The International Hockey Federation (FIH) has confirmed the final line-ups for the men’s Hockey World League Semi-Finals following the conclusion of Round 2 and the subsequent update to the men’s FIH Hero World Rankings.
Between 15-25 June 2017, Lee Valley’s Hockey and Tennis Centre in Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in London, England will welcome Canada, Malaysia, China and Scotland. They qualified for the Hockey World League Round 2 and join Rio 2016 Olympic gold medallists Argentina, reigning European champions Netherlands, Asian champions India, Pakistan, Korea and hosts England, whose participation in this event was confirmed last October.
20 of the world’s best men’s and women’s national teams will take part in these Hockey World Cup 2018 qualifiers between 8-23 July at Wits Hockey Club.
In the men’s event, Pool A contains reigning Hockey Champions Trophy, Hockey World League and Hockey World Cup champions Australia along with New Zealand, Spain, Japan and France. Pool B sees Rio 2016 silver medallists Belgium take on Rio bronze medallists Germany, reigning African champions South Africa, Ireland and Egypt.
In the women’s competition, England – who will contain many of the Rio 2016 Olympic gold medallists who represented Great Britain, will play Rio bronze medallists Germany, Japan, Ireland and Poland in Pool A. Reigning Hockey Champions Trophy and Hockey World League champions Argentina will be up against reigning Pan American champions USA, African champions South Africa, India and Chile in Pool B.
The allocation of these latest men’s teams was determined by their position within the FIH Hero World Rankings which were updated following the conclusion of Round 2 this morning. This latest update eliminated points earned by nations during 2013 as well as reducing the number of points all nations earned between 2014 and 2016.
Consequently, this has seen Rio 2016 Olympic gold medallists Argentina become the world’s number one men’s hockey team, with Australia moving down into the second position. For the updated men’s FIH Hero World Rankings, click here.
The top teams from London and Johannesburg will qualify for two of hockey’s showpiece events – the Odisha Men’s Hockey World League Final Bhubaneswar 2017 and the Odisha Hockey Men’s World Cup Bhubaneswar 2018, both in India.
Depending on final standings, teams will also be awarded FIH Hero World Ranking points, which could prove crucial in relation to qualification for future events. With so much on the line, fans will no doubt witness some action-packed matches full of excitement and drama this summer.
FIH is now finalizing the event schedules with partners and will announce shortly. In the meantime, fans heading to London can already buy tickets for all sessions, including the all-important classification matches here.
The Hockey World League, composed of four rounds and played over two years, shines a spotlight on the sport around the world. Even the smallest hockey-playing nations have the opportunity to write their own chapter in hockey’s history books. London and Johannesburg provide the perfect stage for their dreams to become reality in what are two crucial events in hockey’s international calendar.
10 teams will take part in each Semi-Final. They are comprised of the hosts plus five teams who qualify based on their FIH Hero World Ranking, whilst the remaining four teams qualified through Hockey World League Round 2 events which took place between January and April 2017. In total, 20 men’s and 20 women’s teams will be taking part in the Hockey World League Semi-Finals.
Brussels, Belgium (21 June – 2 July 2017): Netherlands; Australia; New Zealand; China; Korea; Belgium + 4 teams from Round 2. Tickets here
Johannesburg, South Africa (8-23 July 2017): England; Argentina; USA; Germany; Japan; South Africa + 4 teams from Round 2.