The Road to the Women’s World Cup!
From 21st – 24th, the teams qualified for the FIH Hockey Women’s World Cup 2022 – European Qualifier 2021 will battle it out for the one prized slot on offer for the 2022 FIH Hockey Women’s World Cup.
The European Qualifier consists of the teams qualified from the EuroHockey Championship in Amsterdam in June: Ireland, Italy, and Scotland in addition to the teams qualified from the EuroHockey Championship II in Prague: Belarus, France, Poland, Wales, and Russia.
The format in Pisa is a knockout format starting on 21st with the Quarterfinals. Given the vital nature of each game, the match schedule is based on the Olympic order seeding, which was based on the FIH World Rankings.
The full squads and match schedule can be found here:
All the games will be streamed live (for free) on our OTT platform www.eurohockeytv.org – the live links are below.
So who will take away the ultimate prize?
Let’s have a look at the matchups:
09:00 Russia v Belarus (4th v 5th seed)
Russia (WR20) and Belarus (WR21) have played eachother 5 times in the recent past, with Belarus coming out as winners four times. However in their most recent game (2019) Russia took the honours 5-0. They are the closet World Rankings with Russia at 20 and Belarus at 21. Not an easy one to predict, but should certainly be a one to watch!
11:30 Ireland v France (1st v 8th seed)
Ireland is the top ranked team in Pisa (WR12) and with a World Cup Silver medal in their pocket, they will be fighting hard to get back in the mix at the next World Cup in 2022. Ireland, with a new look team following a number of retirements post Tokyo, have been the victors in the last 6 meetings of these teams, but with the French (WR27) women working hard towards Paris 2024 and with solid performances at the recent EuroHockey Championship II, they won’t make it easy for Ireland.
14:00 Scotland v Poland (3rd v 6th seed)
Scotland (WR19) and Poland (WR23) have met 3 times since 2015. Their most recent meeting was the semi-final of the EuroHockey Championship II in 2019, where Scotland prevailed 3-0 and earned a place at the EuroHockey Championship in Amsterdam 2021, where they struggled at that level, finishing 7th with their only win being a 3-1 result over Italy. Poland finished 3rd in the 2021 Championship II, so this game is really all to play for, with Scotland probably with a small advantage
16:30 Italy v Wales (2nd v 7th seed)
Another tricky game to predict as these teams have quite a history of games over the recent past, Italy are currently ranked 17th with Wales behind at 25th. With no less than 12 battles since 2014. Italy are ahead in the results with 6 wins, but with 4 drawn games, Italy will be hoping that a home venue with the home fans starved of International hockey in the past two years will give them the extra edge to progress.
The winners of the Day 1 will be rewarded with a rest day on Friday 22nd and will be in action again for the Semi-Final games on Saturday 23rd. Ranking games will be played on 22nd and 24th.
The Final will take place at 16:30 (CET) on Sunday 24th, with only one place available, only the winners will be qualified for the FIH Hockey Women’s World Cup, 2022 in the Netherlands and Spain.
*FIH World Rankings correct as of 15th October 2021