Nowadays nations are judged on the playgrounds. Games and sports play a very important part of the scheme of keep-fit. Play is, indeed, an instinctive activity. All, the young and the old take part or enjoy games. Pakistanées are sports loving people as it is evident from a large number of T.V. watchers and huge crowds of fans that turn up to witness the matches and competitions.
No, where the saying ‘catch them young’ applies so well as in the field of sports and games. As such great importance is to be given to them in the field exercises. Schools are the nurseries where they should start; but unfortunately, games are neglected at the school level; the case of colleges is worse. In western countries, they catch there young. Regular tournaments and competitions are held around the year. It is not so in our country. In spite of all these handicaps, Pakistanis have produced great players and sportsmen. Most of the great players have sprung from home practice. Children and young men are seen playing games on roads and streets in view of paucity of playgrounds. Games and sports are still to be popularized in villages and urban areas. Little attention is paid to the local tournaments and sports meets that inspire a sense of competition.
Notwithstanding the lack of organization and official encouragement, Pakistan has won great laurels on the grounds, particularly in Hockey and Cricket. Hockey may be called our national game. We had the honor of being world champions in the world Olympics, Asia, and the World Hockey Cup. The stick magicians like Anwar, Islah, Kiddi, Hanif, Sami-Ullah, Asim, Sardar, and Salman have brought great honor and fame to the country. Pakistani hockey teams have been second to none.
Then comes cricket, the craze for the youngsters. Pakistan came up on the cricket map in 1948 after defeating England and was awarded test status. Our cricket Boys have humbled practically all the test-sides of the world. To crown, the victories, our lifting of the Cricket World Cup in 1992 was a new feather in our cap. The cricket wizards like Hanif. Fazal, Asif Iqbal, Wasim Bari, Imran Khan, Miandad, Waqar Younus, Wasim Akram, and Imzimamul Haq are well-known figures all over the world. They have distributed great largess to the spectators.
We are the undisputed masters in the World Squash. The Hashim Khan family has been the ruling world champions for decades. We take off our hats to all the great sportsmen. They are like our roaming ambassadors for they have kept our flag high.
In the track events and athletics, our young men have not fared so well due to lack of proper training and patronize. Our Armymen have put a good show in a hurdle race, putting – the – shot and long jump. Wrestling and Boxing have been our chief medal-winning events. In spite of being a young country Pakistan’s young men have humbled many old giants and have always hit the headlines.
To quote the famous words of the Quaid-e-Azam from his speech in First Pak Olympics. “Remember, one cannot always win. It is the efforts and the spirit behind the efforts that count.”
We do not lack in the spirit and the efforts. Indeed, nowadays nations are Judged on the playgrounds. Our countrymen have justified trust.