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Hockey team's Singapore trip off
September 10, 2003 20:38 IST
The Indian Hockey Federation has decided against sending the national team to Singapore on an acclimatisation trip before the start of the Asia Cup after reports of the dreaded SARS disease resurfaced in the country.
An IHF official said on Wednesday the team will proceed directly to Malaysia, venue of the September 21-28 Asia Cup, after the preparation camp winds off in Delhi on September 17.
"We had requested the government to give permission to the team to go to Singapore. But now we have changed our mind since a SARS case has been detected there," IHF protocol officer Suresh Sharma said.
"Now we will be going to Malaysia from here on September 17," he added.
Earlier the camp at the National Stadium was scheduled to continue till September 14 before the team's departure for Singapore the next day.
The move to send the team to Singapore was taken as the players would have got the opportunity to practice under lights since there is no floodlit astroturf stadium in India and all the matches in the eight-nation Asia Cup would be played at night.
Singapore health officials on Tuesday confirmed a local patient had contracted SARS and quarantined 25 persons he came into contact with.