Victorian Major Events Company Secures Major Sporting Event For Melbourne
The International Hockey Federation (FIH) has awarded Melbourne the rights to host their most prestigious annual event, the 31st Men’s Hockey Champions Trophy, at the State Netball Hockey Centre in December 2009.
“Victorians demonstrated their enthusiasm for hockey during the 2006 Commonwealth Games and will have the chance to once again see world-class hockey played here in Melbourne in 2009,” said Mr Merlino.
“More than 20,000 fans from around Australia and abroad will descend on Melbourne when the six top ranked men’s teams battle for the Trophy,” he said. “A world class tournament such as this requires a world-class facility, and that is exactly what we have here at the State Netball Hockey Centre.”
Mr Merlino congratulated the Victorian Major Events Company and Hockey Australia on securing this major international event for Melbourne.
“The Champions Trophy is sure to add excitement and depth to Victoria’s major events calendar in 2009 – other events secured by Victorian Major Events Company in that year include the Australian Masters Games in Geelong, a Rugby Union international match, a Rugby League State of Origin match, a FIFA World Cup qualifier, the smash-hit Broadway musical Jersey Boys, a Pompeii exhibition for Melbourne Winter Masterpieces, and much more,” added Minister Merlino.
Said McClements, “We are delighted to have worked with Hockey Australia to secure this event. VMEC is proud of its role in bringing world-class sports and cultural events to Melbourne and the state of Victoria.”
The teams competing for the Hockey Champions Trophy will be announced at the conclusion of the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games. Australia’s national hockey team, the Kookaburras, current Olympic champions and ranked as the world’s number two team, are assured a place in the tournament as the host team.
The popularity of hockey in Australia continues to build, fuelled by the success of theHockeyroos and the Kookaburras, and evidenced in club membership as well as the crowds who flocked to the hockey events during the 2006 Melbourne Commonwealth Games.
The Champions Trophy was instigated as a men’s competition in 1978 and as a women’s tournament in 1987. Australia has been one of the most successful nations to compete in the tournament, winning eight times alongside Holland and behind Germany who have won nine times.
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