Iranian coach Sajjad Kazmi will join the Pakistan Judo Federation (PJF) and train the national squad for the Asian Senior Judo Championship that starts on April 26.
Kazmi, hired after the PJF failed to rope in a Japanese coach, has signed a year-long contract and will also train 28 athletes for the 12th South Asian Games in December.
“It was a necessary step for us to hire a foreign coach,” PJF Secretary Masood Ahmed told The Express Tribune. “The Pakistan Sports Board gave us a $2,000 budget and we couldn’t afford anyone but an Iranian. Kazmi, though, is highly qualified and it’s his interest in Pakistan that brings him here despite the salary not being too flashy. Other coaches from Iran wouldn’t come for less than $4,000 per month.”
Kazmi has previously worked as Iran’s coach and was at the helm of their junior team in various international events throughout 2010.
“We wanted Kazmi because he has experience of planning and implementing programmes for the juniors. Designing development programmes is his forte and we can benefit from that. If he gives us the desired results, we might extend his contract.”
Of the 28 shortlisted athletes – of which half are female – three male and two female athletes will be named to represent Pakistan in Uzbekistan.
Published in The Express Tribune, April 17th, 2012.
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