Michel has not refused to coach Pak hockey team despite security concerns: Asif Bajwa

January 20th, 2011 - 4:42 pm ICT by ANI  

Lahore, Jan 20(ANI): Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF) Secretary Asif Bajwa has claimed that while coach Michel van den Heuvel has expressed his ’security concerns’ in Pakistan, he has not refused to continue his assignment with the national team.

Talking to reporters after arriving from Malaysia, where Pakistan earned two seats in the Asian Hockey Federation (AHF) elections, Bajwa said Michel would be in Faisalabad next month to watch matches of the national championship, and that the PHF would try to convince him about the security during his stay.

Bajwa also expressed the hope that the Dutch official would continue his association with the national team till the London Olympics, the Dawn reports.

Heuvel, who had taken time off from Pakistan for a winter break, had startled all by saying last week that he had decided not to return to the country until his ’security concerns’ were addressed.

“I have not made up my mind as yet whether to return to Pakistan but I have serious issues with the security. And I will not return until my concerns are addressed,” he was quoted, as saying.

The security situation in Pakistan had become a bigger worry after the assassination of Punjab Governor Salman Taseer last week, said the coach, adding that he would, however, be happy to continue if the Pakistan Hockey Federation held the team’s training camps in the Netherlands and at other neutral venues.

“I have made my stance clear to them- now the PHF has to decide what to do,” Heuvel had categorically stated. (ANI)

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