With six months to go for the much-awaited FIH men's hockey World Cup, nine out of 12 teams have already booked places in the flagship event, to be held in Delhi [ Images ] from February 28 to March 13.
Apart from hosts India [ Images ], Canada [ Images ] (winners of the third Pan American Cup), Korea (eighth Asia Cup winners), South Africa [ Images ] (winners of the Africa Cup of Nations, 2009), Australia [ Images ] (winners of the sixth Oceania Cup) have qualified for the event.
England [ Images ] (winners of the 12th EuroHockey Nations Championship), Germany [ Images ] (silver medalist of the 12th EuroHockey Nations Championship), Netherlands (bronze medalist of the 12th EuroHockey Nations Championship) and Spain (fourth-ranked team in the 12th EuroHockey Nations Championship) have also made it to the mega-event.
However, 18 teams still have a chance to claim one of the three remaining slots for the event from the three World Cup qualifiers to be held in Lille [ Images ], France [ Images ], from October 31 to November 8; Invercargill, New Zealand [ Images ], from November 7-15 and Quilmes, Argentina, from November 14-22, according to the FIH.
These teams are Pakistan, Japan [ Images ], France, Poland, Russia [ Images ] and Italy [ Images ] (in the Lille qualifier); New Zealand, China, Malaysia, Austria, Scotland and Wales (in Invercargill qualifier); Belgium, Argentina, Ireland, USA, Czech Republic and Chile (in Quilmes qualifier).