Karachi: Squash is that game, where Pakistan enjoyed supremacy for years and country’s achievements in the game is unparalleled as compared to any other sport, however, the recent downfall of Pakistan in the game has been the worst ever, feels Pakistan’s legendary squash player Jahangir Khan.
“It is highly disappointing for that Pakistan no more has a single player in World Top 50,” Jahangir Khan told PPI.
“There was a time when Pakistani squash players dominated the rankings. I remember that Pakistan used to have around eight players not in the top 50 players but in elite world top 10 list. So for me it is a very disappointing fact that top 50 list doesn’t have any Pakistani player,” he said.
“There was a time when finals of top international tournaments were all Pakistan affairs. I have competed with Jansher in many finals. But now it seems impossible that there would be any Pakistani player, who could achieve that glory,” he said.
He said that players must make their efforts in order to make their mark in the world of squash. “Players are talented here without doubt. But focus and efforts are required to claim international glory,” he said.
However Jahangir added that the game of squash was not in the right hands and players were not the only one responsible for the downfall in Pakistan.
“The administration of the game has not also been right. It has not been run in the right direction. Good administration is also needed for the game to prosper, which unfortunately is not the case here,” Jahangir lamented.
“The government and concerned people should take notice of it for the sake of Pakistan’s glorious past in the game,” he urged.
Pakistani players, who once literally ruled the game of squash, have now fallen out of the elite top 50 years perhaps for the first time in the history of game.
Aamir Atlas Khan, who has been top ranked Pakistani player in the international circuit, has fallen 15 places from 50th this month to occupy 65th place.
With Aamir falling out of the top 50, it has been perhaps for the first time in the history of the game of squash that elite top 50 players’ list doesn’t have any Pakistani player in its fold.
Pakistan has a glorious past in the game of squash. Pakistan has produced legendary players like Hashim Khan, Jahangir Khan and Jansher Khan. Jahangir and Jansher still hold world records in the game.
Lahore based Yasir Butt has now overtaken Aamir by jumping 16 places in the rankings and he now occupies 59th spot.
Meanwhile, Indian player Saurav Ghosal has become his country’s first top 20 male player. He jumped four places from 22nd to 18th place after some brilliant performances last month.
“In our times, there were no Indian players in sight who could compete with us. But now they have made their presence felt in the game. They should be appreciated for their efforts and good administration,” Jahangir said.\