KARACHI: Pakistan’s top players Shabbir Iqbal and Mohammad Munir have termed their failure in the World Cup Asian qualifying event an ‘expected one’ and said that the sorry state of golf in the country reflects the players’ performance.
The pair managed to finish seventh in the 16-team event last week where only the top three earned tickets for the Missions Hills World Cup in China.
Both golfers, while admitting their failure, said it was the authorities’ lack of attention towards the game, which was to be blamed more for the disappointment.
“It wasn’t impossible to qualify,” Iqbal, the country’s number one golfer told The Express Tribune. “The main thing is that we don’t play much in international tournaments and lack experience. Golfers play throughout the year but we hardly manage a couple of events abroad because we have to do it on our own expense.”
Iqbal lamented that the young talent was being wasted due to lack of attention by the sport’s authorities.
“I see a lot of talented golfers but they are being wasted. There must be some support from the government for such players who have the potential to make a name for Pakistan.”
Meanwhile, Munir, Pakistan number two, said that sponsorships were badly required for the game.
“There’s a strong need for sponsors who are not coming forward,” said Munir. “We have to spend hundreds of thousands of rupees to play an international tournament and it’s impossible for us to feature in all the major events without sponsors.”
Published in The Express Tribune, August 13th, 2011.