Bhubaneswar, Dec 14: The International Hockey Federation (FIH) today suspended two Pakistani players Amjad Ali and Mohammad Tousiq from playing in the Champions Trophy final after they were found guilty of making obscene gestures towards spectators following their semi-final win against India.
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Hockey India's imminent threat of boycotting all FIH events scheduled to be held in India during the next few calender years made the world hockey's governing body reverse their earlier decision of just letting the players with official reprimand.
According to the release issued by FIH, a third Pakistani player Shafaqt Rasool, got away with official reprimand. All the three players have accepted their guilt.
Amjad and Tousiq were guilty of making obscene gestures with their middle fingers towards a packed gallery, an action that has been photographed and is now documented.
"After the conclusion of the semi-final match between India and Pakistan, Amjad Ali was seen making obscene body gestures that are considered to be obscene, the evidence of which surfaced after the initial statement was issued on 14 December at midnight," the FIH said in a statement.
"Amjad Ali accepts the breach of the code of conduct. The attitude of the team member at the hearing was good, with Pakistan tendering a written apology to the community of hockey. The seriousness of the offence falls within Level 1 of FIH rules and regulations and according to the Code of Conduct of Level 1 offence one match suspension is imposed on Ali Amjad.
"He is suspended for the next match that Pakistan will play in the relevant tournament," the statement further read. The FIH further said that Tousiq committed the same offence and has been handed out the same punishment as Ali.
"Tousiq was seen making gestures that are considered to be obscene (raising the middle finger to spectators on the stands) whose evidence surfaced after the initial statement was issued on 14 December at midnight," it stated.