‘PBF, PSB need to sort their issues’

Coach Baksh warns boards that tussle could see boxing team miss out on Olympic berth.

Natasha Raheel April 13, 2016

KARACHI: The Pakistan Sports Board (PSB) and the Pakistan Boxing Federation (PBF) must sort out their issues before the Olympic qualifiers in June otherwise Pakistan risk not qualifying for the 2016 Rio Olympics, warned coach Ali Baksh.

“The PBF is definitely having issues with the PSB; it’s more of a problem with the officials than the boxers,” said Baksh. “But these differences should be sorted before next month so that they can start preparing for the last Olympics qualification round.”

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The PSB and PBF came at loggerheads with each other after the former refused to issue them Non-Objection Certificates (NOCs) and funds to travel to the Asia-Oceania Olympic qualifiers in China and the matter hasn’t been resolved yet.

“We are still recovering from the shock [of the PSB not issuing NOCs],” said Baksh. “That hurt us badly. I think it’s not easy to build up hopes again. Most of the boxers have already returned to their departmental teams.”

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Due to the ongoing tussle, the boxing camp, which was supposed to be held this month, has been indefinitely postponed and Baksh is of the opinion that the PBF should send the boxers abroad to train rather than hold the camp in Karachi.

“When our boxers go abroad they hear about their competition too, and they learn. Just keeping them in Pakistan and sending them directly to the qualification round is unfair and not very helpful,” he added. “I suggest they need to be sent abroad at least 15 days before the tournament.”

Published in The Express Tribune, April 13th, 2016.

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