The Ireland Women’s national hockey team will take part in the European qualifiers for the 2022 Women’s FIH Hockey World Cup.
The eight-team competition will be played in a knock-out format with only one side earning a place at next summer’s World Cup which will be played at venues in Spain and the Netherlands.
The qualification tournament is being held in Pisa, Italy and Ireland will face France in the first match of their campaign at 10:30 am.
Ireland are the highest-ranked side in the tournament, sitting at number 12 in the world, with Italy being the closest side to them in the rankings also vying for the final European spot in 17th – France are ranked 27th in the world.
A win in this fixture will earn Sean Dancer’s side the right to face either Russia or Belarus in the semi-final.
The Irish side are hoping to improve upon their fortunes after disappointing in their first-ever Olympic campaign at Tokyo 2020 earlier this year.
Dancer’s team failed to get out of the group stage, winning only once in their first match against South Africa and losing an important game to India, whom they beat in the 2018 World Cup.
The girls in green will be aiming to return to the World Cup stage after finishing second in London four years ago as the second-lowest seed in the competition.
France, on the other hand, are looking to bridge a 41-year gap and make their fourth-ever appearance in the competition.
Gael Foulard’s team won the EuroHockey Championship III in 2019 and followed it up with a silver medal in EuroHockey Championship II earlier this year has put Les Bleues within a chance of doing so.
Ireland: McFerran (GK), M. Carey, Upton, Mullan (C), Tice, Carroll, McLoughlin, Watkins, Hawkshaw, O’Flanagan, N. Carey.
Subs: Murphy (GK), Getty, Malseed, Torrans, Duke, Curran, McAuley.
France: Petriaux (GK), Ponthieu (C), Brachet, Simon, Lesgourgues, van Bolhuis, Verzura, Lardeur, Garot, Gaspari, Schubert.
Subs: Ehrmann (GK), Lahlah, Lhopital, Verrier, van der Zanden, Arnaud, Roque.
Where To Watch
The match will be available to watch live on EuroHockeyTV.