Fri. Sep 22nd, 2023
After 19 years, the big hockey competition on Pakistani soil

The Indian Cricket Board is adamant about the decision not to send Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli to Pakistan to play the Asia Cup. If Hockey India takes a similar tough stance, the bronze winners in Tokyo may not be seen at the Paris Olympics. Because, next Olympics qualifying competition will be held in Pakistan.

The International Cricket Council has already given permission to host international matches on Pakistani soil. This time the International Hockey Federation walked that way. Pakistan got the responsibility of organizing the Olympics hockey qualifying competition. After 19 years, a world level hockey tournament will be organized on Pakistani soil.

If India wins gold in hockey at the upcoming Asian Games, it will qualify directly for the 2024 Paris Olympics. If not, they will have to go to Pakistan and play the qualifying round. The competition will be held in Lahore from 13 to 24 January 2024.

International Hockey Federation Secretary General Haider Hussain said, “Hockey lovers in Pakistan have been deprived of watching their team play at home for almost 20 years. It is our hope that the Olympics qualifying competition will breathe new life into Pakistan’s hockey.”

Pakistan’s hockey officials are also happy to be given the responsibility of hosting the Olympics qualification competition. A statement from the Pakistan Hockey Federation said, “Many member countries have supported our proposal to bring back large-scale international hockey to Pakistan.” Our thanks to each of them. We are sure that this competition will create a new enthusiasm for Pakistan’s hockey.” Will get a chance to play directly in Paris. However, Pakistan did not qualify for the last two Olympics.

The top five ranked Asian countries, excluding the gold-winning countries in the Asian Games, will be eligible to play in the qualifying competition. Pakistan can play as hosts even if it is not among those countries. India may also have to play in Pakistan. In hockey, however, there may not be opportunities for bargaining like in cricket.