LAHORE Secretary Pakistan Hockey Federation Asif Bajwa has predicted surprises from the Pakistan team in the forthcoming World Cup to be held in India from February 28. Talking to TheNation ahead of the teams departure to India from here, the former Olympian said at this level of the sport there was little difference among top teams and Pakistan had prepared hard to match that level of the hockey being played in Australia, Germany, Spain and Holland. I am not making tall claims but the team will really surprise everyone. It was unfortunate that we did not get any opportunity to play Australia and Germany, but our matches with Holland recently has brought a new vigour in the team ranks, he said. I would say here that the team will not disappoint the nation, he added. He said if anything unexpected happened during the World Cup, India would be isolated in the sporting world because concerns have already been raised in the wake of the recent blasts there. New Zealand team has pulled out of the World Cup while Canada is still monitoring the situation and similar sentiments are also found in other nations. What happened at Liberty Chowk last March has left lasting impact and any such incident during the World Cup would damage India due to which it wont be able to host any event, he said. He added Pakistan would be having underdogs status in the World Cup but the only thing of concern is the atmosphere because the political situation between the two countries would amplify pressure on the team. The only assurance we were looking for is to secure surroundings during our team plays. We want the crowd to be sporting. They may not favour us but they should also not taunt us, he desired. Bajwa further said that the way Pakistan team has got wins down under, the future is bright. We cannot take a single match of the event lightly. Hopefully the win in the opening match against hosts and arch rivals India will set the tempo for the team. We will enter the field with a positive frame of mind and during the camp training special focus will be drawn on the team work rather than on an individual game, He said. The weak areas noticed during the recent events have been given special attention and the players are also dying to get to at least top four so that they wont have to again sit out of the Champions Trophy, he concluded. PM announces Rs10m for hockey team Prime Minister Syed Yousuf Raza Gillani, who is also patron-in-chief of the Pakistan Hockey Federation, has announced Rs 10 million for the World Cup-bound Pakistan hockey team and half a million rupees for Sohail Abbas in a meeting with the team and officials here at the State Guest House on Sunday. Prime Minister also announced five hundred million Rupees (50 crore) annual grant for the PHF and said that this grant will be approved in the budget. Gillani praised the efforts of President PHF Qasim Zia and Secretary Muhammad Asif Bajwa for the promotion of the game in country. He said that the cooperation of the government with the PHF will continue in the future. The Prime Minister also announced that all the players of the hockey team will get permanent job in their respective departments on better grades according to the rules. He also instructed the departments to form their hockey teams at the earliest. He gave the best wishes to the team for world cup and said that he hope that Pakistan team have the ability to win and bringing back the lost glory. President PHF Qasim Zia said, We are thankful to Prime Minister for the extreme support to the PHF and Pakistan hockey team. We hope that the PHF and the hockey team will produce better results in the future. Secretary PHF Muhammad Asif Bajwa presented the complete report of the PHF and performance of the teams. Prime Minister once again hailed the efforts of Qasim Zia and Muhammad Asif Bajwa after going through the reports.