LAHORE, Pakistan: President Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF) Brig (retd) Khalid Sajjad Khokhar has said that World Hockey XI tour to Pakistan will be ‘a game changer’ for ensuring the return of international Hockey to Pakistan.
“World XI tour will serve as ‘trust building measure’ to inspire the other Hockey playing nations to give consideration to visit Pakistan in near future besides playing its part in making the inaugural edition of Pakistan Hockey league a success”, he told the state-run news agneyc in an exclusive interview in Lahore on Saturday.
The PHF Chief said that the tour of World XI will give a positive message to the world that Pakistan is a safe country to hold top Hockey events.
“Our Hockey suffered badly during over the past two decades as major international Hockey did not take place in our country and no top Hockey team visited us but the tour of the world xi has produced a ray of hope to re-start our Hockey journey for regaining the lost glory”, he said.
Khalid Sajjad Khokhar termed the visit of World XI a step forward for the bringing back international Hockey to Pakistan and to re-organise the national sport with renewed zeal and zest.
The president PHF said that the presence of world known players in Pakistan will help in enhancing the image of the Country. He expressed his gratitude to the foreign players for visiting Pakistan for joining hands with PHF for the resumption of international Hockey.
The president PHF said that it is a big honour for the Country that top international Hockey players are part of the World XI and their presence in Pakistan is a trust building measure for Pakistan Hockey as well as for other foreign Hockey nations and players.
Khalid Khokhar said that the World XI tour is a history making moment in Pakistan as it has enhanced the image of the country besides adding to its prestige and respect.
Brig (retd) Khalid Sajjad Khokhar said that it is a heartening sign that world XI is playing in Pakistan and it will go a long way in the revival of the game besides organizing the Pakistan Hockey league on new lines in coming months.
“Our dark nights of Hockey are finally over, after the tour of world xi we will be starting our preparations for launching our Hockey league and there will be no looking back as far as resumption of international Hockey is concerned”, he said.
The president PHF said that it is imperative for Pakistan Hockey to organise international events on regular basis in the country to show to the outer world that people of Pakistan are peace and sports loving.
“The future of our Hockey also depends on participation in elite Hockey events as it will be a big way of learning for our junior players and with the start of our Hockey league we will be able to find new Hockey talent to expand the base of the game and to put Hockey at the road of progress to re-start our journey for achieving excellence in the game”, he said.