Karachi: The Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF), with the assistance of the Army, is planning to hold a boot camp for senior players in the first week of July with the aim of upgrading their fitness for modern hockey, according to PHF Secretary Shahbaz Senior.
After the PHF and management analysed the team’s performance in recent tournaments, it was decided to put the players through an intense training regime.
“The players are not fit at all for the modern form of hockey. The national team possibly has the lowest fitness levels, which gets exposed during competitions.” Shahbaz told The Express Tribune.
“They don’t have the stamina and so they get tired easily. They even find it hard to catch their breath during substitution timeout.”
He said that in order to build up stamina, the players need to train hard not under PHF coaches but under the strict command of the Army.
“With the help of PHF president, who was also part of the Army, Brigadier (retired) Muhammad Khalid Sajjad Khokhar will conduct a two-week camp at Kakul or any other place available, but under the supervision of the Army,” Shahbaz added.
The World Cup winner did, however, reveal that some of the players who are or were playing in foreign leagues are somewhat fit. “The rest who don’t get a chance to participate in international leagues are completely out of shape,” said Shahbaz.
He further added that the boot camp will be extended if the two weeks of training fail to produce the desired results.