Past Africa Club action at City Park. [Stafford Ondego, Standard]

African Hockey Federation (AfHF) has postponed the continental qualifiers for the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations, which were to be held in Nairobi, Accra and Harare in May. 

Nairobi was to stage the East region hockey qualifiers starting May 12-17 while North-West Africa and Central-South Africa qualifiers in June and August were to be held in Ghana and Zimbabwe.

The tournaments were meant to provide more competitions for Africa teams, which have been struggling to join the big leagues in Europe.

Seif Ahmed, the AfHF President, said they are monitoring the situation. “The three regional qualifiers for the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations will remain on hold until further notice.

“Hosts are being contacted to see what suitable dates would be possible to stage the events now that it is impossible due to the Covid-19 situation. Revised dates might be in late 2020 or early 2021,” Ahmed said on Tuesday.

Nairobi was to stage the east region tournament which had hosts Kenya, Burundi, Libya, Sudan, Tanzania, Uganda and Seychelles in the men’s tournament while giants Egypt, Burundi, Libya, Seychelles, Sudan, Tanzania, Uganda and Kenya were to square it out on the women’s category.

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Meanwhile, the International Hockey Federation (FIH) has said that South Africa will host the 2021 women’s Junior World Cup in Potchefstroom for the first time in Africa.

FIH president Narinder Batra said India and South Africa have been selected to stage the junior hockey competitions next year. Batra, however, announced that the event dates will be determined later. 

“FIH can confirm that the competition will be played towards the end of 2021. It is the first time that the African continent will organize the pinnacle of junior hockey,” Batra said in a statement.
The men’s edition will be staged in India. 

“The Junior World Cup involves the best of young talents globally. This is the perfect platform for under-21 players to unleash their raw skill,” Batra said.

There will be 16 teams in each category, which will compete for the title. Africa will have two teams in the men’s event with Asia represented by four, including India as hosts. 

In the women’s tournament, South Africa will be joined by another African team. 

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