With just a little over two months left for the Commonwealth Games in India, the Pakistan Hockey Federation has decided to send the team on a six-week training camp to the Netherlands.
Sources said the decision was taken on the advice of the national team's new coach Michel Van Den, who belongs to the Netherlands and coached the Dutch team in the World Cup held earlier in 2010 in India.
"The reason for holding the camp in Holland is that they are more training facilities and easy access to specialized coaching staff. Plus our players will regularly play practice games against selected teams," one source in the PHF said.
The appointment of Van Den has drawn criticism from some Olympians who believe the PHF is wasting funds on a experiment that has been tried before and not produced long lasting results.
Pakistan in the past has employed Dutch coaches, Hans Jorritsma and Rolent Oltmans.
They won the Champions Trophy and World Cup in 1994 when Jorritsma was coach but he left after developing differences with the federation during the year.
The Pakistan team has just finished a long training tour of Europe where they played tests against France, Spain and Netherlands and the source said this was all being done to ensure that Pakistan went to India well-prepared.
"The 12th position we finished in the World Cup on Indian soil still haunts all of us and we want to ensure this time we return from India with good results," he said.
The PHF is also trying to launch its own super league in Dubai in collaboration with the Dubai sports city in a bid to raise the profile of the sport.
PHF secretary Asif Bajwa has visited Dubai and held talks with the concerned officials for the organization of the league sometime in December.
"The concept is to invite players from other teams including India, South Korea, Malaysia, Australia and European countries to take part in the super league. There is a belief that hockey can be a successful financial venture in the emirates with a global television audience," one source said.
"The PHF and Dubai sports city believe there is lot of interest for hockey in the UAE specially if Pakistani and Indian players feature in the super league with foreigners," the source added.