KARACHI: Quarter-finals proved to be a hurdle too high for Pakistani competitors at the Islamic Solidarity Games in Baku on Thursday.
Three wrestlers couldn’t progress beyond the last-eight in their respective weight categories, table tennis hope Rahila Kashif also failed to make it to the semi-finals after being blanked by a Turkish rival while tennis players Aqeel Khan and Mohammad Abid also crashed out.
Pakistan wrestler Mohsin Abbas lost 1-4 to Mahmoud Ahmad Dahshan in their 66kg Greco-Roman quarter-final, the Jordanian winning on technical superiority.
Mohsin’s compatriot Abdul Rehman lost by fall to Turkmenistan’s Shermet Permanov in their 75kg Greco-Roman quarter-final while there was a technical superiority (4-0) victory for Azerbaijan’s Sabah Shariati over Pakistan’s Musab Akram Khan in the 130kg Greco-Roman bout.
For Rahila too, the semi-finals proved a step too far. Turkey’s Melek Hu, the winner of last year’s European Championships, hammered her 11-1, 11-5, 11-8, 11-4 to send Rahila packing.
On the men’s side, Pakistan’s Mohammad Rameez was also ousted, losing 11-5, 11-5, 11-4, 11-7 to Iran’s Noshad Derokolaei Alamiyan in the last-16.
On the tennis courts in the Azeri capital, Pakistan number one Aqeel and his doubles partner Abid were no match for Malaysians Ahmed Abdul Razak and Mohammed Merzuki as they were hammered 6-0, 6-3.
In the women’s singles, Pakistan’s Ushna Suhail couldn’t make it past the second round after she was stopped 6-2, 7-5, 6-1 by Theiviya Selva-Rajoo of Malaysia.
There was no respite for Pakistan in taekwondo too as Mohammad Iqbal (men’s -63kg), Mohammad Faheem (men’s -74kg) and Yamna Siddiqi (women’s -62kg) all lost their last-16 clashes.
Pakistan’s track and field athletes didn’t shine either.
Fatima Hussain finished sixth out of sixth competitors with a throw of just 37.75 metres in the women’s javelin final, which was won by Turkey’s Eda Tugsuz courtesy a monster throw of 67.21 metres.
Maria Maratib fared slightly better than her compatriot in the women’s 100m hurdles final. She clocked a personal best of 15.10 seconds, finishing second-last in a race won by Benin’s Odile Ahouanwanou in 13.55.
Later in the long jump, Maria could only manage eighth place with a jump of 5.31 metres. Algeria’s Romaiss Tahani Belabiod won the event with a season’s best jump of 6.33 metres.
Pakistan’s other athlete in action on Thursday couldn’t even make the final. Running in the third heat of the women’s 400m, Aniqa Hashim clocked 1:02.22 — a time that saw her finish 13th among 17 competitors. Among the four beneath her, one did not finish while three were disqualified.
Published in Dawn, May 19th, 2017