Interview with Waseem Ahmed
Q: When and where did you born?
A: I was born on 10thApril 1977 in Vehari, Pakistan.
Q: Why did you start playing hockey?
A: My elder brother plays hockey. So, I thought that I should also play hockey.
Q: What is your qualification background?
A: I did my Matriculation from Govt. High School Vehari. I completed my graduation from Govt. College Lahore. I am a Ravian.
Q: When were you selected for hockey?
A: When I was selected for junior hockey team in 1994, I was in 3rd year. I played in 1st year inter board under 13 and under 14 from Punjab. In 1996, I was selected for senior hockey team. In 2004, I was captain of hockey team. After a year, Sohail Abbas and me announced our retirement. In 2006, I played Champions Trophy and World Cup. Again, I was out from the team for some reasons because I had some strive with board. I played hockey league in Holland during 2006 to 2009. In 2013, I came back in team and still playing now. In 1997, there were only two names of Pakistani players in junior world eleven team in which Waseem Ahmad name was also included. In 1999, there were names of Waseem Ahmad and Sohail Abbas in senior world eleven team. I got nominated for player of the year in 2003 to 2004 for 3 years. I got “Tamgha-e-Imtiaz” in 2013. I was recommended as high performance for coach under FIH in 2013 in Australia. I played and did coaching as well in Australia. Played league in Malaysia, Hong Kong and India. When I played league in India, we were known as Rebel League. From 2004 to 2010, played hockey in Holland. I played league 2002 and 2003 in Germany. I have been playing since last a few years in Malaysia. There is a contract of league in Australia in 2014, 2015 and 2016.
Q: How many international matches did you play?
A: I played 410 international matches. I was highest cap player of Pakistan and 3rd highest cap player in international matches.
Q: How did you take start of your game?
0A: I started my game as a left scout. Then I played center half and then I played left in. In my last two tournaments, I also played full back in which Akhtar rasool helped us.
Q: What is the difference between modern hockey and old hockey?
A: There have been many changes. Rule of off side has totally changed due to which game has been played fast now. Defenders have to run more.
Q: Our players are good in their physique and good in athlete, but we lose our winning spirit?
A: Things should be improved. We improve to too much extent, but our players improve physically rather than their playing skill. Old players were more talented and they played the game with game, but today’s player cannot play without being a good athlete.
Q: Our domestic hockey is not too good and not of good quality. Explain.
A: There are many changes in the rules of the hockey. It is necessary for every player to be fit. Trainers are required for it. Today, the main issue is physical trainer is not available to treat the injuries of the players. You can see when Australian players or British players get injured, they are treated with highly qualified trainers. However, if the player gets injured in our country, career of player comes to an end because there are no sports medicines and insurance in our country. As a result, every player wants to be a part of national team through which he can go out of country to play league.
Q: Which more Olympics did you play?
A: I participated in three Olympics. I played in Sydney (2004), London (2012) and Ethen’s (1998).
Q: How many World Cup did you play?
A: I played World Cup in 2002, 2006 and 2010.
Q: Which are your memorable matches?
A: First, senior champions trophy in which we defeated India in semifinals and played finals. Another is Olympic game in which we defeated Holland Team which was one of the strong team at that time and then we played semifinal with Korea.
Q: Why does Korea always defeat us?
A: Game plan and strategy are very important in hockey. When our team plays, there is lack of strategy because our coaches are not very strong. If coaches are strong, they can change an average player into a good player.
Q: Do we not pay our coaches or we don’t have any structure?
A: Actually, our structure is very weak because our young players are not trained and our coaches are also not talented.
Q: How can we change this structure or bring improvement in our system?
A: Funds should be given and those players should be included in the team who are talented and already playing hockey for example Sohail Abbas.
Q: Are there any incentives in hockey?
A: There are not such incentives because there is no such structure on local level. There is only a single option that they play in national team and qualify for league. In early days, there was hockey Team of every department. So, every player was employed. But now, only Wapda Team has been left which is a proper team and plays on contract. Govt. should offer jobs to hockey player.
Q: What should be done for hockey betterment on urgent basis?
A: Like India, we should also have to make our league. Many players are being trained through league. League has many advantages e.g. player can earn money through league, you can easily select top players from 150 players for national team. India was also kicked out from the Olympics, but they recovered themselves. We should also do so.
Q: Name your five most favorite players of hockey.
A: Manzoor junior because he won every title as captain. And another four are top players of the team.
Q: What do you love to eat?
A: I love to eat Saag, Daal Chawal and continental and if there is no continental, I eat pizza otherwise I love continental.
Q: Who is your favorite actor?
A: I love Naseer-ud-Din Shah and Shaan from Pakistan.
Q: Which films do you prefer?
A: I watch Lollywood, Hollywood and Bollywood movies.
Q: Which type of music do you prefer?
Q: Which color do you love?
A: I love green and white.
Q: What will you like to advice young players?
A: They should work hard and play hockey with their own interest. They should play hockey with enjoyment and interest instead of taking it as professionally.
Q: What do say about women’s hockey?
A: It should must be developed because supporting culture should be promoted in Pakistan.
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