November 23, 2012, (ISN) – On Saturday, the Canadian Men’s National Team will take the field for their first international competition since February.  Canada’s first match of the 2012 Champions Challenge I is against Korea at 10:00am local time in Quilmes, Argentina.  Korea will be a tough opponent – they are currently ranked seventh in the world.  But Team Canada is ready to compete.

“The team is feeling good,” says Forward Matt Guest.  “We have shown steady improvement throughout our practice matches.  With several guys making their international debut in the first match – there are mixed feelings of nerves and excitement within the group.”

“We have two practice scrimmages under our belts, which has helped us get our legs under us and work out a few tactical adjustments,” says Defender Scott Tupper.  “It has been good to get used to the pace again and have a feel for competition before the tournament starts.”

There will be eight teams competing in Argentina, initially split into two pools.  Canada will compete in Pool A against Korea, Malaysia and Poland.  Pool B includes South Africa, Ireland, Japan and Argentina, Canada’s Pan American rival.  The FIH explains, “All eight teams will move onto a quarterfinal game with the first place finishers taking on the last place finishers from the other groups and the second and third place teams playing in a similar cross-over. From there, the winners will move onto the semi-finals and medal games, while the losers will play for placement… the winner of the tournament will be automatically qualified for the next edition of the men’s Champions Trophy.”  Teams will also be competing for World Ranking points.

Follow @FIH_Hockey on Twitter for live results throughout the tournament. 

EVENT WEBPAGE: www.fieldhockey.ca/CC1

SCHEDULE (all times local time in Quilmes, Argentina)

  • Nov. 24: Canada vs Korea @10am Nov. 25: Canada vs Poland @10am
  • Nov. 27: Canada vs Malaysia @11am