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February 15, 2018

Advance wushutraining camp launched


February 15, 2018

KARACHI: Pakistan Wushu Federation (PWF) has held advance training camp for its budding fighters in Lahore to prepare them for the Asian Games slated to be held in Indonesia from August 18 to September 2.“Yes, we have begun advance training camp, carrying nine boys and four girls, in Lahore from February 1,” PWF president Malik Iftikhar told ‘The News’ on Wednesday in an interview.

“It is not yet known when proper preparations for the Asiad under the government will begin. But keeping in view our stature in the discipline we thought that it would be important to at least keep our cream together. We have not yet even given it name of a camp,” Malik said.

He explained that it was a sort of training whose basic purpose is if national camp gets delayed due to any reason then at least they would have worked on their fighters. “The federation itself is meeting all the expenses. When state will give us green signal about a proper camp then we will invite all those fighters who had been shortlisted through trials,” Malik informed. He said that the country’s key fighter Maaz Khan was also part of the Lahore’s exercise.

Pakistan has a golden history in the Asian Games as the country has been able to grab medal in the last three editions on the trot.Malik said that he also hoped that the state would provide his lot a couple of months training opportunity in Iran ahead of the Asian Games in which Pakistan is expected to participate in 28 disciplines.

“I have talked to the Pakistan Sports Board (PSB) and it has agreed. If we get the training tour it will be of cardinal importance for our fighters as they will get quality training for the Asian Games,” the official said.

He said that Pakistan would also send some of its top crop to Iran next month to feature in the 2nd Peace Wushu Championship to be held in Zahedan province from March 3-6.“As there is a financial issue so we will try to ensure participation of our few selected fighters in Iran’s tournament. In the first edition of this event held last year we had sent 15 girls and 13 of them had claimed medals. It was purely for female that time. Now it will be for both the genders,” Malik informed.

Malik, who himself is a qualified coach, said that during stay in Iran Pakistani fighters would feature in several events. He said that India is set to send its wushu squad to China in April and it will undergo training there till the Asiad.

“Iran has also started its preparations for the continental event,” he said.About Pakistan’s strength in wushu, Malik said that barring Iran, Pakistan has been prolific against the nations of South Asia, Central Asia and West Asia. He said that City Government Lahore was also going to organise South Asian Open International Wushu tournament from March 10-15 in Lahore. “Uzbekistan, Afghanistan, Ukraine, Sri Lanka and Tanzania have already confirmed for the competitions, Malik added.

“It would be a good opportunity for our lot to get some match practice in this event,” he said. He said this time most of the fighters Pakistan would field in the Asian Games would be new.“We have only Maaz who has a load of experience while the rest are young but highly talented,” Malik conceded. Syed Maratab Ali Shah had claimed bronze for Pakistan in 2006 Doha and 2014 Incheon Asian Games while Ijaz Ahmed had lifted silver in the 2010 Guangzhou Asian Games.

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