The second EHF Executive Board meeting of 2021 took place via video conference on Saturday 20th March.
The President, Marijke Fleuren, welcomed everyone to the second online meeting of this year. Marijke informed the Board about the European nominees to the FIH elections: Marc Coudron (for President), Erik Cornelissen & Inez Cooper (for Members) and congratulated them for putting themselves forward. The Executive Board will support their candidacies over the coming weeks.
Marijke noted the various committee meetings that had taken place since our last Board meeting and thanked the Board and committees for their engagement during these challenging and busy time. Marijke also thanked the staff for their support with the Board members and Committees in ensuring good communication and co-operation between everyone.
The minutes of the February meeting were approved.
FIH Board Update and Congress
Marijke gave an update on the FIH Executive Board meeting and the actions arising from the meeting. The financial situation is favourable as enough Pro League games are going on, and FIH has worked hard on securing their sponsor and TV broadcasting, etc.
The World Cup Qualification system was approved, and EHF National Member Associations received official documents about it. There is a discussion about the FIH Congress concept – virtual, hybrid or live is still going on, and the decision will be made soon. The Board members expressed reservations about a live or hybrid Congress. The safety of all attendees is paramount; restrictions to and from each NA are unknown and subject to change; securing flights and managing quarantine rules at either end of the trip and in any transiting airport will be difficult. There will be considerable expense around PCR and Antigen tests for all delegates, and the integrity of the Congress needs to be maintained to avoid any legal dispute afterwards the approach must be equitable for all.
Director General Report
Angus Kirkland updated the Board about EHL Final4 in April. We are working closely with AH&BC and KNHB in the delivery of the event and, in particular, the protocols for teams, management, press, staff, and volunteers.
NOS will show four matches live and available in Belgium on Eleven Sports and EHTV as a pay-per-view option – price to be announced.
Preparations for the EHC 2021 are pretty different from previous years due to Covid. The match schedule will be announced this week. Many of our side events have had been postponed (announcement to follow soon)
Commercial update: EHF is sending an information update to NAs covering three topics: EHTV+, LED boarding time at EHC, and Hockey5’s Boards by partner RSI.
We have received a letter from Poland with a request to support their proposition to the European Olympic Committee for an Under 23 tournament at the European Games in 2023. The European Games has expanded the cities in Poland it will host events in, and now one of the venues has Hockey pitches.
Competitions Committee Outdoor Report
Walter Kapounek updated the Board about Competition Committee Outdoor meeting. The Executive Board approved to postpone EuroHockey Club Challenge events that should have taken place in May 2021 by committee recommendations and propose to organize events in September, with conversations with hosts ongoing.
The Board approved the recommendations by the committee for the hosts EuroHockey Junior Championships 2022. The committee discussed EHC in Amsterdam and EHC II in Poland and the Czech Republic. It is paramount that these events are played alongside the now approved European World Cup Qualifiers. As such is important that the events can manage with the Covid situation, as it is when the time comes. The EHF staff are supporting Poland and the Czech Republic via video conference to coordinate event preparation. The Poland and Czech Republic organization committee delegates will be invited to EHC in June to have a see how all the arrangements – particularly around Covid – are managed.
Development Committee Report
Peter Elders updated the Board about the Development Committee meeting. The Development Programmes COVID Plans for the postponement and rearrangement of delivery planned through 2021 were received and explained to the Board members. National Member Associations will be informed soon. The Board has approved the committee recommendations to postpone Development and Education events.
Officials Committee Report
Inez Cooper and Magdalena Nazaret gave an update about the Officials Committee meeting. The Officials meeting took place on 13th March. Inez Cooper & Magda Nazaret communicated the Executive Board’s appreciation for all the work done over last year, highlighted particularly at the last Board meeting. The Chairs of each group (C. Deckenbrock – Appointments, R. ten Cate – Umpire Education, R. Warris – Officials Education) gave an overview of the challenges and work each group for the last year.
Next Executive Board meeting on June in Amsterdam, all hoping to have ‘face to face’ meeting. Board members thanked the committee members and EHF staff for hard work the last year.
The President thanked the Board for their time and contributions. The meeting closed at 12:10.