Na­tional boxing squad for Olympic qual­i­fy­ing round re­duced to five

Pakistan Observer - - SPORTS -

IS­LAM­ABAD—Pak­istan Boxing Fed­er­a­tion (PBF) has re­duced the seven-mem­ber boxing out­fit to five for par­tic­i­pa­tion in the last qual­i­fy­ing round for the sum­mer’s Rio Olympics due to some med­i­cal is­sues.

Ac­cord­ing to PBF Sec­re­tary, Iqbal Hus­sain the United States-born Umar Cheema (64kg) and Amir Khan (69kg) would not be fea­tur­ing in the qual­i­fy­ing round due to some med­i­cal is­sues.

“Those vy­ing in the event to ful­fill their Olympic dream in­clude Awais Ali Khan (81kg), Mo­ham­mad Tan­veer (75kg), Ali Ahmed (60kg), Nia­mat­ul­lah (56kg) and Mo­ham­mad Asif (52kg),” he said.

The five-mem­ber Pak­istani boxing out­fit de­parted for Baku, Azer­bai­jan from Is­lam­abad Air­port on late Monday to fea­ture in the qual­i­fy­ing round.

Box­ers from around the world would chip in th­ese qual­i­fiers sched­uled to be held from June 16 to 25.

Iqbal sounded op­ti­mistic that at least a cou­ple of Pak­istani box­ers would be able to make a cut to the Rio.

“All our box­ers are in a good shape. I am sure the na­tion will soon hear good news,” he added.

The PBF had set up an ex­ten­sive train­ing pro­gramme for 20 box­ers at the camp un­der na­tional boxing coach Ar­shad Hus­sain, an In­ter­na­tional Boxing As­so­ci­a­tion (AIBA) three-star coach.

Ar­shad was as­sisted by for­mer in­ter­na­tional and AIBA one-star coach Nisar Khan.

If any Pak­istani boxer qual­i­fies for Rio Olympics, it will be af­ter a gap of 12 years that the coun­try will have rep­re­sen­ta­tion in boxing at the world’s most pres­ti­gious mul­ti­sports event. Pak­istan’s last ap­pear­ance at Olympics in boxing was in 2004, when five Pak­istani box­ers fea­tured in var­i­ous weight cat­e­gories in Athens. How­ever, none of them could ad­vance to the quar­ter­fi­nal stage.

Syed Hus­sain Shah won a bronze medal for Pak­istan in boxing in the mid­dleweight di­vi­sion (71 - 75 kg) at the 1988 Seoul Olympic Games. He is one of the only two in­di­vid­ual Olympic medal­ists for the coun­try till date.—APP

Devin­dar Walmiki of In­dia and Namy­ong Lee of South Korea dur­ing the FIH Mens Hero Hockey Cham­pi­ons Tro­phy match be­tween In­dia and South Korea at Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in Lon­don, Eng­land.

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