Warwick hockey confirms comeback, announces date
IT’S good news for Warwick’s hockey players and fans alike, as easing coronavirus restrictions mean they will finally be able to take the field again next month.
The Warwick Hockey Association announced this week that all fixtures will be resuming the week of June 11, in line with Stage 3 of eased government measures.
The association’s president Carly Hansen said it was both exciting and a relief to have a concrete plan for the return of Warwick’s hockey competitions.
“We can finally get the word out that hockey is back and get players back on the field,” Hansen said.
“I think we’ll have everybody coming back, if not some more after a few sports have said they aren’t coming back this year.
“We’re back to four teams in the women’s and men’s comps, so all four clubs have fielded teams this season and we hope that keeps up.”
Hansen said the government go-ahead couldn’t have come soon enough, despite being one of the last hockey associations in the state to postpone the rest of their season.
“We were lucky in that being a small town, we decided to keep playing until we had a confirmed case,” she said.
“We were very fortunate to be able to get four games in and be able to make that decision on our own, rather than have an abrupt end to the season.
“Even though we’ve played four games into the comps, anyone is still more than welcome to join – we’re never going to turn anyone away.”
While many athletes will be keen to return the fields as soon as possible, Hansen cautioned that social distancing measures would still apply to families and spectators.
“For the first few weeks, until we know for sure how it’s going to run, we’re not opening our clubhouse or anything for spectators,” Hansen said.
“We don’t want to discourage people from coming, but it’s 100 people per venue and that adds up pretty quickly when you take into account the 30 on the field plus spectators.
“We also won’t be opening the canteen yet, but we hope it won’t be too long until we can get back into that. It is a great source of revenue and we understand why clubs struggle without it.”
Above all, Hansen said she and the rest of the Warwick Hockey Association would keep working towards having more of the community involved in the sport.
“We’re definitely just looking to have as much of the community down there as possible, but we need to hang tough for now,” she said.
To join a club or find out more information about the hockey season’s return, go to the Warwick Hockey Association’s website or contact Carly Hansen on 0431 817 922.