Both of the Ireland Men’s and Ireland Women’s Hockey teams are standing on the edge of Olympic Qualification with one game to go, a win in which would secure their spot for Paris.

The Women play Spain this morning in Valencia with the game being live-streamed on at 11:30 Irish time.

The Men’s team entered their final pool match last night having won one and lost one of their opening two games, the same as their opponents Japan.

Ireland had the advantage of a plus 2 goal difference meaning that a draw would be enough to reach second place in Pool A and that coveted semi-final slot.

For Ireland, who suffered the heartbreak of a playoff elimination back in Vancouver in 2019,there was probably even more motivation after the disappointment of losing their shoot-out to Canada five years ago.

A 1-0 win was enough and now the team will also face Spain in the semi-final of the Qualification tournament and a guaranteed place on the plane to Paris.

“Without the ball we’ve become comfortable in deep defence,” said Men’s Captain Mark Tumilty.

“Deep defence is something we have worked on. The objective was to get out of the group. We have achieved that, and we now face into a huge challenge against Spain in the Semi-final on Friday and then have another opportunity on Sunday, the nature of which (either the gold medal or bronze medal final) will depend on the result on Friday.”

Both of the Irish Men’s and Women’s teams are sponsored by Sport for Business member Softco.


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