LAHORE – Narinder Batra, President Hockey India has been elected the new president of the International Hockey Federation (FIH) in Dubai on Saturday.

Batra beat David Balbirnie of Ireland and Ken Read of Australia in a three-horse race.

“Batra polled 68 votes out of a total of 118. Balbirnie was a distant second with 29 votes while Read managed only 17”, The Hindustan Times reported.

The 59-year old Narinder Batra, who became president of Hockey India in October 2014 after serving as its secretary, has criss-crossed the globe to seek votes in the last few weeks.

Batra is the first Asian to become the chief of the sport, thus breaking the monopoly of the Europeans who have been ruling international hockey for decades.

“He succeeds Spaniard Leandro Negre, who has been the FIH chief since 2008. Negre had defeated the Netherlands’ veteran hockey administrator Els van Breda Vriesman”, the newspaper report further added.