When Paul Revington was first allowed to speak to me by certain quarters who think they own Malaysian Hockey, I told him that Malaysia will qualify for the 2014 World Cup.
And I explained to him why I was confident. For Malaysia had a 16 year jinx in making the World Cup in merit.
Allow me to explain this further to most who are still wet behind their ears, especially to the newly formed Gang of Five who feel that they are Gods gift to Malaysian Hockey.
Malaysia qualified on merit to the 1982 Bombay World Cup via the 1981 Intercontinental Cup.
After that it was heartbreak in London 1986, Lahore 1990 and Sydney 1994.
In 1997 Malaysia hosted the World Cup Qualifiers and made it trough to the 1998 Utrecht World Cup.
We played in the 2002 World Cup as hosts and did not qualify on merit.
And next year Malaysia will be at The Hague, thanks to Argentina winning the Pan American Championships this morning defeating Canada 4-0 in the final.
After the completion of the two World League Semis, Korea, Spain, Malaysia and India- in that order were listed as reserves.
Korea has now qualified thanks to Argentina making it.
Spain will make it if they or either Germany, Holland, Belgiun or England win the ongoing European Championships.
That will leave Malaysia and we are expected to be confirmed once the Oceania Championships is over this November as Australia and New Zealand have already made it into the World Cup via the World League, hence a win by either team at the Oceania will guarantee Malaysia the spot.
But we could even make it by the end of Asia Cup later this month should Malaysia or Korea emerge champions.
A Korean win will eventually allow India into the World Cup as well. So Pakistan can deal a double blow to arch rivals India by winning the Asia Cup hence closing the door firmly shut on India.
Oh well let them fight it out for Malaysia has lived up to the 16 year jinx and well laid plans by the Group of Five are in smoke.
Rabobank Hockey World Cup – Men’s Qualifiers
Germany: 1st place – Hockey World League Semi-Final, Johor Bahru (MAS)
Argentina: Pan American champions
England: 3rd place – Hockey World League Semi-Final, Johor Bahru (MAS)
Belgium: 1st place – Rabobank Hockey World League Semi-Final, Rotterdam (NED)
Australia: 2nd place – Rabobank Hockey World League Semi-Final, Rotterdam (NED)
New Zealand: 4th place – Rabobank Hockey World League Semi-Final, Rotterdam (NED) *
Korea: 4th place – Hockey World League Semi-Final, Johor Bahru (MAS).**
* Netherlands finished third in the Hockey World League Semi-Final event in Rotterdam. As they are already pre-qualified as the host, this means that the highest ranked fourth place finisher from both Semi-Final events earns direct qualification to the Rabobank Hockey World Cup. This place goes to New Zealand, who were fourth in Rotterdam and currently sit fifth in the FIH World Rankings.
** Korea qualified for World Cup as first reserve courtesy of Argentina’s victory in the Pan American Cup.
World Cup Qualification - The Next Stage
The remaining places at the Rabobank Hockey World Cup for men will be filled by the winners of the final four continental championships. However, if any of the above listed teams also becomes continental champion it will open the door to the teams that finished outside the top three at the Hockey World League Semi-Finals that have not yet qualified for the World Cup. These teams can be found below, in order of their placing in the Hockey World League Semi-Finals.
Spain: 5th in Rotterdam / 2nd reserve for World Cup *
Malaysia: 5th in Johor Bahru / 3rd reserve for World Cup *
India: 6th in Rotterdam / 4th reserve for World Cup