By Emily Goddard at Westminster Abbey in London

Hockey World Cup trophyJuly 5 - Britain's Minister for Sport Hugh Robertson has confirmed here today that England will "definitely" be submitting a formal bid for the 2018 Women's Hockey World Cup.

England, which had bid unsuccessfully for the 2014 men's and women's World Cups that were awarded to The Hague in the Netherlands, was one of four nations shortlisted to hold the women's hockey showpiece alongside Australia, Belgium and New Zealand.

And following a meeting with the sport's world governing body, the British Sports Minister is particularly confident that a formal bid is on the horizon for the country.

"We are definitely going to go for that [the 2018 Women's Hockey World Cup]," Robertson told insidethegames.

"We had an exploratory meeting with the FIH when we were out in St Petersburg [for SportAccord] at the end of May and [England Hockey chief executive] Sally Munday absolutely, confidently announced this during the women's hockey tournament at Chiswick.

"We had the FIH there and she said it's our ambition to bring that 2018 Women's World Cup to this country."

Hockey Olympics London 2012Hockey at last year's Olympics in London proved to be a popular attraction

His words today echo those spoken by Munday herself, who earlier this year told insidethegames that her organisation is going to do everything to make sure it wins the rights to host the 2018 Women's Hockey World Cup.

She did say today, however, that the bid still has to be rubberstamped by the England Hockey board and then go through a UK Sport funding panel before it can formally go to the FIH, but she insists that she remains "determined to pull this all together".

England have already been named to host the 2015 men's and women's European Championships, which will be staged in the Olympic Park, making them the first major hockey tournaments to be staged there after London 2012.

The host nation of the 2018 Women's Hockey World Cup is due to be announced on November 8 this year.

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May 2013: Five nations gear up to bid for 2018 Hockey World Cup after dedicated FIH workshop
April 2013: "We're going to do everything to make sure we host 2018 World Cup," says Munday