Friday, March 29, 2013

Laos through by rulebook

Not that it matters to Cambodia, but the AFC have delved deep into the rule book and have amended the list of qualifiers for the final stages of the AFC Challenge Cup next year, following Brunei's last-minute withdrawal from the competition. The seven qualifiers who will joins hosts Maldives in the 2014 AFC Challenge Cup have been confirmed, with Laos and Turkmenistan receiving a ticket to next year’s finals as the two best runners-up. Brunei's pull-out in Group E meant that the results of the matches in the four other groups between the runner-up and the bottom-placed team were declared null and void based on Article 16.1 and Appendix 2 of the tournament regulations.
The affected matches were as follows:
Group A: India 2-1 Chinese Taipei
Group B: Macau 0-3 Tajikistan
Group C: Laos 1-1 Mongolia
Group D: Bangladesh 4-0 Northern Mariana Islands
So with these results no longer being factored into the outcome, Laos emerged as the best of the second-placed team with four points. Turkmenistan, AFC Challenge Cup runners-up in 2012 and 2010, took the second ticket to the Maldives, with their superior goal difference separating them from 2008 champions India, Bangladesh (who originally celebrated getting through only to have that rug pulled firmly out from beneath them) and inaugural winners Tajikistan, who all finished with three points.

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