2015-06-04 23:06:35 - IISHF - Presidium 
 IISHF Communication Letter 2015-12 StumbleUpon Toolbar
Men European Cup 2015 - incidents
1. Men European Cup 2015 - incidents
The Men European Cup took place in Givisiez, Switzerland on May 23-25, 2015 and there were unforntunately a number of incidents that we need to address.

The actions made by a number of players, spectators and officials from a participating team during and especially after the games Monday May 25, 2015 are not acceptable.

We have to express our deep dissatisfaction that unfortunately a participating club reacted unreasonably instead of showing understanding and mutual cooperation. It is acceptable to have different opinions but if a number of representatives of a participating club are offending IISHF Referees and IISHF Officials, this is bad and disrespectful. We will never accept this unfair action and attacks of threats and offending after the game. There are several rules of fairness and respect which have been extremely broken at the Men European Cup and which do not belong to any sport.

The IISHF Presidium has discussed internally the situation with our IISHF Officials and IISHF Referee Manager. We also have to deal with this matter and try to improve our handling of IISHF Title Events in any possible way.

In cooperation with the IISHF Referee Manager Claes Fréder we have decided to publish a relatively short statement on the following 5 topics.

1. IISHF Referee selection.
2. IISHF Referee training.
3. IISHF referee scheduling at tournaments.
4. IISHF focus areas.
5. Communication with IISHF officials at tournaments.

AD 1: IISHF Referee selection
The IISHF pool of referees consists of referees recommended by any National Member Association. This means that the IISHF can't approach or select a referee directly but is dependent on the National Member Association to select local referees with international level and skills.

The IISHF aims to have a pool of referees that represent all member countries, i.e. Austria, Denmark, Germany, Great Britain, Israel, Pakistan, Russia, Spain, Switzerland and The Netherlands.

A large percentage of the referee pool today consists of German and Austrian referees. In principle this fact presents a challenge when selecting referees for tournaments and referee scheduling at the actual tournaments.

The IISHF must therefore encourage all member countries to put forward any national referees that are considered to be able to perform at an international level. Minimum requirements are:

a. The referee must have officiated at the highest level for the complete previous season.
b. The referee must be selected to officiate at the highest level for the current season.
c. The referee must be able to communicate in English in both speech and writing.

Any new referee will be selected, if possible, for a IISHF B-tournament to be assessed by an IISHF Referee Supervisor. Based on this assessment the referee will be accepted or rejected for IISHF Title Events.

AD 2: IISHF Referee training
Prior to any IISHF Title Event the IISHF Referee Supervisor will lead a training session where selected focus areas will be adressed, e.g. positioning, penalty assessment, communication, new rules. The intention is to bring referees from several different countries to same level of officiating required at international level. In this regard skaterhockey faces the same challenges as for other international sport events: the game is not played the same way in all countries and unfortunately not to the exact same rules.

AD 3: IISHF referee scheduling at tournaments.
The IISHF has decided that no referee shall take part in a game where one or both teams are from said referee's country. Despite the fact that all IISHF referees are classified as neutral and, in principle, are capable of officiate any game, the risk of being accused of bias is too high: neither referees nor teams should be put in such a situation.

Based on this principle, and the fact that the IISHF has a relatively nationality limited pool of referees, it is evident that scheduling at a tournament can be a challenge.

AD 4: IISHF focus areas.
The focus areas for 2015 are stick related fouls and verbal abuse from either players or team officials.

During the past couple of seasons there has been a focus on Interference and other impeding fouls. In the opinion of the IISHF officials the stick is increasingly being used to impede the movement and ball handling on players. The IISHF aims to encourage technically skilled and attacking play and therefore protect players and teams that practise such play.

Verbal abuse is not productive in any way. Basically it is only the team's captain that is allowed to discuss with the referees and only on matters relating to the interpretation of the rules (a complaint about a penalty called - or not called - is not a matter relating to the interpretation of the rules). However, a cornerstone of Game Management is to establish a good level of communication between referees and team captains and team officals: the IISHF referees are instructed to communicate with team captains and officials if deemed necessary for the development of the game and, most importantly, if the referees are approached in a calm and civil manner.

IISHF focus areas may change during a season.

AD 5: Communication with IISHF officials at tournaments.
For all title events the IISHF appoints a Technical Director and a Referee Supervisor. The Technical Director has full jurisdiction over all game officials and the tournament as such while the Referee Supervisor is responsible for scheduling, assessment and duties of all referees at the tournament.

Initial communication with the teams is at the Managers' Meeting prior to the tournament. The Technical Director leads this meeting. The IISHF Referee Supervisor will also inform the team officials of any focus areas. The IISHF encourages team officials to approach the Technical Director and/or the Referee Supervisor during the tournament provided that it is done in a calm and civil way.

On behalf of the IISHF Presidium
Erik Sommer (President)
Daniel Taschner (Vice President)
Ingo Goerke (Finance Director)

and with contribution from
Claes Fréder (IISHF Referee Manager)

 By Sommer Erik

 1 additional file to this article: 
 IISHF_Communication_12_2015 332 kb

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