Hockey India has cleared the clouds over Hockey India league. There will be no Hockey India League (HIL) next year, Hockey India said on Tuesday.
“After five years of successfully organizing the Hockey India League, we felt that it is time to review the League, evaluate its success and comeback with a fresh outlook that will benefit the development of the sport,” said Mohd Mushtaque Ahmad, Chairman Hockey India League and Secretary General, Hockey India.
“This decision was made after consultation with all our commercial partners and meeting the contractual obligations of all parties involved,” he added.
InsideSport earlier reported that Hockey India, the most professionally run national sports federation under its former President Narinder Dhruv Batra, will not conduct the sixth edition of the HIL. And that there were certain plans to bounce back with a new edition from 2019.
The tournament’s Governing Committee, comprising representatives of Hockey India and other stakeholders, have unanimously decided to schedule the next edition of Hockey India League in 2019 instead of 2018 January and February.
There were reports that unhappy franchises and financial concerns may see the end of the Hockey India League after just five seasons.
However, Ahmad clarified that this will only be a temporary discontinuation and that the Hockey India League will return in 2019.
“Due to a conflict in dates of the schedule of Hockey India League 2018 and a major international tournament which was likely to restrict the participation of international players, it was decided that the best solution was to postpone the conduct of the sixth season of the League,” Ahmad said.
“I want to emphasize that we want to resume the League in 2019 albeit with greater prospects to make it more viable financially not only for the stakeholders but also for the players,” he added.