Our goal is to qualify for World League Round 2- GHA

HIGH TABLEThe President of the Ghana Hockey Association Richard Akpokavie has stated that the goal of hosting the Hockey World League Round 1 is to qualify and take part in the World League Round 2.

Ghana will be hosting Namibia, Kenya and Nigeria from 9-11 September in Accra involving both male and female sides.

After their impressive showing at the last African Hockey Championships in South Africa last year, the national female and male national teams are ranked 2nd and 4th in Africa respectively and are hot favourites to win the competition to boost their world rankings.

“The goal is to qualify and take part in the World League Round 2 in Spain and Bangladesh,” Ghana Hockey Association President Richard Akpokavie said at the media launch of the tournament in Accra.

“The champion of this tournament will qualify for the Hockey World League Round 2. The women if they qualify will be in Valencia-Spain sometime in February, 2017 and the men in Bangladesh in 2017.”

Having previously hosted the World League Round 1 in 2012, a tournament which involved host Ghana, Nigeria and Egypt, the 2009 African Hockey Nations Cup and the African Club Championships, Mr. Akpokavie added that the competition will give another chance to followers of the game to see international teams in action.

“We believe it gives us an opportunity for all you to see world class hockey. Many at times, you’re used to our local leagues and it’s good to introduce you to hockey in Africa and in the world aside from what maybe you see on television.

“I’m sure those of you who watched the Rio Olympics watched some of the hockey matches. It also offers an opportunity to the corporate world, those who have supported us in the past, those who are supporting us now and those who may support us in the future.

In a related development, the Minister of Youth of Sports, Hon. Nii Lantey Vanderpuye, who was the special guest for the media launch, expressed his delight about the Ghana Hockey Association’s decision to host the event.

“I am very pleased and excited that Ghana has been given the privilege to host such an exemplary tournament,” he said.

“Reading the literature on this world league I see the intention of the International Federation of making hockey as attractive as football, playing the leagues and making hockey very competitive and an all year round activity to also encourage the improvement of the game in the various continents,” he said.

Nii Lantey admonished the national teams to raise the flag of Ghana high while calling on corporate bodies to help sponsor the event.