16 Dec 2014

Sport:Fiji Hockey face funding challenge to reach World League

11:45 am on 16 December 2014

The Fiji Hockey Federation will meet on Wednesday to determine whether they can afford to participate in next year's World League Round 2 events in Singapore and India.

The men's and women's teams went through last week's Round 1 event in Suva unbeaten to qualify for the next stage.

Fiji's National Head Coach Hector Smith Senior says it's always a challenge for the minor sports to compete for sponsorship dollars.

"Funding is always a big issue. The most popular sport here is rugby and they get a lot of publicity so it's something that affects getting sponsors. It's not very encouraging for the minor sports who have to wait for little captions in different places. Even winning both gold medals - men and women - for the World Series Round 1 didn't get us the back page, neither did it get us the front page".

Hector Smith says when they competed in Round 2 early last year players had to raise about $3000 each and if they cannot source any new funding that would likely be the case again.

If Fiji Hockey decides it can't afford to send teams away, Papua New Guinea would take their place as runners-up in both the men's and women's competition.