India provisionally awarded to host 2010 World Cup Hockey

November 14th, 2007 - 10:15 am ICT by admin  
The International Hockey Federation (FIH) announced on Wednesday that the federation’s premier event, the 12th Men’s Hockey World Cup, played by the2 top nations, will in principle be staged in New Delhi over two weeks inebruary 2010 at the Major Dhyan Chand National Hockey Stadium.

International Hockey Federation (FIH) president Els van Breda Vriesman said on Wednesday that India has been asked to meet certain targets by March 2008 before the world governing body gives final confirmation.

“Promoting hockey in India is crucial and I really call upon the positive attitude of the press in promoting the world cup which is so important for this sport in India. It is a happy day for India and this day is a happy day for International Hockey Federation too,” said Vriesman.

The championship is seen as part of the FIH’s bid to halt the slide at world level of the former eight-times Olympic champions India and also tap into country’s booming economy for sponsors.

India recently won the Asia Cup hockey title in Chennai on September 09 defeating South Korea by 7-2.

Hockey is India’s national game and the country notched eight Olympic titles, but the nation’s cricket-crazy fans are quickly losing interest in the sport following two decades of failures in global hockey events.

Indian hockey has been in steady decline since the 1970s and 80s, coinciding with the game’s switch to artificial turf with more emphasis on power, speed and accuracy than deft stick work.

The Hockey World Cup was first held in Barcelona, Spain in 1971, when Pakistan won the title. Since then the event has travelled to nine countries and seen five different winners hold the Cup aloft. India hosted the Men’s Hockey World Cup in 1982 in Mumbai. (ANI)

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