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ISALMABAD: Over 150 shuttlers from all four provinces as well as AJK, Gilgit-Baltistan, FATA and of affiliated departments will be seen in action in the National Ranking Badminton Tournament which is set to commence from Friday here at the Pakistan Sports Complex.

The three-day event will be held at random hall of the sports complex. Addressing a press conference, Secretary Pakistan Badminton Federation Chaudhry Wajid Ali and former international player, said that Islamabad Badminton Association will host the event. He said that players will participate in men singles, women singles, men doubles and women doubles.

Raja Azhar Mahmood will be serving as referee and he would be assisted by Syed Muhammad Sayid and Mujahid Hussain Khan.

Speaking to Dawn later in the day, Wajid said that he is expecting increase in number of participating players. “I guess more than two hundred players will participate in this championship,” he said. “Pakistan has a lot of potential in badminton, but the federation has been facing shortage of funding.

“Could you believe, government provide us only Rs 1.8 million annual grant for running the federation affairs, including holding of training camps, national championships, focusing on senior and juniors players etc while participation in the international events is also a big challenge for us,” he said.

“But despite all these hardship, the performance of the Pakistani players is very satisfactory,” added Wajid.

He said that federation has plans to organize the National Juniors Championship in Lahore in August, while a national ranking tournament will also be organized in Lahore in October. The federation will also host an international badminton series in December.

Published in Dawn, April 27th, 2018