FIH Pro League

FIH Pro League. Great Britain v New Zealand (Women & Men)

An international hockey double-header special at The Stoop as Great Britain’s men and women both take on New Zealand in the FIH Pro League.  Matches starts at xpm and tickets are available.

Lee Valley Hockey and Tennis Centre is the place to be today this afternoon as GB’s men and women take the next steps in the Pro League (see below for an introduction to the FIH Pro League).  

We are taking hockey to the Twickenham Stoop Stadium on Sunday 23 June, and would love to share more of the background to these historic fixtures.

What’s your ticket policy for this game?
A single ticket entitles you to watch both the women’s and men’s games. An adult seat starts at £34, while under 18s tickets begin at £11.50. Available at http://hockey.seetickets.com

First up is a showdown between GB women and their counterparts from Belgium.  It’s a must-win match for GB who are currently languishing in seventh place in the table after 1 win and 2 draws from their first 8 matches.  A 2-1 home defeat to China at the beginning of the month was a real blow and GB will look to bounce back today but it won’t be easy against a Belgium side who are riding high in third place with an impressive record of 4 wins from 6 game so far.

In the men’s match GB will need to be at their best to take the scalp of the current world champions.  Belgium lifted the trophy in December 2018 beating Netherlands at the Kalinga Stadium in India after a penalty shootout.  The teams look very well matched – currently third and second respectively in the FIH Pro League standings – and if GB can play like they did in April when they demolished Argentina 5-1 at the Estadio Mundialista in Rosario there is every chance the home fans will be celebrating a famous victory this afternoon.

Ones to watch: For GB Women, Giselle Ainsley.  A member of the GB gold medal team from the Rio Olympics Ainsley is a mainstay of the GB backline and her experience will be crucial today.  For GB Men, Alan Forsyth. The Surbiton and Scotland striker was the stand out player in the aforementioned win over Argentina.

Previous meetings: This is the first time the sides have met in the FIH Pro League.  The reverse fixtures in Belgium take place on 30 May.

Timings: Gates open at 11.30am ~ Match 1 GB Women v Belgium Women at 1pm ~  Match 2 GB Men v Belgium Men at 3pm.

Tickets in advance for the FIH Pro League are available via the ‘Get Tickets’ link.

Tickets on the day at the gate subject to availability.  Checking the Great Britain Hockey Twitter feed before travelling is strongly recommended.

Travel: There is no parking onsite for spectators.  Taking public transport to Stratford International Station and walking to the venue is recommended.

About the FIH Pro League: The FIH Pro League is the ground-breaking, new, global hockey competition that started this year.  Two leagues, one men’s and one women’s, each comprising the greatest hockey nations, battle it out for glory.  128 matches are taking place around the world this season culminating in a Grand Final in June in the Netherlands.  It’s action-packed, international rivalries at their fiercest and hockey of the highest calibre.

There are nine teams in each league with the top four teams at the end of the season in each gender going forward to their respective Grand Finals.  The finals each consist of two semi-finals and then a final to crown the overall winner.  The same top four sides are also guaranteed a place in the two-legged Olympic qualifiers which take place in Autumn 2019.

The Men’s teams are – Great Britain, Argentina, Australia, Belgium, Germany, Netherlands, New Zealand and Spain.

The Women’s teams are – Great Britain, Argentina, Australia, Belgium, China, Germany, Netherlands, New Zealand, and USA .

Great Britain Men’s and Women’s home matches will be played at Lee Valley Hockey and Tennis Centre between April and June 2019, with the final double header being played at the Twickenham Stoop Stadium on 23 June against New Zealand.

Teams earn the traditional three points for winning a match in normal time.  However, if a match is drawn at full time, each team earns one point, and there’s then a shootout with a point to the winning side.

(FIH Pro League info courtesy of the Great Britain Hockey website).

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