Hockey ACT will launch its 2020 Winter Season this weekend, after the start to the season was called off a week before its commencement.
The 18-week season will be held across 16 weeks with some mid-week clashes, as Hockey ACT CEO Rob Sheekey said he was just pleased to see teams back on the pitch.
“We are just excited and relieved to get the season underway. Our hockey community have been so supportive during this difficult time and we are really excited to be able to deliver a full season of hockey for our members,” he said.
“We are really keen to try and change the narrative of 2020 to something really positive and enjoyable for all our members.”
Junior grand finals will be held on 25 October, and seniors will play finals the following week, on 31 October.
Mr Sheekey said the competition had understandably lost 11 teams during the break, based on health concerns and finances.
“The uncertainty has been the most difficult thing during this time. Not knowing when we can start has been so challenging,” he said.
“Given the climate, people have been hesitant to return to the sport and we were expecting the drop off.”
The season will kick off this Friday (10 July), with two Capital League 1 clashes at the National Hockey Centre in Lyneham.
The centre’s on-site café, Pick Up Stix Kitchen and Bar, is also set to open from today (Wednesday 8 July), just in time for the start of season.
Mr Sheekey said Hockey ACT was happy to return a sense of normality to the community, with the return of the sport.
“So many people have been stuck at home during this time and hockey isn’t a contact sport, so it won’t be too full on,” he said.
“We are hoping to give our community the opportunity to get back to communicating with people they haven’t seen during this time.
“Our hockey community have been so supportive during this difficult time and we are really excited to be able to deliver a full season of hockey for our members.”