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King Khan lashes out at Pakistan slump


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Squash legend Jahangir Khan – APP (File Photo)

KARACHI: Squash legend Jahangir Khan lashed out at the sport's authorities in Pakistan on Thursday calling on them to quit after the team slid to their worst-ever performance in the World Squash Championships.

The six-time champions lost to Malaysia and Denmark in the group stages of the event in Padeborn, Germany, marking the first time they have failed to clear the first round since its inception in 1967.

“It's shameful to see Pakistan failing to clear the first round,” Khan told AFP. “I think all those who are running the game in the country are not competent of that and professionals should come and build a proper set-up.”

Pakistan ruled the game through Khan and his contemporary Jansher Khan in the 1980s and 1990s, with Jahangir winning a world record ten British open titles and six world opens, while Jansher's notched eight world and six British titles.

But since Jahangir Khan's retirement after Pakistan's last world team title in 1993, there has been a gradual slide, with the team finishing a lowly 12th in 1999.

“After failing to get into the top 16 this time we will finish at our worst but I don't see any drastic measures taken,” said Khan, also a former World Squash Federation president.

Khan said Pakistan's squash federation the players deserved equal blame.

“I must say that all those who are running the game in Pakistan must leave their posts because they lack sincerity and planning,” he said.

Comments (5) Closed

sohail bokhari Aug 26, 2011 09:15am
The players are to be blamed. Jansher Khan, Qamar Zaman and few others have tried to train and promote their sons/close relatives in the past which has killed the merit. The present lot of players don't practice hard enough, and therefore lack stamina for a full 5 games match at an international level. For this no body can help them except themselves. The competition has now grown therefore the young players need to understand that in order to be counted in top 5, routine effort will not take them anywhere. They should stop bickering and indulge in politics, take private tips from our legends and set a goal to achieve. Federation should honestly groom 10 to 15 promising players (8-10 yrs)for future and throw these good for nothing so called champions who are not fit to play beyond national level.
Anjum Q Aug 26, 2011 09:10pm
I am of the opinion that our players need to buckle up and do their best instead of falling victims to the political set up.... They must only concentrate on their game abd learn from their mistakes. They too are the heroes of our nation as our arm forces are and they too have a great responsibility on their shoulders to make their Country Pakistan known and respected through out the world .... Pakistan Zinda baad
zeeshan khan Aug 27, 2011 02:16am
The federation dont know the squash .how can some airforce person can run the federation .the players they r the same playing from 10 or 12 years take every facilities every thing after few years there will b in america or somewhere else for making there money ...there is a lot of talent in pakistan but now the pakistan squash is just for two province n.w.f.p and punjab ...they dont knw the boys from sindh or balochistan in every camp and everywhere just from punjab or peshawer they should give chance to others ...some new talent ...amir atlas and all the players they just making the money nothing else plzzzz now do selection on merit pick some juniors ...and make them like jahangir khan or jahangir khan ....plzzz
Adil Mulki Aug 27, 2011 08:50am
Lack of access to facilities and lack of determination are the two main causes behind Pakistan's fall from grace in Squash. Squash, unlike cricket can not be played on the streets. It needs proper infrastructure. Even in a big city like Karachi, there are very few courts available to the average citizen. Most of the courts are located at private clubs with astronomical membership fees well beyond the common man's reach. Last I checked, the open air public courts at KMC Sports facilities at Kashmir road were in a dilapidated condition, with the plaster on all walls falling off. To add insult to injury, there are around three or four world class squash courts ready for action at the National Sports Training and Coaching Center but they have not been inaugurated due to a tussle between the Pakistan Sports Board and Pakistan Squash Federation. These courts have been gathering dust for over three years. Pakistan is a poor nation and when hard earned money is spent on creating such world class infrastructure but the same is not made use of, but instead chosen to rot over ages, falling from grace in sports is just the tip of the iceberg.
Zia R Qureshi Aug 28, 2011 05:30am
Pakistan has great talent in squash which it had proved in past and can always prove it in future. The current issue is lack of resources and lack of focus. If legends Khan's like Jehangir and Jansher devote part of their time for future generations Pakistan can always shine. They need to commit to this game and God willingly they can achive back their pride and success. Lots of luv and best wishes from New York !