Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Tajikistan is the host

I've just heard that the AFC Competitions Committee earlier today awarded the hosting rights of the AFC President’s Cup 2012 Finals to Tajikistan. The 24-30 September Finals will go to Tajikstan's capital city of Dushanbe, where their champions FC Istiklol play. There were three countries in the hunt to host the finals, with Cambodia and Kyrgyzstan (with Dordoi as their champions) also throwing their hat to into the ring. In their wisdom, the AFC suits have gone with Tajikistan. The committee's decision has to be ratified by the AFC Executive Committee to take effect but that's merely a rubber-stamp process. Phnom Penh Crown, Istiklol and Dordoi will be joined in the finals, the third tier of AFC club football in Asia, by Palestine’s debutants Al Amma’ri, Khan Research Laboratories (KRL) of Pakistan and defending champions Taiwan Power Company. The finals will be be played amongst the six clubs in a league-cum-knockout format, with the top two sides playing in the final. Dordoi, the two-time winners of the competition, topped Group B ahead of Phnom Penh Crown in May’s qualifying round held in Phnom Penh, while Istiklol won the qualifiers leaving Palestine's Al Amma’ri in 2nd place when they hosted Group C in the qualifiers held in May. Champions Taiwan Power Company won both their matches in Group A to qualify ahead of KRL. The draw for the finals, which will include two groups of three teams with the winners going through to the actual final on 30 September, will be made in Dushanbe on Tuesday 31 July.


Anonymous said...

Last year, we were the runner-up. How about this year, Andy, do you think PPC can go through to final like 2011? And in case we win all the matches and become champion, do we automatically have one seat next year for AFC President Cup despite we fail in Cambodia Metfone League?

I wonder because I am afraid PPC can't be the champion for CML this year. Thanks

Andy Brouwer said...

I think it will be hard to get through to the final but we have two games to prove ourselves in Tajikistan and anything is possible. If we can prepare as well as we did last year and perform as well as we did, then we can go through again.
The President's Cup winners are NOT automatically included the following season. ONLY the league champions can enter. Its only in the AFC Cup that two teams may be invited like Myanmar this season for example.