The International Hockey Federation (FIH) has released the groups for next year’s Indoor Hockey World Cup, which will see Namibia’s men and women’s teams facing serious competition from some of the world’s hockey powerhouses.
The 2023 Indoor Hockey World Cup will take place in February in Pretoria, South Africa, and will see the Namibian sides lining up to compete for glory against tough opponents.
It will mark the sixth edition of this tournament, which will be played from 5 to 11 February 2023.
In the FIH latest release, Namibia’s women’s team has been drawn in Group B alongside Ukraine, Czech Republic, Belgium, Canada and Kazakhstan, while the men’s side are pitted against Austria, Netherlands, Belgium, New Zealand and Kazakhstan in Group A of the global hockey showpiece.
Reacting to the draw to yesterday, women’s national team head coach Erwin Handura said he was happy with their group and remained confident of their chances to progress to the next phase of the competition.
“It’s a great group with good teams in it. Every team in our group is fairly strong; however, we are happy, and I believe we stand a good chance of advancing to the next stage of the competition,” he said.
In terms of preparations, Handura said they will begin with training at the end of this month to be well prepared for the competition come early next year.
“Now that we know who our opponents are, we will commence with our first training camp this month. Most of our players are currently at universities in South Africa, and some are getting ready to play at the outdoor hockey competition in Zimbabwe. Once they return, we will begin with our training camp,” he added.
The 2023 edition will mark the first time the FIH Indoor Hockey World Cup takes place outside of Europe. The first Indoor Hockey World Cup in 2003 was hosted in Germany (Leipzig) before heading to Austria (Vienna) and Poland (Poznan) in 2011.
The two previous editions have been in Germany in Leipzig and Berlin, respectively.