Planning the return to hockey is underway by Hockey Victoria and the Footscray Hockey Club Board, however there will be a staged process before that starting whistle can be blown for Round 1.
A. On Monday 11th May the Victorian Government will provide an update on restriction levels.
B. There will be 3 Levels for sport coming out of Stage 3 restrictions to a resume to playing hockey at a normal capacity. A very basic summary is as follows:
Level A – physical exercise of no more than 2 persons
Level B – non contact training of no more than 10 persons
Level C – resume normal hockey training & games (however spectator restrictions, no shaking hands, social space restrictions, guidelines around using changerooms/bench areas, regular cleaning of toilets etc may be applicable)
C. Hockey Victoria will be developing guidelines for all of the Levels in conjunction with Sport and Recreation Victoria and the Victorian Government. Maintaining health and safety of participants, officials, coaches, club volunteers and spectators at all times will be a core focus. Footscray Hockey Club will be ensuring we meet the standards expected and will be complying with the guidelines at all times.
D. Hockey Victoria have indicated that there will be a hockey season at the end of this restriction period, that they will advise the cost, length and structure as soon as possible. If a shorter season can be fit before the end of September they will try to do so, however are realistic that it could be extended to October (and maybe even November) and have reasonably positive support from clubs to offer this as an option.
E. HV continue to work with clubs and they meet with the HV Board on 18th May. After this time, more information will be made available. HV have indicated that they will be focussing on getting seniors/masters up and running first, and then focus on juniors so anticipate a delayed start to the junior season.
F. What does this mean for Footscray Hockey Club? There will be a staged approach back to training and playing and we hope all our members will be keen to get back on the pitch. All members will be sent season information, structure and cost as soon as it comes to hand and at this point it will be crucial for our members to make a decision about their participation so that we can confirm team numbers/entries. Clubs have advised HV that a 2-3 week period is what is required to prepare from the time the format/costs are announced to playing competitions. Remember seniors/masters first, then juniors.
G. Footscray Hockey Club strongly encourages all members and families to download the COVID-19 tracing app to assist with tracking the spread and allow us to play hockey sooner and for longer. We also encourage keeping 1.5 meters away from other persons, maintaining good hand hygiene and if you display any of the symptoms or are feeling unwell – get yourself tested and stay isolated in your home.