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New Zealand consolidate sixth position on WorldHockey rankings
21 Jul 2005 15:57
 


New Zealand have consolidated sixth spot on the women’s Sahara WorldHockey Team Rankings after their victory at the Rabobank Hockey Champions Challenge in Virginia Beach, USA, last week. 

By winning the tournament, New Zealand moved 321 points clear of seventh-placed Korea, increasing their lead by 202 points under the formula used to calculate the rankings points. 

As well as provided a valuable boost to their ranking points tally, the Black Sticks’ gold medal triumph also ensured their quick return to the Champions Trophy in 2006 after being relegated from the elite six-team tournament last year. 

Their lead means that New Zealand should have a large enough margin to maintain sixth position even if Korea win the Samsung Hockey Champions Trophy in Canberra later this year.

Elsewhere in the rankings, Japan’s bronze medal nudged them ahead of Spain into 9th position, while South Africa’s silver medal broke them free of USA (who remain 12th) and into sole possession of 11th place. 

The other competitor at the Champions Challenge, England, maintained their eighth ranking despite finishing fourth. 

Less than 100 rankings points separate 7th and 10th position, setting the scene for major changes to the list later this year. 

The end of the year will also be interesting at the top end of the table, Argentina and Netherlands to fight for the number one ranking in Canberra, while Australia, China and Germany are locked in a battle for the number three position.


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