Decision on Pakistan Olympics tennis debut by month-end
KARACHI: Whether Aisam-ul-Haq Qureshi and Aqeel Khan will represent Pakistan in the London Olympics 2012 will become clear by the end of this month, writes Waqar Hamza.
“The ITF Olympic Committee will consider all applications for ITF Places and the announcement of the full list of entries will be made on 28 June,” Nick Imison of International Tennis Federation’s (ITF) communications department told ‘The News’ through email.
Pakistan Tennis Federation (PTF) has requested the ITF to give Aisam and Aqeel a wild card entry into the Games after Aisam failed to finish in the top ten of doubles ranking by the cut off date — June 11. He is ranked 15th in doubles ranking.
Though Pakistan Olympics Association (POA) cannot help the PTF in this regard, it has been trying, on its own, to get a wild card.
The International Olympic Committee (IOC) decides about wild card entries and the ITF helps them by choosing the beneficiary.
PTF’s treasurer Arif Qureshi told this scribe that they had not received the form from the ITF. “We will get it in a day or two. We will fill it and send for further processing. The deadline for sending the form is June 21,” he said.
Pakistan has never appeared in Olympics tennis competitions, and if the pair gets a chance to represent the country it will be a landmark in the history of Pakistan.
“We are hopeful that we will get the entry. Aisam deserves that. We would be creating history for the country this way,” Aqeel said.