National Game Excluded From 31st National Games
31st National Games are scheduled to begin from December 25 in which national game hockey will not be included. Eighteen games of men and seven games of women are included in the event. The National Games were postponed twice due to the bad security situation in the province, but this time all was set to organise this major sports gala at all cost.
The decisions of Pakistan Olympic Association (POA) excluding hockey and football from the forthcoming 31st National Games has widely been criticized in all circles.
Former hockey player Shahbaz Ahmad Senior highly criticized those behind the excluding of hockey. He termed it very discouraging decision.
Secretary PHF Asif Bajwa and Vice President of the PHF M. Saeed Khan also criticized the committee of POA for excluding hockey and football from the Games list.
Punjab Olympics Association Secretary Asif Idrees said, “There is bad time in every thing either it is sports field or other but the game and players who gave and rendered their services for the country cannot be ignored”. “The authorities sitting in the Pakistan Olympic Association (POA) ignored the national game of the country on which grounds,” he questioned.
He said, “They are calling it the National Games and ignoring the national game hockey from it. It is a joke done by the POA or its nominated committee who not only excluded hockey but also football and other games and calling it a National Games.”
Talking to reporters, Provincial Sports Minister Syed Aqil Shah, who is also President of the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Olympic Association, said that excluding of hockey was taken by POA committee in which Brig. Arif Mehmud Siddiqui Islamabad OA President, Col. Rana Shujat Ali (Rep Army Sports), Khalid Mehmood (Wapda) and Zulfiqar Butt Secretary Khyber Pakhtunkhwa OA, Secretary Organizing Committee. He said the number of sports approved for these games was much higher and in the current scenario it was felt that this number be now reduced to easily manage.
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