Ask Ray: about slapping a corner

The query: One that’s been bugging me for a while – and I have been on both ends of decisions! From a short corner, when the ball is played back to the injector, should it be allowed when they slap it, first-time, into the roof of the net.

I would argue that once the injector swings his stick in any way it’s not a deflection and, therefore, has to hit the backboard. In my eyes, a deflection is a stick that doesn’t move and isn’t swung in any way.

YMCA’s second goal against Monkstown sparked this debate where YM were arguing that it was a deflection but Monkstown were arguing that he moved his stick toward the ball. Could you please ask Ray to clarify this principle?

Ray’s response: The question was made easy for me, when the query mentioned a “slap”. So, I will quote the piece on page 13 of the FIH rulebook:

“If the first shot at goal is a hit and the ball is, or will be, too high crossing the goal-line it must be penalised even if the ball is subsequently deflected off the stick or body of another player.

A “slap” is defined in the rulebook as “hitting the ball, which involves a long pushing or sweeping movement with the stick before making contact with the ball, is regarded as a hit.”

** If you have a query over an umpiring decision in a game which you would like clarified or interpreted by Ray, email

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