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Pakistan plans Middle East-based hockey superleague

The Pakistan Hockey Federation is planning to launch a Dubai-based hockey super league featuring players from around the world. The plans for the international league were revealed last by federation secretary Asif Bajwa last week according to Bettor.com”
“We are sorting out the necessary modalities to stage a world-class event which will feature foreign players as well as local (Pakistani) talent,” Bajwa said.

The Pakistan Hockey Federation is planning to launch a Dubai-based hockey super league featuring players from around the world. The plans for the international league were revealed last by federation secretary Asif Bajwa last week according to Bettor.com”
“We are sorting out the necessary modalities to stage a world-class event which will feature foreign players as well as local (Pakistani) talent,” Bajwa said.
In this World PHF Super League all the participating teams are supposed to include six players from various hockey-playing nations, so that all the teams are equally balanced.
“The participation of foreign players will make the competition thrilling and competitive,” the former Olympian added.
The event is set to be organised at the Dubai Sports City International Hockey Stadium, which can accommodate up to 7000 spectators. The Pakistan Hockey Federation is keenly working to put this idea into action by discussing it with other hockey playing nations and have requested them to send their players for the proposed international-level tournament.
The win of the recent Asian Games gold medal by the national team, has served as impetus behind this idea of the establishment of a Super League in Dubai.
While answering questions, Bajwa said that the PHF is following a policy not to ask any player to announce his retirement and the same policy is being applied in the case of six senior players who were a part of the team that recovered the Asian Games hockey title recently in China.
“As long as they are fit and deliver to the satisfaction of the team management they can play, our doors are open to every fit player”, he said.
He said that the senior players of the national team, like Captain Zeeshan Ashraf, Sohail Abbas, Mohammad Wasim, Rehan Butt and Shakeel Abbassi had contributed a lot to the team’s success and that they were role models for newcomers to the sport.
“We are working on a long term plan to strengthen the base of the game and we will continue it by establishing more academies besides making sure that the existing academies are working in the right direction,” he said adding
“We will constitute a committee to monitor their performance as these institutions will help in filling the void in the future and will be a regular source to produce skilled hockey players.”
Asif Bajwa also has good expectations for the revival of Pakistan-India suspended hockey series by next year as both hockey federations are willing to arrange bilateral series again.
“We have been working on different options and we may have this event in Dubai, Malaysia, Doha or at either team’s home venues,” he said.
Bajwa said the PHF will ensure the participation of the national team in international events including the Azlan Shah Cup, the tour of Europe and the Champions Challenge Cup which will be played in November-December next year in South Africa as a qualifying round for the FIH Champions Trophy.

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