KARACHI: Top-seed Aqeel Khan, Aisamul Haq Qureshi’s Davis Cup partner, is aiming to make his mark this Monday in the sixth Super Series Tennis Championship that started at the Beach View Club in Karachi yesterday.
“Even though it’s a small tournament, I’m taking part in it because I’ve progressed to where I am through these small tournaments that are held,” Khan told The Express Tribune. “Junior players can only register their participation through these matches.”
Khan feels that although there is upcoming talent in tennis, sponsorship remains an issue for many players. According to him, players usually do not have enough resources to travel abroad to participate in the international matches where players from Pakistan can get a chance to enter the globally recognised ATP rankings. “International matches are very important for tennis players. However, being in Pakistan makes it all the more difficult for us because there are no sponsors who can send us to foreign tours.
It seems all the multinational corporations in Pakistan only care about cricket.” Khan said the players who were participating in international matches either arrange their own finances or get sponsorships through their personal contacts. “It is not like we do not have any talent in Pakistan or we are out of players. I don’t feel that we are overlooked by the media, but the ones given coverage are those who can afford to go and play abroad.” Aisam is currently touring Italy and recently particpated in the Rai Open tennis Championship.
While Khan is currently trying to arrange a trip to India to play in the ITF Future Tennis Tournament that will begin in May.