The Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF), in its first major overhaul after the 2012 London Olympics disaster, has dissolved the selection committee and named former chief selector Hanif Khan as the national coach, replacing Khwaja Junaid.
"We decided to dissolve the selection committee because it doesn't have a significant role anymore. It doesn't have a role in Pakistan's wins or defeats so it was only sensible to do away with it. The coaching panel will select the players and train them now.
"The role of a selection committee has grown obsolete now. None of the other countries have selection committees; they rely on the coaches for that," The Express Tribune quoted a PHF official, as saying.
Several Olympians and critics had called for a major revamp of the entire PHF set-up in the aftermath of the mega event in London, where the Pakistan hockey team finished seventh. Akhtar Rasool, the head coach for the London event, still holds his place but Olympian Ahmed Alam was added to the four-member coaching panel and was named the goal-keeping coach.
Ajmal Khan Lodhi will serve as an assistant coach.
Meanwhile, Hanif said he had no objections over the PHF's decision to do away with the selection committee.
"We have a lot of talent but we need to polish it. This requires a lot of work. I am keen on doing my job as the coach and I am confident that there will be a visible improvement, I have faith in our players," said Hanif.
Olympian Tahir Zaman also retained his place as the coaching consultant for the senior and junior hockey teams.