Under the direction of Directorate of Sports Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Bank of Khyber National Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Hockey League Peshawar Falcons won Peshawar Bank of Khyber National Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Hockey League organized by Directorate of Sports Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Bannu Panthers lost by two goals to one in the final at the Lala Ayub Hockey Stadium in Peshawar yesterday. Special Assistant to the Chief Minister for Information and Higher Education Kamran Bangash was the chief guest on the occasion of the final.
Ali Mohmand, Director, Sports, Rashida Ghaznavi, Director Operations, Sports, Syed Thaqleen Shah, DSO, Peshawar, Tehseenullah Khan, MD, Bank of Khyber Sher Muhammad, Administrator, Peshawar Sports Complex, Jaffer Shah, Olympian Rahim Khan, Yasir Islam, Director Development, Saleem Raza, Deputy Director Azizullah Khan, Senior Vice President of Pakistan Hockey Federation Muhammad Saeed Khan, President of Provincial Hockey Association Syed Zahir Shah, Secretary Hidayatullah Khan, President of IPS Asia and Pakistan Sports Writers Federation Amjad Aziz Malik, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Sports Writers Association President of the Ejaz Ijaz Ahmed and others were present at the venue.
The final of the first hockey league of its kind was held yesterday between the teams of Peshawar Falcons and Bannu Panthers. A large number of spectators were also present on the occasion. The match started fast and the two teams met each other. No team was able to score in the first two quarters of the match. The match accelerated in the third quarter and Moin Shakeel of Bannu scored in the 47th minute to give the team the lead which lasted for only two minutes. Immediately after, Peshawar Falcons scored a field goal in the 49th minute to level the match.
In the fourth and final quarter, the two teams attacked each other, but the Peshawar Falcons Mumtaz Phil Beck Abu Bakar scored in the 57th minute on a penalty corner to give the team the lead that lasted until the end, the Peshawar Falcons won the league title. Peshawar won three while Bannu Panthers got two penalty corners in the match. Kohat Eagles won the third position. Umpires Atif Malik and Yasir Khurshid were in the match while Master Khan, M Tufail, Qaiser and Sajid were among the judges. Finally, Special Assistant to the Chief Minister for Information and Higher Education Kamran Bangash, Secretary Sports Abid Majeed, DG Sports Asfandyar Khan Khattak and MD Bank of Khyber Sher Muhammad distributed prizes.
A total of eight teams participated in the league including Peshawar Falcons, Bannu Peters, Malakand Tigers, Hazara Warriors, DI Khan Stallions, Tribal Lines and Mardan Bears. Among them Peshawar, Charsadda, DI Khan and Bannu. The matches were held in which two international players of Pakistan team participated and the players and teams were won by the franchise through bidding. The winners of the Peshawar Falcons were awarded gold medals, trophies and Rs. 1 million, the runners-up Bannu Panthers were awarded silver medals and Rs. 500,000 while the Kohat Eagles were awarded bronze medals and Rs. 300,000.
Peshawar Falcons captain Zahidullah Hafeez while talking to media said that the players played a great game and learned a lot from Pakistan’s international player Abu Bakar who joined the team. Bannu Panthers captain Roman said, “I am satisfied with the performance of the team. The players have gained a lot of experience from the league.” Initially, 29 players have been selected for Bangladesh.
PESHAWAR: Special Assistant to the Chief Minister for Information and Higher Education Kamran Bangash has said that the most successful Hockey League was held in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa which will help in the promotion of the game. Talking to media yesterday, he said that all possible steps would be taken for the promotion and development of the national game of hockey. Should show sportsman spirit and the game should be considered as a game, everyone should show patience and endurance.
Director General Sports Board Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Asfandyar Khan Khattak has said that for the first time in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa the most successful hockey league was organized with the aim of promoting hockey. He said that it includes international players of Pakistan hockey team. This has given our players the opportunity to play with them, as well as good level matches on the newly laid astroturf across the province, which entertained the people and helped in the promotion of hockey. More shine has been created and similar competitions will be held in other sports and this series will continue.