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Sports

August 13, 2018

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Pakistan teams start reaching Indonesia for Asian Games

KARACHI: Pakistan’s squads of various disciplines have started reaching Indonesia to participate in the Asian Games 2018, scheduled to be held from August 18 to September 2.

Pakistan’s hockey, football and boxing teams are already in Indonesia.

Pakistan’s contingent consists of 256 players, 216 men and 40 women.

Male players will participate in 35 events of various disciplines and women in 15 events.

Pakistan hockey team has started its training under floodlights. Manager Hasan Sardar told ‘The News’ that the Green-shirts would not take any team lightly. He said due to fast changes happening in hockey no one could predict any team’s performance.

He said that the current management of the team had targeted Asian Games when it took charge. “We have prepared the team for this event and brought a lot of improvement,” said the manager.

He said that India, Pakistan, Malaysia, South Korea, and Japan are the main contenders for the title. “The team that keeps its nerves under control and makes the most of goal-scoring chances will be the winner of Asian Games,” said Sardar.

He said that Pakistan’s defence, midfield and goalkeeper were all playing well. “Our only concern was missing of goal scoring chances. Our forwards were not scoring goals according to the expectations. But we addressed their weaknesses in the training camp in Karachi and now in Indonesia, too, we are working hard. Hopefully, they will produce good results in the Asian Games,” he added.

Sardar said that two practice matches, one against Oman and one against Japan, and five days of training would be enough for the players to acclimatise in Indonesia.

He said that Pakistan would adopt have a different strategy for each game, according to the strengths and weaknesses of the rival team.

“The players are confident that when they can defeat Olympic champions Argentina, can draw level with Belgium, the European champions, and fight hard against Australia, why can’t they play well against Asian rivals!” he said.

Meanwhile, Junaid Rasool, junior team captain, who could not leave with the senior team, has now left for participating in Asian Games. Before leaving the country, the young led was very much confident. Junaid said that he knew how important the Asian Games were for Pakistan.

He said the Asian Games were his first international tournament. He said he would not disappoint the selectors and team management who included him in the senior team.

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