Hockey

The woes of the media

The players are keen to interact. But some strange rules of the World Series Hockey (WSH) will not let them do so. For the media at the Major Dhyan Chand National Stadium here, covering the WSH has been nothing short of a nightmare.

Despite repeated requests, the organisers have failed to provide a point of contact with the players. This despite the overwhelming presence of officials connected with the event. No one seems to know the job.

Humiliating experience

A lady journalist from a national agency was confronted by offensive security personnel and prevented from interacting with the players at the end of the match the other day. Repeated pleas proved futile as the ‘bouncer' just would not budge. After an assurance of improvement from the next match, the media approached a senior organising official for help. For the small group of journalists, who wanted to put their point across in the most professional manner, it was a humiliating experience.

The scribes were told that such an arrangement would need to be approved by the WSH Technical Committee and all the franchises together for all the staging venues.

From the biggest international event to a local competition, a mixed zone is a common feature. But the WSH obviously knows how to run its event without providing basic facilities to the media.

When Chennai Cheetahs players Brent Livermore and Imran Warsi were comfortably interacting with the media, this official brought the impromptu press conference to a halt. “These people (media) are not allowed to talk to any player anywhere except the broadcast area” was her remark.

The problem was, there was no such area marked, the late night match meant meeting the deadline was challenging, but worse was the manner in which the official addressed the two players.

An embarrassment

The media at other staging centres has not encountered such woes. The media gallery in Delhi is an embarrassment for such an event. The public is allowed to come into the area. Repeated requests to demarcate the area and prevent public intrusion have had no impact.

Perhaps the WSH has tried to copy the worst from the standards set by the Commonwealth Games Organising Committee in 2010.

The WSH obviously wants to outdo the CWGOC.


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Printable version | Jul 25, 2021 8:15:11 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/sport/hockey/the-woes-of-the-media/article2971216.ece

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