Khawaja Junaid disappointed by Pakistan Hockey Federation action

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LAHORE: Sacked head coach of Pakistan team Khawaja Junaid is disappointed the way the Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF) ousted him from the job in the backdrop of the national team’s dismal performance in the World Hockey League.

On Thursday, the PHF appointed Olympian Farhat Hassan Khan as head coach in place of Junaid, while also bringing in new selection committee in measures to improve things.

“Yes, the PHF has the right to change anyone but the way I was sidelined is not proper, neither ethically nor morally. I have been working with the national team for past one year and the PHF should have taken a detailed briefing from me and should have informed me about my sacking before going into the media to announce new appointments,” a dejected Junaid told Dawn.

“The PHF president (Sajjad Khokhar) is a visionary and I think he should adopt a decent way before replacing anyone,” he said. “If the new appointments also fail to deliver, will they be ousted in the same way by the PHF?” asked Junaid.

“I have submitted my report to the PHF on World Hockey League performance and there was news that the federation has convened its Executive Board meeting on July 24 where I will be given a chance to explain my position. But if the PHF has made the changes then there will be no use appearing before the Executive Board,” he said.

Junaid had claimed that Pakistan had qualified for next year’s World Cup to be held in India after getting 7th place amid 10-team participated in the World Hockey League, which was a qualifying round for the World Cup. However, the International Hockey Federation (FIH) is yet to announce the final line-up of the teams which will feature in the World Cup.

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