The Sultan Azlan Shah hockey tournament has grown in stature over the years and become an important fixture in the game's international calendar.
The inaugural tournament in 1983, which featured five teams -- Australia, India, New Zealand, Pakistan and Malaysia, was called the Raja Tun Azlan Shah Cup. But it was renamed to his current title two years later.
Australia beat Pakistan 1-0 in the final to win the first edition.
Till 1998 the tournament was staged every two years, but the growing popularity of the game in Malaysia forced the orgainsers to hold it annually.
India (1995, 1991 and 1985) and Pakistan (1999, 2000 and 2003) have won the tournament thrice, while Germany (1987 and 2001) and Australia (1983 and 1998) emerged champions twice. England (1994) and Korea (1996) triumphed won.
India withdrew from the last edition of the tournament after the government denied it permission to make the trip because of the harassment of Indian IT professionals in Malaysia at theat time.
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