"I have never put on skates in my life", admits Toni Quintana, who was the presdent of Girona Club Hockey two decades ago. But hockey has made him and makes him happy. "I speak from the heart, I was very happy at that stage, very happy, very much. It was a sublime, fantastic and exciting time. I arrived from the office, greeted my wife and my children and went towards the pavilion, I was very happy",he emphasizes. While hearing the ticking of a clock, he runs around the room with a pen in hand searching and rummaging through notebooks, notes, papers and documents. His house is full of filing cabinets and boxes. "I keep a lot of things, I've become a bit of an archivist", he points out. He is a lawyer by profession and a historian by vocation.
His eyes sparkle when he talks about the history of Girona CH. He maintains that he is the dean of Spanish hockey, ahead of Cerdanyola. The club was born more than eighty years ago and was proclaimed champion of Catalonia twice in the early 1940s, before ceding leadership to the main dominator of mid-century hockey, Joan Antoni Samaranch's Espanyol. "In the beginning it was played very differently, in a more beastly way and more in the face of the barracks. They played without defenses or gloves. Motorcycle gloves appeared later. The goalkeepers didn't even have a face", he remembers . "In Girona, hockey was a mass movement. They followed Girona in football and hockey. On Sundays they went to watch hockey in the morning and football in the afternoon. All this for people who had means, because it was shortly after the Civil War”, he adds, before recounting the decadence that distanced Girona from the elite. The club was forgotten, in the shadow of skating, until everything started to reflect following the merger with Club Patí Devesa.
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Editor of the agency EFE in Girona, to cover information on Girona FC, Básquet Girona and Uni Girona. Collaborator for Panenka Magazine, El Diario Ara, el Periódico and Diario de Girona.
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