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Castrol parts ways with IHF

May 28, 2003 20:51 IST

The Indian hockey team, playing in the Hockey Australia Men's Challenge in Perth, Australia, suffered an off-field blow on Wednesday when its sponsor Castrol withdrew support, citing cost-cutting measures.

The lubricants major had been the Indian hockey team's official sponsor since the World Cup qualifiers at Edinburg, Scotland, in July 2001.

The Indian Hockey Federation said it is in talks with various corporates and hopeful of roping in a new sponsor soon.

"We are negotiating with various people. Something will come out soon but we cannot reveal anything at the moment," IHF president K P S Gill said in Delhi.

Gill denied that Castrol's withdrawal will affect the team's preparation for the Athens Olympics next year.

"Our preparations will not be affected. We already have some funds lined up," he said.

The IHF chief also insisted that the parting with Castrol was amicable.

"Castrol extended its support to the hockey team at a time when the game was standing at the crossroads. Hockey needed a helping hand and Castrol provided the much-needed support," Gill said.


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