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September 27, 2020

PHF plans whites, juniors matches in stations with new turfs

Sports

September 27, 2020

KARACHI: Pakistan Hockey Federating (PHF) is trying to organise six to nine matches between whites and juniors to prepare the junior lot for Junior Asia Cup 2021, which is to be held in January in Bangladesh, ‘The News’ learnt on Saturday.

The matches will be organised in November and December.

Informed sources said that the best thing of these matches would be that they would be organised in remote cities of the country, where new synthetic turfs have been laid in recent years.

Sources said that PHF is in contact with various government institutions and corporate sector to get sponsorship for these matches. They said talks with some business conglomerates were in final stages. The PHF is also trying for live telecast of these matches so that sponsors to boost the chances of sponsorship.

Sources said that PHF is taking these matches as a kick-off of a wonderful domestic season as part of its efforts to revive the national game in the country.

The PHF sources admitted that it would increase the financial burden but it is necessary for the promotion of the national game and for the preparation of both teams.

Pakistan senior and junior teams are to participate in two big international competitions. Pakistan juniors have not played international hockey for a long time.

Pakistan seniors are to take part in Asian Hockey Championship in March 2021 in Bangladesh.

Pakistan whites will comprise mostly senior players.

Sources said that these matches would be played in Hyderabad, Sukkur, Larkana and Mirprukhas which were ignored in the past by the hockey authorities. These cities now have astro turfs. The PHF high officials will soon visit these areas to decide where these matches can be arranged.

They said that other cities being considered for these matches are Sheikupura, Pakpattan, Gojra, Sialkot, Dera Gazi Khan, Mardan and Peshawar.

The sources said that a lot of work would have to be done and a PHF high official would soon visit all these cities to see the possibilities of arranging these matches and discussing relevant matters with local governments and hockey associations.

It is pertinent to mention here that Pakistan juniors training camp is going on in Abbottabad. The second phase of their training will be held in Karachi next month.