Good news for the hockey players. Today Chief Minister Punjab Mian Shehbaz Sharif has inaugurated the well equipped hockey stadium in Johar Town Lahore. The inauguration ceremony was organized very well .After 25 years in Pakistan, the special efforts of CM brought fruit. The state of the art hockey stadium is equipped with astro-truf and flood lights. Many former Olympians including Akhtar Rasool, Kh Zaka, Khalid Bashir and Mr. Ikhlaque graced the ceremony along-with the government officials. The current Olympians Rehan Butt and Shakeel Abbas also attended the ceremony and displayed their talent during opening match.
The exhibition hockey match between Pakistan Whites and Green have marked the formal opening of the 15oo capacity venue. The officials of new stadium comprise of Chairman Managing Committee new hockey stadium Olympian Akhtar Rasool, DG Sports and DG LDA.
While addressing the audience CM stated that this stadium has been constructed for the revival of hockey .Building hockey venue is a chain of efforts of Punjab government for the true revival of hockey and regain the previous level in this sports.CM further announced that hockey team would be established in Punjab Police and talented players would be given jobs and handsome salaries so that they earn a decent living while playing hockey.CM said that the youth has been his focus of attention and many programs have been initiated for the youth under his guidance.
Yesterday a press conference was held at the National Hockey Stadium where Chief Organizer Punjab Youth Festival and Deputy Speaker Rana Mashhood Ahmed Khan said that last year when several venues and grounds were cleaned to prevent the dengue attack, the Punjab government and Sports Board Punjab identified around 4500 grounds in the province and similarly several places were also spotted in Lahore.
“The camp training of the national hockey team for Champions Trophy is also going to be conducted after its inauguration,” he added.
“We have set a benchmark by developing grounds, holding sports and youth activities and now preparation are underway to conduct the Punjab International Sports Festival,” he added.
“Around 41 countries will be taking part in the International Festival and its going to be the biggest sporting event of the country and will also be participated by the Deputy CM of Indian Punjab,” he said.
Rana Mashhood further added the visit of the foreign teams to Pakistan is a turning point and it is the first hockey stadium after the establishment of the National Hockey Stadium.
He further said that a committee has been formed which will give recommendation for its name as Mian Muhammad Sharif Hockey Stadium is one of the name proposed for the venue.
Rana Mashhood stressed the need of inviting foreign teams to play in Pakistan and the Punjab Government is ready to provide all possible support to hold international cricket matches in the country.
Speaking in the conference, former Olympian Akhtar Rasool thanked Chief Minister Mian Shahbaz Sharif for for taking special interest in developing a new hockey venue, which has all the major facilities a sports venue requires.