The draw for the 2023 AFC Asian Cup beach soccer placed Oman’s national team in Group D along with Palestine, Kuwait and Kyrgyzstan. Oman finished third in the previous edition of the Asian Cup.
The draw was made on Thursday at the headquarters of the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, with the participation of 16 teams.
The AFC Asian Cup beach soccer is scheduled to be held in Thailand from March 16 to 23. The first three teams will qualify for the Fifa World Cup beach soccer at the end of the year in the UAE.
In the draw, participating teams were divided into four groups, with the top two of each group qualifying for the knockout stages, each group included four teams.
Japan, defending champions of the last edition, were placed in Group C, which includes Lebanon, China and Indonesia. The tournament hosts Thailand came in Group A which includes Bahrain, Afghanistan and Saudi Arabia.
Group B will see United Arab Emirates, Islamic Republic of Iran - both two-time winners, Malaysia and Uzbekistan vying for the two spots into the quarterfinals.
The last edition of the tournament was held in 2019. The current edition reappears after the cancellation of the 2021 edition due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
In view of the classification of the tournament teams, the results of the previous edition of the tournament that was held in 2019 in Thailand were relied upon, and the teams were divided into four levels.
The first level included hosts Thailand, defending champions Japan, UAE, runners-up in 2019, and third-placed Oman in the last edition.
The second level included Palestine, ranked fifth, Lebanon, who previously reached the semifinals in the tournament, two-time champions Iran and Bahrain, who won the first edition of the tournament.
The third level included the teams ranked from 9 to 12, namely Malaysia, who hosted the tournament in 2017, China, who had previously reached the semifinals twice, Kuwait and Afghanistan.
The fourth level included Kyrgyzstan, Indonesia, Saudi Arabia and Uzbekistan.