LAHORE: Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF) secretary resigned on Wednesday after the team's failure to qualify for the World Cup sparked protests from former players and fans angry over a spectacular decline in the national game.

Pakistan, a four-time world champion and three-time Olympic gold medallist, failed to win the Asia Cup earlier this month, a victory they needed in order to qualify for next year's World Cup in the Netherlands.

The failure came as Pakistan struggled to lift itself out of a deep slump, after they finished seventh at last year's London Olympics and eighth at Beijing four years earlier.

Pakistan's retired field hockey stars demanded the government sack incumbent officials at the Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF) over the World Cup debacle, threatening Tuesday to stage protests in Islamabad and burn their medals.

Bajwa, a former Olympian, resigned during an executive board meeting Wednesday, saying he takes responsibility for the failure.

“I resign over the latest result. But I must say that it was through our efforts that Pakistan earned victories in the last five years,” an adamant Bajwa told reporters.

During his five-year tenure, however, Pakistan won only the Asian Games in 2010, and earned the dubious distinction of finishing 12th and last in the last World Cup three years ago.

They also finished seventh in the World Hockey League in July this year, an event from which the top three earned berths for 2014 World Cup.

Bajwa's deputy Rana Mujahid, another Olympian, takes over as secretary until next month's PHF elections.

Mujahid announced the formation of a four-member fact finding committee to analyse the causes of the Asia Cup debacle.

“I will try to do my best for the uplift of the game and we will prepare a report through the fact finding committee within the next 10 days,” Mujahid told reporters.

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Comments (16)

September 11, 2013 6:30 pm

Mr. Bajwa woke up little late from his dreams ( nightmares). His defiance has left Pakistan hockey team at a historicaly big loss. India and Pakistan were considered the gurus of the game are now sitting on the sidelines of the world class tournaments now.

September 11, 2013 6:46 pm

All office bearer should resign, they are all responsible for the continued failure of team Pakistan hockey. A totally new PHF should be in place to hunt hockey talents from all over Pakistan with no political considerations within the age group of 18 years. Those from the current team falling in the category should be retained, others shown the door. A qualified foreign coach should be hired to train & carry the young team forward

September 11, 2013 7:57 pm

Just talk the talk now is the time walk the walk .

syed baqar ahsan
September 11, 2013 9:30 pm

the only problem with us is that we do not accept defeat,long tongue to talk,going with grace is not there in our dictionary,what else is required to spoil any department or sport.

September 11, 2013 11:05 pm

Very good news,when the rest of gang will fallow.

Ahmad A.
September 12, 2013 1:38 am

We ended 12th in world championship in 2010. No one was held accountable.Every segment of society has lost sense of shame , hockey is no exception. Country lacks inspiring leadership fro top to bottom. We are becoming a nation of 2nd stringers.

M. Saeed awan
September 12, 2013 7:53 am

Several failures are on his credit. So he had to resign long before. That's all

September 12, 2013 10:28 am

very sad. can PHF consider me for the next coach?

September 12, 2013 2:14 pm

Thanks God....But i think its not Mr. Bajwa its the whole hockey needs a serious overhaul.

September 12, 2013 7:28 pm

Not just Asif Bajawa but Rana Mujahid, Akhtar Rasool, Tahir Zaman, and the entire current set up of PHF need to be ousted. Should be fired if any one doesn't resign.

September 12, 2013 10:30 pm

@junaid: not india , india know already qualified for worldcup

September 13, 2013 8:18 am

It is not the fault of the officials. It is the fault of the environment. The population is being slaughtered by terrorism and terror of the political parties and what is left is radicalized by the mullahs and the so called Islamic parties (including Tablighi jamaat). Parents do not allow kids to play outside anymore scared of the kidnappings and killings and a majority has become Mullah (which means sports is haraam). In such a situation where will you find talent? It is the reason for the dearth of talent and poor performances.

Adeel Khan
September 13, 2013 11:25 am

Mr Bajwa under your tenure we only lost, lost and l

zia khan
September 13, 2013 12:00 pm

Bajway don't you ever come back. The other office bearers should also go.

September 13, 2013 12:32 pm

Either they change everything from top to bottom. Or change the name to SHF ( Shambolic Hockey Federation ). What do you think?

September 14, 2013 12:21 am

@javed: Yes, India did qualify for world cup, barely. That's not how world champs. play.

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