Message from the President
A long message, but it’s important that our members understand the current environment and activities.
Unless you’ve been living under a rock you will be aware of the COVID-19 virus and its impacts on society, as well as its impacts to hockey. North West Lightning has experienced a number of changes as a result of the virus and the resultant “shutdowns” that are in place to limit its spread.
Firstly, for those of you who were intending on participating in the NWL v All Stars practice match, I apologise for the on/off nature of this event. With such a fluid situation, decisions were made and revised quickly.
Here is some background on the events that took place. On Tuesday this week, Hockey Central Vic (HCV) closed access to the facility at Garden Gully (our Elite teams’ training and playing venue) from Friday 20/03/2020 until further notice. When HCV made their announcement, Hockey Victoria’s (HV) competitions (including JSC) were ongoing. As such, I had requested that access to the grounds be maintained for trainings and matches, or at the very least, until Saturday 21/03/2020 so that scheduled practice matches could take place. On Thursday 19/03/2020 afternoon The HCV board agreed for use on Saturday as a one-off session, on the basis that appropriate precautions were enacted and complied with.
Later on Thursday 19/03/2020, Hockey Victoria released a statement advising the hockey community that they had suspended HV activities, and that the start of the Winter season would be postponed until 1 May 2020. After consultation with the coaching staff and consideration of the risks and impacts, the decision was made to withdraw our request and not proceed with Saturday’s session.
Whilst this is a blow to our Elite teams’ preparation for the 2020 season, the good news is that Hockey Victoria has stated that the season is not cancelled. From this point onwards, the Elite teams’ coaches will communicate with their players and keep them informed of ways which they can maintain their fitness and “hockey” mindset whilst access to HCV grounds remain unavailable.
HV has tonight announced that they will be cancelling JCC & SCC for 2020, but not JSC. They have advised that they are looking to reschedule JSC later in the year. JSC is an important part of our NWL program and we wait for further information from HV regarding new trial, training and tournament dates.
In all circumstances, we will communicate with our members regarding the status of all competitions, trainings and JSC dates as soon as we have any certainty of these from HV and/or HCV.
Until such times when trials, trainings and matches recommence, the NWL board remain working towards improving things for our members. Eg; the new Elite teams’ uniform.
I urge all of you to stay safe, follow the DHHS guidelines personal hygiene and get through as best we can.
If you have any questions, please contact me.
President – North West Lightning Hockey Club
0408 535 772