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‘Pakistan will make Asia Cup final’

Updated October 12, 2017

ISLAMABAD: Olympian Naveed Alam is optimistic Pakistan will at least make it to the final of the Asia Cup following the national team’s emphatic 7-0 win over Bangladesh on Wednesday.

“I think they will reach the final at least,” Naveed told Dawn on Wednesday. “That shouldn’t be a problem for this team.”

Currently serving as Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF) director development, Naveed was here to brief the Senate Standing Committee on Inter-provincial Coordination (IPC) on the national team’s poor performance during the last three tournaments.

But the committee refused to listen to him after expressing their displeasure at PHF president retired Brig Khalid Khokar and secretary Shahbaz Ahmed not turning up at the meeting with the duo in Karachi to conduct the Nishan-i-Haider hockey tournament which ended on Tuesday.

On the sidelines of the meeting, Naveed added that Pakistan has a good talent pool which needs polishing.

“We need to provide them adequate facilities and training opportunities,” he said, adding that as per law of the country all districts are bound to spend two percent of their total budget on sports. “There needs to be investment at grassroots level.”

To a query, he said that international hockey league will be organised in April and steps are being taken for smooth holding of this mega event.

Published in Dawn, October 12th, 2017