Tuesday January 18, 2022

Trials for Asian Games on July 30

July 28, 2018

KARACHI: Pakistan hockey team’s trials for Asian Games are to be held on July 30 at Dr Shah- Islahuddin academy, where the training camp of the Green-shirts is going on.

The Asian Games are scheduled to be held from August 18 to September 2 in Indonesia. Team manager Olympian Hasan Sardar has said that Pakistan would play at least two practice matches before the Asian Games, against Oman and Japan.

He said that the team management and players were all targeting gold medal at the Asian Games. “We are preparing to win the Asian Games, which would give us direct qualification for Olympics 2020 and establish our supremacy at the Asian level,” said the gold medallist of Los Angeles Olympics 1984.

He said that all teams in the Asian Games know each other very well. He said that after participation in the Champions Trophy in the Netherlands, where Pakistan played against the strongest teams, the players’ confidence had risen, especially after they defeated Olympic champions Argentine 4-1. “The performance against Australia also gave us belief that we can give tough time to any world-class team,” said Sardar, referring to the match which Pakistan lost 1-2.

He said that India would be the main rival in the event but Japan, Malaysia, and South Korea would also be tough. He said Japan had improved a lot in the last couple of years.

“We are trying to form a strong forward line which can score goals consistently. If their attempts fail, they should get penalty corners,” he added. “Aleem Bilal and Mubashir are our PC drag flickers. Their performance has been erratic. We want them to be consistent. Keeping in mind the importance of this job, we are preparing Abu Bakar as well,” said the manager.

He said that the performance of the players in Champions Trophy, and current form and fitness would be the criteria for selection. Sardar said that PHF secretary Shahbaz Ahmed was also expected to see the trials on July 30. The chairman selection committee Islahuddin will witness the training of players on July 29 as well.