Kuantan: Indian defender Surender Kumar will not play any role in the ongoing fourth Asian Champions Trophy hockey tournament after being suspended for two matches following a deliberate foul during the game against Malaysia.
Asian Hockey Federation's Technical Delegate Ramesh Appoo today conducted a disciplinary hearing under the Code of Conduct and found Surender guilty of a serious foul, warranting suspension for two matches.
The Indian defender, whose good performance in the Champions Trophy earned him a place in the squad for the Olympic Games, will have to sit out of the knockout round, starting with the semifinal on Saturday.
"Surender was shown a yellow card by the umpire for an off-the-ball incident in which Surender lifted his stick in an appropriate manner, thereby causing his stick to hit the chin of a Malaysian player," Appoo said in a statement.
"Having considered the evidence before me, including the explanation given by Surender, I have imposed a two-match suspension," the Technical Delegate said.
Surender was sent off in the 49th minute of India's last league match, which they won 2-1 to take the top spot in the round-robin league and now await the last couple of preliminary matches before knowing who they play in the semifinal.
After Surender got the yellow card, India had to play the rest of the match with 10 players but managed to ward off Malaysia's rapid attacks.
India managed to get a late match-winner off a penalty corner from Rupinder Pal Singh with just two minutes left. A one-match suspension was also imposed on Malaysian player Ashari Firhan.
"Team India handed me a video in which Ashari was seen making a deliberate physical contact by extending his elbow into the body of Indian player Akashdeep Singh in an off-the-ball incident," Appoo said.
"I have imposed a one-match suspension on Ashari," he said.