FIH Hockey Pro League Standings as of February 18

Feb. 18, 2020, 12 p.m. (ET)

After five weeks of competition and eight games played, the women's side of the FIH Hockey Pro League continues to be very exciting.  

Here's a look at match-ups from the past few weeks as well as where the competing countries stand.


 6  - 

Las Leonas made a winning start to their campaign with a 6-2 triumph over an improving USA team that certainly gave the hosts plenty to think about. Julieta Jankunas and Delfina Merino put Argentina 2-0 up before USA captain Ashley Hoffman made the score 2-1 at halftime. Argentina stepped up their game in the third and fourth quarters, with Agustina Gorzelany, Rosario Luchetti, Rocio Sanchez and Carla Rebecchi all on target, with Taylor West scoring USA’s second of the match.


 0  - 
 POSTPONED

Due to the current uncertainties around the outbreak of the coronavirus in China, the International Hockey Federation (FIH), after consultation with the Hockey Associations of China and Belgium, has decided that the upcoming FIH Hockey Pro League matches between the women’s national teams of China and Belgium, initially scheduled on February 8 and 9 in Changzhou, will not be played.

 


 0  - 

Great Britain’s women produced a stellar performance against hosts New Zealand, scoring three times without reply to claim their first win of the 2020 FIH Hockey Pro League. Tessa Howard opened the scoring nine minutes into the match with a finish from close range, with Charlotte Watson's emphatic penalty stroke doubling Great Britain’s advantage in the second quarter. The Black Sticks rallied in the third quarter but failed to find the goal that they so desperately needed before Player of the Match Shona McCallin put the result beyond all doubt, sliding in to score Great Brinta’s third to give Mark Hager an impressive 3-0 away victory over his former side.


 6  - 

In Buenos Aires, Argentina's women powered to a 6-1 win against Pan American rivals USA, ensuring that they took a maximum six points from their first two matches of the 2020 season. Las Leonas, 6-2 winners against the red, white and blue on Friday, February 7, established a 3-0 lead in the opening quarter thanks to goals from Agustina Gorzelany, Delfina Merino and Carla Rebecchi, before USA’s Taylor West reduced the deficit two minutes ahead of half time. However, a Noel Barrionuevo double and second for Merino put the result beyond all doubt.  


 2  - 
  4 SO 5  

Great Britain's women made it five points from a possible six against New Zealand, with Sunday, February 9's shootout success adding two points to the three earned in the previous 3-0 victory over the Black Sticks. Olivia Shannon put the hosts ahead on the stroke of halftime, but third quarter strikes from Anna Toman and Grace Balsdon gave Great Britain the advantage before Shannon tied things up in the fourth quarter with her second of the match, sending the contest into a shootout for the bonus point. Both teams converted four of their five initial shootout attempts, with Great Britain eventually winning in ‘sudden-death’ thanks to Tessa Howard's successful strike and goalkeeper Sabbie Heesh denying New Zealand captain Stacey Michelsen.


 0  - 
POSTPONED

Due to the current uncertainties around the outbreak of the coronavirus in China, the International Hockey Federation (FIH), after consultation with the Hockey Associations of China and Belgium, has decided that the upcoming FIH Hockey Pro League matches between the women’s national teams of China and Belgium, initially scheduled on February 8 and 9 in Changzhou, will not be played.


 3  - 

The Black Sticks women put a tough week behind them to put together a convincing 3-1 win over the USA. Olivia Merry and Olivia Shannon continued their goalscoring form for the hosts as they secured their second win of the FIH Hockey Pro League, moving up to third in the standings.

The two sides walked out onto the Ngā Puna Wai pitch on a sombre note, following the recent passing of New Zealand’s long-time strength and conditioning coach Brad Conza. The two teams observed a moment of silence prior to the start of the contest. Once the match got underway, New Zealand played with some great speed as they looked to run the United States off the pitch. Olivia Merry scored her fifth goal of the 2020 FIH Hockey Pro League season with a first quarter penalty corner, with Olivia Shannon doubling the advantage in the second period with a penalty corner of her own, volleying home a rebound. Player of the Match Rose Keddell made it 3-0 with a superb backhand strike in the third quarter, before USA's Ali Campbell pulled a goal back just before the start of the fourth quarter from the penalty spot. It proved to be only a consolation, with the Black Sticks taking all three points in the first of their two matches against USA.


 2  - 

In Buenos Aires on the evening of Saturday, February 15, Argentina women claimed a stunning 2-0 victory over reigning World, European and FIH Hockey Pro League champions The Netherlands. It was a third win in three games for Las Leonas, leaving them three points behind the Dutch team.

The host nation produced a superb defensive display to keep the world number one ranked team off the scoreboard throughout the contest, whilst registering goals of their own in the third and fourth quarters of the match. Agustina Gorzelany scored a wonderful penalty corner drag flick in the 35th minute, sending her effort into the top right corner. The points were wrapped up in the final minutes of the match by Delfina Merino, who finished off a fine passing move by smashing a backhand strike into an open goal shortly after the Netherlands replaced their goalkeeper with an outfield player.


 3  - 

In Christchurch, New Zealand’s women worked their way past a determined USA team for a 3-1 victory and back-to-back wins for the first time in the 2020 FIH Hockey Pro League. New Zealand captain Stacey Michelsen produced a Player of the Match performance, being instrumental in two of the New Zealand goals and was a constant threat throughout. Olivia Merry put the Black Sticks ahead in the 16th minute with Michelsen doubling the lead mid-way through the third quarter. Danielle Grega pulled a goal back for USA early in the fourth quarter before Alia Jaques sealed a New Zealand win that moves the Black Sticks up to second in the Pro League standings.


 1  - 

The second match in Buenos Aires was heavily affected by a lightning storm that resulted in a delay of nearly two hours, but eventually it was the Netherlands who emerged triumphant, taking a 3-1 victory over hosts Argentina. The victory helped the Dutch extend their advantage at the top of the FIH Hockey Pro League, moving onto 15 points, five clear of New Zealand in second position and six ahead of third placed Argentina.  

The weather delay arrived mid-way through the first quarter with the score at 0-0, but when play eventually resumed it was the host nation who took the lead thanks to Agustina Gorzelany’s low penalty corner early in the second period. The Netherlands restored parity on the stroke of halftime through Frederique Matla’s penalty corner drag flick before moving ahead in the third quarter when Yibbi Janssen found the target from another penalty corner situation. The scoring was completed in the last second of the match by Kyra Fortuin, who angled a Lidewij Welten pass into the Argentine net to earn a measure of revenge following the 2-0 defeat at the hands of Las Leonas.

Per the FIH:

The following points will be awarded for each match:

  • Three (3) points to the winner in normal time
  • One (1) point to the winner of a shootout following a draw plus one (1) bonus point, making a total of two (2) points
  • One (1) point to the loser of the shootout, in the event of a draw
  • No points to the loser of a match in normal time

During the season up until the Grand Final, teams will be ranked in the FIH Pro League table by the percentage of points gained relative to the maximum number possible to have attained at any given time.

For example, a team who have played six matches can achieve a maximum of 18 points from winning all six matches. If they have achieved 9 points after six matches, they will be ranked in the league table based on a score of 50%. The aim of this system is to more easily illustrate team performances at the times in the season when different teams have played significantly different numbers of matches.