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Pakistan move up to fifth spot in FIH rankings

December 11, 2012

hockey, pakistan hockey, champions trophy, champions trophy 2012
Pakistan hockey team celebrate with their medals. -Photo by AFP

KARACHI: Pakistan moved up to number five in the International Hockey Federation (FIH) Men's World Rankings, four spots up from their previous ranking of number nine, according to the newly released rankings. 

The Greenshirts' jump in the rankings comes makes them the most improved team after they clinched the bronze medal at the recently-concluded Champions Trophy in Melbourne, Australia. Pakistan's Shakeel Abbasi was also adjudged the best player of the tournament after his impressive display throughout the event.

Pakistan pulled off an upset in the quarterfinal against Germany and were thrashed by the Netherlands in the semifinal of the eight-nation event. They bounced back from the loss to beat India 3-2 in the third-fourth place play-off match and secure the bronze medal.

“It was not an overnight achievement but a concerted effort of the federation. In the coming years, hopefully we will have a much better side,” Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF) secretary Asif Bajwa said.

He added that the federation will also pursue its plan for improvement in 2013-2014 to further lift the performance of the team before the World Cup.

The top four positions remained unchanged, with London Olympics champions Germany at number one, followed by Australia, Netherlands and England.

New Zealand are one spot behind Pakistan, followed by Spain, Korea, Belgium and Argentina while India are ranked 11.