Sunday, June 23, 2024

We need more club-led events to boost domestic crowds, says Weir

Great Britain and England international Henry Weir has backed our #watchyour1s campaign after Old Georgians were lifted by home support at the weekend.

Old Georgians is set to benefit from the work the club put in to attract hockey families to their Premier Division clash on Sunday against East Grinstead, which resulted in a 7-0 win to stay top of the table.

“It was such a brilliant atmosphere following the Watch Your 1s campaign,” said Weir. “Having that level of support for both teams pushes the hockey to another level.”

Weir added that putting more focus into club attendances were “very important if we want to take a step forward with the sport in this country.”

Old Georgians crowd lifted Premier Division clash

He said: “As a sport, we have always found it hard to generate large and consistent crowds, at Premier Division and sometimes international matches.

“Clubs and our governing body are set up to prioritise participation, which serves the country in many positive ways.

“Unfortunately, this can be to the detriment of our sport, as a well-followed, well-supported and commercially attractive investment of time and money.”

Old Georgians played out a memorable 10-6 win over Oxted last season

On Sunday, Old Georgians held a prize draw and urged more locals to attend the top flight clash – and Weir says that it’s up to more clubs to focus in on peripheral entertainment for supporters to make the experience more attractive in the long run.

He added: “Club-led events like this are helping to bridge the gap and push our sport to become not only a great game to play but also a fun, exciting and atmospheric game to watch.”

The Hockey Paper’s Watch Your 1s competition and campaign is running for a second year. Clubs have until the end of November to get their entry in.

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