Pakistan’s sports scene is dominated by cricket, with many believing that this competitive game is the country’s national sport. In reality, however, field hockey in Pakistan is also liked by Pakistanis.
Field hockey is not only famous in Pakistan but also all around the globe, with its world cup happening every 4-5 years. This sport has dominated the world, most notably from 1948 to 1994.
In this blog, Graana.com features everything you need to know about field hockey, including its history, rules, and stadiums.
Overview of Field Hockey in Pakistan
Simply known as hockey, field hockey was introduced by the British to the Indian Subcontinent during the British Raj. Even after gaining independence, the people of newly formed Pakistan thoroughly enjoyed the sport, even deeming it the title of the country’s national sport.
Pakistan, along with Japan, Malaysia, India, and the Republic of Korea, is one of the founding nations of the Asian Hockey Federation (ASHF).
In the history of the Hockey World Cup, Pakistan has had the most tremendous success of any national field hockey team with four victories, closely followed by The Netherlands with three wins.
The team’s nickname is “The Green Shirts,” and their home arena is Lahore’s National Hockey Stadium. The Pakistan Hockey Federation, which oversees both the National Men’s Hockey Team and the National Women’s Hockey Team, has its main office here as well.
History & Records of the National Hockey Team of Pakistan
In addition to the aforementioned accomplishments, Pakistan’s national hockey team also won the Hockey World Cup in 1971, 1978, 1982, and 1994.
The Green Shirts are one of the most successful national teams in the Asian Games, with a total of eight victories in 1958, 1962, 1970, 1974, 1978, 1982, 1990, and 2010. They also have one of the finest overall results in the history of the Hockey World Cup.
In addition, the hockey team from Pakistan is the only one from Asia to have won the Hockey Champions Trophy (HCT) three times, in 1978, 1980, and 1994.
The squad also triumphed at the Olympic Games in Rome in 1960, Mexico City in 1968, and Los Angeles in 1984, returning home as winners each time.
Sohail Abbas, a former captain of the national field hockey team and expert in penalty corners, also owns the record for scoring the most individual goals in international hockey, with a total of 348 goals.
The Pakistani hockey team is currently ranked 17th by the FIH, but it has a distinguished past that includes appearances in 17 Olympic Games, 13 Hockey World Cups, 31 Hockey Champions Trophy matches, and 16 Asian Games.
Rules of Field Hockey
The sport of hockey is played in many different variations around the globe, but some of its fundamental regulations include:
- The only people who can touch the ball with anything other than their sticks are goalkeepers.
- Only the stick’s flat side may be used to strike the ball.
- A penalty is assessed when the rounded side of the stick is exerted to strike the ball.
- At the conclusion of the hockey match, the team with the most goals has been crowned the victor.
- In the case of a tie, a draw or penalty shootout occurs.
Hockey Stadiums in Pakistan
Pakistan has eight major hockey venues, with the National Hockey Stadium in Lahore being the most well-known. With a capacity of 45,000 sports fans, it is also known as Gaddafi Hockey Arena and is renowned for being the biggest field hockey stadium in the world.
The Abdul Sattar Edhi Hockey Stadium in Karachi and the Faisalabad Hockey Stadium are next in line. Other hockey arenas can be found in Rawalpindi, Peshawar, Gojra, and Sialkot.
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