Here's a guide to hockey so you know what's going on during Great Britain's final against Holland


Great Britain's women have a tough task in the Olympic final against world and Olympic champions Holland.

Here's a hockey guide you need to read ahead of the match at 9pm.


An 11-a-side game played on a pitch - predominantly artificial turf but still occasionally played on grass - 100 yards long by 60 yards wide, divided into four quarters with goals 12ft wide by seven feet high. Players hit, push, flick or scoop the ball with sticks which have a curved end. Elite-level hockey is played over four 15-minute quarters with short breaks in between and a traditional half-time.


Great Britain's Lily Owsley
(Owen Humphreys/PA)

The ball can be played with the flat side or the edge of the stick only and all sticks are right-handed. If the ball touches any part of the body (except a hand which is holding the stick) the offending player is penalised unless the ball is deemed to have been lifted off the ground dangerously. Goalkeepers are the only players who can use other parts of their body and kick the ball but can do so only inside the D, a 16-yard semi-circle in front of their goal. At elite tournaments teams have one referral to a video umpire if they wish to contest a decision.


A stick (made of a composition of fibreglass, kevlar or graphite), and shin pads are essential. Some players also opt to wear gum shields and protective gloves similar in style to cricket batting gloves. Facemasks are also worn to defend penalty corners (see goalscoring). Goalkeepers wear helmets, chest, hand guards and leg protection made from high-density foam leg pads and kickers for their feet.


Britain's Alex Danson
(Hussein Malla/AP/PA)

A goal can only be scored inside the D and the ball must touch an attacker's stick inside the circle. There are no restrictions on the methods of shooting from open play. However, if a team win a penalty corner for an infringement which occurs inside the D different rules apply. If the attacking team opt to hit the ball when shooting at the set-piece the first shot must enter the goal below the height of the 18-inch backboard. A push, scoop or drag-flick (which can exceed speeds of 80mph) can enter the goal at any height. Only four outfield players and the goalkeeper can defend a penalty corner with the remaining players retreating to the halfway line but there is no limit on the number of attackers involved.


Hockey has a three-card system and implements a sin bin: a green is a two-minute suspension, a yellow card is a minimum of five minutes' suspension and a red card is permanent suspension.