Pakistan Men’s National Hockey Team announced for the 20th Sultan Azlan Shah Cup – Hockey News

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Pakistan Men’s National Hockey Team announced for the 20th Sultan Azlan Shah Cup – Hockey News
The Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF) has announced the 18-member squad on April 28 in Islamabad, who will play the 20th Sultan Azlan Shah Cup Hockey Tournament. This event will be held from May 5-15 in Ipoh, Malaysia, at the Sultan Azlan Shah
National Hockey Stadium.
After thorough scrutiny of players during the preparatory camp and trials, PHF selection committee has promoted Muhammad Imran, as the captain of the team in the upcoming event.
PHF also selected the rebellion trio of Rehan Butt, Shakeel Abbasi and Waseem Ahmad, who had secretly engaged with India’s unauthentic hockey body, Indian Hockey Federation (IHF), by participating in the unrecognised World Series of Hockey (WSH). The three
players were issued a show-cause notice for being involved in the WSH, which is not recognised by the International Hockey Federation (FIH).
According to PHF, the three have been included in the squad after their clearance of avoiding the money-spinning league.
The actual centre of attention was the selection of the captain, since former leader Zeeshan Ashraf had withdrawn his name from participating in the upcoming event prior to the camp. Ashraf said that his decision was indented to allow juniors to step-up
for the golden opportunity.
The selection committee, however, regarded to Ashraf’s proposed candidate Imran, for the captaincy and found the deputy worthy of the vacancy.
PHF Chief Selector, Hanif Khan said that Imran was undoubtedly the best choice for the team’s captaincy role. Hanif stated that the squad had been selected while considering the forthcoming 2012 London Olympic Games.
Khan added, “It is the best pool of players available considering the fitness levels. It includes seniors who can represent Pakistan at the Olympics. In terms of fitness, the squad is better than the one that won gold in the Asian Games.”
The vice captaincy role will be played by Shakeel Abbasi. Veteran player, Shafqat Rasool did not qualify for the squad because he failed to overcome his illness in time.
PHF President, Qasim Zia said, “We want blue turfs for our Olympics preparations and have sought the government’s assistance in this regard.” Zia shared happiness that Dutch Coach Michel Van Den Heuvel will remain as the national team’s coach until the London
The 18-member squad selected for the Azlan Cup will depart on May 1 for Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. The team members include Imran Shah, Muhammad Umar Bhutta, Muhammad Rizwan Senior, Waqas Sharif, Waseem Ahmed, Muhammad Zubair, Kashif Shah, Muhammad Imran Junior,
Muhammad Rashid, Waqas Akbar, Sohail Abbas, Rehan Butt, Muhammad Rizwan Junior, Abdul Haseem Khan, Fareed Ahmed, Muhammad Tousiq, Muhammad Imran as captain and Shakeel Abbasi as vice-captain of the team.



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