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 1st World Cup, Barcelona, Spain, 1971
 Venue: Real Polo Grounds, October 15-24, 1971
Pool A  India, West Germany, France, Kenya, Argentina
Pool B  Pakistan, Australia, Holland, Japan, Spain

The tournament was originally scheduled to be held in Lahore, because it was mainly because of Pakistan's efforts that the World Cup was instituted. But security concerns in the subcontinent forced it to be switched to Barcelona. Ten teams took part.

Pakistan, the reigning Olympic and Asian Games champions, were the pre-tournament favourites. They got off to a rousing start, whipping Australia 5-2 on the opening day of the tournament.

India did not have it so easy in their opening match. They had to labour to beat France by a solitary goal. They also struggled to beat Argentina by a similar margin in the second match. But in their next match, the Indians showed a marked improvement and beat Kenya, which comprised many players of Indian origin, 2-0. They then went on to beat West Germany 1-0 to finish the league stage with an all-win record.

Pakistan, however, were held to a 3-3 draw by Holland, after beating Japan 1-0 in their second match. Then, in their concluding group league match on October 18, they were surprised 2-3 by Spain. The victory allowed Spain to go through to the semi-finals.

As the Netherlands had drawn with both Spain (0-0) and Pakistan (3-3), they needed a win against Japan to edge out Pakistan and make the semi-finals. But they lost 0-1, and thus Pakistan went through as the second team from the group.

In the preliminary matches, Pakistan scored the highest number of goals (11) followed by West Germany (9). India, Spain and Kenya had five each.

With India topping Pool A and Kenya finishing second, it meant that India would meet Pakistan in the semi-finals, as they had finished second to Spain in the other pool. Thus, the stage was set for a battle royale between the two Asian giants.

The match took place on October 22. India drew first blood through Rajvinder Singh while Pakistan equalised through Abdul Rashid, Jr. Pakistan's winning goal came off a penalty-corner in the closing stages of the match through youngster Munawar-uz-Zaman, who had come on as a substitute for Tanvir Dar. Pakistan won 2-1.

In the other semi-final, Spain beat Kenya 2-1 in extra-time.

The final took place on October 24. The home side was the odds-on favourite, having beaten Pakistan 3-2 in the league stage. But they were surprised. Pakistan played a compact game by packing their defence and won 1-0 through a penalty-corner goal by Akhtar Rasool. The victory made Pakistan the first ever nation to be regional, Olympic and world champions.

India took third place beating Kenya 2-1.

Pakistan's penalty-corner specialist Tanvir Dar was the tournament's top scorer with eight of his team's total of 14 goals in the tournament.

 Final Positions
1.  Pakistan
2.  Spain
3.  India
4.  Kenya
5.  West Germany
6.  The Netherlands
7.  France
8.  Australia
9.  Japan
10.  Argentina

Indian Team:
Ajitpal Singh (captain), Cedric Pereira, Charles Cornelius, Baldev Singh, Vinod Kumar, Michael Kindo, P Krishnamurthy, Harmeek Singh, Vece Paes, M P Ganesh, Ashok Kumar, Rajvinder Singh, Shaheed Noor, Francis D'Mello, Kulwant Singh, Harcharan Singh.
Coach: Balbir Singh

 1st World Cup, 1971
 Summary | Complete Results
 2nd World Cup, 1973
 Summary | Complete Results
 3rd World Cup, 1975
 Summary | Complete Results
 4th World Cup, 1978
 Summary | Complete Results
 5th World Cup, 1982
 Summary | Complete Results
 6th World Cup, 1986
 Summary | Complete Results
 7th World Cup, 1990
 Summary | Complete Results
 8th World Cup, 1994
 Summary | Complete Results
 9th World Cup, 1998
 Summary | Complete Results

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