THE New Zealand Maori Hockey team intends to win the FIH (International Hockey Federation) World League Round 1 and Oceania Pacific Cup (OPC) even though this is their first time in the competition.
The Oceania Hockey Federation opted to invite the Maori hockey side rather than the New Zealand Barbarians who were the defending champions of the OPC.
Council chairman Kahu Ripia said the Maori Hockey men's and women's side were looking forward to taking both titles back to the Land of the Long White Clouds.
He said even though they were not as experienced and well prepared as their Barbarians counterparts, they were optimistic of their chances.
"This team was selected after the Maori Hockey tournament in October and since then they haven't played together," Ripia said.
"But we have come here to win and we are confident of doing that," he said.
He said he was wary of Australian Country and Fiji teams but were looking at playing clever to win the tournament.
"Our toughest opponents will be Australian Country and Fiji and in this heat, we will play clever and play a more defensive game.
"It's no use running out our players in this heat as we will only get tired but if we play clever, we can last longer on the field," Ripia said.