Sunday January 16, 2022

Former champions lament Pakistan’s poor show at Asian Championship

December 06, 2021

KARACHI: Former champions on Sunday criticised Pakistan’s poor performance at the the Asian Team Squash Championships in Malaysia.

Pakistan finished 5th after losing to India and Japan in the first round, which happened for the first time with the 15-time winners of the championship. Pakistan lost for the first time to India in a group match and then to Japan to finish outside the top 4 in the championships.

“This never happened in our era. Pakistan ruled the squash world for 30 years,” said former champion Jahangir Khan in a tweet. “Now we touched this low even at Asian level,” he said.

Jansher Khan, another former champion, said Pakistan’s defeats to India and Japan were very painful. It seems squash cannot grow in Pakistan now, he added.

Former world champion Qamar Zaman termed the unavailability of good coaches the reason behind the team’s failure. “Though our team did not have caliber to reach the finals, lack of good coaching system is one of the reasons for their failure to finish among the top four,” said Qamar while talking to ‘The News.

He added that the federation did not consult him or he would have suggested them to send promising junior players for this championship.

“If juniors were sent, we could have avoided this humiliating finish. The juniors would have benefited from participating in this big event,” reasoned Qamar.

Pakistan Squash Federation (PSF) is likely to take strict action against the national team for their poor show.

“The players’ non-serious conduct let Pakistan down at Asian level, which is very serious and the players have to explain it,” said a source while talking to ‘ The News’.

He added that the players did not train citing different excuses while the federation could not set up any training camp before the event.

“The federation spent around 4 million rupees to prepare the team and participate in this prestigious championship,” said the source.

The source added that the federation was expecting Pakistan’s team to at least reach the finals.