The Pakistan hockey team’s tour to China for a five-match series has been cancelled as the PHF failed to gather funds to sponsor the tour, according to a PHF official.
Another setback: Pakistan’s plans for China tour fizzle out
The series was set to be held in the first week of February, which was also a part of the plan proposed by the team management in the preparation for the World Hockey League – the Olympic qualification round – that will run from June 20 to July 5 in Antwerp, Belgium.
“We have been training for the tours, goalkeeper Imran Butt told The Express Tribune. “We were hoping that the new year will begin some good days for hockey, for which we performed well in the national championship, but it wasn’t meant to be.”
PHF President Akhtar Rasool confirmed that they cannot organise tours unless they get funds. “There’s some chance of a grant to be released by the government in the coming month as I have written an urgent letter to the concerned authorities regarding the matter,” he said.
He urged the private sector and multinational companies to support the national game for its revival. “We are unable to do anything without funds,” said Rasool.
Meanwhile, head coach Shahnaz Sheikh expresses disappointment on the cancellation of the tour. “My proposed plan for the revival of the game will be ruined and I’m afraid that we may lose the chance to qualify for the Olympics,” he said. “We have already made history by missing the World Cup and Commonwealth Games, we can’t afford any more upsets.”