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September 22, 2020

Bajwa orders repair of turfs at hockey stadium

Sports

September 22, 2020

KARACHI: Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF) secretary Olympian Asif Bajwa visited Abdul Sattar Edhi hockey stadium on Monday to examine its condition.

The stadium was damaged by the heavy rains that the city received last month. The PHF secretary examined the condition of both blue and green turfs and directed the officials concerned to get it repaired within 15 days.

Talking to media on this occasion, Bajwa said that PHF would write a letter to FIH, informing them that Covid-19 situation in Pakistan is much better than in other parts of the world, so international hockey events can be organised here.

He said that PHF would seek permission for revival of international hockey competitions in the country. Bajwa vowed that PHF would improve the condition of both turfs and these would be in better shape soon for practice and matches.

He said that both turfs would be leveled and pressed and pasted to the floor again by the experts. It has to be mentioned that these turfs are not old, having been laid by the Sindh government a few years back.

Bajwa said that PHF wanted that the second phase of the National Junior hockey team’s training camp be held in Karachi at Abdul Sattar stadium and PHF wanted the repair work to be completed as soon as possible. He said that the national junior hockey team’s training camp would be held here in the last week of October.

On the question of 5-a-side tournament in Karachi, he said that PHF had made up its mind that the event would be organised in Karachi in September-October period. But the devastating rains in Karachi foiled that plan and he felt that it was not possible to organise the event in Karachi.

But he was quick to add that it could be held if the situation improved quickly. He said that in October, PHF would finally decide that when and where the 5-a- side tournament would be organised.

About activating the domestic hockey activities in all four provinces, he said the PHF had requested all provincial governments for the guidelines regarding Covid-19, and was waiting for their responses.

He further said that PHF wanted to establish four academies in all four provinces where fresh, talented players would be groomed. One such academy would also be established in Islamabad, he said.

The PHF secretary regretted that Karachi, considered one of the biggest hockey nurseries in the world and which and produced such legends as Olympian Abdul Waheed Khan, Islahuddin, Munawar-uz-Zaman, Hasan Sardar, Hanif Khan, Mansoor Ahmed, and Sohail Abbas, was not contributing anything now.

He added that since forward Haseem Khan, no player has made his place from Karachi in the national hockey team. Bajwa said that PHF wanted that the differences among the Karachi Hockey Association (KHA) officials should end and that all of them should work together. He added that PHF would provide guidelines and resolve the issues between the KHA officials.