Asian Champions Trophy: India's campaign comes to an end due to COVID-19

A file photo of the Indian women's hockey team at the Olympics. (PC: Hockey India)
A file photo of the Indian women's hockey team at the Olympics. (PC: Hockey India)
Hari Kishore M

The Indian women's hockey team's Asian Champions Trophy match against China on Thursday has been called off. With the Indian team serving a mandatory quarantine, it also means that they will no longer be participating in the tournament. The Asian Champions Trophy is being held in Donghae, South Korea.

Hosts South Korea and Japan will play for the Asian Champions Trophy title on December 11 while China and Thailand will play for third and fourth place.

India's campaign has come to an end after a member of the Indian women's hockey team tested positive for COVID-19 during a routine test. The result was received ahead of India's match against South Korea on Wednesday.

The Indian women's hockey team is the second team to be infected with the coronavirus. The Malaysian women's hockey team had to withdraw from their matches in the first two days of the Asian Champions Trophy due to the same reason.

Also Read: Women's Hockey Junior World Cup postponed; South Africa, Canada join Pro League

The Apex Council of Hockey India has taken the decision not to go ahead with the match, scheduled for December 9. They are doing so by keeping in mind the safety of the players, the opponents, the hosts and the organizers.

Hockey India confirmed India's non-participation in the match against China.

"With the health and safety of the players being paramount, the Indian Women's Hockey Team's match against China on 9th December will not take place," Hockey India said.

Asian Champions Trophy campaign over for India

The Indian women's hockey team got off to an impressive start at the Asian Champions Trophy when they thumped Thailand 13-0. However, the Indian team's second match against Malaysia was canceled after the Malaysian team couldn't participate due to a player getting infected with COVID-19.

The Indian team was next to get infected and their matches against South Korea and China now stand canceled.

Speaking to Sportskeeda, a source in the know of developments, said the Indian team is undergoing a mandatory quarantine. The source added that the COVID-19 test results of other players have returned negative.

"It is unfortunate that two teams (Malaysia and India) have not been able to play to their full capacity. The Indian team is undergoing a mandatory quarantine and will not be taking part in the rest of the tournament. We (India) are one of the title contenders and it is said that our campaign ends this way," the source said.

The Women's Asian Champions Trophy was originally scheduled for 2020 but was postponed multiple times because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Also read: Hockey India to take part in 2022 Commonwealth Games

Edited by Diptanil Roy
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