EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT HOCKEY SERIES

Hockey Series Open

Questions and answers

What is the Hockey Series?
Fuelled by the magic of fast-paced, highly-skilled, action-packed hockey, the Hockey Series provides unrelenting drama and excitement driven by the opportunity to qualify for the Olympic Games or Hockey World Cup.

Open to all countries not in the Hockey Pro League, the Hockey Series gives developing hockey-playing nations the opportunity to test themselves against some of the world’s best, with dreams of reaching hockey’s flagship events. For it is here, in the Hockey Series, that history will be made and future stars born.

The Hockey Series is composed of two rounds, played over two years preceding either an Olympic Games or Hockey World Cup. The competitions and subsequent qualification processes are exactly the same for both the men’s and women’s competitions in line with hockey’s ‘Equally Amazing’ ethos.

Events at this level will be continentally based. The number of competitions spread throughout the world will be determined by the number of entries.

From all teams competing in this round, a minimum of 15 teams will qualify for one of three separate Hockey Series Finals.

Each of the Hockey Series Finals will have eight teams playing in them and will take place throughout the world, with berths into the Olympic Qualification Events up for grabs.

What is at stake during the Hockey Series?
Teams competing in the Hockey Series will not only have the chance to gain valuable ranking points, but also to qualify for the Olympic Qualification Events, and in future for Hockey World Cup Qualification Events. The two best teams in each of the three Hockey Series Finals are guaranteed a berth in the Qualification Events.

Who will compete in the Hockey Series Open and how do nations qualify for the Hockey Series Finals?
All nations affiliated to FIH and not playing in the Hockey Pro League are eligible to enter the Hockey Series Open. In 2018, more than 75 teams are expected to compete.

However, the nine highest placed nations in the FIH Hero World Ranking as of 9 June 2017, that are not playing in the Hockey Pro League will be exempt from the Hockey Series Open and will qualify directly for the Hockey Series Finals.

In 2019, three Hockey Series Finals will take place, each with eight teams competing.

The Hockey Series Finals will include at least five qualifiers from the Hockey Series Open but contain no more than three of the teams that qualified directly for the Finals based on World Ranking.

When will the Hockey Series take place?
For the 2018/2019 cycle, events will take place during the following periods:

  • The Hockey Series Open is scheduled to take place between June and September 2018
  • The Hockey Series Finals will take place in May and June 2019

How does the Hockey Series compare to the new Hockey Pro League?
The Hockey Series is an accessible competition played in a two-year cycle all around the world.

This competition gives even the smallest hockey-playing nations the opportunity to make their mark and write their own chapter in hockey’s history books by going all the way through to the Olympic Games or Hockey World Cup.

The Hockey Series events will be played in a tournament format and played over a period of between one and two weeks in one location depending on whether they are single gender or joint events.

In comparison, the Hockey Pro League is an annual global home and away league involving many of the world’s leading hockey nations. The Pro League will see one-off matches played rather than in tournament format and will take place between January and June each year. For more information on the Hockey Pro League, click here.

Teams from the Hockey Series will continue to play in their continental events where they will have the opportunity to play matches against Hockey Pro League teams. They may also get the chance to play Hockey Pro League teams in test matches and in Hockey World Cups, Olympic Qualification Events and the Olympic Games, should they qualify.

How can teams competing in the Hockey Series eventually become part of the Hockey Pro League?
We hope that teams competing in the Hockey Series will aspire to join the Hockey Pro League. By playing in and hosting events in the Hockey Series, nations will gain valuable experience that would benefit any application to join the Hockey Pro League in the future.

How do teams qualify for the Olympic Games?
The top two nations from each of the Hockey Series Finals will be guaranteed berths in the new Olympic Qualification Events. 

They will be joined by the top four nations from the Hockey Pro League and the two highest placed nations in the FIH Hero World Rankings (at the end of the 2019 Continental Championships) not already qualified via the Hockey Series Finals or Pro League.

The 12 men’s and 12 women’s nations will compete for a total of six spots in the Olympic Games, with the winners joining hosts Japan and the five continental champions who automatically qualify for Tokyo 2020.

The six Olympic Qualification Events will each feature two nations playing two back-to-back matches, with nations drawn to play each other based on their rankings at the end of the 2019 Continental Championships. 

The nation who scores the highest aggregate score over the two matches will qualify for the Olympics. 

The Olympic Qualification Events are scheduled for October and November 2019 and the matches will be hosted by the higher ranked of the two competing nations.

Official Olympic Hockey Qualification Guidelines can be downloaded here.

Who will play in the Olympic Qualification Events?

  • The top two nations in each of the three Hockey Series Finals will qualify for the Olympic Qualification Events
  • They will be joined by the top four nations from the Hockey Pro League
  • The two remaining spots will go to the two best ranked nations in the FIH Hero World Rankings not having qualified through either of the above events

In case one or more of the above-mentioned nations are the host of the Olympics or continental champions, and as such directly qualified for the Olympic Games, additional teams from from the FIH Hero World Rankings will be sought to determine the remaining spots for the Olympic Qualification Events.

How will fans be able to watch, read and get information about the Hockey Series?
FIH will cover the new Hockey Series on all of its channels including easy to access digital outlets such as the FIH website and social media. The Hockey Series Open and Hockey Series Finals will also be broadcast either through webstreaming or through our TV broadcast partners’ channels.

Who will host the Hockey Series?
The majority of hosts of the Hockey Series Open have been confirmed and can be viewed here, with more due to be announced within the next few weeks. Hosts of the 2019 Hockey Series Finals will be announced later this year.

HOCKEY SERIES OPEN

The FIH reviewed bids received for Hockey Series Open events and allocated hosts based on the principles below:

  • Regional spread of events;
  • Principles of maintaining low costs for National Associations;
  • Bids that provide evidence of conforming to FIH venue specifications
  • Evidence of suitable experience of LOC to deliver the event

Confirmed Hosts (as of 2 May 2018)

Gender Venue Date
Men & Women Salamanca (MEX) 5 - 10 June
Men & Women Singapore (SGP) 23 June - 1 July
Men Zagreb (CRO) 25 - 30 June
Women Wattignies (FRA) 6 - 8 July
Women Vilnius, (LIT) 21 – 26 August
Men Gniezno (POL) 28 August - 2 September
Men Lousada (POR) 4 - 9 September
Men & Women Santiago (CHL) 18 – 23 September


HOCKEY SERIES FINALS

The FIH will review potential venues for Hockey Series Finals over the coming months. The evaluation will be based on an on number of factors, including:

  • Venue and accommodation
  • Budget
  • Host fee
  • Commercial benefits
  • Motivation and objectives
  • Organisation and previous hosting
  • Event experience and sport presentation
  • Ability to attract large crowds
  • Potential for high levels of broadcast and media coverage

The allocation of the Hockey Series Open qualifying teams to the Hockey Series Finals will be finalised once the hosts of the Hockey Series Finals have been confirmed.

Our website uses cookies

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you continue without changing your settings we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies on the FIH website. To find out more about our data policy please click here