9’s hockey format makes more thrill
October 28, 2011
Hockey Australia organised first ever 9 players per side international super hockey series as thousands of hockey spectators predicting that the new format of hockey demonstrating the brilliant skills, pace and to make some more thrill in the game of hockey will get its popularity very soon.
Four teams including host Australia, Pakistan, India and New Zealand were contested in the four day event at the Perth Hockey stadium, Western Australia with the new rules adopted first time in the hockey history.
With the new format bring fast hockey as each match consists of two 15 minute halves (instead of 2x35 minute halves) with only 5 minutes break for halftime. All participating teams have a maximum of 9 players on the field instead of 11 players and each team can use up to 18 players instead of 16.
According the rules, the team who got the Penalty corner will have the three attackers while two defenders and goalkeeper will stop this action as well as the penalty corner has a 25 second countdown clock – if the team does not execute their corner in this time they will loss possession.
Penalty strokes have been replaced with 1-on-1 “Face-offs” between a player and the goalkeeper with the player starting at the 23 meter-line. The 1 on 1 faceoff has an 8 second countdown clock and if the player does not execute a shot in this time they will loss possession.
More tolerance of foot & stick contact to reduce unnecessary stoppages in play. If the ball hits the foot outside the circle and it doesn’t influence play – as non-intentional use of foot it will be called play on. Normal foot rules apply as normal in the circle
In the first ever 9-a side series, Pakistan hockey team led by ShakeelAbbasi shown the abilities in the four day event as green shirts lost only one match against strong Australia and demolished the archrival India by 4-1 to get the third slot in the event with the superb attack and rhythm where more than five thousands audience witnessed this match.
After two consecutive frustrating draw matches against India and New Zealand the green shirts started things in the fashion today against archrival India, and if not for some brilliant saves from the Pakistani goalkeeper Imran shah the score could have been significantly different for the third slot match.
Pakistan dominate in the first half and scored two goals in just twelve minute in the game with the help of skipper ShakeelAbbasi and Muhammad Waqas through the penalty corners.
In the last minute of first half Pal Singh attacked on Pakistan with the help of ArjunHalappa make the good attempt and throw the ball in the court to fight back Indian side in the match by 2-1.
Green shirts were too strong in the second half and never allow the archrival to do anything more as a brilliant set play in the 17th minute of the second half saw Fareed Ahmad to convert the Pakistan for the lead of 3rd goal in the match.
Muhammad Waqas destroy the all Indian hopes in the 21st minute through the wonderful field goal to put Pakistan top in the match.
Australia have capped off a fantastic end after defeating rivals New Zealand by 5-3 in the grand final as Kookaburras proving to be the superior team throughout the tournament.
New Zealand came out in full attack mode, not taking a defensive role in this final, which suited Australia who wanted a good content to finish year's Series. After an action packed first half the Kookaburras took an early lead, including yet another remarkable goal by 4 time world player of the year Jamie Dwyer. However New Zealand struck back on every occasion, staying close to the Kookaburras who knew they had a battle on their hands to win the first ever LISS championship.
New Zealand gained the upper hand early in the second half and when they scored to draw level, they had all the momentum. However the Kookaburras had one more phase of attack left in them, scoring two goals in the dying minutes including a sealer to Glenn Turner to claim the win.
Talking to this correspondent, Pakistan Hockey Federation Secretary General Olympian AsifBajwa said that new format of hockey will get its popularity very soon like the T-20 cricket, adding that aggressive hockey with no pressure bring big victory against archrival India in International Super Hockey Series.
He said that that young player including goalkeeper Imran Shah, Muhammad Irfan Senior, Rashid Mehmood, Syed Kashif Shah and others perform well in the International super hockey series where Pakistan participated first time in the history.
“Our players didn’t get maximum practice matches before starting the event but youngsters shown their skills as Pakistan lost only one match against host Australia by 3-2’’, he said, adding that young goalkeeper Imran Shah prove their abilities and talent as he restricted strong opponent attacks successfully where only 5 goals were done in the whole the event against Pakistan.
PHF secretary lauds the victory against archrival India by 4-1, said that players didn’t take any pressure against archrivals with the good rhythm in the match change the body language of our players to won the third slot in the event. He said that victory against India will helpful for Pakistan in 3 nation’s hockey event which will be staring from the last week of October in Australia.
Answering a question, Bajwa said that the visit of the Chinese team in December this year will be a great boost for us and revive international hockey in Pakistan. “It will be a big boost for Pakistan sports, particularly hockey and people will be able to watch an international event at home," he said.
Pakistan hockey skipper ShakeelAbbasi said that new format of hockey gives the opportunity to youngsters to learn and improve their skills beside we are failed to qualify for the final in the International Super Hockey Series.
“We played good hockey in the whole event and only lost one game against host Australia and this event gives us good opportunity for the preparation of champion’s trophy to be held in New Zealand in December”, he said.
Shakeel said that this is not easy for young players to play the new format of hockey with the new rules but if we see overall performance in this series that is satisfactory.
Talking about young goalkeeper Imran Shah, he said that Imran shown their abilities and talent in this series as he stops many goals in every match and he has full capability to replace Salman Akbar in future too.
Answering a question, Shakeel said that we played good game against New Zealand and archrival India but unfortunately failed to qualify for the final but we will try our best to come in the third position in the super series.