While it is good that the Asian Hockey Federation is once again paying emphasis to its Champions Trophy tournament, question marks can be raised on the regional body's planning.
For starters the 4th AHF Chanpions Teophy for men is being held from October 20 to Octiber 30 in Kuantan.
Why is the tournament even planned smack in the middle if Diwali celebrations which is equivalent to Eid for the Muslims. For the info of many that may be unaware Diwali, or Deepavali as some know it as, is scheduled for Oct 29.
And the AHF Champions Trophy final is slated for Oct 30!
That is not the only planning blunder as this time around there are semi finals slated for the TOP four finishers after the preliminary group matches.
In the past 3 AHF Champions Trophy, the two teams that emerge first and second after the preliminary round matches contest the final.
In a 6 team round robin tournament, the FIH has always by convention never held a semi finals.
So why is AHF doing this? Not only is it a burden on teams as they have to play a match extra, this also extends the duration of the tournament that s causing nations to incur extra expenditure.
The FIH Champions Trophy has always used a TOP two finish as qualifiers for the final whenever it is a six team affair.
With this format a team needs to win only two of its five preliminary matches, semis and final to emerge champions.
As opposed to being consistent in six matches to be crowned truly Asian Champions.
A short cut way for some?
And just that some using the event to promote their agenda?