Hanke's World Cup blow

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Young striker Mike Hanke's hopes of being selected for the 2006 World Cup have suffered a massive blow.

The 21-year-old was hopeful of winning a place in Jurgen Klinsmann's squad, but he has been hit with a two-game ban.

Hanke was summoned by Fifa for his red card against Mexico in the Confederations Cup back in June.

As Germany have no competitive games between now and next summer, Hanke's ban will start in next summer's prestigious tournament.

DFB president Gerhard Mayer-Vorfelder feels the punishment is too severe for a player of Hanke's age.

"I think it's excessive to ban a young player for the first two matches of the World Cup for a rash act a year beforehand," said Mayer-Vorfelder.