Six men's and six women's teams ready to battle for London
The team entries for the 12 competing teams at the last Olympic Qualification hockey tournaments were announced today. Six women’s teams and six men’s teams will vie for the two last remaining places at the London 2012 Olympic Games with only the winner of each tournament earning a berth.
On the women’s side, host Japan enters as the heavily favored team holding the ninth spot in the FIH World Ranking. The closest competitor is Azerbaijan, coming in at 15th in the ranking. It is the biggest gap between the top-ranked and second-ranked team at any of the Olympic Qualification tournaments. Chile can also be considered a contender in the event with a 17th World Ranking position.
Of course, Japan can’t takes its World Ranking position for granted, at the last qualification event in Belgium, Spain became first highest-ranked seed not to win the tournament and earn a berth to the Olympics.
The men’s side is a much tighter race for the last Olympic spot with only five World Ranking positions separating the top three teams. The 12th-ranked South African men will look to join their women in London, but standing in the way will be #15 Japan and #17 China.
The final FIH Olympic Qualification tournament will be held from April 25-May 6 in Kakamigahara, Japan. The two tournaments will start with a six team round robin with the top two teams meeting in a final game to determine the Olympic berth and the remaining teams playing a final placement game for World Ranking points.
The winners of the event will be the third, and final teams, to qualify to London through the Olympic Qualification tournament. The Indian men won the Hero FIH Road to London tournament at home in Delhi, where the South African women. In Dublin, the top-ranked Korean men earned a berth to the Olympics and in Belgium it was the host nation women to punch their ticket to London.
To view the six men’s team lists, click here
To view the six women’s team lists, click hereBack