Syncotts International hosts seminar in Delhi on ‘Dry Turfs’ for future of Hockey post Paris Olympics

World hockey is all set to move towards a dry turf that does not require water, post the Paris Olympics. It will be done in a phased manner at the international and national levels.

Syncotts International, an FIH certified field builder based in India, hosted a seminar on dry turf for hockey in the Capital on Wednesday, to create an awareness among the stakeholders and impress upon them the need to embrace the new technology and be on par with the best in the world.

“Every player should be able to develop skills on a hockey pitch. Where water is scarce, hockey on wet surface is not viable. The move towards dry hockey turf means the game becomes more accessible globally and at all levels”, said Floris Jan Bovelander, the Olympic gold medallist from the Netherlands.

The dry turf was introduced at the seminar by Prof. Alastair Cox, the FIH Facilities and Quality Programme Manager, who has been a key figure in the development, research and testing of the innovation.

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The FIH preferred supplier, GreenFields BV was represented at the seminar by Dr. Kathryn Severn.

“The GreenFields Pure EP represents a fundamental and innovative leap, introducing a completely different design principle. The approach results in a surface with significantly reduced friction, enabling remarkable speed and emulating the qualities of wet fields”, said Dr. Kathryn.

The first such full size pitch was installed in Weesp, the Netherlands, in June 2023 and the roll out of pitches continues internationally.

“For the sake of Indian hockey, we want the government and hockey associations to be aware of this development and understand the technology of dry turf, so that it can be used for replacement and for laying new turf”, said Sanjay Minotra, the Managing Director of Syncotts International, a pioneer in laying synthetic tennis courts around the country for the last few decades.

“Greenfields has laid about 30 artificial turf pitches in India. The Pure EP is a high end product bringing as close as possible, the playing characteristics of a wet field onto the dry surface”, said Sanjay.

With State units like Punjab, Odisha and Madhya Pradesh showing interest, Sanjay felt that the first dry turf could be laid in India in the second half of the year.

With the dry turf requiring different shoes, clothing and protective gear, it could be another revolutionary change in the world of hockey.

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