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Men’s Hockey World Cup to return to Odisha in 2023

Belgium celebrate victory following the 2018 FIH Men's Hockey World Cup Final against the Netherlands at Kalinga Stadium in Bhubaneswar (by Charles McQuillan/Getty Images for FIH)

Hockey India has announced that the 2023 Men’s Hockey World Cup will be co-hosted by the cities of Bhubaneswar and Rourkela.

The decision comes after the hosting rights to the tournament were granted to India by the International Hockey Federation (FIH) earlier this month, through a process that also saw the 2022 Women’s World Cup assigned to the Netherlands and Spain.

Bhubaneswar and Rourkela are both located in the state of Odisha, with the former city having also staged the most recent edition of the Men’s World Cup in 2018. Hockey India said the government of Odisha’s strong support for the development of hockey, its vision to provide state-of-the-art infrastructure, and willingness to invest in the event, were the key reasons behind returning the World Cup to the state.

Mohd Mushtaque Ahmad, president of Hockey India, said: “When we decided to bid for the 2023 FIH Hockey Men’s World Cup, we had about five states that showed interest in hosting the coveted event in 2023.

“Having successfully hosted the 2018 Men’s World Cup here in Bhubaneswar, it was important for Hockey India to raise the bar further and ensure the next event is bigger and better than what world hockey saw in 2018. Hockey India shares an excellent working relationship with the Government of Odisha whose vision for the sport aligns with ours.

“In terms of the economics involved in hosting an event of this magnitude, the Government of Odisha’s support was unmatched and I am confident the world will witness yet another incredible World Cup in 2023.”

FIH chief executive Thierry Weil added: “Conscious of the costs generated by the organisation of such world events, we think that using existing facilities – especially when they are of the quality of those provided in Bhubaneswar – is a real advantage.

“Also, the income-generation potential of the bid submitted by Hockey India will contribute to the development of hockey worldwide, which is the first mission of the International Hockey Federation. Furthermore, we will work closely with Hockey India on the sustainability and legacy aspects of the 2023 FIH Hockey Men’s World Cup.”