Qatar makes pitch for FIFA 2022 WC

Last Updated: Sep 15, 2010, 13:51 PM IST

London: Qatar, one of the world’s wealthiest countries, is hoping to convince FIFA officials to stage the World Cup in the Middle East for the first time - with air-conditioned pitches, and is convinced that it can keep the players cool in summer temperatures of up to 50C by blowing cool air over them.

Qatar has decided to show the FIFA officials plans for multi-billion pound stadiums shaped as boats and sea shells.

Organisers of the bid for the 2022 tournament are proposing to ferry fans to some of the matches in boats and provide a view of the sea from seats at matches, Sky News reports.

It has been reported that a FIFA delegation is visiting the state to look at the facilities, including a five-a-side prototype of one of the air-conditioned stadiums.

The solar-powered cooling system keeps temperatures in the stadium and on the pitch at a constant temperature of 27C, compared to the summer average of 41C.

FIFA President Sepp Blatter had given Qatar’s bid a boost earlier this year, saying the Arab world deserves to stage the World Cup.

"Qatar’s successful hosting of the 2006 Asian Games showed it was capable of organising big international events," said Blatter.

Experts consider it an outsider among bidders including the USA, Australia, South Korea and Japan.

FIFA will announce the hosts of both the 2018 and 2022 World Cups this December.

ANI