Rule of the Week - Edition 3

Published Mon 25 Apr 2022

Each week we will be providing a "Rule of the Week" for players and umpirs to develop their knownledge and skills of the game.

The full FIH rule book is attached below for anyone who is feeling adventurous 

This week being the first edition there will be one rule and one explination of what tools umpires use throughout a game.

Rule 4 - "2 in a tackle" (or in this case a non rule)

One of the more common misconceptions is the "2 defenders in a tackle rule". While this was an older interpretation of the of the third man obstruction, it is definetely no longer in effect.

Any numer of players are able to effect a tackle against an attacker. As long as they do not breech one of the other rules in the process. 

A breech by a defender in this scenario could be

- Stick Obstruction (blocking the attacker from getting the ball with one of the defenders sticks)

- Body Obstruction (i.e. one of the defenders stepping in between the attacker and one of the defenders effecting the tackle essentially preventing the attacker from playing the ball)

- One of the defenders making physical contact with the attacker player causing them to loose control of the ball.

From the rule book - 

9.3 Players must not touch, handle or interfere with other players or their sticks or clothing.

9.12 Players must not obstruct an opponent who is attempting to play the ball.

Players obstruct if they : (Only showing relevant clause, there are others)

      • A player who runs in front of or blocks an opponent to stop them legitimately playing or attempting to play the ball is obstructing (this is third party or shadow obstruction). This also applies if an attacker runs across or blocks defenders (including the goalkeeper) when a penalty corner is being taken

9.13 Players must not tackle unless in a position to play the ball without body contact.


Any clarrification talk to our Umpire Coordinator Nick McCarthy.

Here are some good techniques for effective tackling.



We Support