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Striking hockey players given ultimatum

January 11, 2010 19:57 IST

India's revolting hockey players were served a 24-hour deadline to resume practice or face disciplinary action as the entire squad began an indefinite boycott of the World Cup preparatory camp over a payment dispute.

Peeved by the fresh strike, Hockey India, the game's governing body, threatened to crack the whip by warning the players to return to the camp by Tuesday evening through the players seemed to be in no mood to relent till their demands are met.

A top Hockey India source said the players have been given a 24-hour deadline to return to the camp or face disciplinary action, but senior player Prabhjot Singh, who has been appointed by his teammates as their representative for negotiations, said no such ultimatum has been received.

"The ultimatum is all hypothetical. Till now we have not received any ultimatum. We were told that Hockey India officials are coming here tonight. Let us see what happens; we are waiting for their arrival," Prabhjot said.

A high-level Hockey India delegation, headed by president A K

Mattoo, Harish Sharma, Narender Batra and Jagbir Singh, will leave for Pune either Monday night or Tuesday morning for discussions with the striking players, who are demanding their match dues, incentives and a graded payment structure among other things.

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