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APP
January 11, 2019

FIH Pro League a big way of learning for Pak players: Saeed Khan

Sports

A
APP
January 11, 2019

LAHORE: The newly-appointed coach of Pakistan hockey team said on Thursday that participation of national players in the FIH Pro League will be a big way of learning and they will be getting much needed high profile international experience and exposure.

“Young players need to improve their game which is only possible if they get the opportunity to play against world top notch hockey players and pro league will provide them an ideal chance to face off with different hockey nations,” he told APP here after supervising the afternoon session of the national camp set up for the build-up of Pak team for Pro league being played in different countries later this month.

The former hockey Olympian was of the view that Pak team needs to change its style of play, switching to attacking game from its usual defensive approach during run of play. “Players have to drop this tendency (defensive approach) which has damaged Pakistan hockey in recent years and it is one of the main key reason of down fall of our national sport,” said Saeed.

The team coach and manager said in the ongoing camp efforts are being made to change the mind set and approach of players and helping them to adopt fast track of game. “Attaching hockey helps in mounting pressure on opponents, creates ample opportunities of goal scoring and that is the reason other hockey nations have progressed a lot in international hockey in last one decade whereas we have a nose dive trend and stand nowhere at world ranking which indicates that we are a weak side at world level”.

He said another reason which contributed to the overall decline of the hockey was suspension of international hockey at Pakistani soil in the last one decade. “ If foreign teams are not visiting the country on regular basis, how come our players will be lifting the level of their game as arranging foreign tours on regular intervals is quite an expensive venture,” said the team official.

To a question, he said the team management has no such information that the Pakistan Hockey Federation has decided not to participate in the Pro league owing to paucity of funds.“I am optimistic that PHF will arrange necessary funds to ensure Pakistan’s participation in the league to revive the sagging fortune of the hockey,” he said adding “Due to the same scenario question mark was posed on participation of Pak team in international events in the recent past and eventually PHF was able to get the funds to send its team abroad and hopefully this time it will also secure funds for ensuring team’s participation in pro league”.

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