March 27 / Veronika Mühlhofer
Perhaps it was in homage to this summer’s main event, the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa, or perhaps it was for lack of other spaces in the arena. Whatever the reason was, today took place the first ever IIHF Directorate that was held on a soccer field.
After skillfully navigating through passport control, the pre-game warm-up before the First Directorate, all teams were fired up for the game. The World Women’s U18 Championship’s first directorate meeting kicked off punctually at 19:00. The meeting’s “referee”, tournament chairman Tony Rossi, didn’t waste any time in getting the contestants started on the game.
After a quick exchange of passes served as introductions, the first dangerous situation was created off a flank by the organizing committee representative when outlining the team laundry schedule. He followed this up with a dangerous corner-kick, nearly headed in for a goal as he detailed the drink-and-fruit service in the team dressing rooms. Off the re-start, the medical supervisor received a long pass in the midfield and drove forward as he reported on emergency evacuation procedures and dental service.
The first goal was finally scored by the referee supervisor with a swift and effective report on the team rule information meeting held earlier with the coaches. The second half started just where the first one left off, and this time it was the IIHF to score the 1-1 with a run-down on the pre-game count-down and the tournaments’ awards and ceremonies. Despite an action-packed last 20 minutes of quick exchanges capped off by game assignments, colors and benches, and other business, the score remained tied at 1-1.
By the time the referee blew his whistle to signal the end of the game, everyone was satisfied with a good outing on the soccer pitch, and was ready to head to the hotel for a well-deserved post-game dinner. The rematch is scheduled for Sunday night on the same field.