Wednesday, March 5, 2008

CAS to hold March 19 hearing to resolve Asian Olympic handball qualifying dispute

LAUSANNE, Switzerland (AP) — The Court of Arbitration for Sport will hold a hearing March 19 to resolve the Asian Olympic handball qualifying dispute.

CAS secretary-general Matthieu Reeb said a binding ruling will then be given within days of the hearing, allowing Asian teams to take part in further qualifying matches in Europe from March 28.

The Asian federation and the national associations of Kazakhstan and Kuwait have challenged a decision by the International Handball Federation, the sport’s governing body, to order replays of qualifying matches for the Beijing Olympics following questionable referee decisions.

“I think we will go forward positively from this,” IHF managing director Hala Helmy said of the hearing date. “We have three women’s qualifying tournaments taking place at the same time (March 28-30) all over Europe. In each of the venues, four teams are taking part and two will go to the Olympics.”

Asian men’s teams will play in Olympic qualifying tournaments from May 30-June 1.

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