Host City: Seoul, South Korea
Date Started: September 18, 1988
Date Finished: October 1, 1988
Participants: 314 (190 men and 124 women) from 13 countries
Youngest Participant: Jang Eun-Jeong (18 years, 35 days)
Oldest Participant: Ric Charlesworth (36 years, 226 days)
Most Medals (Athlete): 96 athletes with 1 medal
Most Medals (Country): Netherlands (2 medals)
For the first time since 1972, no boycott affected the fields in hockey. The matches were played at the Seongnam Stadium in Seongnam, just southeast of Seoul. The men had 12 teams separated into two six-team groups who played a round-robin to determine the top two teams in each group, who advanced to the semi-finals. The women had eight teams separated into two four-team groups who played a round-robin to determine the top two teams in each group, who advanced to the semi-finals.
The 12 men’s teams were selected as follows – Korea (South) as the host nation; Pakistan as the defending Olympic Champion; Argentina as the 1987 Pan American Games Champion; Kenya as the 1987 All-African Games Champion; the next four best teams from the 1987 World Cup (Australia, Great Britain, West Germany, Netherlands); and four teams selected by the FIH (Fédération Internationale de Hockey) based on rankings (India, Soviet Union, Spain, Canada).
The eight women’s teams were selected as follows – Korea (South) as the host nation; Australia as the defending Olympic Champion; Argentina as the 1987 Pan American Games Champion; the next three best teams from the 1986 World Cup (Netherlands, Canada, West Germany); and two selected based on FIH rankings (Great Britain, United States).
The Australian women, the Hockaroos, won the gold medal by defeating Korea in the final. Great Britain won the men’s gold medal, beating West Germany in the final. The Netherlands won the bronze medal in both the men’s and women’s tournaments.