The prestigious Indoor Hockey Africa Cup 2020 and the Indoor World Cup, which were scheduled to take place this year, have been postponed to next year and 2022, respectively.
The Africa Cup was initially scheduled for this week but has now also been rescheduled to take place next year to give enough time for their World Cup preparations.
The World Cup will take place in 2022.
The Indoor Africa Cup tournament serves as a qualifier for the World Cup that was set to be held in Belgium in February 2021.
A statement released by the International Hockey Federation (FIH) stated that the World Cup has been postponed to maximize athletes’ and fans’ experience.
“Due to the global Covid-19 pandemic still going on, the FIH and the Belgian Hockey Association have jointly decided to postpone the upcoming FIH Indoor Hockey World Cup - initially scheduled to be played in February 2021 - to 2-6 February 2022, in order to maximize the athletes’ and fans’ experience,” the FIH CEO Thierry Weil said.
“The FIH Indoor Hockey World Cup is a great hockey spectacle, which generates a fantastic atmosphere. With the current major uncertainties which we are facing - such as the ability of all teams to travel, the completion of all continental qualifiers, or the access of fans to the venue - and in order to protect the health of everyone involved, a postponement was the only option to go for. Our thanks go to the Belgian Hockey Association and the Province of Liège for their great commitment to put together an amazing show in 2022.” Reacting to the news, Namibia Hockey Union (NHU) President, Marc Nel feels it was a good decision to postpone both tournaments which will give them enough time to prepare.
“I think it was a great decision by the International Hockey Federation (FIH) to push the competitions back with new dates. This will give us enough time to prepare and correct where things were not right, this decision obviously help us,” Nel said.
It will be the sixth edition of the FIH Indoor Hockey World Cup. The showpiece event will see 12 teams competing in both the men’s and women’s competitions. Austria men and Germany women won the last FIH Indoor Hockey World Cup events that took place in 2018 in Berlin, Germany.