KARACHI: The Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF) on Wednesday appointed former Pakistan captain Muhammad Saqlain as the head coach of the national team for the upcoming South Asian Games (SAG), formerly known as the South Asian Federation (SAF) Games, which start in India from February next year.
A PHF official told The Express Tribune that success at the Games is high on their agenda. “The new management is trying its best to improve the skills of the players for which they have scheduled the training camp. Depending on the performance of the team at the games, the PHF is also planning to send the team to more international events,” he said.
According to the official, Saqlain, whose first assignment will be to conduct a training camp at the National Hockey Stadium in Lahore from the third week of January, was selected for the role because of his extensive knowledge of modern hockey.
The PHF also appointed Pervez Bhandara for the role of team manager as, according to the official, the management believes he could bring back international hockey to Pakistan just like he did in 2012 when a team from China toured the country on his invitation.
Meanwhile, the PHF is organising the 63rd edition of the National Senior Hockey Championship at the Hockey Club of Pakistan in Karachi from December 25 to January 10, where a four-member field jury will be present to spot the most talented player in the tournament.
Published in The Express Tribune, December 24th, 2015.