JAKARTA: Record eight-time champions Pakistan began their quest for another Asian Games hockey gold with a 10-0 hammering of Thailand here on Monday.
Riding on a hat-trick by Atiq Arshad here at the Gelora Bung Karno Sports Complex, Pakistan were imperious in their opening Pool ‘B’ match.
Atiq’s brother Tauseeq, Mohammad Irfan and Abu Bakr all scored twice each while Mubashar Ali scored the other goal.
Tauseeq converted a penalty corner to set Pakistan on their way in the last minute of the first quarter before they hit top gear in the second quarter.
Another penalty corner conversion, this time by Irfan, made it 2-0 in the 22nd minute before Atiq got his first a minute later with Irfan getting a second in the 30th.
Mubashar made it 5-0 in the 33rd from a penalty corner before Atiq hit is second five minutes later. Abu Bakr, from a penalty corner, and Atiq scored in the space of two minutes to make it 8-0 by the 43rd.
Abu Bakr got his second after another penalty corner conversion in the 49th and Tauseeq rounded off the scoring a minute later for Pakistan who next play Oman on Wednesday.
Oman went down 2-1 to Bangladesh in their opening match while in the day’s other Pool ‘B’ match, Malaysia mauled Kazakhstan 16-2 to take top spot in the section.
MONGOLIA CRUSHED IN VOLLEYBALL
There was victory in another team sport for Pakistan on Monday as the volleyball team won their Group ‘B’ opener, crushing Mongolia 3-0 (25-16, 25-19, 25-14).
With Asif Nadeem and Sheraz in top form, Pakistan attacked from the start with 13 spikes seeing them coast through the 21-minute first set.
Mongolia tried to get back into the game, taking a 11-6 lead at one stage of the second set but Pakistan fought back and gained a 15-13 advantage, only to be pegged back again to 17-17 before regaining their nerve and taking the set. They then raced away to victory in the third after taking an 8-1 lead early on.
Just like in the hockey and volleyball events, Pakistan are also placed in Group ‘B’ of the kabaddi event but having opened their campaign with a thumping victory over Malaysia in the opener the other day, they succumbed to a 20-36 defeat to Iran in their second match.
The handball team also tasted defeat on Monday, going down to Chinese Taipei 32-36 in their opening match in the ninth to 13th place classification group. It was the third straight reverse for the team.
NO VICTORY IN EIGHT
The trend of losses continued in the tennis courts where Pakistan were unable to get a single win in eight matches.
Aqeel Khan lost 3-6, 1-6 to Uzbekistan’s Dennis Istomin and Abid Ali Akbar fell 4-6, 2-6 to South Korean Lee Dukhee in the men’s singles second round.
In women’s singles, Sara Mansoor was able to win just one point as she lost to Liang En-Shuo of Chinese Taipei but Ushna Sohail fared better in a 3-6, 1-6 loss to Kaichen Chang.
Pakistan lost two matches each in both men’s and women’s doubles.
Similar fate befell the two Pakistani competitors in taekwondo competitions on Monday with both being knocked out in the round-of-32.
Shahzaib Khan lost to Mongolian Enkhbold Buyunshagai 11-27 in the men’s 58kg competition while Aneila Ayesha Asfar fell 6-12 to Sin Yi Law of Hongkong in the women’s 53kg.
A day after national coach Mohammad Anwar said Pakistan wrestling “was stuck in the mud”, referring to the country still using past practices in the sport, Commonwealth Games bronze medallist Tayyab Raza came away with nothing in the men’s 125kg event.
In paragliding men’s individual accuracy, Farman Haider ended last in the opening two rounds while rower Asim Ejaz ended 10th out of 12 competitors overall in heats of the men’s lightweight sculls with his time of 8:16.09.
Pakistan’s shooters also failed to find their range with none of its six participants being able to qualify for the final. There was also no result of note for Pakistan in wushu.
Published in Dawn, August 21st, 2018