One of the undisputed giants of global hockey, Germany (FIH World Ranking: 3) have been a powerhouse of the game for decades and the current group is certainly no different.
They are the holders of the Olympic and Champions Trophy titles and are always capable of winning every tournament that they enter.
2014 was far less successful than Head Coach Markus Weise would have hoped, with a seventh place finish at the Hero Hockey World League Final being followed by an even more surprising sixth place finish at the Rabobank Hockey World Cup in The Hague.
However, any conversations about the demise Germany’s “golden generation” were halted at the end of that year when they returned to form by winning the Hero Hockey Champions Trophy in Bhubaneswar, India.
The team continued their good form in 2015 by winning the Argentina Hockey World League Semi-Final in Buenos Aires, although a 6-1 hammering at the hands of the Netherlands in the final of August’s Unibet EuroHockey Championships showed that they are certainly not faultless. That said, with some of the most gifted players in the game available for selection, it would be foolish to write them off on the basis of one bad day at the office.
The current training squad for Raipur includes two winners of the FIH Men’s Player of the Year Award, with Tobias Hauke (2013) and Moritz Fürste (2012) being rated among the very best midfielders in the game.
22-year-old attacker Christopher Rühr, the FIH Young Player of the Year for 2013, has already proven himself to be an explosive game-changer with a very bright future ahead of him, while fellow striker Florian Fuchs, the 2012 winner of the FIH Young Player of the Year, is one of the best finishers in the game.
Germany will be considered amongst the favourites in Raipur and will have high hopes of becoming Olympic champions for a third time in succession at Rio 2016.
Nickname: Die Honomas
Key player: Tobias Hauke. A classy midfielder blessed with skill, vision and intelligence. 2013 FIH Player of the Year Hauke is a double Olympic Gold medallist, having been a central figure in the Germany teams that emerged triumphant at the Beijing 2008 and London 2012 Games. At 28 years of age, his best years may still be ahead of him. He is the elder brother of Franzisca Hauke, who is a key player for Die Danas, the German women’s international team.
4x Olympic Gold medallists (1972, 1992, 2008, 2012)
2x World champions (2002, 2006)
9x Champions Trophy winners (1986, 1987, 1988, 1991, 1992, 1995, 1997, 2001, 2007, 2014)
8x European champions (1970, 1978, 1991, 1995, 1999, 2003, 2011, 2013)
1st place – Argentina Hockey World League Semi-Final (2015)
Additional information: Although Germany’s numerous world class players always grab the headlines, Head Coach Markus Weise is undoubtedly the team’s mastermind. Weise is one of the most successful sports coaches in Germany, having guided Germany’s women to Olympic Gold at the Athens 2004 Games before taking the men to Olympic glory at both Beijing 2008 and London 2012. A fourth successive Olympic Gold medal is certainly not beyond the realms of possibility, and achieving it would surely cement his place as one of the greatest hockey coaches in the history of the game.