National hockey goalkeeper S. Kumar

KUALA LUMPUR: The Malaysian Hockey Confederation (MHC) have done their best to help goalkeeper S. Kumar prepare an affidavit and submit it to the International Hockey Federation (FIH).

Now they are only waiting for a hearing date from the FIH, in the hope that Kumar will not be heavily punished and be able to play in the Asian Games on Aug 18-Sept 2.

   "We hired a lawyer to prepare an affidavit and submitted it to the FIH. They had wanted more paperwork, which we also submitted and are now awaiting for a hearing date.

  "We hope to hear in a few weeks from the FIH about the hearing date where we hope the parent body will not be too harsh on him.

  "We need Kumar for the Asian Games, and hopefully the FIH will not hand him a heavy punishment," said MHC president Daruk Seri Subahan Kamal.

  Malaysian hockey was dealt a big blow when national No 1 goalkeeper Kumar tested positive in a doping test during the Asia Cup in Dhaka, Bangladesh last October.

  He allegedly used the banned substance sibutramine, which is prohibited by the World Anti Doping Agency (Wada). The substance is for weight loss purposes.

  And even though Kumar had denied using the substance, he did not contest Sample B.

  Malaysia hope to win gold at the Asian Games, and qualify for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics from this regional qualifier.

  "We are looking for a historic gold in the Asian Games to qualify for the Olympics early. The MHC did their best in this case and hopefully, the FIH will consider every factor before making a judgement," said Subahan.

  Going by the high profile doping case of Lee Chong Wei, who was given a backdated eight-month ban for doping by the Badminton World Federation, Kumar has a good chance of making a comeback for the Asian Games.

  Two-time Olympic silver medallist Chong Wei had tested positive for the anti-inflammatory drug dexamethasone during the World Championships.


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