Shahnaz Sheikh - Legends of Hockey
Written by PHF   

There cannot be two opinions about the fact that Shahnaz was one of the most crafty of hockey players that Pakistan has so far produced. 

At the same time he also was an explosive player who stood tall among his generation and would have easily walked into any side in the world.


Being given a feminine name, that was the only soft thing about him as he was a marauder on the left wing, and was an inner to Samiullah in the later part of his career he ran shivers down the spine of opposition defenses.

To them he was nemesis, virtually unstoppable on his day and a handful on all others.

In early 70's he was the only really mobile Pakistani forward but the mid 70'2 he had become such a force that his absence from the field through injury was a major cause of the Green shirts narrowly losing two prestige assignments: the '75 World Cup final against India at Kuala Lumpur and the '76 Montreal Olympics against Australia in the Semis. On both occasions, Pakistan went down 2-1 on controversial circumstances.



The good thing about shahnaz seemed to have good hockey head over his shoulders, that at least were one's impression of him after his rather brief stint coach of the Pakistan Junior team, which in his supervision won the Junior Asia Cup. One had great hopes that once he got the job with senior team he would do well for Pakistan hockey.

Sadly, those expectations remained unfulfilled when in his tenure as coach under Zaka in 1998-99 and then in his steam as manager during the '99 Asian Cup one found that he lack in courage, conviction and imagination to make a meaningful contribution.