Pelicans pay tribute to ‘club legend’ following his death

Pelicans Hockey Club has paid tribute to one of its former playing stalwarts following his sudden death last week.

Alan ‘Saggy’ Sagrott, 64, passed away last week after representing the club in a number of capacities for more than four decades.

Saggrott was an incredibly agile, fearless goalkeeper and spent a number of years in the first team and was also a member of the very successful Pelicans indoor team in the late 1980s and early 1990s.

Pelicans stalwart and legend Alan Sagrott with his family.
Pelicans stalwart and legend Alan Sagrott with his family.

A brief statement on behalf of the club said: “Saggy has been taken from us far too early but as a club we are all the better for having had him as a member of Pelicans Hockey Club and his influence, enthusiasm and cheeky grin will never be forgotten.

“We have all lost a friend, team-mate, umpire, drinking partner and not least a true Pelican.

“Our thoughts and prayers go out to his family and as a club we will do all that we can to support them.”

During his time with Pelicans, Saggy held a number of positions at the club including first team captain, vice-chairman and ultimately club chairman. He also qualified as an umpire and would regularly take charge of a game before playing for the 4th team.

He played between the posts played for all teams across the club, including the renowned men’s 4th team. In a bid to prolong his playing career, which came to an end at the end of the 2021/22 campaign, he decided to hang up his pads and take up a position as centre forward.

He turned into quite a goal scorer, being particularly prolific from a yard out.

As he often said ‘it takes a certain skill to always be in the right place at the right time’ – however team-mates would regularly disagree with the use of the word ‘always.’

Following his playing retirement, Saggy took up full-time umpiring, regularly umpiring the ladies on a Saturday and often the men’s masters team in cup games on a Sunday.

He would always be found in the bar after a game and would socialise with the opposition, no matter whether he had been on the winning side or not.

Pelicans stalwart and legend Alan Sagrott with his family.
Pelicans stalwart and legend Alan Sagrott with his family.

For him socialising after a game was an important part of the game and through this outlook of the sport he made a huge amount of lifelong friendships, while his legendary quizzes brought the club and the hockey community together.

Saggy was very much a family man and met his wife Sarah through the club when she was playing for the ladies section.

His son Daniel played for the men’s first team before following in his father’s footsteps and joining the RAF, being posted to different parts of the country.

His daughter Lucy is an excellent young goalkeeper (again following in her father’s footsteps) and currently plays for the ladies first team.

Saggy was also extremely well known for organising teams to go on tour.

Teams returning from these tours would often have plenty of stories to tell, particularly of late night hi-jinks and inevitably a lot of them would centre around Saggy.

Through these numerous trips he made friends with hockey players from far and wide.

The number of messages on social media following the announcement of his passing from players from across the country (and beyond) is quite staggering and is testament to how well liked and respected he was as a player, umpire and raconteur in the bar after a game.