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Rediff.com  » Sports » India clubbed with Aus, S Korea, Bahrain in 2011 Asian Cup football

India clubbed with Aus, S Korea, Bahrain in 2011 Asian Cup football

April 24, 2010 10:08 IST

India were handed the worst possible draw for the 2011 AFC Asian Cup finals in Doha, Qatar, as they were clubbed with Australia, South Korea and Bahrain in Group C.

India got a tough group featuring Australia and South Korea -- two sides have qualified for 2010 World Cup from Asia -- and Bahrain, who just missed out on the showpiece event in South Africa via a play-off against New Zealand.

Australia are Asia's highest FIFA ranked side at 19th while South Korea are third highest at 49th, besides finishing third in the earlier edition in 2007.

Bahrain are ranked 67th in the world.

India are lowest FIFA-ranked side among the 16 teams at 132nd.

Hosts Qatar, seeded No 1, are clubbed in Group A with Kuwait, China and Uzbekistan while defending champions Iraq are in Group D along with DPR Korea, Iran and the United Arab Emirates.

Last edition's runners-up Saudi Arabia have the company of Japan, Jordan and Syria. India were seeded 15th, ahead of DPR Korea, at the draw ceremony at Aspire Dome in Doha. They were placed in Pot Four along with Syria, Kuwait and DPR Korea.

Asian Football Confederation General Secretary and competition director Zhang Jilong of China conducted the draw of lots. The 12-member organising committee, headed by Jilong, had seeded the 16 teams according to results in the AFC Asian Cup 2007 (finals and qualifiers). The schedule of the tournament will be announced on April 26.

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