Hockey India League starts off on a promising note
Hockey India League is a professional league for field hockey competition in India. It is organised by Hockey India.
Each HIL franchise has 24 players which include 10 foreign and 14 Indian players. The players were acquired in an auction which was held on 16 December.
A total of 246 players were available for the auction out of which 93 were foreign player and 153 local. Teun de Nooijer is the highest paid player of the league who was bought by Uttar Pradesh Wizards whereas Sardar Singh is the highest paid Indian player bought by Delhi Wave Riders. The participating players were given the privilege to choose their base price which will have four slabs.
The Hockey India League is bringing the best coaches in the world – like Ric Charlesworth etc (see the profiles of the coaches in HIL here)- and the top international players are coming over to be part of the whole Hockey League. Will it be any better than the other two attempts at creating such leagues in India? That is an important question for, Premier Hockey League (PHL) and World Series Hockey have been two other private leagues were started earlier. The latter fizzled out and the latter hasn’t really picked up at all.
The teams – and their details – in the Hockey India League is given in the table below:
Three reasons why this league may be successful –
- Rs. 100 crores invested: Good amount of money has been pumped into this league.
- FIH is onboard with this effort: FIH is creating a special window for the HIL and this league is sanctioned by that body. This enables the international players to participate in the league in the off-season time.
- Top World Hockey Coaches and Players participating: The best names in the world are coming over. For the many hockey players, this will be like the ultimate place to be in as no other option in the sport provides them avenues to make money.
The first match was played between Delhi Waveriders and Punjab Warriors, which was won by Delhi Waveriders 2-1. The Hero goal of the match was awarded to Oscar Deecke of the Delhi Waveriders. The man of the match was awarded to Jacob Stockman from Punjab Warriors.
Here are the highlights of this first match:
Here are some excellent Promos of the whole league event from the TV:
SV Sunil Promo:
Sandeep Singh Promo
Sardar Singh Promo