This is my second blog and for this blog I’d like to introduce myself.
My name is Manfred Iyambo also known as Manfred Baumgarten ‘Contemplating a change to my moms surname’, but everyone calls me Manny. I am a proud Namibian player, I come from a small German town in Namibia called Swakopmund. I started playing hockey when I was in grade 8, at 14 years old. I never knew about the sport hockey until I had moved to Windhoek in grade 7 and in the same year went on a rugby tour, where the girls played hockey and the lads played rugby. We’d sometimes watch the girls and I was really interested, because hockey looked like a challenge and I love challenges, so in grade 8 I started hockey. I challenged myself to make the Namibian team and after 4 years, in 2008 I made the national U/18 team, a stepping stone to getting to the senior Men’s team that I now play for.
It was a tough, but hard ride to make the national team, because after failing to make the team at my first national trials, I had to work even harder to make the team, since making the U/18 team, I have not looked back and have been making a lot of progress and travelling a lot. I debuted for the U/18 team in Botswana against Zimbabwe, was a great experience, an experience I will never forget.
A year before that, in 2007, I was chosen to represent a development team called Namibia Sports Dynamics in Cape Town at the U/18 school/ club Brothers International tournament, where I got my first taste at playing against players that were 10 times better than me, but I played to pick up experience.
Present times, I am now one of the senior players in the Mens and the U/21 team. I have made my country proud in the last few years of playing for Namibia, but middle of 2010 till beginning of 2012 I took a break from the national team to concentrate more on my personal life and some work/ studies in South Africa.
While taking a break, from the national team. I have been in talks with FC Barcelona’s Ula Sagarra (Captain of the team) and Antonio Rubio Cillan (Sporting Director of FC Barcelona hockey) for a possible move to play for the club, however, due to family restrains negotiations were halted after the club had informed me I was able to play for them.
At present I am going through an injury spell, after I had just come out of an 8 month spell with a heavily strained lower back. This time it’s my damaged clavicle and I won’t be playing hockey for the next 5 weeks, by the time my spell is over, it will be time to prepare for Senior Mens IPT in Bloemfontein in September with the Namibian team and in October it will be the U/21 Junior African Cup Qualifiers
Till next time, I have a Facebook fan page for everyday happenings and a personal twitter account.