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Hockey 5s teams in the Americas vie for four Olympic quotas

2018-03-12 14:53:45

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Starting on Monday  and running through to Saturday in Guadalajara, Mexico, a qualifying tournament will be played to award four quota places – two women’s teams and two men’s – for the discipline at Buenos Aires 2018.

Currently there are three National Olympic Committees that have their spots guaranteed in the Argentine capital from October 6 – 18, in addition to the host country. Last year at the European Youth Hockey 5s Championship, France and Poland’s men’s teams won quota places. For the women’s teams, both Poland and Austria secured their places.

Hockey has been part of the Youth Olympic Games since its first edition at Singapore 2010. Four years later at Nanjing 2014, the five-a-side version created by the International Hockey Federation (FIH) made its debut to attract new generations of fans, thanks to the fast pace and more opportunities to demonstrate skills on the field.

It will soon be time for the best 24 youth hockey 5s teams on the planet to face off at Buenos Aires 2018.

The Americas will have its representatives following the Pan American Youth Championship which is taking place in the city of Guadalajara. This tournament will determine which four National Olympic Committees will make it to Argentina. As the host country, Argentina will have a men’s and women’s team competing at the Games.

Argentina, Guatemala, Jamaica, Mexico, Paraguay and Uruguay will play in the women’s qualifier. The tournament will be played in a round robin format and the four best teams will qualify for the semi-finals. The semi-final winners will also win a spot at Buenos Aires 2018.

If Argentina makes it to the final, the third-place team will be awarded a place at the Youth Olympic Games.

Among the men, teams from Argentina, Brazil, Canada, the Dominican Republic, Guatemala, Jamaica, Mexico and Paraguay will play in the qualifier.

The men’s tournament will follow a different format from the women’s: they will play in groups of four teams – A and B – to determine each team’s position in the region.

After the first round, the teams will meet in the following way: 1º Group A vs. 4º Group B, 2º Group B vs. 3º Group A, 2º Group A vs. 3º Group B and 1º Group B vs. 4º Group A. The winner of each match will qualify for the semi-final and the semi-final winners will play the final and get the ticket for the Youth Olympic Games.

Just like in the women’s tournament, if Argentina makes it to the finals the team in third place will earn the right to compete at Buenos Aires 2018.

Currently there are three National Olympic Committees that have their spots guaranteed in the Argentine capital from October 6 – 18, in addition to the host country. Last year at the European Youth Hockey 5s Championship, France and Poland’s men’s teams won quota places. For the women’s teams, both Poland and Austria secured their spots.

Once the quota winners are known for the Americas, the Olympic qualifiers will continue in Asia, Africa, and Oceania to complete the hockey 5s list for the next Youth Olympic Games.

At Buenos Aires 2018 the discipline will have 12 men’s teams and 12 women’s teams competing on fields that are currently under construction at the Youth Olympic Centre, located within the Youth Olympic Park.

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