Bhubaneswar, 4 December 2014: After outplaying Argentina in the yesterday’s practice match, Pakistan trained hard with more motivation at their practice session at Kalinga Stadium, Bhubaneswar ahead of the upcoming Hero Men’s Champions Trophy 2014.
Placed in Pool A with defending champions Australia, dark horse Belgium and England, Pakistan is not leaving any chance to utilise their practice sessions with various fitness drills. Today, they practiced penalty shoot-outs, working on their strategies and indulged young players in game plans.
Speaking after the match, Pakistan Captain Muhammad Imran said, “We don’t have any special player in our team but we will play as one unit team. Being among the lowest-ranked team in the Hero Men’s Champions Trophy, our only objective is to perform well as a team without taking much pressure. We came here with a few youngsters in our team to build-up for the Rio Olympics 2016 and this tournament is a good platform for the youngsters to play against the best teams as well as understand their game. The turf is good here, an international level turf, and we are expecting good results from this turf.”
Speaking after the match, Pakistan Coach Sheikh Shahnaz said, “We came here after our five-week training session in Karachi for the Hero Men’s Champions Trophy. Our only major drawback is not playing international matches against the Europeans in the last many months. But we kept practicing at our home base and working on new strategies. I guess that benefitted us when we reached the final of the Incheon Asian Games as nobody has seen our games before in international tournaments. As I said before, our objective is to reach the semi-finals of the tournament and this achievement will motivate us as well as improve our FIH ranking.”