ISLAMABAD- Defending champion Pakistan hockey team continued their brilliant show in the Asian Games men's hockey, as they thumped China 2-0 in the second Group-B match played at Seonhak Hockey Stadium, Incheon Sunday.

The match against China started at very high pace. Chinese goalkeeper and defenders played very well and denied the green shirts from taking early lead. Pakistan team should have scored at least two goals in the first two quarters, as it makes no sense of keeping the possession without taking advantage.

The green shirts managed to break the persistent deadlock in the 42nd minute, when Abdul Haseem Khan scored a beautiful field goal. The third quarter ended with green shirts leading 1-0. After 13 minutes, the second goal was converted in the 55th minute, as M Dilber scored the goal.

Talking to The Nation, head coach Shahnaz Sheikh said: “Although the green shirts did manage to win with utmost ease and comfort, yet I am not convinced with the score line, we should have scored at least half a dozen goals. “One thing is quite satisfactory for me and my entire supporting staff, that after two games, we didn't concede a single goal, a feat which is quite heartening, as in the recent past, the green shirts had scored very few goals and conceded lot more.”

“We dominated the entire four quarters of the match, but despite lime share of possession and enjoying complete dominance, our strikers failed to capitalize in the first two quarters, which is quite disturbing and I would give top attention on that particular issue and ensure no such repetitions in the next match, to be played against arch-rivals India on 25th,” he added.

“Now, we are at the top of the group with two wins, six points and scored 16 goals, while conceded not a single goal, while India is at No 2, with one win out of one and China is occupying the third spot with three points, losing one and also winning one. India has better goal scoring average, as they played just one match against Sri Lanka, winning it 8-0.”

“Now we have three days before the crunch match against India. We will prepare very hard for the next three days and try to win this particular match, as win in this match will boost the team’s morale. On September 27, we will play last group match against Oman. I am quite optimistic boys are in great spirits and hungry to win more and more. It is our request to entire nation to remember hockey team in their prayers,” Shahnaz concluded.

SQUASH PLAYERS BADLY BEATEN IN INDIVIDUAL CATEGORIES: It was not a good day for Pakistan squash in the individual category both in male and female categories, as last hope Nasir Iqbal was sent packing by Indian Sourav Ghosal in the quarterfinals 3-1, and Maria Toor was given a squash lesson by Hong Kong's Annie Au, as she beat Maria 3-0.

After Farhan Mehboob's exit, it was being expected Nasir would perform well against Indian, but Sourav had other ideas, as he wasted very little time to win the first game 11-6. Nasir bounced back in the second game to take it 11-9, but then Sourav fully dominated the third game, as he just lost two points to take the game 11-2 and took the fourth game 11-9 to book a place in the semi-finals.

In the females' quarterfinals, Maria Too Pakai was crushed by Annie Au, who wasted little time to register a thumping victory against Pakistan No 1 female squash player. Maria looked completely hapless against Annie, who won the first game 11-3, second 11-3, and third by 11-4.

These pathetic results proved the tall claims of Pakistan Squash Federation (PSF) secretary Group Captain Amir Nawaz false. Now instead of putting faith in old horses, the federation must hunt young birds and let them fly high with the provision of modern facilities and international exposure, as it is the only solution to Pakistan squash woes.

CHINESE THRASH PAKISTAN 3-0 IN TENNIS SINGLES: It was also a very bad day for Pakistan tennis team as they were beaten 3-0 by the mighty Chinese. Chinese chose one of the strongest teams packed with start-studied players. In the first singles, Chinese No 1 Zee Zhang beat Pakistan No 1 Aqeel Khan 2-0. Aee won the first set 6-1 and second 6-0. In the second singles, M Abid lost to Chinese No 2 Di Wu 2-0. Di won the first set 6-1 and second 6-2. In the doubles match, Abid and Aqeel took on the pair of Maoxin Gong and Zhe Li. Pakistan players gave tough time the Chinese pair before going down fighting 6-3, 6-4. Now the green shirts have been focusing on individual category, which commences from September 24.

PAKISTAN SHOOTERS DISAPPOINTING IN GAMES: Pakistan shooters had a disappointing day in the shooting competition of the Asian Games. Kalim Khan finished 28th in 10 meter Air Pistol with score of 570/600 after rounds of 94, 96, 92, 95, 96 and 97. Rashid Yunusmetov of Kazakhstan topped the qualification rounds by accumulating the score of 586/600 after firing the rounds of 98, 96, 98, 99, 98 and 97. In the men trap team competition, Pakistan’s team comprising of Aamir Iqbal, Usman Chand, Fakhar-ul-Islam Qureshi mustered 324 points to finish 10th in the 12 team contest.

ASIF FINISHES 8TH IN 100M BACKSTROKE HEATS: Pakistan's M Asif crashed out of the 100meter backstroke after finishing eighth and last in the Asian Games swimming. Asif, 25, clocked 1m04.53sec to finish at the bottom in heat three of the championship. India Sudha Madhu finished 7th six seconds head of Pakistanis swimmer. 19-year-old Merdan Atayev of Turkmenistan topped the heat with 58.50 seconds. Danill Bukin of Uzbekistan was second Gede Siman of Indonesia was third.