Basketball has changed its rules on headgear in a move that will allow players to wear the hijab during matches.

Previous rules had banned the practice, over what world governing body Fiba said was a safety issue.

The Qatar women’s team withdrew from the 2014 Asian Games after being denied permission to wear the hijab – a head covering worn by many Muslim women.

On Thursday, new rules were ratified that will take effect from 1 October.

“The new rule comes as a result of the fact that traditional dress codes in some countries – which called for the head and/or entire body being covered – were incompatible with previous headgear rules,” a Fiba statement read.

Fiba began a revision process of its headgear rule in September 2014, with exceptions being granted at national level as part of a two-year testing period.

Earlier that year, football’s governing body Fifa officially authorised the wearing of head covers for religious reasons during matches.

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