ISLAMABAD: In-form Farhan Mehboob will face Israr Ahmed in the final of Pakistan Squash Circuit-I men’s event while sisters Madina Zafar and Faiza Zafar will face off in the women’s final here at the Mushaf Squash Complex on Sunday.
The PSA recognized mens event carries a handsome prizemony of US$10,000 while the women’s event has US$5000 in prizemoney.
In the first semifinal on Saturday, which turned out to be one-sided affair, Farhan Mehboob eased past Farhan Zaman 3-0. But the other semifinal was a nerve wrecking five game thriller, which lasted for over one hour in which Israr finally emerged a winner against Ammad Fareed.
Zafar sisters to clash in women’s final
Farhan brushed aside his namesake in straight games in 36 minutes. The experienced Farhan Mehboob dominated his opponent from the start of the match and won the first game 11-8. The second game was closely fought but Farhan won it as well by 11-9. The third game, though, was a nail-biter but and young Farhan Zaman displayed his talent with some fine shots. Farhan Mehboob, however, kept his nerves to win it 13-11 and booked his place in the final of the championship.
“I am very happy about reaching the final and am confident about winning it tomorrow,” a Jubilant Farhan told Dawn. “My next targets are the championships in Lahore and Karachi.”
“Today, instead of an aggressive approach, I opted for routine game, keeping my opponent engaged in rallies and long game, forcing him to make errors,” he said.
In the second semifinal lsrar had to use all his expertise and energy to beat defeated Ammad who proved a handful for him. Ammad won the first game 11-8 but Israr came back in the match by winning the second game 11-5.
In the third game, Ammad found his feet again and displayed superb strokeplay to easily win the game 11-4. The fourth game proved a thriller in which Israr survived four match points and took it to the end, winning 13-11. Fifth and final game was also won by Israr with the game score 11/9 earning him a place in the final. This exciting match, eagerly witnessed by the spectators, lasted for over one hour.
In the women’s semifinal, Madina Zafar swept aside Zoya Khalid in straight games with scores of 11-9, 11-7 and 11-7 in less than twenty minutes.
The second semifinal was amore exciting affair, played between Faiza Zafar and Amna Fayyaz. Though Amna won the first game, Faiza recovered brilliantly, denying any chance to her opponent in the next three games and winning the match in 26 minutes with scores being 5-11, 11-8, 11-9, 11-5. This victory set her up for a showdown against her sister Madina Zafar in the final.
Published in Dawn, May 13th, 2018