[India], Oct.10 (ANI): The first Hockey India 5-a-side Senior Hockey National Championship 2016 will be held at the Shiv Chattrapati Sports Complex in Pune from October 26 to October 30.
Hosted by Hockey Maharashtra, the championship will have eight teams: Association of Indian Universities, Hockey Haryana, Hockey Jharkhand, Hockey Karnataka, Hockey Maharashtra, Hockey Odisha, Hockey Punjab and Uttar Pradesh Hockey.
This explosive short format for field hockey played for the first time in India under the aegis of Hockey India will be conducted on a 38.5m x 22.5m size indoor court. It is seen as one of the key development for the sport worldwide. The objective of Hockey 5-a-side is to allow flexibility so that it can be played on any surface and on different sized pitches.
A match will consist of three periods of 10 minutes each with an interval of there minutes between the periods. Some of the key differences from current field hockey are in terms of the ways goals are scored and penalties imposed.
Unlike traditional hockey, goals in 5s don't have to be scored from inside the circle. A goal is awarded when the ball crosses the line from anywhere on the court. In addition, the ball is moved using a push, scoop or flick and no hitting is allowed as it is being played at an indoor arena.
In terms of fouls, only free hits and challenges are awarded for respective offences by an attacker or defender. A Challenge is similar to the way shootouts are conducted in modern hockey. Free hits and fouls follow the same rules as modern hockey as well.
Speaking about the tournament, Md. Mushtaque Ahmad, Secretary General, Hockey India said, " Hockey 5s is an exciting format, that has gained a lot of popularity internationally as an alternative to the traditional game. With the introduction of the Hockey India National Championship we can analyse and see how the format can help us build a fan base as well as a player base at the grassroots level. It is a very spectator friendly format of the sport sport, so we are keenly looking forward to it."(ANI)