The tournament will see 16 teams competing to win the trophy.

There are few tournaments more prestigious than the World Cup in every sport. In terms of field hockey, the Women’s World Cup holds a lot of importance. The 2022 edition of the tournament is set to start soon. It begins from 1 July 2022 onwards and runs until 17 July 2022. As for the hosting of the event, it will be held in Terrassa, Spain and Amstelveen, the Netherlands.

The Netherlands is the defending champion and a clear favourite to defend the title this year too. Playing at home will certainly play a major factor if the team is to successfully retain their status as world champions in women’s hockey. However, there will be stiff competition from the likes of Argentina, India and more when the tournament commences.

It will be interesting to see if any other team stops the Dutch who are the leading nation with the most number of FIH Women’s World Cup titles in history. With the tournament getting closer by the day, here is a look at what it has in store for the hockey enthusiasts:

Pools

There are 16 teams which are placed in four different pools. The team finishing first in the pool will go straight into the quarters while the second and third finishers move to the crossovers. Starting with Pool A, reigning champions the Netherlands are grouped with the likes of Germany, Ireland and Chile.  

Pool B consists of England, India, New Zealand and China. It will be a close group with both Indians and the English claiming to finish on top, as these two also met at the Tokyo Olympics where the latter won the bronze. Both outfits are contenders for the title and will hope to secure a direct place in the quarters. New Zealand is outside favourites to win the pool as well. 

Over at the Pool C, Argentina is the clear favourite to take the top position. The World No. 2 ranked women’s team will have to fend the challenge from Spain, South Korea and Canada. Playing as the hosts, the Spaniards could spring up a surprise. Finally, the Pool D consists of Australia, Belgium, Japan and South Africa. The World No. 3 ranked Australians are favourites to win this pool but the world cup often has a few surprises in store.

Indian Squad

Savita will captain the Indian national team for the 2022 Women’s Hockey World Cup. Rani Rampal misses out due to injury and will be a major absentee. Deep Grace Ekka will be the deputy to Savita as the Indian women’s team aims to win its first-ever world cup. Here is the squad that will represent India at the tournament:

Goalkeepers: Savita (C), Bichu Devi Kharibam

Defenders: Deep Grace Ekka (VC), Gurjit Kaur, Nikki Pradhan, Udita

Midfielders: Nisha, Sushila Chanu Pukhrambam, Monika, Neha, Jyoti, Navjot Kaur, Sonika, Salima Tete

Forwards: Vandana Katariya, Lalremsiami, Navneet Kaur, Sharmila Devi

Replacement Players: Akshata Abaso Dhekale, Sangita Kumari

Key Player 

Gurjit Kaur will be key to India’s success at the 2022 Women’s FIH Hockey World Cup. The powerful drag-flicker is going to be the main threat when it comes to scoring goals. During the 2021-22 FIH Hockey Pro League, Kaur managed five goals for India, becoming the country’s top scorer. Her goals were a key factor in helping the nation finish third overall in the league tournament.

Apart from her threat from the edge of the circle, Gurjit Kaur is a leader in defence. Her reading of the game and command in the centre will be essential to the team. Janneke Schopman will hope that the defender can consistently perform at a high level to keep the opposition attackers at bay. 

Indian fixtures schedule

3 July 2022: England vs India

5 July 2022: India vs China

7 July 2022: India vs New Zealand

Broadcast

The 2022 Women’s FIH World Cup will be broadcast on the Star Sports Network. Viewers can also catch the live streaming of the games that will be available on Disney + Hotstar app.

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