Alexander Nevsky Cup: experimental rules for HMB Future

The 1st full scale experimental tournament included in the HMBIA Marshals Committee project, codenamed HMB Future, was held in Saint Petersburg on May 29th in collaboration with HMB Russia. The Alexander Nevsky Cup became the 1st tournament where the experimental rules in the 5vs5 category with the participation of 5 teams were implemented.

The 1st full scale experimental tournament included in the HMBIA Marshals Committee project, codenamed HMB Future, was held in Saint Petersburg on May 29th in collaboration with HMB Russia. The Alexander Nevsky Cup was organized for the 12th consecutive year and not only started the season of the summer outdoor tournaments as usual, but also became the 1st tournament where the experimental rules in the 5vs5 category with the participation of 5 teams were implemented. All fights were observed by the most experienced certified HMB marshals and knight marshals of Russia.

According to the announced HMBIA plans for 2021 that were posted in the beginning of January, the new set of tournament tests aiming to possibly adjust the current rule set was planned by the Marshals Committee. Thanks to the additional agreement with the HMB Russia National Organization, which has one of the most developed and numerous fighting communities and a huge number of smaller tournaments not included in the Buhurt League or National Championship rating system, it became possible to discuss several preliminary internal tests before suggesting some confirmed regulations for further testing on a global level.

The following changes and adjustments were implemented:
– adding of the top bar to the rails;
– fighters’ change during the round;

– allowed hand\shield touch of the list surface after the throw.

One of the most noticeable adjustments that was tested was the change of the shape of the rails with adding the 65 cm wide top bar. This adjustment changed the overall situation with list usage technique and grappling, as the average time of the round was reduced by approximately 35%. For the moment we can say that such adjustment may significantly impact and change the whole picture of the fights and will lead to the crucial changes in the teams strategy. An overwhelming majority of fighters and marshals reacted positively to this change.

The next experimental addition was the possibility to change the fighters during the round. At the Alexander Nevsky Cup it was implemented as the unlimited option on the team captain command or the fighters decision, the main idea is that the very next moment one fighter leaves the list, he must be replaced by the other one. However, one isn’t also allowed to escape the clinch and sneak under the rail. Currently, opinion is divided, as some of the fighters were concerned about the procedure itself that definitely should be formed more precisely as the requirements set. One more concern is the substantial change of the list gates configuration that will be necessary in case such change is added.

The final experimental option that was implemented is the change of the rule about fighter removal after touching the surface of the list with the 3rd point of support (hand, weapon or shield) after the throw. According to the marshals this exact change requires improvement and more detailed regulations but has a great potential for new tactics with a lot of grappling techniques. It could definitely reduce the number of cases with the exchange situation when fighters are just dragged down by a fallen opponent.

In general the experiment was considered successful and organizers provided a wide range of materials for further analysis and discussion for the Marshals Committee.

As soon as we have new concepts suggested for further experiments we’ll be able to share them with the National Organizations willing to join the project.