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 March 8, 2002 | 1155 IST

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FIFA may use X-Ray technology to determine player ages

The use of X-rays to determine the real age of players will be one of a range of subjects discussed at a two-day meeting of the FIFA Executive Committee starting on Friday.

The world's governing body is looking for ways to stop cheating in age-controlled football competitions and would examine players' wrists if the proposal was adopted, explained FIFA spokesman Keith Cooper.

He pointed out, however, that the X-ray examinations may not be able to determine age with the same accuracy as that required by the rules.

FIFA's debate on X-ray technology will follow progress reports made to the committee on the 2002 World Cup finals, the 2003 Women's World Cup in China and the 2004 Olympic soccer tournament and a report on the selection of stadiums for the 2006 World Cup finals in Germany.

Other subjects to be discussed include a report on the Goal project, the future of the Club World Championship and financial reports.

After the controversy of the last week surrounding FIFA's finances in general and president Sepp Blatter's part in alleged bribery to help him win the 1998 presidential elections, the agenda appears to promise more routine business matters.

It also includes such subjects as standardisation of concepts for artificial playing surfaces, planning for the 53rd FIFA Congress, to take place in Seoul, Korea, on May 28-29, co-operation with the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) and planning for FIFA's centenary in 2004.

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