Oman eye Asian Games hockey qualifying berth
March 6, 2018 | 9:32 PM
by Sports Reporter
A file photo of Oman national hockey team.

Muscat: After providing all the required support to the team, the Oman Hockey Association is now expecting the Sultanate’s squad to clinch an Asian Games berth when the qualifying tournament takes place at the Sultan Qaboos Sports Complex from Thursday.

In the run up to the 2018 Asian Games Hockey Qualifier, the OHA has roped in an experienced coach, arranged both domestic and international training camps besides hosting an invitational triangular series with the sole objective preparing the national team well for the big challenge.

If the OHA chief Talib bin Khamis Al Wahaibi is to be believed, the team is now ready for the Qualifier.

“We have extended all the support to our national team with the aim of winning a qualifying berth in Asian Games,” he said.

“Our squad has a highly qualified technical team led by experienced Pakistani coach Tahir Zaman. The preparations have been good as well,” he said.

“We have a very promising team now. We are confident of the team achieving positive results and clinching the Asian Games berth,” he added.

Oman at 32 on FIH ladder are the second highest ranked team in the eight-team tournament Bangladesh (30) and are favourites to clinch one of the five qualifying places.

In the Qualifier, the eight teams are divided into two groups of four teams each with hosts Oman placed in Pool B along with Sri Lanka, Chinese Taipei and Kazakhstan. Pool A comprises Bangladesh, Hong Kong, Thailand and Afghanistan.

The event will start on Thursday with Sri Lanka taking on Kazakhstan in the inaugural match from 6.00 pm while Oman start their campaign against Chinese Taipei at 8.00 pm on the same day.

Oman will play their remaining group matches against Sri Lanka on March 10 and against Kazakhstan on March 12.

After the group stage matches, which will be played till March 13, the two top teams from each pool will qualify for the semifinals to be played on March 15.

Following the classification matches on March 16, the third-place playoff and the final will be played on March 17.

The five qualifying teams as well as hosts Indonesia will join India, Malaysia, Pakistan, South Korea, Japan and China in the hockey competition of the 2018 Asian Games scheduled to be held from August 18 to September 2.

Oman team: Muhanna Al Hasani, Rashad Al Fazari, Qasim Al Shibli, Mahmood Al Hasni (capt), Asaad Mubarak Al Qasmi, Marwan Al Raisi, Imad Al Hasani, Khalid Al Shaaibi, Ahmed Al Noufali, Sami Al Laun, Faisal Ambork Alloun, Salah Al Saadi, Ahmed Al Balushi, Mohammed Al Lawati, Fahad Al Noufali (GK), Wail Hassan Sanjor, Mahmood Bait Shamaiaa and Said Al Hasni. Tahir Zaman (coach), Khalid Al Raisi (assistant coach), Shakir Munir (goalkeers coach) and Raed Marjan (team manager).


Mar 8: Sri Lanka vs Kazakhstan (Pool B); Oman vs Chinese Taipei (Pool B)

Mar 9: Hong Kong vs Afghanistan (Pool A); Bangladesh vs Thailand (Pool A)

Mar 10: Chinese Taipei vs Kazakhstan (Pool B); Sri Lanka vs Oman (Pool B)

Mar 11: Hong Kong vs Bangladesh (Pool A); Thailand vs Afghanistan (Pool A)

Mar 12: Chinese Taipei vs Sri Lanka (Pool B); Oman vs Kazakhstan (Pool B)

Mar 13: Bangladesh vs Afghanistan (Pool A); Thailand vs Hong Kong (Pool A)

Mar 15: 3rd Pool A vs 4th Pool B (5th - 8th Place); 3rd Pool B v 4th Pool A (5th - 8th Place)

Mar 15 1st Pool A vs 2nd Pool B (SF 1), 1st Pool B vs 2nd Pool A (SF 2)

Mar 16: 7th/8th place match

Mar 16: 5th/6th place match

Mar 17: 3rd place playoff

Mar 17: Final

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