‘Some Pakistan hockey players to quit national team after Commonwealth Games’

They are struggling financially
<p>Photo: PHF</p>

Photo: PHF

Former Pakistan hockey star Adnan Zakir has claimed that some of the players will quit the national side after the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham.

While talking to SAMAA Digital, Zakir, who is currently working as Hockey Skills Specialist at the Ipswich School in England, stated that he helped three Pakistan players get hockey contracts in the United Kingdom.

“After the commonwealth Games, I can guarantee that some of the Pakistan players won’t return. I also helped three Pakistan hockey players get a contract in England,” said Zakir.

He also said that Pakistan vice-captain Ali Shan, who announced retirement recently, is also likely to play in England.

“I think Ali Shan will also play league in England during the upcoming season and leave Pakistan hockey like many others,” he said.

However, PHF Secretary Asif Bajwa is hopeful that he can convince the player about taking back his retirement.

Zakir also said that financial concerns is one of the major reasons behind players leaving Pakistan team.

“Players are struggling financially because in Pakistan hockey players come from humble backgrounds. If they don’t have anything to eat, how will they perform? If the situation persists, nobody will be left to play hockey in Pakistan,” he said.

He also revealed that Pakistan’s current physical trainer, Australia’s Daniel Berry, is also unhappy with the Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF) and will resign soon.

“I convinced Daniel Berry to go and work in Pakistan in order to get experience but he is struggling too. That story is really embarrassing because he will leave as soon as he is paid,” he said. “The reality is that professionals are treated poorly in Pakistan.”

The Commonwealth Games will take place from July 28 to August 8 in Birmingham.

Pakistan hockey team will play their opening match against South Africa on July 30. They will face New Zealand on the following day. Meanwhile, Pakistan’s matches against Scotland and Australia are on 3rd and 4th August, respectively.


Pakistan hockey

Commonwealth games

Adnan Zakir


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