ISLAMABAD, Jul 18 (APP):Following the one-year postponement of the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 due to the COVID-19 global health pandemic, the International Hockey Federation (FIH) has confirmed the match schedule for the men’s and women’s hockey competitions of the XXXII Olympiad.
The hockey event was originally scheduled to run from Saturday July 25 until Friday August 7, 2020, with matches being played at the purpose-built Oi Hockey Stadium in Japan’s capital city. Although nothing has changed in terms of the location and overall running order of the matches, the Olympic hockey competitions will now start on Saturday July 24 and conclude on Friday August 6, 2021, the FIH said in a press release.
In line with what was planned for this year, the opening match of next year’s Olympic Games will be contested between the men of Japan and Australia, with the host nation facing a stern test from the 2019 FIH Hockey Pro League champions – Olympic gold medalists at Athens 2004 – on July 24. The opening match of the Women’s tournament will be played on the same day, with reigning world champions and current world number one the Netherlands – Olympic champions in 1984, 2008, and 2012 – taking on India.
The men’s and women’s gold medal matches will take place on August 5 AND 6, respectively.
The pools for the Olympic hockey competitions are as under:
Pool A: Australia, Argentina, India, Spain, New Zealand, Japan
Pool B: Belgium, Netherlands, Germany, Great Britain, Canada, South Africa
Pool A: Netherlands, Germany, Great Britain, Ireland, India, South Africa
Pool B: Australia, Argentina, New Zealand, Spain, China, Japan
The teams that will compete in Tokyo all earned their tickets by either becoming continental champions of their respective regions or via the FIH Hockey Olympic qualifiers.