Bhubaneswar: The third edition of the men’s Hockey World League Final kicked off amid a glittering opening ceremony at Kalinga Stadium here in Bhubaneswar on Friday.
Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik inaugurated the event.
The inaugural event showcased the Odissi dance. Italy-born Odissi dancer and Padmashree award winner Ileana Citaristi and her troupe enthralled the audience.
A laser light show with ‘Chak De India’ song and fireworks also spiced up the inaugural ceremony.
It is noteworthy to mention that eight teams Argentina, Australia, Belgium, England, Germany, Netherlands, Spain and hosts India — nations all inside the top 10 of the FIH rankings- are participating in the tournament.
The tournament will continue till December 10.
The winning of the tournament the will guarantee qualification for the Men’s Champions Trophy 2018 taking place in the Netherlands in June/July followed by the men’s Hockey World Cup next year in November/December in Bhubaneswar.
In the opening game of this prestigious tournament, Germany beat England 2-0, to start their campaign in a dominating fashion.
In the second match of the day, India opened their campaign with a resolute 1-1 draw against defending champions Australia.
In a closely-fought encounter between England defeated India 3-2 on the second day of the tournament on Saturday.
Meanwhile, in the other Pool B game of the day, Germany and Australia played out a 2-2 draw.