With the Lanco International Super Series only days away, the CEO of Hockey Australia has written an open letter to all hockey fans and supporters urging that each and everyone gets behind this exciting new tournament by watching the live and delayed telecasts around the world.
By watching these matches, it will mean a healthy increase in the ratings of the telecasts, and thus telling the television stations and broadcast partners that hockey is a great television sport. This will help increase the chance of future broadcasts and help to grow this great sport.
Read on to see what Mark Anderson, CEO of Hockey Australia, has to say about it all and be sure to spread the word and get behind this exciting new event! For us, there are a stack of Gryphon Ambassadors in action throughout the tournament who will be raising the level of what’s possible and we can’t wait to witness it!
Cheers, The G-Team.
HOCKEY ON TELEVISION – HOW CAN YOU HELP?
Dear Hockey Fan,
With the Oceania Olympic Qualifier just completed and the 2012 LondonOlympics now less than a year away, I’m sure you are as excited as we are about what is in store for our two national teams, the Kookaburras and Hockeyroos, in the coming months.
The next opportunity to see our teams in action is just a few days away. For those of you who are not aware Hockey Australia has created a unique tournament unlike any other hockey event in the world – the Lanco International Super Series, (LISS).
The tournament will be held in Perth from October 20-23 in conjunction with Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) thanks to the support of the Federal and State Governments and Australian Sports Commission we will see both the Kookaburras and Hockeyroos take on the likes of India, Pakistan, Malaysia and New Zealand.
New rules and formats have been created for the tournament to engage interest from both hockey fans and non hockey fans. Our National Programs and in particular Head Coaches, Ric Charlesworth and Adam Commens have also had input to the creation of these rules. These include teams having 9 players a side, games will be played in 15 minute halves as opposed to 35 minute halves, bigger goals, one player from each team will be required to stay in the forward half to create more space and rules around the ground will be relaxed to encourage continuous play.
We understand there may be some traditionalists who are not fans of the rule changes. Rest assured, we are not trying to change our great game. It is about providing another option which will appeal to television and sponsors to increase the exposure of our sport in what is an extremely competitive sporting market. Australia has always been an innovator in our sport and this is just another example.
Over the past months we have already achieved some fantastic results for the LISS, firstly signing Indian engineering and construction company Lanco Infratech Limited as naming rights sponsor for the tournament.
With Lanco aiming to build a presence in the WA market, we think we can give them great value for money and have no doubt that the sponsorship of the tournament will increase their profile both here in Australia and also in India. Hero Motocorp has also come on board as an Associate Sponsor and we will announce an Australian hockey partner at the event.
More recently, we were extremely excited to announce that ABC will be broadcasting the tournament LIVE.
The importance of this cannot be understated. It will be the first time in a significant period that hockey will be shown live on free to air television outside of the Olympics or Commonwealth Games.
The first two days of the tournament will be shown in the form of delayed highlights, but the final two days on Saturday and Sunday will be shown completely live. In further exciting news, all games will be shown in full delayed on Fox Sports, who continue to show great support of hockey. We thank them for this continued coverage. You may be interested to know that the event will also be broadcast into India, Pakistan, New Zealand and Sri Lanka and many other countries around the world.
As I’m sure you will agree this is a fantastic result for our sport. The lack of hockey on free to air TV always seems to be one of the biggest issue raised amongst fans. With the ABC showing the Lanco International Super Series we are now asking all fans to make the most of it. The opportunity is now there to show the broadcasters that there is great value in our sport and that hockey and sports fans will support our two great teams.
The reasons as to why there isn’t more hockey on free to air TV are varied but there are two major reasons – cost and interest. Broadcasting just one game of hockey is extremely expensive. Unfortunately it is an expense that we cannot afford without television network support. In previous discussions networks have indicated they are unsure of potential ratings for hockey tournaments outside of the Commonwealth and Olympic Games.
And that is where we need your help. I can’t understate how important it is in our bid to gain more free to air coverage of our sport that the Lanco International Super Series rates well on the ABC.
We therefore need EACH and EVERY hockey fan around the country to tune and watch the action. If the LISS rates well – as we know it will with your support – our chances of gaining more free to air coverage in the future will significantly increase.
And on the other hand if it doesn’t rate well, our position and chances of getting more coverage in the future will be significantly reduced.
So for all of you out there who have justifiably wondered why we don’t have hockey on free to air TV, this is your chance to ensure that changes.
A full fixture of ABC’s and Fox Sports schedule of the event can be found here.
ABC Broadcast Schedule (All times are AEDT – Australian Easter Daylight Time):
Thursday 20th October: 23:00 – 00:30 – Day 1 action (Highlights)
Australia v Malaysia (women) & Australia v Pakistan (men)
Friday 21st October: 23.10 – 00.10 – Day 2 action (Highlights)
Australia v India (women) & Australia v New Zealand (men)
Saturday 22nd October: 17:00 – 18:30 – Day 3 action (LIVE)
Australia v India (women) & Australia v India (men)
Sunday 23rd October: 17:00 – 19:00 – Day 4 action (LIVE)
Play-off 3 v 4 (men), Women’s Final & Men’s Final.
Fox Sports schedule (All times are AEDT):
Friday 21st October: 3pm on Fox Sports 1 (day 1 matches)
Saturday 22nd October: 5.30am on Fox Sports 1 (day 2 matches)
Monday 24th October: 7am on Fox Sports 2 (day 3 matches)
Tuesday 25th October: 3pm on Fox Sports 3 (finals)
Wednesday 26th October: 9am on Fox Sports 2 (finals)
We now have an opportunity to show the broadcasters exactly how much passion and demand for hockey there is in Australia. We look forward to your support of both our valued broadcast partners.