FIH were concerned that 2 large Masters Hockey organisations operating independently would dilute the hockey brand and their vision that hockey is a sport for all ‘from the cradle to the grave’. There aim was to have a more seamless transition as participants graduated from the Youth section, to the Senior section and then onto Masters Hockey.
It was also perceived to be easier to sell hockey as a complete package to Commercial sponsors and the Olympic Committee (IOC) if there were fewer organisations involved. At the time, there was the fear that 11-a-side hockey might lose its IOC recognition and the funding that came with it.
However the success of hockey at the 2012 London Olympics and the changes to the rules, which made the game quicker, more exciting and allowed players to develop completely new skill sets, has pushed that threat into the background. Having said that, the growing popularity of Hockey 5s may renew the threat to the 11-a-side game.
It may come to pass that FIH will take full control of Masters Hockey, but logistically and financially, that change is many years into the future.