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The victorious Pakistan Development Squad members celebrate with the trophy at the Sultan Qaboos Sports Complex on Friday
The victorious Pakistan Development Squad members celebrate with the trophy at the Sultan Qaboos Sports Complex on Friday

The visiting Pakistan Development Squad (PDS) claimed the five-Test hockey series, 3-0, against Oman after it was held to a 1-1 draw by Oman in the fifth and final match at the Sultan Qaboos Sports Complex (SQSC) on Friday. Oman had also drawn the opener 2-2 on Tuesday.

Following the opener, Pakistan side won the next three games 4-2, 4-1 and 4-2 respectively.

On Friday, playing in front of a packed crowd, the hosts matched their much-experienced rivals and held them to a goalless stalemate till halftime.

The visitors took the lead in the third quarter through Muhammad Ateeq but Oman’s Khalid al Shuaibi got the equaliser in the final quarter.

The series was organised by the Oman Hockey Association to help the team, under coach K K Poonacha of India, prepare for the Asia Cup next month in Bangladesh where Oman is aiming for a top-six place in the eight-nation tournament.

Asia Cup features the continent’s best teams with the winner gaining a direct entry into the 2018 World Cup, which will be held in Bhubaneswar, India, from November 28-December 16.

Oman has been placed in Pool B with reigning champion South Korea, fancied Malaysia and China. Pool A has India, Pakistan, Japan and Bangladesh.

The tournament will be held at Maulana Bhashani Hockey Stadium in Dhaka.

Oman takes on South Korea on October 12 in its opener and then faces China on October 14 before concluding its pool engagements against Malaysia two days later.

The classification matches and semifinals will take place between October 18 and 21 with the final on October 22.