Badminton: the most neglected game in Pakistan

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KELLY ALLAN

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Badminton News
  • Badminton: the most neglected game in Pakistan

        Badminton: the most neglected game in Pakistan

Pakistan is included among those countries which have a large number of talented youth for all kinds of games. Either it is cricket, hockey or badminton; Pakistan has a number of good players. But despite having talent, our players fail to excel due to lack of proper guidance and training facilities. Pakistan is short in physical training, experienced coaches and above all strong administration. The game of Badminton has always been neglected in Pakistan. And the only reason which comes to mind is the absence of administrative system and policies. Though the Pakistan Badminton Federation has been working since 1953 but yet no major event has been won by any Pakistani national.

 Pakistan got affiliated with the International Badminton Federation in 1953. The first National Championships event was held in 1954 with Sultan F. Hussain being the first Secretary General of Pakistan Badminton Federation. In the first National Championships, Shamshad Ali won the men’s singles title.  The noteworthy aspect of the National Championship was that women players also participated in the event and earned fame in the championship. Talat Sultana, Elsie Hunt and Rodrigues were among the top reputed female players of that time. Pakistan for the first time participated in the Thomas Cup in 1956 and won against Sri Lanka. The next Thomas cup was held in Lahore under the banner name of Pakistan Badminton Federation and again Pakistan won against Sri Lanka.

But after that short span of victories, badminton went in to the abyss. The decade of 1960 did not see any progress in the badminton field. In 1970 a name arose in the Pakistan badminton field. Naqi Mohsin, also a retired badminton star of Pakistan became the Secretary General of Pakistan Badminton Federation in the early 1970’s. He came with a purpose to rebuild the badminton institution in Pakistan. He first of all started promoting the game from a backyard game to an athletic professional indoor game. His efforts produced some of the great names in the history of Pakistan badminton. Salah-ud-Din, Javed Iqbal, Hassan Shaheed and Tariq Wadood were among his trained players. All the above mentioned players played the game for Pakistan in high spirit and earned name for Pakistan. It was the performance of the top players that the administration had to send some of the players to China for extensive training sessions. Tariq Wadood was exemplary in his game and the duo Javed Iqbal and Hassan Shaheed had represented Pakistan in three quarter finals of major European International events.

Pakistan hired Chinese coaches and under their guidance the players defeated South Korea in the Asian Games in 1974 in Tehran. Pakistan also defeated Japan in the same event. Tariq Wadood became the proud of Pakistan when he represented Pakistan in 1978 in the World Championships. He won the silver medal in the men’s singles event. This was an overall shining decade of Pakistani badminton as Pakistan clenched the 12th spot in the international badminton ranking. As soon as Naqi Mohsin got retired the decreasing period of Pakistani badminton started. The changed administration could not stand for long according to the policies of the previous administration. The bad policies started affecting the badminton adversely and within years Pakistan’s badminton declined to a zero stage. The status of Pakistan’s badminton went down to that extent that Pakistan was not among the top fifty countries.

 

Since then till now the Pakistan badminton federation has been unable to lift up to the lost status of badminton. In recent past some efforts have been made in the administration to work out some plan for improvement of badminton. Aamer Hayat Khan Rokhri has been appointed as the secretary general of PBF and he himself has chosen Naqi Mohsin to be the vice president of the federation. Since the change of abler administration, progress has been viewed in the points table. National shuttlers have started participating in the international events.

At Pakistan stands at the 30thspot in the men’s doubles category. The rise of badminton in Pakistan has not properly started yet that controversies have again surrounded the administration.  This time and again shift in policies has ruined the badminton future in Pakistan. At this crucial time immediate attention of the government could solve the problems facing by talented badminton players of Pakistan.

 

 

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