LAHROE - Pakistan rugby team qualified for the Asian U-19 Rugby Championship final after thrashing Afghanistan 44-6 on the first day of the event held here at Punjab Stadium.

The final will be played between Pakistan and India on October 5. Minister YASAT Rana Mashhood Ahmed Khan was the chief guest at the inaugural ceremony of the event which is being organised by Pakistan Rugby Union (PRU) in collaboration with the Punjab government. Director General Sports Usman Anwar and PRU president Fowzi Khawaja were also present on the occasion. A number of spectators including females and students were also present there to applaud the teams. The special foolproof security arrangements were made to ensure the security around the stadium.

In the first half of the match, Pakistan’s Fahad Ali and Usman showed their best skills. Fahad scored two tries whereas Usman managed one. The Uzbekistan team could not participate in the tournament due to some technical reasons for which India team was awarded the match.

The India team also played a warm-up match with Pakistan Universities and outplayed them 30-05. The score at the half time was 15-5. Inder Gorov scored all five tries from India. Secretary Sports M Khan Kicchhi was the chief guest of the second match while DG Sports Usman Anwar was along with him.

All the captains of the participating teams thanked Punjab government, Pakistan Rugby Union and sponsors for their all-out support.

Speaking at the press conference, Pakistan rugby team Daud Gull said” “We are fully prepared to score high against India in the final and win laurels for the country.”

Indian captain M Sharma told media that his team was all contented with the security and the residence provided to them by the Punjab government while Afghan team captain Ferdeen Haider said: “We have been provided with the best facilities here. The match against Pakistan was a good lesson to learn from our mistakes and loopholes while we hope to show best performance next time.”

“Pakistan is the safest country for the sports and the successful conduction of the AFC U-16 Football Championship is the biggest proof of it,” said Rana Mashood. DG Sports Usman Anwar thanked the Asian Rugby Championship teams’ participants and officials. He told media that all the international teams had been provided best ever facilities and this practice would be continue in future too for the promotion and revival of sports.