Belgium, the defending champions, have an abundance of experience in their squad.

The FIH Men’s Hockey World Cup 2023 is almost upon us. This is going to be the 16th edition of the prestigious tournament which started in 1971. 16 nations will be competing for the coveted trophy in the upcoming World Cup. The Hockey World Cup has already seen six different champions over the years.

With the tournament set to start in less than a week’s time, all the countries have announced their respective squads. Experience plays a key role in winning any competition. The same is the case for the Hockey World Cup. Keeping that in mind, here is a look at the five most experienced teams in the 2023 FIH Men’s Hockey World Cup:

5. England – 1871 international caps

England has played in all the Hockey World Cups except in the inaugural edition. So it is safe to say that they are a seasoned competitor in the tournament. However, they are yet to win the World Cup. Their best-ever finish in the Hockey World Cup came back in 1986 when they hosted the tournament. England finished runners-up in that year. They lost to Australia in the final. England comes into the FIH Men’s Hockey World Cup 2023 with a lot of experience. Their sum of caps of all players combined stands at 1871. David Condon of Wimbledon is the most capped player of the squad with 136 caps for England.

4. Malaysia – 2105 international caps

Currently ranked No. 10 in the world, Malaysia comes into the tournament as an underdog. Despite that, they are not a squad that lacks experience. Their collective cap sums up to 2105. Veteran defender Razie Rahim is the most capped player on their World Cup squad. Malaysia’s penalty corner specialist has more than 300 caps to his name. Malaysia has played in the World Cup in eight previous editions. Their best-ever finish came back in 1975 when they finished fourth. Malaysia ended up in the eighth position in the 2018 Hockey World Cup.

3. India – 2289 international caps

India would like to repeat their performances in the 2020 Olympics in the upcoming World Cup as well. The Men in Blue had their first podium finish in 40 years in the last Olympics. However, India’s recent performances in the World Cup haven’t been as impressive. India have failed to qualify for the semifinals since winning the World Cup back in 1975. The Men in Blue would like to change that in the upcoming World Cup and they have an experienced enough squad to do that. India’s collective caps stand at 2289. Midfielder Manpreet Singh is the most capped player in the squad with more than 300 caps to his name.

2. Australia – 2632 international caps

Australia have been one of the most dominant teams in the Hockey World Cup. They have won the most matches and scored the highest goals among all teams in the history of the Hockey World Cup. The Kookaburras have lifted the World Cup trophy thrice. The No.1 ranked team in the World come into the 2023 FIH Men’s Hockey World Cup as one of the favourites to lift it. They also have a very experienced squad to back their skills. The caps of all the players in the squad sum up to 2632. Captain Eddie Ockenden is the most capped player in the squad with more than 400 caps to his name.

1. Belgium – 4126 international caps

Defending champions Belgium come to the 2023 Hockey World Cup with the most experienced team. Their collective cap stands at 4126. Veteran midfielder John-John Dohmen is the most capped player in the squad with more than 400 caps to his name. Other than Dohmen, the Belgian squad has four more players with more than 300 caps to their name. Belgium have played in only seven editions of the World Cup so far. They won their first-ever World Cup in 2018.  

** This list has been sourced from Twitter handle @indianhockey

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