Eleven international hockey goalkeepers arrived in Karachi on Tuesday for the Nishan-e-Haider hockey tournament that begins on Wednesday at Abdul Sattar Edhi Hockey Stadium.
The tournament, which will be featuring five goalies from Argentina and six from Australia, will represent 11 teams in the event where the players from domestic and intentional hockey will also be taking part.
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One keeper from Argentina called the event a positive step by the Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF). “They have invited us to Pakistan and this will be my first tour here, and I hope that it turns out to be great as I have heard there is lot of talent in this country,” he said.
He added that his favourite player from Pakistan is Shahbaz Ahmed Senior, the secretary of PHF. “I grew up watching him play and I am much excited to meet him on the field. He is a legend,” he told The Express Tribune.
The Argentinian said international players participating in the event will take the message of peace back home and will try to convince the national teams to tour Pakistan.
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Meanwhile, Olympian Iftikhar Syed, while talking to media at Jinnah International Airport said: “The credit for inviting these players goes to government, Pakistan Army and PHF. It has all been possible because of them and this will be the revival of international hockey in Pakistan.”
The teams will be named after the martyrs of Pakistan forces and the families of the martyrs will be invited to watch the matches.