to a hitherto unknown sport. Although new to Brentwood, he is proving to be the personification of Virtue, Learning and Manners, the values that have served the School for 400 years.”

Although he has no ambitions to play ice hockey professionally, Amor’s sporting aspirations do not end with his national team outings. “I will forever continue improving and becoming better in order to represent my country in a brighter light, and I would like to one day play for the senior men's team, instead of being a reserve.”

With that sort of determination, who would bet against Amor realising his dream. The future is bright and we wish Amor the best of puck in January's championships. Is a medal on the horizon?
National Call-up for Student Ice Hockey Star - Photo 1
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