C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Indian hockey players are better off: Pak coach
G. S. Paul
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 7
For the first time in the history of Chandigarh the cricket as well as the hockey teams of Pakistan are in the town to play their matches against their respective Indian counterparts.

The cricket team has arrived in the city today to play a high profile day and night ODI match at PCA Stadium, Mohali scheduled for November 8.

The Pakistan’s hockey club Multan Hockets, consisting of Olympian’s and junior international players, have come to compete for a pre-quarterfinal in 37th S. N. Vohra’s All India Gurmit Hockey Tournament underway at Sector 42 Hockey turf.

Talking to The Tribune, the Pakistan hockey squad reiterated that the state of hockey in Pakistan is almost the same as it is in India.

The reason, they opined, is the lack of its marketing, sponsors and the lack of knowledge about the latest techniques, which needs to be reviewed. “The game techniques have been changed with the changing times and we are not aware of new methods of training. In our country, there is no proper system or schedule for organising the hockey tournaments, especially in domestic circuit. The reason is that it is only the Cricket which sells,” said Mohammad Mansoor Ul Haq, the coach.

Comparing the system adopted by the European nations, Mohammad told they have separate wings for taking care of tournaments, physiotherapists chalk out training schedule of the players, their diet and their progress report etc.

Muhammad Shabbir, the Olympian, viewed that until and unless the government does not secure the future of the players the real talent would hesitate to come forward. “There is no dearth of talent in either of the countries, but the need of the hour is that the administrators of both the countries should come forward for the rescue of the hockey players,” said Mirza Waheed Baig, the coach.

Muhammad Shabbir, who hails from Sargodha, also runs a hockey club named as Punjab Hockey Club. In his club, around 35 to 40 young hockey enthusiasts in the age group of 8 to 15 years learn the finer nuances of the game.

Moreover, the old time Olympians, who dominate the proceedings in Pakistan say they have a little knowledge about the latest techniques adopted by the European countries. “There’s need to introduce leagues and tournaments in domestic circuit to make the game stronger at the grassroots level. That’s where we lack,” said Shafiqat Rasool, the junior hockey team captain.

Comparing with the Indian set up, an international player Aman Ullah expressed that the system in India is yet better than Pakistan. “The infrastructure here is much better than Pakistan. There are academies, who take care of the players’ education, their living expenses and to a larger extent, the shining players are also given jobs in prominent departments, which is a very major factor,” said Aman.

Zakar Ullah Khan, the right in player and part of 1996 Asia Cup gold medallist team chipped in “The jobs are also offered in Pakistan, as five of us are enrolled with Water and Power Proof Authority, which is the central government’s organisation in Pakistan. The Army, police or banks too absorb hockey players but still it remained constraint for a privileged few, the majority of the players are left to their own fate,” said Zakar.

What to talk of secured future, the hockey team does not get match fee for any tournament. How would we survive?



St Anne’s beat Manav Mangal by 46 runs
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 7
A fine batting display by Vishesh Pal (77 runs) enabled the hosts, St Anne’s Convent School, Sector 32, to beat Manav Mangal School, Sector 21, by 46 runs in the final match of Sister Alberta Memorial Cricket tournament 2007.

Anne’s won the toss and elected to bat first. They made 158 runs for the loss of 6 wickets in 25 overs. Besides Vishesh, Himanshu and Anirudh contributed valuable 22 and 20 runs respectively. Manav’s Shivkaran claimed three wickets for 31 runs and Akshay took two wickets for 22 runs only.

In reply, the Manav Mangal team started their innings on a sound note and scored 60 runs in the first seven overs but could not maintain the rhythm later. They lost wickets at regular intervals and the whole team could muster only 112 runs in 17 overs. On the other hand, St Anne’s bowlers, leg spinner Ripunjaya Bansal 6 for 10 and Tarunpreet Singh 2 for 15, were the wreckers-in-chief. Ashish Sharma 43 and Deepak 34 were the main scorers from Manav Mangal School.

The ‘Man of the Match’ title was awarded to Vishesh Pal while Shivdeep, Ripunjaya Bansal, all of St Anne’s School, were given the best batsman and best bowler award respectively. However, the ‘Best All-Rounder’ award was given to Ashish Sharma of Manav Mangal School.



Rajasthan Frontier lift tennis trophy
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 7
The Border Security Force’s (BSF) Rajasthan Frontier won the 7th BSF Inter-Frontier Lawn Tennis Tournament, which concluded here today. Kashmir Frontier were the runners-up.

As many as 13 teams comprising 52 players from all over India participated in the three-day event. Chairman, Chandigarh Lawn Tennis Association, Rajan Kashyap, who was the chief guest, gave away the prizes.



Sandhu records hole-in-one
Our Golf Correspondent

Chandigarh, November 7
Ravinder Singh Sandhu today joined a select band of golfers who have scored a hole-in-one on the par-72 greens of the Chandigarh Golf Club.

Sandhu, along with G.S. Bedi, T.L. Verma and D.S. Malhotra, teed off this morning around 6 am. He went for a perfect drive on the par-3 third hole. The ball went soaring into the skies and curved in as it landed on the green and then went into the cup after the first bounce.

One of the foursome noted the historic drive and congratulated Ravi. Yes, he had holed the ball in one stroke to join the select band of golfers who have achieved this. It was after a year that such a feat had been repeated on the Chandigarh greens.



GMSSS excel in soft ball
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 7
Government Model Senior Secondary School (GMSSS), Sector 11, beat Government High School (GHS), Sector 24, 11-0 in the U-17 category (boys) during the Inter-School Soft Ball Tournament (Boys and Girls) at Guru Nanak Khalsa Senior Secondary School, Sector 30, here today.

In boys’ U-19 section, Guru Nanak Khalsa Senior Secondary School, Sector 30, thrashed Government Model Senior Secondary School, Sector 32, 10-0.

The events are being held in U-14, U-17 and U-19 categories in the tournament, organised by the Education Department.



Asmita tops in pole bending

Chandigarh, November 7
Tashina Sidhu won the first prize in Junior Ball and Bucket Group II girls’ event while in Pole Bending Group I (girls) Asmita Chaudhary secured the first position during the North Zone Horse Show held at PU today. TNS



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