India in Pool D of the FIH Odisha Hockey Men’s World Cup 2023

LAUSANNE (SWITZERLAND): During the draw ceremony held today at the Convention Centre, Lok Sewa Bhawan, Bhubaneswar, India, the four pools for the upcoming FIH Odisha 2023 Men’s Hockey World Cup Bhubaneswar – Rourkela were determined as follows:

Pool A is led by current FIH World Ranking (WR) number one Australia, who won the bronze medal at the last World Cup in 2018. They will face 2016 Olympic champions Australia. Argentina (WR:7), France (WR:11), playing their fourth World Cup and African champions, South Africa (WR: 14).

In Pool B, reigning world champions Belgium (WR:2) are the number one seed and have been drawn to face 2002 and 2006 world champions Germany (WR: 4). The two European teams will face two representatives from Asia, namely Korea (WR:12) and Japan (WR:17).

Pool C will feature the finalists of the last edition, the Netherlands (WR:3), at the top of the group. They will face fellow Oceania representatives New Zealand (WR:9), Malaysia (WR:10), playing in their ninth World Cup, and newcomers Chile (WR:23), competing for the very first time at an FIH Hockey Men’s World Cup.

In Pool D, host India is the highest ranked team (WR:5). They will face England (WR:6), who they recently met at the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games for a thrilling encounter (4-4), the double silver medalists (1971, 1998), Spain ( WR:8) and Wales. (WR: 16), who, like Chile, will play their first World Cup.

India, Australia, Belgium and the Netherlands have been placed on the front row of their corresponding pools based on the FIH World Ranking as of June 1, 2022.

Chief Minister of Odisha Naveen Patnaik and Acting FIH President Seif Ahmed attended the draw ceremony along with Honorable Minister – Sports and Youth Services Shri Tusharkanti Behera, Odisha , Dr. SY Quraishi, Member, CoA, Hockey India, Mr. Zafar Iqbal, Member, CoA, Hockey India, Shri Dilip Tirkey, Chairman, Odisha Hockey Promotion Council, Shri Suresh Chandra Mahapatra, IAS, Chief Secretary and Chief Commissioner for Development, Odisha, Shri VK Pandian, IAS, Secretary to Honorable Chief Minister, Shri R Vineel Krishna, IAS, Commissioner and Secretary, Department of Sports and Youth Services, Odisha among other personalities. The draw was carried out by the CEO of the FIH, Thierry Weil.

Mr. Naveen Patnaik said, “We are always very proud to host the best hockey teams and players in the world for such an exceptional event. This time the appetite is even greater as, above our magnificent Kalinga Stadium in Bhubaneswar – where so many wonderful sports stories have already been written – we invite the world to a whole new arena, namely the Hockey Stadium Birsa Munda in Rourkela. This new stadium is further testimony to our strong commitment to hockey. Congratulations and best wishes to all the teams!

FIH Acting President Seif Ahmed said: “We look forward to seeing the best teams in the world in action at hockey’s new ‘gem’, the Birsa Munda Hockey Stadium in Rourkela, which alongside the iconic Kalinga Hockey Stadium in Bhubaneswar, will host the FIH Odisha Men’s World Cup of Hockey 2023. I wish to renew our heartfelt thanks to Hockey India and Odisha State for hosting the 15th edition of this Cup world. With their commitment, experience and passion, you can expect nothing but an incredible event to come in 4 months time! I wish all the teams the best of luck from now on participants and officials, and invites all fans to tune in early next year: an unforgettable hockey spectacle awaits!

The pinnacle of the FIH Men’s Tournaments will be held from January 13-29, 2023 in Bhubaneswar and Rourkela, in the state of Odisha, India.

Belgium are the current world champions after beating the Netherlands in the final of the 2018 edition.

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