ISLAMABAD   -    The First Special Persons Badminton Championship 2019 started with a colourful opening ceremony here at Rodham Hall, Pakistan Sports Complex on Sunday.

Allied Badminton Academy (ABA) along with Islamabad Badminton Association (IBA) organised the two-day event. More than 120 special players are participating in four different categories.

It was amazing to see that the special kids, along with their parents and instructors, were properly dressed up, standing in queues and showing their love for sports. Inter Provincial Coordination (IPC) Secretary Akbar Hussain Durrani graced the occasion as chief guest. Durrani, who is the only IPC Secretary to attend every single sports event, had promised to arrive at the venue by 4pm. But he reached to the venue 15 minutes earlier and personally met with all the special participants to give them respect and joy.

ABA Secretary Agha Saud Ullah did a fantastic job for the athletes, as the entire venue was decorated with balloons and big posters of former badminton greats. Rodham Hall, which was hardly in proper shape in the recent past, was given wonderful touch by DDG Facilities Agha Amjedullah and his team. Air conditioners were working properly to maintain the temperature of the hall.

Durrani praised IPC Minister Dr Fahmida Mirza for their tireless efforts to promote sports. He said: “Mirza is not only motivated, but keenly involved in helping sports personalities and athletes. I am very glad to witness such number of athletes. I request all the parents to let their able kids enjoy life and showcase their skills. These kids should be allowed to come out and enjoy their lives. They are proud sons and daughters of the country. I had witnessed tremendous skills and extra abilities of special kids during the recently-concluded Quaid-e-Azam Games for special athletes. We are ready to help all those, who want to provide healthy opportunities to special kids.”

“Special kids are our future, as I know they had raised Pakistan’s flag high in every given international platform and won medals. We are willing to address all their needs and our doors are open for them. They must utilise our cooperation and work hard to win laurels for the country. I also appreciate the Pakistan Sports Board (PSB) and the ABA Secretary for their efforts,” he added.

While speaking at the occasion, Agha Saud informed the chief guest about his efforts for promotion of badminton and the special athletes. He said: “His academy is striving hard to ensure that maximum number of special athletes are accommodated and trained from top coaches and national players. While helping the PSB in conducting the First Quaid-e-Azam Games for special athletes, I got the idea to host a tournament. I am thankful to IPC Minister Dr Fahmida Mirza, the IPC Secretary and PSB DG Arif Ibrahim for their overwhelming support, as he could not conduct the event without their support.”