Olympic Qualification is at stake for second edition of four-round Hockey World League

The ultimate dream of Olympic Qualification can come true for any nation participating  in the Hockey World League (HWL) . HWL is ready for its second edition, beginning with Round 1 in late June of 2014. Men’s and women’s teams from 60 nations will battle their way to make their mark in the second HWL season that boasts more than 450 scheduled matches.

This unique global league happens over a two-year cycle, alternating between Olympic and World Cup Qualification, and presents hockey at its best. The inaugural season included 19 nations who had their first introduction to international competition, while more than 300 officials were involved and there were over one million views through live streaming. After its 2012-2014 debut the Netherlands men and women became the first teams to hoist the HWL trophy.

In the second edition of the HWL, slight changes to the competition format for both the men and women have been made including the progression to three events of 8 teams in Round 2 and two events of 10 teams in the Semi-Final rounds. The top three in each men’s and women’s 2015 Semi-Final round, six men’s and six women’s teams total, will earn qualification spots to the Rio 2016 Olympic Games. The HWL Final round will remain an eight-team event.

Immediately following the Rabobank Hockey World Cup, focus will shift to the 11 nations hosting Round 1 events including Croatia, Kenya, Bangladesh, Oman, Fiji and Lithuania. Through early 2015, HWL Round 2 begins with hosting duties for the men going to Singapore, USA and South Africa, while women’s events will be held in Uruguay, India and Ireland.

Argentina, Spain and Belgium will host the HWL Semi-Finals, with Belgium pulling double duty in Antwerp. Argentina and India will host the women’s and men’s HWL Finals, respectively. Both are hosting the final round for the second-straight time.

Fan experience, free live YouTube streaming and overall coverage for the excitement of hockey was more apparent than ever throughout last year’s HWL. The upcoming season promises over 540 hours of pure, adrenaline-filled hockey entertainment and will be accessible all around the globe.

Please note the below list of dates, hosts and participating teams is subject to change.
For up to date information on changes visit: http://www.fih.ch/en/events/worldleague

HWL Round 1 – MEN
Dates Host Participating Teams (as of 5 May)
1 – 6 July, 2014 Sveti Ivan Zelina, Croatia Croatia, Bulgaria, Russia, Switzerland, Turkey
2 – 7 September, 2014 Nairobi, Kenya Kenya, Egypt, Tanzania, Ghana, Nigeria
2 – 7 September, 2014 Hradec Králové, Czech Republic Czech Republic, Armenia, Belarus, Lithuania, Ukraine
5 – 7 September, 2014 Dhaka, Bangladesh Bangladesh, Afghanistan, Hong Kong, Sri Lanka
5 – 7 September, 2014 Muscat, Oman Oman, Azerbaijan, Iran, Uzbekistan
12 – 14 September, 2014 Lousada, Portugal Portugal, Austria, Italy
12 – 14 September, 2014 Guadalajara, Mexico Mexico, Brazil, Chile, Guatemala
30 Sept – 5 Oct, 2014 Kingston, Jamaica Jamaica, Barbados, Dominican Republic, Trinidad and Tobago, Venezuela
6-13 December, 2014 Suva, Fiji Fiji, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Vanuatu

HWL Round 1 – WOMEN
Dates Host Participating Teams (as of 5 May)
21 – 27 June, 2014 Singapore, Singapore Singapore, Hong Kong, Kazakhstan, Malaysia, Sri Lanka, Thailand
27 – 29 June, 2014 Siauliai, Lithuania Lithuania, Belarus, Poland, Ukraine
5 – 7 September, 2014 Nairobi, Kenya Kenya, Nigeria, Tanzania, Ghana
5 – 7 September, 2014 Hradec Králové, Czech Republic Czech Republic, Austria, France, Turkey
9 – 14 September, 2014 Guadalajara, Mexico Mexico, Brazil, Canada, Guatemala, Peru
30 Sept – 5 Nov, 2014 Kingston, Jamaica Jamaica, Barbados, Dominican Republic, Trinidad & Tobago, Venezuela, Puerto Rico
6 – 13 December, 2014 Suva, Fiji Fiji, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Vanuatu

HWL Round 2 – MEN
Dates Host
17 – 25 January, 2015 Singapore, Singapore
28 Feb – 8 March, 2015 Lancaster, USA
7 – 15 March, 2015 Cape Town, South Africa

HWL Round 2 – WOMEN
Dates Host
28 Feb – 8 March, 2015 Montevideo, Uruguay
7 – 15 March, 2015 Ranchi, India
14 – 22 March, 2015 Dublin, Ireland

HWL Round 3 – MEN SEMI-FINAL
• Argentina
• Antwerp, Belgium

HWL Round 3 – WOMEN SEMI-FINAL
• Valencia, Spain
• Antwerp, Belgium

HWL Round 4 – MEN FINAL
• India

HWL Round 4 – WOMEN FINAL
• Argentina

Source: FIH