Lausanne, May 3 (IANS) The International Hockey Federation (FIH) on Wednesday announced that 15 national associations, including India, have advanced in the selection process for the forthcoming global Home and Away League, which is due to begin in 2019.
"A total of 13 national associations remain part of the selection process for the Women's League, with 12 still in contention for places in the Men's League," FIH said in a statement.
"With a maximum of nine teams taking part in each League when it commences, the process remains particularly competitive going into the final assessment stage for this ground-breaking competition."
Argentina, Australia, Belgium, England, Germany, India, Ireland, Netherlands, New Zealand and Spain submitted applications for both their men's and women's teams. China, Japan and the United States for their women's teams and Malaysia and Pakistan for their men's teams.
The latest phase of the application process required the national associations to complete an extensive online questionnaire before the deadline of the April 30. This provides the FIH Event Portfolio Implementation Panel (EPIP) with in-depth information based on various aspects of their hosting and participation capabilities.
"This included information about financial sustainability, commercial vision, legal compliance, proposed venues, organisation and personnel, event delivery and presentation, team performance history, marketing strategies, motivation for participation, the proposed legacy impact and any added value they can bring to the competition," FIH said.
FIH CEO Jason McCracken said: "To have 15 national associations still in the running at this stage of the assessment process is fantastic news for the Home and Away League, a game-changing competition that is central to our 10-year Hockey Revolution Strategy.
"The depth of information that we required the National Associations to provide was extensive and the quality of submissions received was outstanding. I congratulate and thank the national associations for their work ahead of what will be a very thorough and competitive assessment process.
"The FIH continues to work in close collaboration with the National Associations as the sport looks forward to taking advantage of the growing interest, excitement and engagement in this competition from fans, broadcasters and commercial partners."