BHUBANESWAR: The International Hockey Federation and Government of Odisha on Monday officially confirmed that the Men’s Hockey World League Final 2017 and Men’s Hockey World Cup 2018 will be held here.
The Kalinga Stadium will host the two of hockey’s biggest events, where World League and World Cup champions will be crowned. The venue successfully hosted the 2014 Men’s Hockey Champions Trophy. It is also home to the current Hockey India League champions, the Kalinga Lancers.
The Men’s Hockey World League Final in 2017 will take place between December 1-10 and will welcome eight of the world’s best men’s teams who, in addition to the hosts, qualify from this summer’s Hockey World League Semi-Finals.
The Men’s Hockey World Cup 2018 will take place in late November/early December and will see 15 teams join hosts India at the event. They will qualify from the Hockey World League Semi-Finals and Continental Championships, also taking place this year, a release from the FIH said.
It was also confirmed that the state of Odisha will be title sponsor of both events. As a result, the official event titles will be the ‘Odisha Men’s Hockey World League Final Bhubaneswar 2017’ and the ‘Odisha Hockey Men’s World Cup Bhubaneswar 2018’.
Speaking about this announcement, FIH President Narinder Dhruv Batra said: “Bhubaneswar is a city ready to welcome the world. Its passionate sports fans and our experienced hosts will create an incredible environment for our stars to shine during what are the two of the biggest events in our sport.
“We encourage fans from across the world to come together and share the glory with their teams, each of them aiming to become world champions in these respective competitions. In doing so, fans will also get to experience first-hand the rich culture and warm hospitality offered by this amazing part of the world.”
Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik said that the global events will not only enthral hockey fans in the state but also help promote the sport among the younger generation.
“It brings me immense pride to announce that the Government of Odisha will be hosting the prestigious Odisha Men’s Hockey World League Final Bhubaneswar 2017 as well as the Odisha Hockey Men’s World Cup Bhubaneswar 2018. Over the years, Odisha has played host to several reputed international events and we are very happy to be hosting the hockey events in Bhubaneswar,” Patnaik said.
“I am delighted that the FIH and Hockey India have chosen us as hosts and I am sure all the teams, officials and fans heading to Bhubaneswar will have a thoroughly enjoyable experience in this city which is rich in its culture, heritage and has a unique history that will provide lasting memories. I am confident our officials with do everything in their capacity to make these mega events a big success.”