10.06.2015, Brussels; Rogier Warris and Sylvie Petitjean will head up the EuroHockey officials teams at the 2016 EuroHockey Indoor Championships in Prague for Men and Minsk for Women.

In between their busy days balancing work, family life and hockey, we caught up with them as they prepare to take on the top EuroHockey Indoor events of 2016.

Rogier, Sylvie – so you have been appointed to the EuroHockey Indoor Championships as TD – what does this mean to you?

Sylvie – I feel very privileged to be appointed to such a high profile tournament. Our one aim is to make this tournament a showcase for hockey and I trust the Belarus Federation will put up a fantastic show.
Rogier – Like Sylvie, I am delighted and very much honoured to be appointed. I look forward to working with the team of Umpires, Officials and the Local Organization Committee. Together we will aim to create a great environment for the players to perform at the highest level and show their hockey skills.

What are the main differences between TD at Indoor and Outdoor or is it the same job?

Sylvie – Basically there is not much difference except that everything is so much more manic, but that’s what makes the TD job exciting
Rogier – I would say it’s more intense! 

What is a typical day in the life of a TD during a Tournament?

Sylvie – The tournament actually starts a few months before with all the pre-tournament preparation and liaising.

At the tournament itself, my job is to ensure the smooth running of the tournament, working closely with the officials, liaising with the Umpires’ Managers re appointments, performance, etc. and also keeping in touch with and being attentive to Team Management. We’re also in constant contact with the organising committee. At times, you will be a mentor to some of the officials as well. I would also mention liaising with social media and making full use of social media to promote the tournament.

The other role is a discipline one; to uphold the code of conduct. You have to be prepared to make the tough decisions when the need arises.

Everyone has their jobs to do but we work together as a team to make things happen. The TD job is very much a hands-on job.

It’s all about building personal relationships with all those involved.

What do all the people surrounding the technical table do?

Sylvie: There are sometimes very many people surrounding the technical table. It can get pretty crowded. Yet again, it is very much a team thing and the officials need to work with the pitch manager, the doctor and medical staff, TV (for some of the bigger events), ball patrol, photographers, etc.

Rogier: During a game however on the table 1 Technical Official and 2 Judges are appointed. All these people have specific tasks that are assigned to them. One of the Judges is responsible for the time keeping (match time, suspension timing and injury timing). The other Judge is responsible for the match report and other official documents for the match. The Technical Official is responsible for the table work, to ensure it is correct before it’s signed and very importantly is the contact person for the team managers during the game. 

What is the most unusual situation you have had to deal with as TD? What did you learn from it?

Sylvie: Without mentioning specifics there is one thing that never ceases to amaze me at equipment check…just how inventive team staff are with players’ equipment to bypass regulations on sticks, gloves and all sorts. This has happened at every single tournament I’ve been to!
Rogier: I had a situation where there was an anomaly between regulations, it was resolved in the best way, but it was a good reminder to read re-read and then re-read regulations before the event! 

How has the role changed, if at all?

Sylvie – The role has not changed much. However, because EHF are promoting the game much more widely, there is much more interaction between all those involved in a tournament, be it with umpires, officials, media, organisers…
Rogier – like Sylvie says I don’t think it has changed much in recent times, we are there to make it work, and we make sure we get it done! 

We will be using the FIH TMS, can you explain a little bit how this has changed hockey?

Rogier – Computers at the pitch side. Less paper work as all the information is digitized immediately, so less re-entering of data! With only a couple of mouse clicks the Tournament Director as well as the media, team management and most importantly the fans have the tournament stats (results, pool standings, top scorers etc)

Finally what are you most looking forward to in Prague and Minsk?

Sylvie – Besides sharing knowledge and experience with all those involved, working with the organising committee and meeting new people, I am looking forward to making the EuroHockey Indoor Championships for Women in Minsk a fabulous and exciting platform for hockey.
Rogier – I am really looking forward to playing my part in making the tournament in Prague a great success and seeing the best Indoor men’s players in Europe perform at their best.

Thanks guys, good luck to you and indeed all our Officials appointed for the 2016 events!

All of the accepted Appointments can be seen under Appointments on our home page

Pictured:  Rogier and Sylvie worked together at this years FIH Indoor World Cup. Sylvie is 3rd from end in from row and Rogier is second from end in back row.