Rules of Hockey in England for the 2019-20 Season

Rules of Hockey in England for the 2019-20 Season

By Andy Howell
14th August
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Rule Changes


England Hockey can now confirm that it supports the implementation of all the rule changes with the exception of one.

Read the below for more information on the changes that will be implemented at all levels of the sport in England from the start of the 2019/20 season ?.

Key Changes

2.2 – Mandatory Experiment: a team no longer has the option to play with a player with goalkeeping privileges. This means that teams either play with a Goalkeeper, or 11 outfield players

5 – timing of matches to be more closely aligned with the international game as seen at the Vitality Hockey Women’s World Cup or FIH Pro-League. See above / below for further details.

6 – wording change around the start and re-start of the match to reflect the change to quarters in the rule book.

9.12 – Very minor clarification of third party or shadow obstruction during a penalty corner on defenders (and goalkeeper).

11.6 – wording added to this rule to show that Umpires blow the whistle for the start / end of each quarter and for the stopping / re-starting of time around a Penalty Corner.

12.4 – clarification added to the awarding of a Penalty Stroke if the ball hits a piece of equipment lying in the circle and a probable goal is prevented, a penalty stroke may be awarded.

13.1 – A free hit awarded to the defence within the defensive circle can be taken anywhere in their circle OR taken up to 15 metres from the back-line in line with the location of the offence, parallel to the side-line.

13.2 – Additional wording in the guidance concerning the re-start after awarding a Free Hit to the attacking team within 5 metres of the circle they are attacking. The introduction of a quick self-pass for these Free Hits allows the defenders to stay within the circle, within 5m and not interfere with play until the ball can legitimately enter the circle. If there is no quick self-pass, then ALL defenders, regardless of location in the 23m, have to retreat 5m if they wish to legitimately play the ball once the Free Hit is taken.

13.3.g – Clarification on defending team’s responsibilities when defending a Penalty Corner when playing with no Goalkeeper.

13.5 – Removal of previous rule of when a Penalty Corner is finished if time has already lapsed and clarification that if play during a Penalty Corner is stopped because of an injury or for any other reason during the taking of a penalty corner at the end of a quarter or half and a bully would otherwise be awarded, the penalty corner must be taken again.

13.6.e – change to current rule, now if an attacker enters the circle at a Penalty Corner before permitted, the player taking the push or hit from the backline is required to go beyond the centre-line and the Penalty Corner is taken again.

13.7.e – if a team has chosen to play with eleven outfield players and no goalkeeper, if they concede a Penalty Stroke then this explains what protective equipment is permitted for the defender.

Further information can be found on England Hockey's website.

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