Rabobank Hockey World Cup 2014: Forthcoming Fixtures and Predictions – Bleacher Report

The 12 best teams in world hockey will gather in The Hague from May 31 until June 15 for the Rabobank Hockey World Cup, international hockey’s biggest tournament outside of the Olympics.

Hosts and favourites, the Netherlands, failed to take home the gold medal in both the men’s and women’s categories in 2010, and they will be backed by a fiery home crowd, with reports that all 16 matchdays have already sold out.

The Australian men and Argentine women will defend their titles from four years ago over the course of the next two weeks against one of the deepest fields ever assembled, with nations like Belgium and Spain also staking their claim to the title.

Here are the four groups that will be used in the 2014 World Cup:

2014 Hockey World Cup Groups
Men’s Group A Group B
Australia Holland
England Germany
Spain South Africa
India Korea Republic
Belgium Argentina
Malaysia New Zealand
Women’s Group A Group B
Australia England
New Zealand Germany
Japan Argentina
Korea Republic USA
Belgium China
Netherlands South Africa

rabobankhockeyworldcup2014.nl

Teams will play all of their group opponents once, with the top two from every group advancing to the semi-final. Tie-breakers will go to wins first, with goal differential second.

The schedule for the first two days of competition:

2014 World Cup Fixture Schedule
Date Competition Team A v Team B
Saturday, May 31 Men Australia v Malaysia
Saturday, May 31 Women New Zealand v Belgium
Saturday, May 31 Women Australia v Korea
Saturday, May 31 Men Belgium v India
Saturday, May 31 Men England v Spain
Saturday, May 31 Women Netherlands v Japan
Sunday, June 1 Men Germany v South Africa
Sunday, June 1 Women England v USA
Sunday, June 1 Women Germany v China
Sunday, June 1 Men Netherlands v Argentina
Sunday, June 1 Men New Zealand v Korea
Sunday, June 1 Women Argentina v South Africa

rabobankhockeyworldcup2014.nl

For the full schedule, visit the event’s official website.

England will be facing a difficult task escaping from a treacherous men’s Group A including defending champions Australia, India, Spain and Belgium.

The Belgians defeated England during last week’s Four Nations tournament on their way to an overall win, beating the Netherlands on goal difference.

One of the sport’s emerging countries, Belgium, will be England’s main rivals for the second ticket to the knockout stages, behind favourites Australia.

India have fallen down the pecking order of world hockey a bit, but the team is not to be underestimated, and the country seems to be taking the 2014 World Cup very seriously. Even cricket star Virat Kohli wants his compatriots to do well:

Michael Hoare believes England should be able to improve on their 2010 performance, which saw the team advance to the semi-finals. He told The Guardian‘s Rod Gilmour even the gold should be a possibility:

I don’t see why we can’t get gold; we’ve got the capabilities to beat anyone on our day. We’ve played a lot of the top teams recently in the last year and half and we’ve beaten all of them so I don’t see why we can’t do it.

Belgium’s dominance on penalty corners gives that team the edge, however, and punters should be wary of the team’s meteoric rise in world hockey.

The hosts and Germany are the clear favourites in Group B, where New Zealand will be looking to challenge either of the perennial contenders for a top-two finish.


Virginia Mayo/Associated Press

The Argentine men have failed to duplicate the successes of the women’s team in recent years, while South Africa simply don’t have the depth to compete with some of Europe’s top nations.

Predictions: Australia and Belgium advance from Group A, Netherlands beat out Germany for the top spot in Group B.

The Netherlands are the strong favourites for the women’s gold, thanks to home-field advantage and a relatively easy draw in Group A, where Australia are the team’s main competitors.

Unlike the men’s team, the Belgian women’s squad is young and experienced, and along with Korea, Japan and New Zealand, they shouldn’t challenge the two title contenders all that much.


Bruno Cerimele/Associated Press

Group B features a nightmare draw for the English team, who will have to take on defending champions Argentina and a German team looking to improve on 2010’s fourth-place finish.

Argentina will be the favourites by a slim margin, but the race for second is wide open. Both England and Germany feature a solid blend of youthful explosiveness and experience, and defence will be key when these two teams meet on the last matchday.

Predictions: Netherlands and Australia do what they need to do, England repeat their heroics from 2010 to join Argentina in the semi-finals.

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Rabobank Hockey World Cup 2014: Forthcoming Fixtures and Predictions – Bleacher Report


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Baseball state tournament results and links for Friday, May 30 – The Star-Ledger

FRIDAY’S PUBLIC STATE SECTIONAL FINAL STAFF COVERAGE

North Jersey, Section 1, Group 4 final -?No. 13 Roxbury 5,?Bloomfield 2
Timmy Pilrun scattered seven hits in a complete game effort with five strikeouts and no walks as Roxbury edged Bloomfield for its first sectional title since 2001.?
??STORY (PHOTOS TO COME)?|| BOX SCORE ||?BRACKET

North Jersey, Section 2, Group 4 final – Millburn 3, No. 6 Westfield 0
David Talpalar threw 4 1/3 hitless innings in relief and had an RBI double as Millburn took down defending champion Westfield for its first sectional title since 2011.?
??STORY + VIDEO + PHOTOS?|| BOX SCORE ||?BRACKET

Central Jersey, Group 4 final -?Jackson 6,?Monroe 2
Brandon Janofsky settled down after some earlier troubles and tossed a complete game with seven strikeouts to lift Jackson to its first sectional title since 2010.?
??STORY + PHOTOS?|| BOX SCORE ||?BRACKET

North Jersey, Section 1, Group 3 final – Mount Olive 3, Mahwah 2
Connor Henry gutted through a mild seventh inning jam to wrap things up as the Marauders won their first sectional title since 1991. Bobby Shannon was 2-for-3 with a double and a run and Jason Grillo threw 5 1/3 strong innings for the win.
??STORY (VIDEO TO COME) || BOX SCORE || BRACKET?

South Jersey, Non-Public A semifinals – No. 7 Gloucester Catholic 9, No. 1 St. Augustine 0
Tyler Mondile tossed a three-hitter as GC upended the state’s top-ranked team and continued on its way toward what would be a record fifth straight state championship.
? GAME STORY?|| BOX SCORE?|| BRACKET

EXTENDED COVERAGE

??IN-DEPTH PREVIEWS OF ALL 16 SECTIONAL FINALS ON FRIDAY

??NEUTRAL SITES FOR STATE SEMIS/NON-PUBLIC SECTIONAL FINALS

??FEATURE: GLOUCESTER CATHOLIC LOOKING TO MAKE HISTORY

??VIDEO: ABSEGAMI’S LUKE HARRIS MAKES SENSATIONAL CATCH

??BASEBALL TOP PERFORMER: MIKE COSS, POMPTON LAKES

SECTIONAL FINALS RESULTS

NORTH JERSEY, SECTION 1

GROUP 4
Roxbury 5, Bloomfield 2

GROUP 3
Mount Olive 3, Mahwah 2

GROUP 2
Ramsey 7, Lenape Valley 1

GROUP 1
Ridgefield 2, Cedar Grove 1

NORTH JERSEY, SECTION 2

GROUP 4
Millburn 3, Westfield 0

GROUP 3
Cranford 14, West Essex 4

GROUP 2
Bernards 6, Caldwell 0

GROUP 1
Dayton 8, Secaucus 7

CENTRAL JERSEY

GROUP 4
Jackson 6, Monroe 2

GROUP 3
Hamilton 4, Steinert 1

GROUP 2
Robbinsville 7, Rumson 0

GROUP 1
Shore Reg. 3, New Egypt 2

SOUTH JERSEY

GROUP 4
Eastern 5, Rancocas Valley 1

GROUP 3
Mainland 2, Moorestown 0

GROUP 2
Buena 1, Barnegat 0

GROUP 1
Pennsville 12, Glassboro 2

SECTIONAL SEMIFINALS

NORTH JERSEY

NON-PUBLIC A
Bergen Catholic 6, Don Bosco Prep 5
St. Joseph (Mont.) 5, St. Peter’s Prep 3

NON-PUBLIC B
St. Mary (Ruth.) 12, Queen of Peace 0
Hudson Catholic 5, Montclair Kimberley 4

SOUTH JERSEY

NON-PUBLIC A
Gloucester Catholic 9, St. Augustine 0
St. John Vianney 13, Christian Brothers 9

NON-PUBLIC B
Rutgers Prep 4, Marist 1
St. Joseph (Hamm.) 9, St. Rose 8

S-L HS Sports Desk: sports@njschoolsports.com; Twitter: @StarLedgerHS

Baseball state tournament results and links for Friday, May 30 – The Star-Ledger