India reverses decision, to participate in Birmingham CWG
India has reversed its decision to pull out its hockey teams from next year’s Birmingham Commonwealth Games and will compete in the multi-sport quadrennial event “if they qualify”, a Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF) official said on Saturday.
Hockey India had earlier this year decided to withdraw its teams from the 2022 CWG, citing Covid-19 related concerns and short turnaround time between the Birmingham Games and the Hangzhou Asian Games, a qualifier for the 2024 Paris Olympics.
India’s decision to send its hockey team to 2022 CWG came after the intervention of Indian Olympic Association president Narinder Batra and sports minister Anurag Thakur, both of whom guaranteed the country’s participation in CWG hockey events, provided they qualify.
“No team has been offered a place yet, but the IOA has said to CGF president (Dame Louis Martin) they (IOA) will accept if the teams qualify, which is highly likely,” the CGF official said. “The sports minister has been involved I understand,” he added.
The Birmingham CWG is scheduled to be held from July 28 to August 8 next year while the Asian Games are starting on September 10.
The list of qualified nations for the hockey tournament at the Birmingham Games has not yet been announced and is set to be made official in February next year.
Canada defeated Chile 2-1 in a classification match to finish 13th at the FIH Junior Men’s Hockey World Cup on Saturday.
Canada scored two field goals through John Jacoby (40th minute) and Tanvir Kang (52nd minute) to eke out the narrow win in the 13th-14th place play-off game at the Kalinga Stadium in Bhubaneswar.
In the other classification match earlier in the day, Harendra Singh-coached USA beat Egypt 3-0 via a penalty shoot-out to avoid the wooden spoon and end their campaign on the 15th spot.
India, beaten in the semi-finals by Germany, will take on France in the play-off for the third place on Sunday. India had lost to France earlier in the tournament.