New Delhi: Eight-time hockey Olympic champions India will start their campaign against lowly-ranked Italy in the men's Olympic qualifiers for the 2012 London Games that would be held at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium here Feb 18-26.
The men's field, besides hosts India, also includes Canada, France, Poland, Italy and the United States. India enter the event as highest ranked team in the tournament at world No.10. The two top teams will play the final and the winner will qualify for the London Olympics.
India shockingly failed to qualify for the 2008 Beijing Games for the first time in 80 years.