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April 25, 2020

SAG wrestling, squash medallists receive cash awards

Sports

April 25, 2020

KARACHI: Pakistan Sports Board (PSB) on Friday gave away prize money to players of wrestling and squash who earned medals in the 13th South Asian Games in Nepal last December.

The prize money as per established formula was handed over to the players of the two most important disciplines in two sessions in Islamabad. The federal minister for Inter-Provincial Coordination (IPC) Dr Fehmida Mirza handed over the cash awards. The gold medallists were given Rs 1 million each, the silver medallists got Rs 500,000 each while the bronze medallists received cheques of Rs 250,000 each.

Pakistan had got three gold and four silver medals in wrestling. The gold medallists grapplers are the country’s star wrestler and two-time beach wrestling world champion Mohammad Inam, the 2018 Argentina Youth Olympics bronze medallist Inayatullah and Abdul Rehman, while Mohammad Bilal, Umair Ahmed, Tayyab Raza and Zaman Anwar had claimed silver medals in wrestling.

Similarly, Pakistan had got team event squash gold. The team comprised Tayyab Aslam, Farhan Mehboob, Asim Khan and Ammad Fareed. All the four players of the team got Rs 1 million each.

Similarly, Tayyab Raza had also clinched men’s singles squash gold and also claimed Rs 1 million. Highly experienced squash player Farhan Mehboob collected a cheque of Rs 250,000 for securing men’s singles squash bronze in Nepal.

This was just the start as the Board plans to hand over cash awards to the remaining medallists of the biennial event. Pakistan had claimed 32 gold, 41 silver and 60 bronze in the South Asian Games.

Speaking on the occasion, Dr Fehmida Mirza congratulated the athletes on winning medals in the region’s major extravaganza. She said that although the state wanted a national level ceremony by inviting the Prime Minister Imran Khan as chief guest but due to current COVID-19 pandemic the cash awards were distributed among the players by inviting them in small batches, said the minister who is also the president of Pakistan Sports Board (PSB).

The Secretary Generals of wrestling and squash federations also appreciated the stance of the state to honour the athletes. They also requested the minister of IPC to provide funds to the federations.

Meanwhile, a senior official of the PSB told ‘The News’ that he is in contact with the federations and all effort will be made to distribute the cheques among all medallists in the near future.

“The next two days are off and from Monday we will chalk out a strategy on how to give away cash prizes to the medallists. It may be either given to them by inviting them to Islamabad or cheques may be forwarded to them through their federations. We will complete the process by obeying state order to keep social distancing during the pressing time of COVID-19,” he said.