HI withdraws from ’22 CWG citing COVID-19 concerns

06 October,2021 07:44 AM IST |  New Delhi  |  AFP

Hockey India reasoned that there is only a 32-day window available between the Birmingham Games (July 28-August 8) and the Hangzhou Asian Games (September 10-25)

Photo for representational purpose. Picture Courtesy/iStock



India on Tuesday pulled out of next year's Birmingham Commonwealth Games' hockey competition, citing COVID-19 concerns and UK's discriminatory quarantine rules for travellers from the country, a day after England's withdrawal from the junior men's World Cup in Bhubaneswar over similar reasons.

Hockey India President Gyanandro Ningombam communicated the federation's decision to Indian Olympic Association (IOA) President Narinder Batra in a letter.

Worst-affected area

Hockey India reasoned that there is only a 32-day window available between the Birmingham Games (July 28-August 8) and the Hangzhou Asian Games (September 10-25). HI said it can't risk sending its players to the UK, which has been one of the worst affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Also Read: Hockey India withdraws from 2022 Birmingham CWG; cites Covid-19 concerns

‘Cannot take risks'

"You will appreciate that the Asian games is the Continental qualification event for the 2024 Paris Olympic Games and keeping the priority of the Asian Games in mind, Hockey India cannot risk any members of the Indian teams contracting COVID-19 during the Commonwealth Games," Ningombam wrote.

"Therefore, Hockey India will not be sending its men and women teams to Commonwealth Games 2022 and are informing you in advance to kindly notify the organisers to identify reserve teams."

Also Read: Tokyo Olympics: Indian women's hockey team loses 1-2 to Argentina in semifinal

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