The Pakistan Hockey Federation president Khalid Khokar on Friday threatened not to send its national team to India next year for the FIH World Cup without assurance of foolprrof security and easy procurement visa.
The PHF president told the media that during recent meetings with FIH President Narinder Batra in Dubai, he had made it clear that Pakistan team should be guaranteed top security during the World Cup in India.
“We had a very good meeting as we conveyed all our concerns to Batra and other FIH member boards. I have made it clear to them that we want assurances from FIH that we will face no problems with procurement of visa and will be given top security during the event,” Khokar claimed to have told Batra.
“I made it clear that if we face similar problems that our junior team faced in getting visas than we will not send our team to India,” he added.
He said Pakistan had conveyed its reservations over the way the Indian High Commission in Islamabad had refused to issue visas for the national junior team despite the PHF applying on time for the Junior World Cup.
“Eventually our team couldn’t go to India and that put our hockey back quite a lot. But this time we have told the FIH President we want complete assurances and security for the World Cup in India,” he said.
The FIH recently confirmed Pakistan had qualified for next year’s World Cup after it failed to qualify for the last World Cup and Olympic games.
When asked about the despicable behaviour of the Pakistan national team with their players making obscene gestures after beating India during a 2014 FIH Champions Trophy game, Khokar said that its time to move on.
“We want to move on and we have even suggested that Pakistan and India should play a bilateral series as a start in Muscat next year,” he said.
Khokar said that he has spoken to Batra about the launch of Pakistan Hockey League.
“We also spoke to Batra and other FIH members about our plans to launch the Pakistan Hockey League and sought assurances from them foreign players will be available for the league.”
“We don’t want a situation where we invest a lot of money in the league and than find out other countries are reluctant to send their players to Pakistan or the FIH is not supporting our league,” Khokar signed off.