by Faizan Lakhani
KARACHI: The FIFA ban on Pakistan Football Federation may have been overturned and Football activities for men’s team are resumed, but country’s women football team players are still in oblivion with no literal hope.
Things, as explained by Pakistan Women team’s captain Hajra Khan, are so worse that the officials at PFF are even not aware of any calendar events of Pakistan’s women football team.
“Asian Games 2018 are just for months from now but we haven’t heard anything from the federation on this. We haven’t heard about any training plans for the event,” Hajra told Geo.tv in an exclusive chat.
And to add insult to the injury, Hajra received a call from one of the representatives from PFF for a promotional video shoot – for men’s football event.
When she questioned the official about training and events, the answer she got was shocking.
“I recently spoke to a PFF official when I got a call from them for a promo shoot. When I asked about women activities I was told that there is no international activity for Pakistan women team this year. I actually reminded them that we have Asian Games and SAF games scheduled this year,” Hajra said.
According to Hajra, Pakistan women footballers have not played any top level football since November 2014 when the country hosted South Asian Women Football Championship in Islamabad.
“The last event we played was in November 2014 and since then there has been no activity of any sort other than some private tournaments but nothing from the federation yet,” she rued.
“We want PFF to let us know or confirm our participation for Asian games, girls are eager to play. The team we are going to get this time is good team, as some former players are back and there are some good young players. Now I suggest PFF to take it seriously,” Harja highlighted.
The country’s most successful female footballer says that since FIFA’s ban was overturned, there have been activities for men footballers but female footballers are being ignored continuously.
And since there was no activity, the many of the Football players have opted for other sports because they wanted to play.
“You can’t take sports away from an athlete,” she said.
But Hajra hasn’t gone away from Football and to keep herself fit for the game, she is now playing night football matches in Islamabad.
It is ten years that she has been playing Football, but in that period she hasn’t seen any big change.
“I am playing football for 10 years, when I started playing we had to train on cricket pitches, and today if I see ten years back it is still the same or even worse because the system has gone the drain,” she lamented.
“PFF is the official federation and they must do something about seriously,” she demanded from Pakistan Football Federation while adding that without support from the top body, players and game can’t grow.