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Sohail Abbas in Pak WC squad
August 21, 2006 12:16 IST
Four-time champions Pakistan named an 18-member squad for next month's 11th men's World Cup hockey tournament.
The squad was announced by the Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF) Secretary Akhtarul Islam in Abbottabad after the trials.
Centre-half Mohammad Saqlain, who could not lead the Pakistan team in Champions Trophy in Terrassa because of serving a three-match ban slapped by the International Hockey Federation, was reappointed captain.
Striker Rehan Butt was appointed vice-captain.
World record holder drag-flicker Sohail Abbas, who has scored 279 international goals, has been retained in the squad along with left-half Waseem Ahmed. The two players had come out of retirement last month and were part of the team that finished fifth in the Champions Trophy.
Left-in Shabbir Husain is the only change in the squad from the Terressa event. Shabbir, who missed the event because of a hamstring injury, was back in the squad in place of Waqas Sharif.
Pakistan won the inaugural edition of the World Cup in Barcelona in 1971 and won the title three more times in 1978, 1982 and 1994.
Ironically, 1994 was the last time Pakistan won any major title. For the Monchengladbach edition of the World Cup this year, Pakistan qualified by finishing fourth in the Changzhou qualifying tournament.
Pakistan has been drawn in Pool A of the World Cup along with Argentina, Australia, Japan, New Zealand and Spain. Pakistan open their campaign against Japan on September 7.
Prior to the World Cup, the 18-man squad would also play in the Hamburg Masters tournament from August 25 and 27.
Salman Akbar, Nasir Ahmed, Sohail Abbas, Zeeshan Ashraf, Ehsanullah, Ghzanfar Ali, Mohammad Imran, Adnan Maqsood, Mohammad Saqlain (capt), Waseem Ahmed, Dilawar Husain, Rehan Butt (vice-capt), Waqas Akbar, Shakeel Abbasi, Akhtar Ali, Mohammad Shabbir, Adnan Zakir and Mohammad Zubair.