ISLAMABAD          -          UAE-based taekwondo player Sinan Ashfaq Ahmed continued his sensational performances at the international stage, as he bagged silver medal at the French Open Taekwondo Championship held in Paris.

Talking to The Nation from UAE, Sinan said: “I represented Pakistan taekwondo team and beat Russian player Pavel Mironov in the quarterfinal and outperformed Spanish player David Rodrigues Garcia in the semifinal, however, I lost the final against yet another Russian player Ivan Skudrit. It was really tough fight and I gave my all, but my opponent was highly experienced and had played in number of top international G1 events.

“More than 1,050 players from around the world participated in one of the biggest taekwondo events in the world. I have so far won seven medals this year, including four international and three national medals, silver medal in Paris is my fourth international medal for Pakistan this year. I won gold medal at Fujairah Open, silver medal in Belgium Open and another silver medal at Bulgaria Open Taekwondo Championship,” he added.

Sinan, 14, also bagged three gold medals this year, while presenting Sharjah Sport Club in UAE, including gold at the UAE National Clubs Championship in March this year, gold at the Emirates-Korea Taekwondo Championship in October and another gold medal at the UAE National Taekwondo Championship in November this year. Sinan had also won a bronze for Pakistan at the President’s World Taekwondo Championship held in Tashkent in August 2017.

Sinan is the first Pakistani player in the cadet category to win medals for Pakistan in Europe. Sinan’s next target is the Junior Taekwondo World Cup to be held in October next year in Belgium. He is also a high-performing student at the North American International School (NAIS) in Dubai.

Speaking about his success in Paris, Sinan said that he was happy to get silver medal for Pakistan in French Open though he wanted to win gold. “I am working hard and hope to bring more medals for Pakistan at international competitions,” he said.

Sinan thanked Pakistan Taekwondo Federation (PTWF) and especially its President Lt Col (R) Waseem Ahmed Janjua for his continuous support and encouragement.

Sinan’s coach Abdullah Hatim, who is also UAE national team coach and Technical Director at Sharjah Sports Club, told The Nation that Sinan’s performance considering that French Open is one of the toughest championships in the world. “Sinan is gradually improving his skills and he will be ready for the Junior World Championship next year.” He trains at Sharjah Sport Club with coach Hatim.

PTWF Lt Col Waseem Ahmed said he is very happy that Sinan won silver medal at the French Open. “Sinan is special because he has chosen to play for his country despite being an expatriate. We hope he will earn more medals for Pakistan in upcoming international events.”

Sinan is younger brother of Ammar Ashfaq Ahmed, who represented Pakistan at the Junior World Cup last year, Asian Taekwondo Championship in Jordan this year and also played a number of other international events for

Pakistan.