Hockey is Pakistan’s national sport but other sports are always under the spot light. On Friday, Mehwish Hayat along with her brother paid a surprise visit to the Abdul Sattar Hockey Stadium to watch the ongoing matches of the National Hockey Championship.
Recipient of Tamgha e Imtiaz Mehwish Hayat was welcomed by Hanif Khan, Iftekhar Saeed, and Haider Hussain, who briefed her about the championship.
Hayat met the players and asked if they need any help or support. Her visit was appreciated by the players. Former captain of Pakistan’s hockey team suggested that celebrities should give same importance to the hockey players like cricketers.
“We only expect you to promote hockey as ambassadors. When you do a show, invite some hockey players there as well just like you invite Kamran Akmal or Mohammad Aamir,” Rehan Butt suggested.
Mehwish agreed and replied,
“We talk a lot about cricket. We must realize that we have won more titles in hockey than in cricket. We have won four World Cups and three Olympic titles,”
Hayat futher said,
“We are too much focused on cricket. Hockey needs our focus as well.”
Multi award winner Mehwish was well informed about hockey’s decline and its present status,
“Once we were number one in hockey, but now we are at our lowest. We are now even struggling to qualify for the Olympics. I believe that government must take drastic steps to revive hockey in Pakistan,” she said.
Celebrities have a great number of followers, Hayat said that they should promote the neglected sports by highlighting the achievements on their respective forums.
“Hockey being our national sport needs our attention. We all need to come together to support hockey.”
She added that media coverage and social media attention plays an important role to help and grow sports.
“I am also surprised that the national tournament of hockey is not getting broadcast live anywhere. How can we expect games to achieve glory without live broadcast? We need to work to save the national sport,” she said.
Her visit was a great gesture to uplift the spirits of the hockey players. She grabbed a hockey stick and tried her skills on the ground.