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FIH mulling wild card system for Champions Trophy

June 02, 2010 14:38 IST

The International Hockey Federation is planning to introduce two wild card entries in the Champions Trophy from next year which will increase the number of competing teams in the prestigious event from six to eight, Pakistan Hockey Federation secretary Asif Bajwa said on Tuesday.

Bajwa, who had attended the FIH's competition committee's meeting in Singapore recently, said that there was a proposal to introduce two wild card entries in the Champions Trophy from 2011 or 2012.

"The matter was discussed at the competition's committee meeting and the committee has now recommended that teams in the Champions Trophy be increased to eight, with two wild card entries," he said.

India and Pakistan have been pushing for the wildcard system in the Champions Trophy after failing to qualify for the prestigious FIH event in recent years due to poor rankings.

Bajwa also said the FIH competition committee had recommended a world series of 24 teams from all the four continents.

"The proposal is to have 24 teams from Asia/Oceania, Europe, Panamerica/Africa continents with the tournament continuing between major events like the World Cup or Champions Trophy," he said.

Bajwa, a former Olympian, said the idea was to increase the popularity of hockey globally.

He said that the recommendations of the competitions committee would be discussed at the next Executive Board meeting of the FIH.

Meanwhile, the PHF secretary also said that Pakistan would be appointing a foreign coach for the national team later this month.

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