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September 17, 2019

Saadi to train in Turkey ahead of Moscow Karate-1 Premier League

Sports

September 17, 2019

KARACHI: Pakistan’s premier karateka and the sole 2020 Olympics hope Saadi Abbas plans to undergo a few days training in Turkey before featuring in the Karate-1 Premier League to be held in Moscow from October 4-6.

“I had planned to visit Turkey for a week-long training ahead of the Moscow event but it seems that I would be able now to spend only four or five days in Turkey before proceeding to Moscow,” Saadi told ‘The News’ from Dubai on Monday.

Saadi said that he could not feature in the Chile event because of shortage of time. Chile hosts Karate-1 Series A from September 20-22. “I had no time even to submit papers for visa as I was very busy so I am unable to go there and now my target is the Moscow event,” the US Open champion said.

He said that he had been training hard in Dubai for his assignment in Russia. “I have started vigorous training here in Dubai along with the UAE national team and I think it will help me a lot,” the fighter said.

Saadi, who is currently ranked 18th in the Olympics ranking, is expected to jump in ranking in the next few days following his solid performance in the Karate-1 Premier League in Tokyo early this month.

Saadi had a golden start to his journey in Tokyo when he overcame Garibovic Enes of Croatia 1-0 in the -75 kilogramme first round fight. He then edged past Bulut Enes of Turkey convincingly 4-0 to set fight with the world’s best fighter Thomas Scot of the United States who stands at No5 in the Olympic rankings. Saadi made a great start against Scot and at one stage was leading 2-0. But Scot was lucky to land a kick in the right area of his Pakistani opponent’s body that tilted the pendulum in favour of the American.

Saadi needs to make a place in top five and he is confident he can do that. He has been featuring in the Olympic qualifiers for the last few months. He has been extended good support by Pakistan Olympic Association (POA) and corporate sector in his Olympic bid.

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