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International Hockey Federation reveals match-based world ranking system for 2020

Field Hockey   |   December 16, 2019


The International Hockey Federation on Friday unveiled a new world ranking system for next year [2020], which will be a match-based instead of tournament-based calculation, which will be for a better reflection of current performances, as this new system will begin from January 1st, 2020.

The Federation disclosed that the new ranking system had been launched after 12 months of thorough research, analysis, and testing. The outgoing FIH world ranking system had been in existence since 2003, as it was set up to initially serve the purpose of allocating teams into pools at tournaments. What the old model did was to allow nations to earn ranking points two to three times a year.

The FIH, however, cited numerous restrictions of the tournament-based system for the change. These include the limited opportunities for lower-ranked teams to earn points and the subjectivity required to determine the strengths of the five continents to calculate continental ranking points. The FIH stated that the fact is over 60 percent of international hockey matches had no ranking points on offer and have since then provided an ever-strengthening case for a change of approach.

The new-match based world ranking system involves an exchange of points between two teams competing in each FIH sanctioned match played. The number of points exchanged depends on a trio of factors, which are the result of the game, the relative ranking of the teams, and the importance of the match. The FIH said the new model removes much of the subjectivity surrounding continental weighting by creating a system that is fair to all.

This decision to introduce a new world ranking system was taken after a yearlong trial period using every official international match played since the end of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games. It will take some time for everyone to adjust, but it will undoubtedly continue to monitor the rankings to ensure it is accurate and fair to all.



Written by:Olumide Akinnifesi