Hockey Olympic Qualifiers likely in October or November

The draw for the qualifiers will be held in September (date to be decided) after the updated world rankings are released on September 8.

India made the cut for the Olympic Qualifiers be reaching the summit clash at the FIH Series Finals in Bhubaneswar.   -  Hockey India Twitter

The International Hockey Federation (FIH) on Saturday announced tentative dates for the 14-team FIH Olympic Qualifiers which is likely to be held in October (26-27) or November(2-3) this year.

The draw for the qualifiers will be held in September (date to be decided) after the updated world rankings are released on September 8. These rankings will be updated after the completion of the continental championships (African, Pan American, Oceania, European).

Fourteen teams (6 top teams from FIH Series Finals + 4 top teams from FIH Pro League + 4 top-ranked teams which have not played in either tournaments) will feature in the Olympic Qualifiers where each team plays one other team over two legs and will have to outscore its opponent on aggregate to earn a berth at the Olympics.

Infographic: Men's Hockey - India at the Olympics

“As per the qualification process agreed with the International Olympic Committee, the 14 teams in the FIH Olympic qualifiers, for each gender, will be ranked 1 to 14 based on their FIH World Rankings on September 8th, after the completion of all Continental Championships,” the FIH said, in its official statement.

Currently, Malaysia, Canada, India, South Africa have sealed a spot in the men's qualifiers by finishing top two in the FIH Series Finals at Kuala Lumpur and Bhubaneswar respectively while eight teams will be in action in French capital of Paris, from June 15-23 for the remaining two spots.

The continental championships will take place in the next few months - Pan America Games - July 26-August 11, Africa Championship - August 12-18, Eurohockey Championship - August 16-25, Oceania Championship - September 1-8.

Both Japan’s men’s and women’s team have qualified for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics by winning the gold medal at the 2018 Asian Games.

The top 7 ranked teams will the host the FIH Olympic qualifier events. The qualifiers draw will see the top three teams hosting the bottom three teams and the teams ranked 4-7 will be pitted against the teams ranked 8-11.