New Delhi,23 January: India has been placed in very tough pool B for the Paris Olympics along with defending champion Belgium, as per the draw released by the International Hockey Federation (FIH) draw released on Monday.

Interestingly all the three- medal winning teams at the Tokyo Olympics-Belgium (gold), Australia (silver), India (Brnze) are clubbed in the same pool.

India, world No. 3 in the latest FIH rankings, will be the second-best ranked team in their pool after world No. 2 Belgium.  Australia (world No. 6), Argentina (7), New Zealand (10) and  Ireland (11) are the other four teams in the Pool.

The Men in Blue secured a berth for the Paris Olympics by winning the gold medal at the 2023 Asian Games in Hangzhou, China.

Meanwhile, world No. 1 Netherlands, fourth-ranked Germany, Great Britain (5), Spain (8), hosts France (9) and South Africa (14) make up Pool B of the 12-team men’s hockey tournament at the Paris Games

The participating teams, who booked their tickets to Paris 2024 through continental championships or any of the FIH qualifying tournaments, were allocated their respective pools on the basis of the FIH World Rankings, as of January 21.

The teams were placed in the following order:

Pool A: teams ranked 1st, 4th, 5th, 8th, 9th and 12th,    Pool B: teams ranked 2nd, 3rd, 6th, 7th, 10th and 11th

India finished with a  bronze medal at Tokyo It was the country's first Olympic medal in hockey after a 41-year gap.

Meanwhile, Eight-time Asian Games champion, Four-time world champion and three times Olympic Winners in Pakistan failed to qualify for the Olympics for the third time in a row

On the other hand, the Indian women’s hockey team won’t feature at the Paris 2024 Olympics after narrowly failing to secure a berth at the qualifying tournament in Ranchi last week.

In the women’s draw, reigning and four-time champions Netherlands are in Pool A. The Dutch team is also the top-ranked team in the FIH rankings for women currently.

The Paris hockey tournaments will take place between July 27 and August 9.

Women's Pool

Pool A: Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, Japan, China and France

Pool B: Australia, Argentina, Great Britain, Spain, United States and South Africa

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