KARACHI: The Pakistan Handball Federation (PHF) has finalised a 10-member squad for the upcoming 4th Asian Beach Games 2014 scheduled to take place from November 14 to 23 in Phuket, Thailand.
According to PHF President and Asian Handball Federation secretary Muhammad Shafiq, the team was selected after 20 probables showcased their skills at the ongoing training camp, which will conclude tomorrow at the Agriculture University in Faisalabad.
“The selected team, along with three officials, will leave for Thailand on November 9,” Shafiq informed The Express Tribune. “They have been placed in Group A with Afghanistan and hosts Thailand.”
Pakistan will be going into the tournament, along with 13 other nations, as one of the top sides from the continent, having won the Asian Beach Games in 2007 and 2008 while finishing runners-up in 2010.
Despite winning the bronze medal in the last edition held at Haiyang, China in 2012 after defeating Oman 2-1, Shafiq said expectations were high. “We’re sure we’ll win the gold this time around. I know we’ll surely make it to the semi-finals easily. Asian Games gold-medallists and defending champions Qatar, along with South Korea and Bahrain, can offer a tough challenge.”
The PHF chief added that the camp was organised to prepare a fighting lot of youngsters for international assignments which included the Asian Games, the Thailand event and the IHF Challenge Trophy, which will take place in Faisalabad from December 3 to 7.
“We failed to participate at the Asian Games, but that wasn’t our priority as we didn’t see ourselves progressing. Our main focus is on the two upcoming assignments,” concluded Shafiq.
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