ISLAMABAD - Pakistan number one squash player Tayyab Aslam has urged Pakistan Squash Federation (PSF) President Air Chief Marshal Mujahid Anwar Khan to have mercy on Pakistan squash and send the team for participation in the World Squash Team Championship, to be held in USA in December this year.

Talking to The Nation, Tayyab, who is world number 49 player, said: “It is very harsh on part of the federation to blame the players for not training at Islamabad. It is not true as the matter of the fact is that the PSF must understand one simple fact that to produce world champions, they need world class coaches. The current coaches are not capable of producing top players and best results.

“I was at 138 in PSA rankings, when I was training in Pakistan National Squash Academy in Islamabad but I went back to Lahore and trained with Punjab Squash Association (PSA) coaches, it helped me improve my PSA rankings from 138 to 49. I am sure I can break into top 20 in next few months, if I will be provided with sponsorship,” he added.

Tayyab said that Pakistan team is capable of doing well in the World Team Squash Championship and if it will not be sent for the mega event, it will be a great injustice with the team and players. “We have rich squash history as we had won world team squash championships for six times and we still have chances to do well in the event. If the PSF allows us to train in our respective areas, we can register upset victories against any given team.

“If the PSF talks about dip in my performances, they must understand that Punjab Squash Association (PSA) fully sponsors my international events and without their help, I can’t even think about playing in the PSA events abroad and without playing in PSA events, no one can improve international rankings. I have to sit for 4 to 5 months at home due to non-availability of sponsors. If the PSF helps me financially, I can produce wonders at international level, like I did in the past,” he added.

About Pakistan International Squash Tournament, which starts today (Monday) here at Mushaf Squash Complex, Tayyab said: “Being the top seed of the event, I am ready to live up to the expectations. I am fully prepared for the event and I will try my best to win it.”

He said Farhan and he were among the top 100 but now other players have also started breaking into the PSA 100 rankings. But for this, they need to participate in the PSA tournaments on regular basis as one or two tournaments aren’t enough to improve their rankings.

“We have to face a lot of problems when it comes to refereeing in local tournaments. It is true that refereeing all across the world is almost same, but at the PSA tournaments, referees know the rules and regulations but in Pakistan, local referees are unaware about the rules and there is dire need to educate them.,” he added.

The squash player said it is good that the PSF has managed to allocate three men’s and three women’s events for ladies in Pakistan. “Although the amount is not much high, which may help us earn PSA points, but even then, it will help local players improve their PSA rankings. We need to arrange more and more tournaments while the PSF must hire top coaches, who may transform us from normal to world class players.

“If I can improve my rankings significantly, why can’t others do the same? I am employee of SNGPL, who have hired me on contract and pay me Rs 35,000 monthly, which is too less to run day-to-day affairs. I will visit the SNGPL chairman soon and request him to help me and sponsor me so that I may win laurels for the country.

“I assure the federation and all that we are ready to serve Pakistan squash and my only hope is with the PSF President, so he should intervene and ensure the participation of Pakistan team in the world team squash event and arrange top class coaches for us,” Tayyab concluded.