Japan’s men will face world number one-ranked Australia in the opening match of the Olympic hockey tournament at next year’s Olympic 2020 Games in Tokyo. The International Hockey Federation and Tokyo Olympic officials, including sports director Koji Murofushi, revealed the match schedule for the men’s and women’s competitions at a ceremony in the Japanese capital.

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The men’s gold-medal match will be held on August 6, with the women’s showpiece taking place the following day. Organizers have scheduled games for the morning and evening in an effort to avoid the high temperatures expected during Games-time.

On the occasion of a press briefing in Tokyo involving Tayyab Ikram, FIH Executive Board Member and IOC Olympic Solidarity Commission Member, Koji Murofushi, Tokyo Olympic Sports Director, Shihori Oikawa, Japan Women’s hockey national team player and Seren Tanaka, Japan Men’s hockey national team player, the International Hockey Federation (FIH) today revealed the match schedule of the Tokyo Olympic hockey tournaments.

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The opening match will involve the Men’s national squads of Japan, the hosts, and the current number one team in the FIH World Rankings, Australia, on 25 July. The first match of the Women’s tournament will be played on the same day and sees the Netherlands who are topping the FIH World Rankings

All 12 teams in the men’s event will be in action on the first day of the Tokyo Olympic hockey tournament on July 25. New Zealand plays India and Spain take on Argentina in the other Pool A matches.

In Pool B, the Netherlands faces Belgium in a repeat of the 2018 World Cup final, while Canada entertains Germany and Britain square off against South Africa. The Netherlands, who lost the Olympic final to Britain in Rio 2016, will take on India in the first women’s game of the competition in Pool A.

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Ireland’s clash with South Africa in the same group is the only other women’s game scheduled for the opening day. The remaining eight women’s squads will make their entrance into the Olympic tournament on July 26.

In Pool A, Britain goes up against Germany, while Japan plays China, Australia takes on Spain and New Zealand face Argentina in Pool B. Oi Hockey Stadium will stage the hockey rivalries at the Sports.

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