LAUSANNE: In an effort to make international hockey matches more exciting, the International Hockey Federation (FIH) announced changes to the structure of the game, moving from two 35-minute halves to four 15-minute quarters, a model that has been tried and implemented by both the Euro Hockey League and Hockey India League.
The purpose of the change will improve the flow and intensity of the game and increase the fan experience and opportunity for game presentation and analysis.
Other changes include the implementation of 40-second time-outs following both penalty corner awards and the scoring of a goal. Both stoppages ensure that the 60-minute game time is maximised for actual play and not consumed with penalty corner set up or other dead time when the ball is not in play.
Leandro Negre, president of FIH, said, the decision demonstrates our commitment to fan engagement.
With the additional breaks, fans will have the opportunity to enjoy more replays and be more engaged with the event, whether in the stadium or watching from a far, while hockey commentators will be allowed more time to provide sport analysis between plays.
In addition, coaches and players will see improvement in their performance with the additional opportunities to re-hydrate and re-strategise.
Following the already-existing formats of several other sports such as basketball, American football and netball, the FIH Executive Board has decided to move hockey into a four-quarter format.
Overall game time will move from 70 minutes (previously two 35-minute halves) to a 60-minute game with four 15 minute quarters where there is a time-out for penalty corner setup and goals.—Agencies