KARACHI: Owing to the failure of the national athletes in various disciplines at the Olympic qualifiers, Pakistan have requested wild-card entries to the wrestling, shooting, athletics and swimming events in order to gain maximum participation at the 2012 London Olympics.
Pakistan athletes featured in various qualifying tournaments in the last few months but only succeeded in confirming an Olympic berth in hockey, courtesy their Asian Games triumph last year.
Their failure in several disciplines, including football, taekwondo and shooting, has prompted the Pakistan Olympic Association (POA) to take the step of seeking four wild-card entries at the London Olympics after a meeting was held earlier this month with an official confirming the request.
He said that the association’s vice-president and Khyber-Paktunkhwa Sports Minister Syed Aaqil Shah, who represented the country in a meeting of the chef-de-missions, made the request.
“The POA has requested wild-card entries in four disciplines,” the official told The Express Tribune. “We’re seeking men’s and ladies’ participation in athletics and swimming, as well as entries in shooting and wresting team events.”
The official added that the final decision regarding Pakistan’s request will be made at the meeting of the International Olympics Council South Asian Region in Thailand in October.
Published in The Express Tribune, August 29th, 2011.