The Asian Hockey Champions Trophy for men has been postponed for the third time due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Asian Hockey Champions Trophy will now be held from December 14 to 22 at the Maulana Bhashani National Hockey Stadium in Dhaka.
The Asian Hockey Champions Trophy was originally scheduled to be held in 2020, but the peak of the pandemic forced the event to be postponed to March 2021. However, the major tournament was then postponed to October and now to December for the third time.
The travel restrictions of COVID-19 and a tight hockey calendar are said to be the reasons for the postponement of the event.
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The Asian Hockey Federation has announced that the new dates have been approved by the International Hockey Federation.
The Asian Hockey Champions Trophy features Asia’s top six teams competing in a round robin format. India and Pakistan are the most successful teams in the Asian Hockey Championship, winning the trophy three times.
India and Pakistan are the joint defending champions of the Asian Hockey Champions Trophy, which were declared joint winners in the 2018 edition.
Asian Hockey Federation convinced of a successful tournament
Tayyab Ikram, chief executive of the Asian Hockey Federation, said the postponement of the event would not take away any enthusiasm or brilliance from the tournament. In a statement, he said:
“In our mission to bring hockey back to the field, following the global disruption caused by the novel coronavirus, I am delighted to announce the rescheduling of dates for the postponed 2021 Asian Champions Trophy in December this year. very excited to deliver one of the biggest hockey events in Bangladesh.”
“I am confident that the upcoming event will be a great success and will be organized with the same ambitions of excellence and dedication that we have seen so far.”
However, sources familiar with the development told Sportskeeda that if the tournament does not go according to the third revised schedule, this time it would be better to cancel the marquee.
“We have a full agenda for next year. We have the CWG, the Asian Games and a lot of other major tournaments. The Asian Champions Trophy is an important one, but we cannot keep postponing the event. It is now also so close to the next edition of the event. In that case, we can cancel the current edition and focus on the next one.”
Olympic bronze medalists in Tokyo, India, Japan, Pakistan, South Korea, Malaysia and host country Bangladesh will compete for the trophy.
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