Rule of dating a hockey player
Today the figure is nearer 1,000 because of amalgamations of ladies’ and men’s clubs and also the amalgamations of local clubs.
While the basic format of the game remained largely unchanged for the first 100 or so years, recent years have seen many major changes; the introduction of league hockey in the 1960s/70s that took over from purely “friendly” fixture lists; technology improvements to stick, ball and GK equipment; rule changes (removal of offside, ‘sticks’ and obstruction rules have opened up the game), the introduction of Indoor Hockey and the move from grass to artificial pitches.
The first recorded women’s international match was also England v Ireland in Dublin but it was the Irish who won 2-0.
By the First World War, England had played 63 international matches.
The reference comes from the Book of Sports published in 1810, which gives a synopsis of recognisable rules and a comment by the scribe that he had not played the game for 30 years, since school.
So, the first hockey club in the world was Blackheath HC in 1862, some twenty four years before the formation of the Hockey Association in 1886.
To see a timeline depicting the development of hockey over the last our centuries go to The Hockey Museum website.
Similarly the North American Indians were playing lacrosse a long time ago.The answer to these questions is that probably we will never know for sure.