KARACHI: Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF) president Brig Khalid Khokhar will meet Sindh Chief minister Murad Ali Shah on Monday (today) to discuss some measures for the promotion of hockey, ‘The News’ has learnt on Sunday.
The PHF desires the help of Sindh government in its efforts to increase hockey activities in the province. In coming months Sindh will host a number of hockey events. Sindh government has laid a number of synthetic turfs in many cities of the province. The PHF wants to fully utilise these blue and green turfs.
PHF is organising a national senior hockey championship in Sukkur in December. Sindh government has laid a turf and installed floodlights at a ground there. The PHF will also organise a schoolboys national hockey championship in the province in the middle of November.
Sindh chief minister has assured the PHF on different occasions that his government would provide all possible support for the promotion of the national game. The PHF president will also discuss with him the renovation and development of Abdul Sattar hockey stadium.
The Sindh government has laid a blue turf at the ground and promised that it would provide the generators for floodlights and a big screen. The World XI which will soon visit the country play a match in Karachi. Besides, a Hall of Fame award ceremony will also be held in Karachi to honour foreign and national hockey legends.
The championship in Sukkur will involve 16 departmental teams. The school championship will involve 16 teams, including four from Punjab, three from Sindh, three from KP and two from Baluchsitan. Informed sources said that the place of the event was yet to be decided.
Meanwhile, a 16-member Pakistan senior hockey team left the country for Australia on Sunday night to participate in a four-nation tournament starting from November 8. The other teams are hosts Australia, New Zealand and Japan.
Pakistan will play their first match against the Aussies on November 8, Japan on 9 and New Zealand on 11. Pakistan head coach Farhat Khan told ‘The News’ that all teams were tough and the boys would have to play hard-hitting hockey in Australia. “The experience they gained in Asia Cup will definitely help them,” he said.
“We cannot make big claims. Things will go up and down before we are able to make a formidable side. It will happen when they play rigorous international hockey,” he added. He said that if the tour had taken place before Asia Cup, Pakistan’s performance would have been much better in Dhaka. He said that the players were in shape and rhythm. “They only need to overcome their weaknesses in finishing and defence,” he said. He said that Pakistan would play in their traditional attacking style. He said that only one goalkeeper, Amjad, had been included in the team.