Pakistan's hockey community is anticipating an exciting semi-final against arch-rivals India in the Champions Trophy but they believe a win is an absolute necessity for the future survival of the cash-strapped sport in the country.
Pakistan men's hockey team will take part in next month's Champions Trophy in India after a high-profile businessman and cricket fan has agreed to bear the expenses of the team for the tournament, a top official of the national federation said today.
With the FIH Champions Trophy a little more than two weeks away, the Pakistani hockey players are headed for a showdown with their national federation (PHF) over its failure to award them new contracts and non-payment of dues.
A severe cash crunch has struck Pakistan hockey team`s preparations for the Asian Games. The record eight-time champions hopes of defending their title is in jeopardy as the team`s Europe tour to prepare for the Incheon Asian Games, Sep 19-Oct, now looks doubtful.
As if the humiliation of not being able to qualify for the ongoing World Cup in Rotterdam was not enough for Pakistani hockey fans now even the national veterans team has been forced to pull out of the Masters World Cup tournament on the sidelines of the main event.
Keen to revive bilateral ties with India, the Pakistan Hockey Federation is planning to host the country for a Test series and has got the government`s clearance for it even though the dates are yet to be finalised.
The Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF) has managed to woo back some of its disgruntled former stalwarts as it announced a new set up for the national senior and junior teams in a bid to revive the sport in the country and relive glory days at the world level.
Pakistan might be keen to revive the bilateral hockey series against India this year but Hockey India is not too optimistic about a 2014 date and feels 2015 would be ideal to renew the event between the two neighbouring nations.
A group of Pakistani Olympic hockey greats protested outside the parliament in Islamabad against the present set up in the Pakistan Hockey Federation, calling for the sacking of the present PHF officials and an inquiry against them.
The Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF) has threatened to pull out of the Junior World Cup to be staged across the India-Pakistan border in December this year after the Indian government cancelled the visit of the Indian team to Pakistan for the 10-match bilateral series, due to security reasons and growing tensions between the nuclear-armed neighbours.
The Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF) has said that resumption of bilateral ties with India will help both the countries improve their hockey set-up and also boost the performance of the national teams.
The Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF) has decided not to ban the eight players, including former captains Rehan Butt and Shakeel Abbasi, for playing in the rebel World Series Hockey (WSH) in India. Instead, heavy fines would be slapped on them so that they would be eligible for selection in Pakistan`s squad for London Olympics.