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October 22, 2018

Row with Sardar PHF calls Saqlain back

Sports

October 22, 2018

KARACHI: Hot words were exchanged between Pakistan’s manager-cum-head coach Hasan Sardar and coach Muhammad Saqlain during their match against India of Asian Champions Trophy in Oman.

India defeated Pakistan 3-1 in the tense match. Sources in the national hockey team informed ‘The News’ that Sardar and Saqlain lost their temper when Pakistan had conceded two goals. They held each other responsible for the mistakes the players were committing on the field.

Pakistan had taken the lead very soon after the match began. Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF) Secretary Shahbaz Ahmed, when contacted, said what happened was regrettible. He said the country’s prestige was above everything else. He added that Saqlain had been called back to the country as a first step.

Shahbaz said Saqlain should not have misbehaved with Sardar. “An inquiry will be conducted when the team comes home,” he said. He said matches against India were always tense encounters. “But still what happened there should not have happened,” he added.

He said that Saqlain was junior to Sardar who was also the head coach and the manager of the team. “I contacted the team management without any delay and after finding some reports decided to call Saqlain back. He will return to Pakistan on Monday (today),” Shahbaz said.

“A thorough inquiry will be conducted. Both will have the opportunity to present their stance,” he said. Shahbaz said that the preparation of Pakistan for the World Cup would not be affected as PHF had decided to replace Saqlain with Tauqir Dar. He said that Tauqir had played for Pakistan and was a well-known coach in domestic hockey. “He also runs his academy,” he added.

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