Due to travel restrictions because of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic in India, Australia have opted out of the competition.
Since 2018 when Odisha hosted the hockey World Cup, the state has taken the role of being the sport's official sponsor. Courtesy CM Patnaik, hockey in India can again hope for better days.
Odisha Sports-cum-Tourism Secretary Vishal Dev said besides the 2020 FIFA U-17 Women's World Cup, Bhubaneswar is also the front-runner to host the FIH Olympic Qualifiers in October-November this year if India qualifies for the event.
The regulation time of the intense all-European final ended goalless, forcing the penalty shootout.
This was Australia's fifth bronze medal in the history of the tournament. The last time the Kookaburras had to be satisfied with a third-place finish was way back in 1994 in front of their home crowd in Sydney.
Belgium mauled England 6-0 in a one-sided match, but the Dutch survived a late Australian charge to win 4-3 via a shoot-out.
Belgium and the Netherlands registered wins over Germany and India with identical margins in the third and fourth semi-final matches on Thursday.
India took the lead but it lasted only three minutes. Then a superior, smarter and more experienced side took control of the match, taking the lead in the last quarter even as India continue to play the catch-up.
India find themselves in a rare position to go beyond the quarter-final stage in Hockey World Cup for the first time since 1975.
India last played in the semi-final of the World Cup way back in 1975 when they went on to lift their maiden title.
Australia will play the winner of Thursday's last quarter-final between India and the Netherlands in the semi-finals on Saturday.
In a lopsided match, Pakistan failed to match their spirited rivals and were found wanting in almost every aspect of the game.
On Monday, England and France won their respective crossover matches against New Zealand and China to enter quarters.
France, the lowest ranked team in the tournament at 20, have already shown the world that rankings hardly have any significance by stunning Olympic champions Argentina 5-3 in the pool stages.
England will face Olympic champions Argentina in the first quarterfinal on Wednesday.
Both the semi-finals and the final are scheduled for December 15 and 16 respectively.
In the crossover, the Netherlands will face Pool C third-place team Canada, while Pakistan will take on Pool C runners-up Belgium.
The Olympic bronze medallist finished their pool engagements with a maximum of nine points from three games. They have previously defeated Pakistan 1-0 and the Netherlands 4-1.
A health worker disinfects Kanyakumari S.P office after a few office staff tested positive for the coronavirus, in Kanyakumari district.PTI Photo
Bharatiya Kisan Union (BKU) national spokesperon Rakesh Tikait speaks during a 'Kisan Mahapanchayat' to mark one year of the farmers' agitation, in Mumbai.PTI Photo/Kunal Patil
Union Home Minister Amit Shah inaugurates the 150 metric ton per day Milk Powder Plant and Automatic Robotic Storage and Retrieval System of Amulfed Dairy, in Gandhinagar.PTI Photo
Union Ministers Smriti Irani and Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi arrive for the BJP Parliamentary Executive Committee meeting ahead of the Winter Session of the Parliament, in New Delhi.PTI Photo/Shahbaz Khan
Smriti Irani, Locket Chatterjee and Ranjanben Dhananjay Bhatt arrive to attend BJP Parliamentary Executive Committee meeting ahead of the Winter Session of the Parliament, in New Delhi.PTI Photo/Shahbaz Khan
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