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“The POA gave every chance to the PHF to send their expression of interest but they were getting the instructions from the government which doesn’t play an effective role in such cases.” -File photo
“The POA gave every chance to the PHF to send their expression of interest but they were getting the instructions from the government which doesn’t play an effective role in such cases.” -File photo

LAHORE: After the disappointment of failing to qualify for the 2014 FIH World Cup, Pakistan hockey suffered another blow on Monday when the national team failed to get entry into next year’s Commonwealth Games.

This after the Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF) could not send expression of interest to the Games organising committee, despite having been granted extension twice.

Pakistan Olympic Association (POA) president Arif Hasan told Dawn that a letter from the organising committee of the Commonwealth Games was received on Monday in which they refused to grant further extension to the PHF to send the expression of interest for participation.

“The POA gave every chance to the PHF to send their expression of interest but they were getting the instructions from the government which doesn’t play an effective role in such cases,” Arif said.

Arif added that Pakistan would be sending a contingent for other sports as the country had a good chance to qualify in some team and individual disciplines.

The PHF, which depends on the financial resources of the federal government, decided to follow its instructions and ignored the invitation through the Arif Hasan-led POA.

The government, meanwhile, recognises another body of the national Olympic association led by Akram Sahi. Sahi’s body, though, has no affiliation with the International Olympic Committee (IOC).

The two parallel bodies have been involved in a power struggle and the dispute is yet to be resolved.

Failure to make it to Glasgow is another setback for hockey after the national team finished third in last month’s Asia Cup.

Pakistan needed to win the Asia Cup in order to make next year’s World Cup which will be held in the Netherlands.

Earlier on Monday, new PHF secretary Rana Mujahid had said that if Pakistan fail to participate in next year’s Commonwealth Games, the government should be held responsible.

Rana Mujahid was elected as secretary following the resignation of Asif Bajwa in the aftermath of Pakistan’s failure to qualify for the World Cup.

“The PHF wants to take part in the Commonwealth Games and is following government instructions to get entry into the event therefore if we fail to participate, the government should be held responsible,” Rana Mujahid said at a press conference held here to announce Manzoor-ul-Hasan Senior as the new head coach of the national junior team.

Rana Mujahid was previously in-charge of the junior team affairs.

“Every player has a desire to feature in mega events such as the Commonwealth Games and we also expect our team to win a medal,” he added.

“The PHF has already written letters to the Pakistan Sports Board (PSB) to take up the matter regarding the entry of national team in the Games and they have to solve the issues, including of war between the two groups for the Pakistan Olympic Association (POA).

“If the PSB asks us not to take part in the Commonwealth Games, we will follow it but again that will be the decision of the government.”

Recently, inter-provincial minister in his summary to the prime minister recommended ad hoc on the PHF.

Rana Mujahid, though, said it was unnecessary as the PHF had already announced the election schedule which runs from Oct 25 to Nov 25 and Minister for Information Pervaiz Rashid had already been appointed Election Commissioner.

“When [previous secretary] Asif Bajwa has already resigned and with president Qasim Zia deciding not to contest the next elections, then there is no need for any ad hoc as change through a democratic system will be more constitutional,” he said.

With Rana Mujahid being elected as PHF secretary, Manzoor has been tasked with the job of leading the junior team at the Sultan of Johor Cup which starts in Malaysia from Sept 23.

Rana Mujahid announced that national team coach Tahir Zaman will also travel to Malaysia with the junior team as consultant.

Manzoor informed that he himself had approached the PHF for the job.

“I took this responsibility as a challenge and I’ve set myself a target of forming a team capable of winning the FIH Junior World Cup [which will take place in India from Dec 6],” Manzoor said.

“Time isn’t on my side but I know what I have to do. Coaches like Danish Kaleem and Anjum Saeed have been working with this team for the last three years, so, I am hopeful that after meeting with them we will be able to prepare an effective strategy.”

Reminiscing on his track record, he added: “I prepared that Pakistan team in three years — which had finished 11th in the 1986 World Cup 1986 — that played in the final of the 1990 World Cup.”

Despite having been away from the game for almost a decade due to his posting in Saudia Arabia as PIA station manager, Manzoor said hockey hadn’t changed much in that span except for changes in the off-side and the penalty-corner rule.

“The pace of the game has changed but the basic rules are the same,” he said. “And I haven’t been out of touch with the game in the last ten years as I followed news of the hockey team through television and newspapers.”

Comments (28) Closed

Khan Sep 17, 2013 12:38pm

PML N keep it up,there is more to come.

Jaan Bhittani Sep 17, 2013 01:11pm

Very very sad, power struggle in every institute of Pakistan,,, The only option is that Supreme Court of Pakistan must take action against this mafia.

raza Sep 17, 2013 04:03pm

Self interests are keeping the national esteem and honor as secondary to those who are not willing to let go their so called lust for power and authority....This is a national dilemma found in every other government organization and POA is no more different.

We all have gone bankrupt when it comes to matter of morals and principles.

Pervez Sep 17, 2013 04:06pm

Does this nation have any pride left? Is there a soul anywhere who cares about pakistan? How do these uneducated baboons get to such positions of power?

A Shsh Sep 17, 2013 05:39pm

Pakistan is doomed!

brijesh Sep 17, 2013 05:59pm

this is really sad... no pakistan in world cup and now cwg... sucks! Would have loved to see Pakistan thrash the Aussies, the English and lose to India in the finals :)

ZEB Sep 17, 2013 06:12pm

All three organizations should be fired and where have media been didn't know what's happening?

Ahmer Sep 17, 2013 07:40pm

Will this slide in every field of national activity ever end?

IKE Khan Sep 17, 2013 09:56pm

Sure every player has desire to attend big events. But can they deliver? They already failed us so many times. No one should get second chance and players picked based on politics should be sent home.

Abbas Sep 17, 2013 10:50pm

@brijesh: Pak-India finals are long gone. Perhaps you meant to say we would have fight it out for 11-12 positions? :P

disgustedhockeyfan Sep 17, 2013 11:01pm

Besharam log. Thats all i can say.

Youth Sep 18, 2013 12:01am

"National team failed to get entry into next year

hanif Sep 18, 2013 01:01am

Corruption doesnt work right away, it takes some time. In this case, it took longer to destroy Pak Hockey.

AC Sep 18, 2013 01:48am

USA, India or Israel are to blame for this.

dr. Bashir khan Sep 18, 2013 03:42am

nothing new same story.. utterly useless in everything we do!! no discipline, incompetence and useless administrative structure everywhere!

Abdul Sep 18, 2013 05:41am

I have never seen or heard any contra So much problem. I love Pakistan but truth is fail state Pakistan's biggest problem is dishonesty

Talha Sep 18, 2013 06:03am

@brijesh: Indian hockey's "chita" was already burned and thrown in ganga a decade ago :)

Talha Sep 18, 2013 06:04am

@Pervez: These baboons get into power because there is a huge bunch of baboons in our country who vote for these baboons. Simple.

mujahid Sep 18, 2013 07:09am

No setback that the hockey team is out of the Champions trophy which is scheduled for 2014 is good for the country,just think abt how much Pakistani govt will save & this amount could be well distributed among MNS & his crew & also what is Pakistani team going to achieve Nothing,Nada.

Ali Sep 18, 2013 07:25am

Pretty standard practice for government officials. I left Pakistan 22 years ago and it seems to be still stuck there. I remember, I had to go to Islamabad to move my file from one desk to another by just asking around and making requests. The irony is these competitions happens repeatedly so why can't a blanket letter be ready to be mailed out any day any moment. The government must sack some officers. Even though, this might be better that hockey team is denied this opportunity to save us some face.

Ali Vaqar Awan Sep 18, 2013 11:35am

POA is the constitutionally recognized body by IOC(International Olympic council) and OCA (Olympic Council Asia). According to IOC laws government interference in sports is the violation against sporting spirit. PSB(Pakistan sports board) has no right challenge the writ of law and they are illegally functioning. Supreme Court must intervene stop this ill-legal act of PSB and let POA function for the betterment of sports and Olympic spirit. In this way hockey is suffering, now not being able to participate in CWC. Selfish pride and egos are going to take our sport no where.

Sonal Sep 18, 2013 01:33pm


Hahaha. That is absolutely classic!

ailly Sep 18, 2013 05:00pm

this was bound to happen since POA and IOC were on logger-heads since last 3 years and enough time was given to Pakistan for stopping political appointments. justice done. my friends, lets wait and see how many other sporting events and trading divisions will close their door on us with the sole reason being no one is singled out as head of a particulars department coupled with the responsibilities attached to it.... sooner we will become a failed state with no one willing to bail out Pak from such dire straits. wake up.

seomeone Sep 18, 2013 06:57pm

@Talha: Thats true man. India could not produce a better player than Dhyan Chand after all these years. Cricket has taken all the attention from masses and other sports are suffering a lot. Instead of cricket, India and Pakistan should start regular hockey series. That may revive the glory of hockey in both countries.

haris Sep 18, 2013 07:32pm

POA(Pakistan Olympic Association) is recognized by IOC(International Olympic council) and OCA (Olympic Council Asia).

Pak Govt. only recognizes NOA (National Olympic Association) PHF(Pakistan Hockey Federation) is governed by Federal Govt. hence, PHF ignored POA because Federal Govt. don't recognizes POA.

What a mess? Mis-management at its best. kool!

Azhar Rahman Sep 19, 2013 03:02am

We call hockey our national sport and still we cannot even qualify for the World Cup or play in the Common Wealth games. We should be ashamed of ourselves as we have not been able to promote our national sport. Long gone are the days when Pakistanis were World champions in Cricket, Hockey, Pool and Squash. I believe that the government needs to focus on improving our sports so that the young generation has something look up to.

kirther Sep 19, 2013 05:17am

Very disgusting, what kind of people are are these?

saeed Sep 19, 2013 06:55am

@Ali: Well said