Karachi Boat Club (KBC) successfully defended their title at the International AREA-FEARA Regatta Trophy when the team outpaced clubs from India and Sri Lanka in the men’s fours event, while the women’s team bagged silver medal in the coxed-fours event at the Paoay Lake in Manila.
KBC clinched the title for the eighth time in a row at the tournament that featured nine countries and more than 100 rowers in nine events that ran through January 13 to 20.
Captain Arif Ikram, whose team comprised of Benney, Khurram Khwaja and Asghar Ali said the excitement of winning the trophy is still the same for him as it was eight years ago. The 12-member squad returned to Karachi on Friday after the win.
“We have been competing in this event for the past eight years now,” Ikram told The Express Tribune. “I hope our win would also motivate other amateur rowers in the country to do better. With this win we have showed them that there is plenty of scope in this sport. Meanwhile, there is a lot of activity on the local front as well so we are prepared to compete with the best clubs in the region.”
The KBC squad won six medals in the eight events of the tournament. Apart from the gold and silver medal in the fours event, the men’s team also won bronze in men’s pairs, single scull and fours race in the AREA (Amateur Rowing Association of the East) Trophy while women’s team won bronze in the AREA Women’s Double Scull event.
The women’s team consisted of Alizeh Premjee, Shehla Sajjad Gokal, Aleena Abid and the 14-year-old Salma Rabia Arif, who was also the youngest participant in the eight-day competition. Meanwhile, India’s Calcutta Rowing Club took the AREA Super Masters Trophy.
KBC will be preparing for the Asian Schools Championship in July and later a team will participate in the World Masters Championship in September in Italy.
“This is going to be the first time that our rowers will take part in the World Masters and we will start preparing for the event at least six months before the competition.”
Published in The Express Tribune, January 27th, 2013.