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Posted On: 31 January 2011 02:35 pm
Updated On: 12 November 2020 02:10 pm

Police shut out fans at Asian Cup

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Thousands of ticket-holding fans were turned away from the Asian Cup final at Khalifa Stadium as police imposed a lockout ahead of Japan's win over Australia on Saturday. Al Jazeera English sports correspondent Andy Richardson described how supporters who had travelled halfway around the world were confronted by riot police as they waved their tickets at the locked gates. Another fan said a policeman wounded her hand as he grabbed her and tried to wrench her camera out of her hands. The incident on Saturday is likely to bring into focus how Qatar will deal with much larger crowds when it hosts the World Cup in 2022. "It was just incredibly badly handled. There were kids and families, not causing any problem, being confronted by riot police and being told they weren't getting in," Richardson said of the situation outside before kickoff. "There were hundreds of people waving their tickets at our camera, people who had travelled from Japan, India, loads of Aussies." News agencies reported that up to 5,000 people had been shut out. Richardson added that the policing at the relatively low-key Asian Cup final would need to be reviewed if large, boisterous crowds were to be handled effectively when the World Cup comes to Qatar in 2022. Source: