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Page last updated at 11:23 GMT, Sunday, 16 May 2010 12:23 UK

Africa Cup of Nations Cup to move to odd-numbered years

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Caf hopes the switch will help African teams do well at the World Cup

The Confederation of African Football (Caf), has confirmed that the Africa Cup of Nations will now be held in odd- numbered years.

A statement on the Caf website says the switch will take place from 2013.

The decision was rubber-stamped at a CAF executive committee meeting at its headquarters in Cairo on Saturday.

The change means that two tournaments will be staged within a year with Gabon and Equatorial Guinea co-hosting one in 2012 and Libya 12 months later.

The decision means the Nations Cup will no longer be held in the same year as the World Cup, one of the reasons given for the poor performance of African teams at the world event.

In February Algeria coach Rabah Saadane had told the BBC the qualification matches for the 2012 edition would also serve for Libya.

"The 11 different qualifying groups are going to count for both 2012 and 2013," he told the BBC.

"It's official and what's more, the qualifiers for the Nations Cup and World Cup are going to be separate from now on," he continued.

Caf also announced that the Championship of African Nations (CHAN) will now be held in even-numbered years, starting with Libya in 2014.

The Nations Cup has been played in an even year since 1968, although the very first competition in Sudan took place in 1957.

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see also
Togo's African Cup ban is lifted
14 May 10 |  African
Saadane claims Nations Cup move
26 Feb 10 |  African
Toure calls for Nations Cup move
30 Dec 09 |  African
Nations Cup leaves Grant baffled
22 Dec 09 |  African

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