India, Pakistan set to revive bilateral hockey series
Islamabad: After two months of political tensions, India and Pakistan are set to bring back normalcy in the field of sports with the revival of the bilateral hockey series between the two feuding neighbours which is being planned for March-April.
Top officials of the Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF), including President Qasim Zia and Secretary Asif Bajwa, are scheduled to meet Hockey India (HI) Secretary General Narinder Batra to finalise the plans for the bilateral series during the Asian Hockey Federation meeting at Kuala Lumpur, one paper reported.
Bajwa said that the revival of the series was in the interest of both the countries and added that the PHF was looking forward to it. However, a PHF official said that the body may persuade HI officials to send their team first as they fear that the Indian government might hinder their return visit after Pakistan’s tour.
The official further said there was also a possibility that the two bodies could agree to financial compensations in millions for a team in case it withdraws from making the return trip, adding that the schedule of the series will be announced once both bodies reach a consensus on the changes in the contract.
Recently, Pakistan confirmed that India will be coming over for a snooker series in late March. In December last year, the two counterparts signed an agreement that would see them hold Pakistan-India bilateral Test series between 2013 to 2018, which became doubtful due to political tensions and were aggravated further when the Pakistan players had to return without playing the inaugural Hockey India League due to security threats, the report added.