Sohail Abbas is among 14 Pakistan hockey players who have signed up for the inaugural Hockey India League (HIL) to be held from January 5 to February 3.
Rated among the world’s best drag-flick exponents, Abbas has scored 349 goals, the highest number of international goals in the history of the game. The list includes 13 players from the Pakistan squad that finished seventh at the London Games this year.
The 14 players will be among the pool of about 80 overseas players in the HIL players auction to be held next month.
“We are delighted that the cream of Pakistan’s Olympic Games squad has made itself available to play in the Hockey India League,” HIL chairman Narinder Batra said. “We know that the Indian fans will love to watch these stars as part of the six teams that will vie for honours in the exciting tournament that will raise the profile of the sport.”
According to a Hockey India press release, Pakistan Hockey Federation President Qasim Zia and Secretary Muhammad Asif Bajwa said they were as happy as many as 14 players would be part of the HIL players auction.
“Our players are excited to be among those considered for the inaugural Hockey India League,” Mr. Bajwa said. “We are sure that the event will be a huge success, drawing the best talent from around the world.”
Pakistan players who will be part of the players’ auction:
Goalkeepers: Imran Shah and Imran Butt; Defenders: Muhammed Irfan, Sohail Abbas, Muhammad Imran, Syed Kashif Shah; Midfielders: Muhammad Rizwan Jr., Fareed Ahmed, Rashid Mehmood, Muhammad Tousiq; Forwards: Muhammad Rizwan Sr., Shafqat Rasool, Waqas Muhammad and Ali Shan.