Tuesday, April 23, 2024

Trials and tests: World hockey ready to turn off water pitches from 2024

While hockey and water remain bedfellows on the pitch — at the recent World Cup in India, one of the most water-stressed nations in the world, the FIH did away with watering the turf at half-time – momentum is gathering off it for major changes in the synthetic turf market.

“We won’t say from 2024 that all elite hockey is to be played on non-watered turf,” Jon Wyatt, of the FIH, told The Hockey Paper. “There will be a period of eight to 10 years where teams are still playing international hockey on wet turf. It will be a natural life cycle.”

What we do know is that the Paris Olympics will be the last global FIH event played on a watered turf, the FIH’s previous aim for the 2024 Games to be held without water, after working with turf manufacturers and testing labs, scuppered by the pandemic and pushing their aims back by 18 months. Some continental clubs are now getting ahead of the game.

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