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Sports

January 2, 2015

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PSA confines events to Islamabad

KARACHI: The recent wave of terrorism in Pakistan has taken its toll on squash as Professional Squash Association (PSA) has placed restrictions on the four $25,000 events it sanctioned to Pakistan for 2015.
“PSA has asked us to hold all four PSA-25 events only in Islamabad, but we are not going to do this,” Pakistan Squash Federation (PSF) secretary Amir Nawaz told ‘The News’.
He added that the recent wave of terrorism in the country compelled the PSA board to review their decision. “They don’t want to risk the security of foreign players. We had plans to host one event in Karachi, one in Lahore, one in Islamabad, and one in any other city,” added Amir.
He said PSF was not going to deprive other cities of hosting such big events. “Therefore, only two PSA-25 events will be held in Islamabad with foreign participation and two events of PSA-15 category will be held in other parts of the country. The first event of this year will be PSA-15 category in Karachi near February-end,” he added. It would be only for Pakistani-origin players and the sponsor of the event was Pakistan Navy, he said. PSA awarded Pakistan four $25,000 events in a year from 2015 onwards in November 2014. It was actually up-gradation of four tournaments of $15,000 allotted to Pakistan in a calendar year.
The successful hosting of a $25,000 event in October by PSF after a gap of six years, in which more than 20 players from eight countries participated, had convinced PSA that Pakistan was a safe country for foreign players.
It was this permission that did not allow Pakistan to host the last PSA event in the last quarter of 2014. “PSA told us not to organise the last $15,000 event of 2014. One reason was the award of the $25,000 event held in October and the other reason was the permission to hold four high-prized events next year,” said Amir.

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