Requests have been made to the England Hockey Umpiring Committee where suspended players (under yellow card suspension) should be sent during their suspension. The Umpiring Committee cannot give a blanket recommendation as every pitch surround is not identical and a position that is safe for one pitch may not be safe for another pitch.
The UC confirmed:
a) That it is the umpires' responsibility to decide the appropriate place for suspended players to serve their suspensions and discuss it with the captains before the start of the match, given the following information.
b) Where a match delegate is present, suspended players should serve their suspension with the delegate.
c) Suspended players should never serve their suspension behind the goal. This is potentially dangerous and an alternative place must always be found.
d) Players who are under 18 years of age should be accompanied while suspended. Having someone to accompany them is the responsibility of the team captain or manager (not the umpire).
e) Umpires and captains should use common sense in determining the appropriate place, which will depend on the number of spectators and the number and location of substitutes and team officials.
f) It may not be appropriate for a suspended player to serve their suspension close to the substitutes and team officials of the opposing team, or spectators.
The most important factors are that the safety of the player is paramount and that the umpires and team captains agree the suspension area prior to each game commencing. Suspended players may be approached by their coach/manager and given warm clothing and a drink immediately they are suspended.
Please Note that none of this advice contradicts that which has been given to NHUA umpires and has been our practice for several seasons now.