Srinagar: Pakistan hockey team is currently in India for Asian Champions Trophy and they have roped in Indian physio Rajakamal for the services during the competition as its own physio couldn’t travel due to Visa issues.
“They got in touch with me just one day before their first match,” Rajakamal told reporters after Pakistan’s 1-1 draw against Korea Republic on Friday.
However, there has been little time for him to ease into his job. Pakistan’s opener – which they lost 3-1 to Malaysia – finished around 8pm local time, while his treatments carried on well past midnight.
Rajakamal has also worked for the past three seasons with the Tamil Nadu Premier League cricket team Nellai Royal Kings.
“I speak with them in English, we translate for each other and communicate,” Rajakamal was quoted by ESPN. “They have all made me feel welcome here, it’s a very comfortable atmosphere.”
The Chennai native, who has been a sports physio since 2016, said that there will be no split loyalties on August 9, when India take on Pakistan.
“I’ll always be Indian, but on the day of the match, I’m only thinking about players coming through the game without any injuries,” he said.
Muhammad Saqlain, Pakistan’s coach here in the absence of chief coach Shahnaz Sheikh, was full of praise for Rajakamal. “He is incredible at his job, world-class,” he said.
Saqlain called Rajakamal a ‘godsend’, saying that his team were lucky to have found him at short notice.