Earlier this week International Olympic Committee (IOC) President Thomas Bach awarded former International Hockey Federation (FIH) President Leandro Negre, from Spain, the Olympic Order for his outstanding services to the Olympic Movement.
The Olympic Order is awarded to an individual in recognition of their outstanding achievements in the cause of world sport and their faithfulness to the Olympic ideal as illustrated by Pierre de Coubertin, renovator of the Olympic Games.
The award ceremony took place in the Palace of the State Government of Catalonia during President Bach's visit to mark the 25th anniversary of the Barcelona 1992 Olympic Games.
Speaking about this, Negre, an FIH President of Honour, said: "I am honoured to receive such a prestigious award. My love of hockey goes back to when I was a young boy playing the sport right here in Barcelona, therefore it is incredibly special to receive the Olympic Order in my hometown. I strongly believe that this recognition is a reflection of the progress hockey has made in recent years thanks to the support of many great people across the world. I would also like to reiterate my sincere gratitude to Thomas Bach who has been incredibly supportive of our sport during his time as IOC President. The sport is certainly experiencing exciting times, particularly with the launch of the Hockey Pro League, therefore I am looking forward to watching hockey continue to evolve over the coming years as a key player within the Olympic Movement."
Spaniard Negre enjoyed a successful period as FIH President which saw the sport transformed during his time in office. He will be remembered for driving forward FIH's 10-year Hockey Revolution strategy which aims to make hockey a global game that inspires the next generation. For more information about this strategy, launched in 2014, click here.