Tuesday, November 28, 2023

Hockey 5s set for showcase weekend in Lausanne

Such is the freshness of the International Hockey Federation’s new concept – Hockey 5s – that it used promotional shots of the 11-a-side game to promote its first senior event of the shortened outdoor format.

The FIH confirmed that it will showcase a two-day event on Sep 11 and 12 in Lausanne, with some off-pitch razmatazz to go alongside as it further ramps up profile of a game which could rival the traditional 11 v 11 game in future years.

This is the decade where we likely see a shift in the Olympic programme following the pandemic. Cost, infrastructure and athlete numbers will all come into the equation. And while the rhetoric for now is that Hockey 5s is the perfect bedfellow to grow the game globally, there must remain the threat of the shortened format joining the Games programme one day.

The FIH are clearly putting some energy into the September event ahead of its first World Cups.

Five men’s and women’s teams will compete in Lausanne over the weekend: Switzerland, England, Germany, India, Malaysia (Men) and Switzerland, England, Germany, India, South Africa (Women).

There will be free entry to gee up the host nation at the Place de la Navigation and the event will be broadcast live on the Watch.Hockey platform. It will be the first of a planned series of events, with a Hockey5s World Tour planned down the line.

FIH chief Thierry Weil said: “Hockey5s is a great format to promote our sport and especially introduce it to sports fans not yet familiar with hockey. I invite everyone to come to this world event and enjoy the speed, skills and fun of our game.”

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