Tuesday March 21, 2023

Pak coach Aikman yet to receive eight months’ salary

December 18, 2022

KARACHI: Pakistan Hockey team's head coach Siegfried Aikman has been deprived of his salary for the last eight months amid a confrontation between the Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF) and Pakistan Sports Board (PSB), ‘The News’ has learnt on Saturday.

Though PHF has sent the reminder to PSB – thrice – over the clearance of Aikman's dues, but, there hasn't been any positive response.

It's pertinent to mention that upon the federal government's directives, the responsibility of payment of the Dutch coach – Aikman's salary was handed over to PSB.

However, as per the sources in the hockey circles, the differences between PHF and the federal government are the reason behind the delay in the salary, as the Shahbaz Sharif-led government has objections to PHF over various issues.

Aikman, who was appointed to improve the Pakistan’s performance, has been the sole victim of the overall disputes despite doing well ever since taking up the role at a time when Pakistan hockey is going through a severe crisis.

It should be mentioned during the Azlan Shah Hockey Cup 2022 nine senior players of the newly developed team announced that they would not represent Pakistan and preferred playing in foreign leagues.

As a result, PHF was forced to recruit new players. And despite nine players making their debut, the team surprisingly, did well as they secured a bronze medal in the event.

They defeated a well-oiled Japan side by 5-3 in the bronze medal match – winning their first medal in Azlan Shah Cup in 11 years.

In the recently-concluded FIH Hockey Nations Cup in South Africa, the team’s performance wasn’t satisfying, but they did manage to play a 3-3 draw against France and thumped Canada by 5-3.

And it is believed that had they reached South Africa four or five days before the event, their performance could have been much better.

Since Aikman’s appointment, the national team has jumped to the 17th spot from 18th in the team rankings, with an increase of 200 points.