- Hockey World Cup
The Hockey World Cup, sometimes called the Hockey World Championships, is an international
field hockeycompetition organised by the International Hockey Federation (FIH). The tournament was started in 1971. It is held every four years, bridging the four years between the Summer Olympics.
There is also a
Women's Hockey World Cup, which has been held since 1974 and was organised by the International Federation of Women's Hockey Associations (IFWHA) until 1981, when the governing bodies merged into the current International Hockey Federation.
Five countries have dominated the event's history. Pakistan is the most successful team, having won the tournament four times. The Netherlands have won three titles, and Germany has won two titles. India and Australia have each won the tournament once.
The 2006 Hockey World Cup was held at the
Warsteiner HockeyPark, Mönchengladbach, Germanyfrom September 6to September 17. Germany won for the second time, defeating Australia 4–3 in the final. The FIH decided to allot the next Hockey World Cup in 2010 to India. [cite web|url=http://www.playfuls.com/news_0000009399_India_To_Host_2010_Mens_Hockey_World_Cup.html |title=India To Host 2010 Men's Hockey World Cup |accessdate=2007-03-28]
The Hockey World Cup was first conceived by
Pakistan's Air Marshal Nur Khan. They proposed their idea to the FIH under the name of Patrick Rowley, the first editor of "World Hockey" magazine. Their idea was approved on October 26, 1969, and adopted by the FIH Council at a meeting in Brussels on April 12, 1970. The FIH decided that the inaugural World Cup would be held in October 1971, in Pakistan.
However, political issues would prevent that first competition from being played in Pakistan. Pakistan and India had been at war with each other only six years earlier. When Pakistan invited India to compete in the tournament, a crisis arose. Pakistanis, led by cricketer
Abdul Hafeez Kardar, protested against India's participation in the Hockey World Cup.
In 1971, there was also a civil war (
Bangladesh Liberation War) between West Pakistanand East Pakistan, which led to political instability throughout the country. By the end of the year, this led to the Indo-Pakistani War of 1971between India and Pakistan.
Given the intense political climate between Pakistan and India, the FIH decided to move the tournament elsewhere. In March 1971, the FIH decided to move the first Hockey World Cup to the
Real Club de Polo groundsin Barcelona, Spain, which was considered a neutral and peaceful European site. [cite web|url=http://www.bharatiyahockey.org/worldcup/ |title=World Cup Hockey |accessdate=2006-08-02]
The FIH has set no requirements or limitations on the size of the competition. The 1971 Cup included only ten nations, the smallest World Cup to date. The 1978 Cup featured fourteen nations. The 2002 Cup featured sixteen nations, the largest World Cup to date.
The first three tournaments were held every two years. The 1978 Cup was the only tournament held three years from the previous tournament. Since 1982, the tournament has been held every four years, halfway between the Summer Olympics field hockey competition.
The Hockey World Cup trophy was designed by the
Bashir Moojidand created by the Pakistani Army. On March 27, 1971, in Brussels, the trophy was formally handed to FIH President Rene Frankby Mr H.E Masood, the Pakistani Ambassador to Belgium. The trophy consists of a silvercup with an intricate floral design, surmounted by a globe of the world in silver and gold, placed on a high blade base inlaid with ivory. At its peak is a model hockey stick and ball. Without its base, the trophy stands 120.85 mm high. Including the base, the trophy stands 650 mm. It weighs 11,560 g, including 895 g of gold, 6815 g of silver, 350 g of ivory and 3500 g of teak. [cite web|url=http://www.fihockey.org/vsite/vcontent/page/custom/0,8510,1181-123056-124363-15983-51674-custom-item,00.html |title=The World Cup - A Masterpiece |accessdate=2006-08-15]
The Hockey World Cup consists of a qualification stage and a final tournament stage. The format for each stage is the same.
The qualification stage has been a part of the Hockey World Cup since 1977. All participating teams play in the qualification round. The teams divide into two or more pools and compete for a berth in the final tournament. The top two teams are automatically qualified and the rest of the berths are decided in playoffs.
The final tournament features the continental champions and other qualified teams. Sometimes it also features the winners of the Summer Olympics' hockey competition or the continental runners-up. The teams divide into pools once more and play a
round robin tournament. The composition of the pools is determined using the current world rankings. The top two teams in each pool play in the semifinals for a place in the final. The bottom two teams in the semifinals have a third place playoff. The rest of the teams have playoffs to determine their final positions. If they are third or fourth in their pool, they play for fifth place; if they are fifth or sixth in their pool, they play for ninth place.
#= "no longer in existence"
Women's Hockey World Cup
Junior Hockey World Cup
Junior Women's Hockey World Cup
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