Up to four replacement teams are set to be invited into Season 3 of the FIH Hockey Pro League after Australia and New Zealand pulled out of all international competition until July 2022.
The two nations, both set to travel to London for Pro League games, cited the ongoing pandemic and needing three months to prepare for events with regards to travel restrictions and quarantine.
With the Women’s World Cup scheduled to be held in Spain and the Netherlands next July, followed by the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham, New Zealand is eyeing matches against Australia in the build-up, which would mark a similar scenario to their Olympic preparations.
Both nations also revealed that teams will pull out of the men’s Junior World Cup India in November/December, the women’s Junior World Cup in South Africa in December and February’s FIH Indoor Hockey World Cup in Belgium 2022.
Junior pathways will now focus on future competition in 2023, with future junior World Cups taking place in Chile (women) and Malaysia (men).
The next home matches in the Pro League across New Zealand and Australia will next come in November 2022.
Australia and New Zealand have also ruled out sending Masters team to the World Masters Hockey (WMH) Masters Indoor World Cup in the USA in February.