HI warning ahead of IHF's Nationals

The KPS Gill-led IHF has sprung back to life after the Delhi High Court lifted the suspension imposed by Indian Olympic Association. HI, an ad-hoc body which was formed by IOA after IHF's suspension, has the recognition of the International Hockey Federation (FIH). Armed with FIH's recognition, HI maintains they are the sole authority to run the sport in the country. Both HI and FIH have announced that they will conduct senior nationals.

"We have informed all the states that they should not take part in the IHF conducted nationals in Bhopal. They do not have the recognition of FIH, how can they conduct national championships?" HI secretary general Narinder Batra asked while speaking to reporters.

"We have told them that we will impose penalties which will be stricter for officials and technical people who have gone there. The players will also be penalised, but it could be less severe because there are some institutional teams participating and the players have no choice but to appear for these teams," he said.

Batra, however, claimed that the first choice teams from the states are not participating. "The state units who have been given recognition by HI are not participating." IHF was denied facilities by Sports Authority of India to conduct the nationals in which 32 teams are participating. The Madhya Pradesh government then pitched in with the facilities. The top eight teams from the nationals will qualify for the Federation Cup. IHF will also conduct the junior national hockey championship for men and women.

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