Muscat: Residents in Oman will soon be able to see some of Asia’s finest hockey players, as well as many upcoming talents, live in the Sultanate, with the Stars Light Syed Fayaz Group 2017 Oman-Pakistan Friendship Cup taking place from September 9 to the 15.
The first edition of this tournament is aimed at further strengthening the historical and cultural bonds shared between the two nations, in addition to developing stronger sporting ties between Pakistan and Oman.
The tournament is the brainchild of Dr. Khamis Al Rahbi, the secretary general of the Oman Hockey Association, and Ali Javed, Ambassador of Pakistan to Oman, and will see five matches played between a select group of players from both nations.
In the spirit of friendship and bilateral cooperation, entry is free to all hockey enthusiasts in the Sultanate, and several sponsors have come forward to champion this sporting endeavour.
These include Oman Air, Salam Air, Omantel, Pakistan International Airlines, Air Blue, Shaheen Air and Habib Bank, with Stars Light and Syed Fayyaz Group also providing their support.
Residents at the venue can enjoy a colourful laser show and live vocal and instrumental performances: Omani singing sensation Haitham Al Balushi will be taking to the stage during the tournament. In addition, a raffle draw held during the tourney will see lucky winners receive free tickets to Pakistan, Samsung Galaxy S7 phones and even TVs.
The tournament rounds off the celebrations organised by Pakistan’s Embassy to Muscat to mark the nation’s 70th Independence Day, with hockey being chosen as the sport of choice because of the strong presence it has in both countries.
24 clubs in Oman contest the nation’s national championship, the Sultan Qaboos Cup, whereas Pakistan holds the distinction of being the most successful world-cup winning country, having lifted the trophy in 1971, 1978, 1982 and 1994, in addition to eight Asia Cup triumphs in 1958, 1962, 1970, 1974, 1978, 1982, 1990 and 2010.
Courtesy: Times of Oman