Minutes of the East League Management Committee

The meeting was held on 7th December 2017 at the London Stansted Airport Novotel Hotel.




Vicky Benedikz


Neil Liversedge


David Roberts


Jade Bloomfield


Marc Lloyd


Pritpal Sagoo


David Burt


Richard Malone


Kishor Shah


Phil Churchman


Sarah Mann


Ali Smyth


Christina Dewing


Richard Munns


Ed Stubbings


Shaun Dewing


Russell Nutter


Nicola Wilkes


Sarah Farmer


Chris Perry


Barry Harness


Rosemary Prince




1.      Apologies and Introductions – Sarah Mann, Ed Stubbing, Nicola Wilkes, Jade Bloomfield


2.     Correspondence

2.1             Cambridge Nomads 2 v Wisbech 2 – Email received from Cambs Nomads regarding conduct of Wisbech 2nd X1 against their umpires. Satisfactory response provided from Wisbech in regard to speaking to the team members to remind them of their role under EH Code of Conduct. Also noted that number of cards given in the game didnÕt match the severity of the complaint.


2.2             Watton 1 v Newmarket 2 – Email received from Watton regarding conduct of certain Newmarket players. Satisfactory response provided by Newmarket as player had been identified and dropped. Also noted that that number of cards in the game didnÕt match the severity of the complaint.


2.3             Cambridge City – Good practice regarding doubling up with team captain checking her interpretation of the selection rules. Other League Managers reported having increased communication with clubs, which was seen as positive.


2.4             England Hockey – Governance Review – Rosemary had attended a Governance review workshop, hosted by England Hockey, looking at how the game was governed throughout the game. This was in addition to the survey carried out. Really active discussions. RP felt the feedback she received at all levels was that the East League was very highly regarded and seen as being run well.


2.5             National League Update – NL attending a meeting on 4th January with other Regional Leagues. Post meeting note: Regional Leagues supported the Top 2 divisions and the exciting format which would see a split between early and late season. Also, to minimise impact on Regional Leagues recommended 3 Conferences x 12 teams, rather than 4, however East did say could support original plan.


2.6             West Herts – Crowd Behaviour – Issue with crowd giving negative comments to umpire in WomenÕs game against Cambridge University. A suspended 1 point deduction had been implemented. West Herts instructed to brief and enforce England Hockey Code of Conduct to all members.


2.7             Horncastle Ladies – Underage Player – found had fielded a 12 year old player, which is against an England Hockey policy. Initial communication with club was met with resistance, until the policy was provided in full. No appeal was received. Just a reminder to all, where possible the East League rules are aimed at providing structure to allow competitive hockey to be played by member clubs.  We try not to include any England Hockey policy in our rules and it is for clubs to know and understand the England Hockey policies.


2.8             Ipswich – Ineligible player – Points awarded against Ipswich 1 for fielding a player without a transfer.


2.9             Ed Stubbing – Ed is, unfortunately for the East League, moving to Canada, so will be unable to continue as a League Manager. We wish him all the best. Richard Munns will take over the management of his League division.


3.     Finance – No issues


4.     League Manager Report

4.1             Sarah Farmer (EML Div 6-8SW) reported 1 game had been awarded against Harpenden for fielding a player without a transfer.


4.2             Christina Dewing (EWL 1N&4NWN) – no particular issues


4.3             Pritpal Sagoo (EML 1, 2N&S) – Good practice from Bedford providing a teamsheet before indoor weekend.


4.4             Vicky Benedikz (EWL 2NW&SW) – Complaint received about a Spalding/Pelicans game that was Òhighly charged!Ó Appears to be fault and lack of respect from both teams. Both teams told to calm down and remember their responsibilities under the EH Code of Conduct.


4.5             Ali Smyth (EML 3&4SE) - Travel costs awarded against 1 team. Also 1 very late indoor cancellation request.


4.6             Shaun Dewing (EWL Prem) – Early season reporting failures had now rectified themselves.


4.7             Rosemary Prince (EWL 3NW) – Haverhill 2Õas appear to have an issue where they double up too many players too often. This issue was reported last season and has not eased this season despite assurances from the club. RP will speak to the club as this is unfair on other clubs and shows a possible lack of sustainability in the club for fielding this team.


4.8             Russell Nutter (EML Prem A&B) – Number of yellow cards is reducing, shows the benefit of introducing green card suspension.


4.9             Richard Munns (EML 3-5SW) – 1 abandoned game due to a serious injury. Although abandoned in first half of season game, with League ManagerÕs permission, re-0arranged to Feb when injured player is likely to be fit again.


4.10           Barry Harness (EML 3-5NW) – Concern that where clubs who have been requested all games at home/away at the same time to facilitate with umpiring requirements teams are abusing the doubling up rule. TeamÕs are doubling up within the rules, but is leading to teams winning home games/losing away games. Is not keen on this being allowed. Issue with Louth re-arranging games, with club officer being difficult, has resolved by bypassing him.

                  Also issue with Louth not cancelling game early enough, allowing Cambridge City to travel as far as Lincoln before calling of the game.


4.11           Chris Perry (EML 9&10SE and 9SW) – 2 teams have withdrawn so far (Rickmansworth 4 and Romford 3). 1 game abandoned due to injury, game will be replayed.


4.12           Phil Churchman (EML 5&6NE) – Harlow had unfortunately withdrawn as a club.


4.13           All other League Managers reported no particular issues



5       Umpires

5.1             Feedback forms from both clubs/umpires for ERHUA appointed games is about to be trialled in Prem divisions. Form is held on ERHUA website.  


6.     Discipline

6.1             Richard Munns reported the current number of cards issued. Seems to be an issue with duplicate cards, particularly from higher EML NE quadrant divisions. A number of examples given. D Burt committed to review and delete cards where this had occurred.


                  Number of cards issued to date:





Yellow Cards



Red Cards





7.     AGM and Presentation Day

7.1             Likely to be 2nd June, likely to be at Letchworth unless any other club volunteers. Venue is central, food and bar facilities are good. Kishor will look after the trophies and Sarah will do the League Table certificates.


8.      Next season New Rules

                  8.1             Some proposed rule changes had been put forward for discussion.

8.2             From Kettering

Rule 4.5.1 Team Sheets Additional text - It is acceptable to send a photo or scanned version of the team sheets to the League Manager electronically. However, paper copies must be retained in case they are required to be sent in an exceptional circumstance.

This was discussed and would not be put forward to the AGM. Teamsheets are still the official record of a game taking place. Some League Managers still find it quicker to refer to paper copies than to go on-line, find a file and then look at it. Some League Managers do not have the facility to accept these files.

Rule 6.2 East Men's League Structure - It is our contention that it is currently more difficult to get promoted out of division 6NW than it is to stay in division 5NW.To quote the existing rules "Promotions and relegation's are based on the general principle that there should be two promotions from Divisions 5 or higher and three from lower divisions."



This was discussed and where 1 division splits into 2 (as is the case in 5NE and 6MWN and 6NWS) the issue described would always occur. The proposal also does not quote that where divisions are short in team numbers the number of promotions would be reduced. The proposal had also suggested introducing a play off and again there are issues surrounding this (who pays for the pitch, where would the game be played, what date would it be played on, what if the game has to be cancelled) and the League has always been settled during the course of the season.

The meeting noted that the bottom division is very much affected by promotions and relegations from higher leagues and lastly the number of teams entered into the League has an impact on the bottom division.

The committee decided, therefore, that this proposal would not be put forward to the AGM.

                  8.3             From Richard Malone

Rule 4.3.3 Notifying times and venues -  
At least 4 weeks before the start of the season, a club must input to the league website details of the venues and start times of all its home league matches to be played up to the mid-season break. The same information must be provided by the end of November for all matches after the break.  Failure to meet these deadlines may result in the League Manager imposing a fine of £5 per fixture, though this may be waived under exceptional circumstances.
The start of the season is defined as the first East league game to take place.
Changes made after this cut-off must be input to the league website and also notified directly and immediately to opposition clubs and umpiring pool organisers.  Messages left without response and emails without answers are not acceptable as notifications. An away team should not refuse time or venue changes notified at least a week before the fixture.  An away team in need of information is expected to contact the home club. 
If failure to give sufficient notice to all parties leads to a match not being played, the League Manager may decide on a postponement, award the match 0-5, or void the match.

This was discussed and the additional words were agreed to be put forwards to the AGM.

9.      Any Other Business


9.1             ML and RM asked if the review of the bottom divisions had commenced. NL said unfortunately not but would in the New Year. Had been delayed primarily by time. It was noted though compared to this time last season the number of conceded games was down significantly.


9.2             Dates for Next season would be agreed at the next meeting.


10.    Dates of Next Meetings - 8th February and 12th April 2018 both to be held at the Novotel Hotel at Stansted Airport, starting at 7.30pm.