More foreign teams to visit Pakistan: PHF President

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Lahore—President, Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF), Brig (retd) Khalid Sajjad Khokhar said on Monday the visit of Oman junior team will serve as gateway and more foreign teams will be visiting Pakistan later this year and the following year.
“The visit of Oman hockey has broken the deadlock of bringing back the international hockey to Pakistan. We look forward to host Argentina junior team in December this year and Chinese senior team early next year”, he told APP in an exclusive interview here.
PHF Chief was upbeat regarding return of international hockey to Pakistan with the visit of Oman team and termed it a lifeline for hockey at home.
“During past many years our hockey suffered badly due to refusal of foreign teams to visit here but the tour of Oman team is a silver lining on the clouds for Pakistan hockey as it will motivate other foreign teams too in due course of time”,said Khalid.
He said Argentina team will visit in the first week of December to play three matches against Pakistan junior string prior to its participation in the Junior World Hockey Cup being played in Lucknow,India from December 8.
He said the visit of the Argentina team will be followed by the tour of Chinese senior team in early 2017.
“During our recent visit to China we had fruitful meetings with the officials of Chinese Hockey Federation and discussed the details of a bilateral hockey series between Pakistan and China”,he said adding,”First the Chinese team will visit Pakistan and then we will send our senior team to China as a part of a bilateral series”.
He said PHF is taking best possible measures to ensure the return of international hockey to Pakistan and it has already started the process to send invitations to Asian hockey nations to visit Pakistan.
“Resumption of international hockey to Pakistan is not an overnight process and there is no short cut to it.What is important is the continuation of efforts on our part to convince the foreign teams to visit Pakistan as fool proof security will be provided to them during their visit”, the PHF Chief said.—APP