In HIL 2016, each field goal to count as two!

New Delhi, Sep 14 (IANS) The fourth edition of the Hockey India League (HIL) will see a new set of rules and regulations being implemented with the most important being that a field goal will be counted as two to encourage more skilful and tactical hockey.

In the first of its kind in any hockey competition, field goals will be given more priority than penalty corners in HIL 2016. Also, to curb rough tackles and maintain discipline, two goals will be awarded for every goal scored from a penalty stroke resulting from a penalty corner where a goal being scored is prevented by a deliberate foul.

But for the rest, i.e. penalty corners, penalty strokes and shoot-outs, the usual one goal will be awarded for conversions. The new goal-scoring system is approved by the international hockey federation (FIH) Competitions and Rules Committee, HIL chairman Narinder Batra said on Monday.

“Penalty corners give undue advantage to those teams which have penalty corner specialists. The teams also fight to earn penalty corners rather than scoring goals through field penetration. The new system will encourage teams and players to play to score goals instead of looking for penalties,” said Batra.

“The system will surely enhance players’ skills and mentality of playing good hockey. HIL is committed to promoting the worlds best hockey and with these new rules, players will improve themselves in a competitive environment.”

It other changes, when it comes to the squad, franchises can now only have a squad of 20 players, four less than last time, with a composition of 12 Indians and eight foreigners. The squad must have at least two goalkeepers and all players of the squad will be mentioned in the match sheet and be present at the team dug-outs.

The HIL auction will be held here on Thursday where where 135 Indians and 141 foreigners will go under the hammer. Earlier in August, the governing council of the league had provided all franchises the option of retaining up to three Indians and foreigners each while releasing the rest of the squad.

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