PHF blames PM for hockey debacle

Cites premier’s failure to meet players and release funds on time as the reason.


Nabil Tahir August 05, 2015
"PM Nawaz himself is mainly responsible for the team’s poor results. He didn’t spare his time to meet the players and PHF officials on all six occasions," PHF probe committee member Mansoor Ahmed. PHOTO: REUTERS

KARACHI: While the probe committee set up by the Prime Minister (PM) to uncover the reasons for the poor showing in the Olympic qualifiers by the hockey team has already submitted their report and suggested changing the management of the Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF), the committee formed by the PHF lays the blame for the debacle on the government and the PM.

PHF probe committee member Mansoor Ahmed said that it was the actions of the premier, who failed to release the funds on time and also refused to meet the players on six occasions, which led to the poor showing in the qualifiers.

“PM Nawaz Sharif himself is mainly responsible for the team’s poor results. He didn’t spare his time to meet the players and PHF officials on all six occasions, nor did he properly acknowledge them for the medals they brought home,” Mansoor told The Express Tribune. “This is the reason we formed the committee ourselves because we felt that the IPC-formed one would never say anything against the government and therefore would be biased.”

The committee, headed by Olympian Shahid Ali Khan and including members Mansoor and Ikhlaq Ahmed, will submit its findings, which include detailed interviews with the federation officials, players and the team doctor, within a week to the Pakistan Sports Board.

“We have found a number of reasons behind the team’s dismal performance. We will submit our report within a week which will be completely transparent and based purely on facts. In our report, we have also given our proposals on how to streamline the affairs of hockey,” he added.

Meanwhile, head coach Shahnaz Sheikh and chief selector Islahuddin Siddiqui refused to meet with the officials, claiming that they had already submitted their report to the committee formed by the Prime Minister and do not intend to play any part in the fact-finding commission of the PHF.

Published in The Express Tribune, August 5th, 2015.

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