Raipur to host Hockey World League Final

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New Delhi, Aug 18 (IANS) The 2015 Hockey World League (HWL) Final will be held in Chhattisgarh capital Raipur from November 27 to December 6.

The event will be held in the 3,000 capacity Raipur International Hockey Stadium which was opened as a dedicated hockey facility in August 2014.

The tournament will feature eight teams who qualified through the HWL Semi-Finals in Buenos Aires and Antwerp. They include World No.1 Australia, Netherlands (2), Germany (3), Belgium (4), Great Britain (5), Argentina (6), hosts India (8) and Canada (13).

This will be the first international hockey event to be staged not only in the newly built stadium but also in Raipur.

“The HWL Final is going to be an extremely exciting event with all eight teams having qualified for the 2016 Olympics. This will be one of the last opportunities to test themselves against one another in international competition before they head out to Rio for the Games later next year,” international hockey federation (FIH) president Leandro Negre said.

“India has a strong connection with the sport of hockey and we are delighted to be taking this showcase competition to a city that has shown a great desire to host international tournaments. We have no doubt that the local organisers and the people of Raipur will put on a fantastic event for athletes, spectators and TV viewers around the world.”

Speaking on the announcement, Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Raman Singh said: “It is a proud moment for Chhattisgarh. When we started work on the stadium the aim was to make a world class stadium which meets international standards and I’m happy that we have successfully achieved that.”

This is the second edition of the HWL. The inaugural edition’s Final was held in New Delhi and won by Netherlands.

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