Head coach of the Pakistan hockey team, former Olympian, Khawaja Muhammad Junaid, has put the blame of team’s dismal performance in the World Hockey League in England on the nine new players and their lack of experience.
“The team could not click in the event as majority of the players were young and even some of them were playing with little international experience, whereas the other participating teams were very strong due to the presence of experienced players,” he wrote in his tour report which he submitted to the Pakistan Hockey Federation and made available to APP, here on Tuesday.
In the report, the former Pakistan captain narrated how the inexperienced players failed to handle the pressure situations in different matches, especially against India twice losing 7-1, 6-1 and their 6-0 drubbing at the hands of Canada.
At the same time, the head coach expressed his satisfaction over team’s qualification for the next year’s World Cup, being played in India. He said that though Pakistan finished seventh in the competition, it was a matter of satisfaction for him that the team qualified for the World Cup. “The target given to me was to inspire the team to qualify for the World Cup, which has been achieved and as the head coach, I am very much contended with it,” he said in the report.
Junaid said it was his first-ever hockey assignment as the head coach and he did his best to motivate the team, but the lesser experience on the part of the new players restricted the side from producing encouraging results.—APP