LAHORE: Pakistan defeated arch-rival India 3-2 to claim 7th position in the Asian Senior Volleyball Championship in Tehran, Iran on Saturday, according to the results released by the Pakistan Volleyball Federation.
The set points were 25-23, 25-21, 20-25, 19-25, 15-6.
Pakistan claimed the 7th place in a 16-team contest and by virtue of it, the country has also qualified for the Olympic qualification tournament in which eight top teams of this event will vie in China in January, 2020.
In quarter-final, Pakistan lost to one of the giant teams Australia 2-3. Australia have qualified for the final of the event.
Against India, Pakistan’s Aimal Khan and Mubashar Raza played outstanding game. With his ferocious attack, Aimal shattered the Indian’s defence while Mubashar exhibited a fine defence and he also won points at crucial stages.
Meanwhile, chairman PVF Ch. Mohammad Yaqoob said that the performance against Australia was encouraging one, though Pakistan lost it by a narrow margin. And against India, he said, the victory was a worthy one as the arch-rival was spending huge budget on its national team.
Yaqoob said many countries had contacted Aimal to play in their professional leagues. Aimal, he said, had received an offer of Rs7 to 8 million for a league of three months. It may be pointed out that a number of Pakistani players like Murad, Mubashar and Wasim are already playing league in different countries. He appealed to the Pakistan Sports Board to keep continue the contract with the South Korean coach of the Pakistan team as the team has been improving gradually after his induction. He said it was also important to keep him as Sri Lanka and India having the foreign coaches would be the close rivals of Pakistan in the upcoming South Asian Games being held in Nepal in December this year.
Published in Dawn, September 22nd, 2019