Hockey India ends all ties with arch-rivals Pakistan
Hockey India announced on Sunday of its decision to end all ties with Pakistan after their players made obscene gestures towards Indian fans and media after their win over India in the semi-final clash of Champions Trophy.
New Delhi: Hockey India announced on Sunday of its decision to end all ties with Pakistan after their players made obscene gestures towards Indian fans and media after their win over India in the semi-final clash of Champions Trophy.
In March 2015 the arch-rivals were scheduled to play a series, but after this latest incident, that now is in jeopardy.
Hockey India president Narinder Batra stated: "no bilateral series against Pakistan till an 'unconditional apology' by the Pak federation."
Though, on Sunday, according to few media reports, Pakistan hockey federation have sent a written apology.
Earlier, soon after their 4-3 win, Pakistani players went into a frenzied mode and had started celebrating their victory in a wild fashion. They had started dancing in jubilation.
They removed their shirts, used foul language and made obscene gestures towards the crowd and media, prompting their coach Shahnaz to come into action and take away his players.
After the incident, Hockey India had registered their complained to FIH regarding the obscene gestures by the Pakistani players, FIH had ordered an inquiry into Pakistani players' indecent behaviour.
Later, tournament Director Wiert Doyer had spoken to Pakistani camp and had said International Hockey Federation (FIH) has accepted their apology.
"The celebration of the Pakistani team contained some behaviour that warranted further investigation by me as Tournament Director. As a result I have spoken to the Head Coach of the Pakistan team, Mr. Shahnaz Sheikh and told him that the behaviour of Pakistan players went beyond what is acceptable to standards of the FIH," Doyer said.
"The behaviour in question concerned many members of the Pakistan team. It is difficult to find any particular miscreant, and it is possible that the behaviour of the players may have been a reaction. Shahnaz Sheikh has apologised and assured me that this behaviour will not occur again. Given these matters, I've decided that no further action is warranted," Doyer added.
The gestures of the Pakistani players had infuriated every person present at the stadium. Pakistan coach Shahnaz Sheikh was bound to feel the wrath of the media at the post-match press conference for his players' behavior but he went away by merely saying sorry, which according to him was enough to settle the issue.
"I am not a politician, I am a sportsperson, but I am sorry for this. They are youngsters and made a mistake in enthusiasm. I guess that's enough," Sheikh simply said and walked out of the conference hall evading further questions on the matter.
India captain Sardar Singh had also denounced winners' celebration style. "It doesn't look good because many families came to watch the match. Their celebration after the win was not appropriate. They deserved to win. Congratulations to them, but the way they celebrated by opening their shirt and making indecent gestures was not right. It sends a wrong message."
With Agency inputs