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FIH revokes hosting rights for Men’s Hockey Olympic Qualifiers from Pakistan

FIH revokes hosting rights for Men’s Hockey Olympic Qualifiers from Pakistan

Non-cooperation and interference by the Pakistan government in the daily affairs of the Pakistan Hockey Federation are said to be the reasons for FIH's decison to withdraw the event from Pakistan.

Hockey Olympic Qualifiers: The International Hockey Federation (FIH) on Tuesday stripped Pakistan of its rights to host the upcoming Paris Olympics Qualifiers. The tournament was scheduled to be held in Lahore from 13th to 21st January 2024.

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Reasons for Pakistan not being granted the Hockey Olympic Qualifiers hosting rights

Pakistan was set to host an international hockey event after a gap of 19 years with the Hockey Olympic qualifiers. However Non-cooperation and interference by the Pakistan government in the daily affairs of the Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF) are said to be the reasons for FIH’s decison to withdraw the event from Pakistan.

Also in August, the Pakistan Sports Board (PSB) suspended the PHF. The suspension came into effect after the orders of the outgoing Prime Minister Shahbaz Sharif. Following the suspension, fresh elections were ordered. However there has been a delay in conducting the election.

The suspension of the PHF is also said to have played a role in FIH stripping the hosting rights. According to reports, the decision was conveyed by the FIH in a written letter to the PHF.

In July this year, the FIH named the hosts for the Hockey Olympic qualifiers. Pakistan along with Spain were awarded the hosting rights for the Men’s tournament. All the 8 top Asian nations, apart from the Asian Games winner will battle it out in the tournament.

Meanwhile Pakistan Men’s Hockey team will next be in action in the upcoming Asian Games. The winner at the Asian Games in Hangzhou, China will qualify automatically for the Olympics. The team that wins the gold in continental event need not play in the Hockey Olympic qualifiers. 12 teams including India, Malaysia, China, Japan will be in action in the Asian Games. The quadrennial event will get underway from 24th September.

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