World Cup qualification: FIH to allocate more spots for continental events

While 11 of the 16 spots would be filled through the five continental championships, the remaining five would be decided through FIH qualification events.

FIH has issued fresh qualification process to finalise teams for the 2022 Women’s and 2023 Men’s World Cups.   -  Getty Images

The postponement of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics and the scrapping of Hockey World League competition has forced the FIH to rework its qualification process for the next edition of the World Cup, allocating more spots to continental events.

The International Hockey Federation’s Executive Board on Tuesday issued the fresh qualification process to finalise teams for the 2022 Women’s and 2023 Men’s World Cups. While 11 of the 16 spots would be filled through the five continental championships, the remaining five would be decided through FIH qualification events, to be held in March 2022.

The changed rules now allow both finalists at the 2021 women’s Asia, Oceania and Pan-American Championships to qualify for the World Cup while for the men, Asia gets an extra spot at PanAm’s expense.

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Host India (for men) and joint hosts Holland and Spain (for women) qualify automatically, as before. The continental quota places for the FIH qualification events to decide the remaining five spots, however, would be confirmed later.

This is the first time more than one spot has been allotted to continental events in recent years with the increase in number of teams from 12 to 16 at the 2018 edition too playing a role.

For the past two editions, a majority of spots were filled through the World League while various forms of qualifying events were held before that.

Revised continental quotas:

Women: Africa 1, Asia 2, Europe 4 (including hosts Holland and Spain), Oceania 2, PanAm 2.

Men: Africa 1, Asia 3 (including hosts India), Europe 4, Oceania 2, PanAm 1.

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