Latest / NEW DELHI – Sandeep & Sardara Singh got years bans > India’s top field hockey players, defender Sandeep Singh and midfielder Sardar Singh, have been banned for two years from international tournaments for indiscipline, it was announced on Saturday.
The decision came after the duo, who were part of an 18-man squad for next month’s Asian Champions Trophy tournament in China, left a training camp on Tuesday without permission in the southern city of Bangalore.
“This is the third time they have done this and some strict action was necessary,” Hockey India (HI) secretary Narinder Batra said, adding the duo can appeal against the ban within 30 days.
The Indian squad, coached by former Australian international Michael Nobbs, is already without two senior stars, midfielder Arjun Halappa and striker Shivendra Singh, both of whom are injured.
The September 3-11 tournament features the top six finishers at the Asian Games in Guangzhou last year — gold medallists Pakistan, losing finalists Malaysia, third-placed India, South Korea, Japan and China.
The event is the first big test for Nobbs, who succeeded Spaniard Jose Brasa as India’s coach last month for a five-year period.
India, who won the last of their eight Olympic field hockey titles in 1980, failed to qualify for the 2008 Beijing Games and must win a qualifying event in New Delhi next February to play at the London Olympics.