The Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF), in its efforts to revive the dying sport in Pakistan, has added the Pakistan Hockey League (PHL) to their annual calendar following the success of the Pakistan Super League (PSL).
PHF Director Development and Domestic Naveed Alam, who made the announcement, further revealed that in addition to the PHL, many tournaments, which will focus specifically on developing the youth, have also been added to the calendar.
“The preparations for holding the PHL in Pakistan are in the pipeline and the progress is encouraging,” revealed Alam. “The calendar not only includes the senior and junior teams’ international assignments but domestic events, designed specifically to develop younger players, as well.”
Alam further said that the PHF is planning to introduce Hockey-5, the most innovative format in modern hockey, in domestic competitions, with the first of such competitions expected to take place in Ramazan under floodlights in Karachi and Lahore.
Meanwhile, PHF Secretary Shahbaz Senior revealed that the PHF is expecting a lot of international players for the league and added that while the federation is doing its best to host the league in Pakistan, in case that does not happen, then the PHF already has plans to hold it on a neutral venue.
The PHF is also planning to hold a nine-a-side event at the same venues, while inter-school, inter-college and inter-club events and regional and provincial leagues are also in the pipeline.
The federation is also expected to hold the Chief Minister inter-club championship and the Prime Minister inter-club championship this year as well.
In addition to the plethora of events planned for the year, the PHF will also send the U18 and U21 teams to participate in international events, including the U18 Boys Asia Cup in Muscat, while the women’s team would participate in the Women’s Asian Hockey Federation Cup
in Bangkok, the Women’s Asian Championship and the U18 Girls Asia Cup as well.
Published in The Express Tribune, May 9th, 2016.