KARACHI: Shiraz Fena was crowned the champion at the All Sindh Arm-Wrestling Gold Cup after he defeated Hafeez Niazi in the final bout of the 105-kilogramme event at the Sindh Sports Board Complex.
More than 300 arm-wrestlers participated in the championship that featured athletes in 26 men and women competitions.
According to Sindh Arm-Wrestling Association Secretary Kashif Ahmed, 210 matches were played yesterday. The top arm-wrestlers that emerged from the competition will represent Pakistan in Uzbekistan for the Asian Championship next month, added the official.
Fena, a 2012 National Games gold medallist, said that the event was a good opportunity for him to practice for the Asian Championship.
Like Fena, Niazi and bronze medallist Mohammad Asif said that Karachi is gifted with several talented arm-wrestlers.
“It’s an exciting sport and we are looking forward to it going up a notch at the national level,” Fena told The Express Tribune. “Most of the National Games gold medallists in both men and women events are from Karachi. But this was the first time that Sindh hosted a big arm-wrestling championship and I can say that new talent is emerging in the city.”
According to Sindh Olympic Association official Syed Asghar Hussain, the championship was well-received by spectators and participants alike.
However, he expressed his concerns about the participation of the national arm wrestlers.
“The professional arm-wrestlers shouldn’t have participated in the championship,” said Hussain. “It discouraged the younger players. They complained that the national squad members were too good for them.”
Meanwhile, Abid Ali, Tauqeer Ejaz and Asad Sikandar also won gold medals in the 80-kg, 85-kg and 95-kg events.
Published in The Express Tribune, June 3rd, 2013.
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