ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF) president retired Brig Khalid Sajjad Khokhar on Tuesday termed International Hockey Federation’s (FIH) move to scrap the Champions Trophy uncalled for, stating he would ask the world’s hockey governing body to reconsider its decision.
“The move is the most unfortunate for the game of hockey. We’ll ask the FIH to rescind its plan of doing away with the event and continue holding it regularly,” he told APP.
“Hockey is our national game which though has been suffering for quite some time, people still love it very much. It’ll be unfortunate if the prestigious international event is dumped for any other event,” he maintained.
The FIH has recently announced that a new portfolio of events will be launched in 2019 which will completely change the landscape of international hockey. The plan also includes scrapping of the Champions Trophy which, according to the FIH plans, will be held for the last time in 2018 at Amsterdam, the Netherlands.
Proposals for the new portfolio were approved by the FIH Executive Board in Lausanne, Switzerland earlier this month. The decision was made after more than 18 months of consultation and research overseen by a specially-formed working group for the project.
However, the PHF chief said that the federation was not taken on board as the current FIH Executive Board member from Pakistan Qasim Zia (former PHF president) never conveyed it to the PHF management. “We were never informed about the FIH’s new plan,” he claimed.
The PHF did not oppose any new event, he said, adding that the federation believed that maximum events should be held to popularise the game of hockey. “Notwithstanding, our concern is that a new event should not be held at the cost of the Champions Trophy.”
Khokhar also pointed out that all major events including Champions Trophy were introduced by the PHF. “Our innumerable services to the game of hockey are well-known. Changes could have been made without doing away with the Champions Trophy, if they were really necessary at all,” he remarked.
Courtesy : Dawn News