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The Death of Sports in Pakistan

The angel of death has not yet kissed the Pakistani sports, but the sports structure is surely on the verge of collapse. It was one shock after another and one humiliating defeat after another that has brought Pakistani sports on the brink of death. Let's start with the most favorite sports of Pakistan: cricket. Pakistanis are mad about cricket and it is the de facto national sport of Pakistan. The national cricket team of Pakistan has been embroiled in a major controversy after suffering one of its worst defeats ever in Australia. Pakistan lost all matches of the one-day series, test-series and the 20/20 play-up.

The reasons behind this shameful defeat were many. The major one being the rift in the team ranks. This rift reached magnanimous proportions and ultimately resulted in the complete failure of the Green Shirts in Australia. There were reports of players' infighting and many issued public statements defaming their adversaries. The controversy reached epic proportions when the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) entered the fray and imposed life bans on two of the most senior cricketers in the team: Muhammad Yousuf and Younis Khan; both have captained the Green Shirts during their cricketing career. PCB also imposed heavy fines and one-year bans on other star players, citing gross misconduct and infighting.

The scurry decision of PCB has muddled the future of cricket in Pakistan. There has been a major outcry on these bans with former cricketers blasting the PCB for its hasty decisions. PCB has not budged from its decision and has even decided to deduct match fees of the fined players. The controversy is expected to last longer as some players might opt for litigation against the PCB.

As if the cricket setback was not enough, The Pakistani hockey team has decided to retire en masse after clinching the last position in the Hockey World Cup that was held in India. They lost all of their matches except with Spain, a first in the hockey history of Pakistan. Hockey is the national game of Pakistan and the country has won three world cups -- the last one in 1994.

The sports structure of Pakistan has come tumbling down after these defeats and there is a gloom in the sports circles of Pakistan. Sports are heavily politicized in Pakistan and the usual mudslinging has started after this fiasco. There will be no glimmer of hope for the Pakistani sports if things remain the same. The gloom is there but there are greater chances of it turning into a doom if serious steps are not taken immediately.

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