2018 is going to be a big year in the world of field hockey, with plenty of action going on.
Its starts out at the begining of 2018 with matches in Australia involving both Australia and the Netherlands, then we move on to the Indoor World Cup in Germany. This indoor World Cup is expected to be dominated by the European countries namely, Germany, Austria and Netherlands. Other countries will be in the mix as well including from the Pan American region Argentina and the USA.
Then in April the eyes of the field hockey world look to the Gold Coast in Australia for the Commonwealth Games where Australia is expected to do well in both the Men's and Women's competition along with New Zealand and England. It will also see in the Women's competition the debut of Ghana on the International stage for the first time, lets all wish them well.
Once the Commonwealth Games have concluded we then move on to London for the Women's World Cup where we will see the might of Alyson Annan's Netherlands, Olympic Champions Great Britain and the re-emoerging Young hockeyroo's compete for the gold, along side the seasoned Argentina, the USA and New Zealand. At this stage I am tipping the top three at the Women's World Cup will be-
1. Netherlands Gold Medal
2. Belgium Silver Medal
3. Australia Bronze Medal
After the Women's World Cup we move to the Central America and Carribean region for the CAC Games which will take place in Columbia. This tournament will bring together teams like Guyana, Mexico and Trinidad and Tobago and there goal will be to qualify for the Pan America Games in 2019, which will ultimately lead to qualification for the Olympic Games in Tokyo in 2020.
We then finish out the year in India with the Men's World Cup, where defending champions and world no 1 Australia will try to defend there title agains the might of Olympic Champions Argentina, Beligium, Netherlands, Great Britain, India among others. I am tipping the top three at the Men's World Cup will be-
1. Belgium Gold Medal
2. Australia Silver Medal
3. Argentina Bronze Medal
That will then conclude 2018, and the Hockey World will turn in 2019 and the start of the biggest change in the game for a number of years when the Hockey Pro League begins.
But before all this lets enjoy our New Year celebrations, then buckle up for a massive 2018 of field hockey.