ISLAMABAD: Pakistan will field two athletes at the World Judo Championship scheduled to be held from August 24 until 29 in Astana Kazakhstan.
Secretary Pakistan Judo Federation (PJF) Masood Ahmed confirmed on Wednesday that Shah Hussain Shah and Wajahat Sarwar would represent the country in the event.
Initially we planned to send four males and as many female athletes to participate in the championship but due to scarcity of funds we have decided to send only two athletes now, he told APP.
He said that both athletes were Pakistan’s best judokas at present and were undergoing a tough training at Judo Academy in Tokyo Japan.
“Everyone is training really hard for the championship. We have also arranged the best possible training for our athletes.”
Ahmed said both Sarwar and Shah would directly leave from Japan for Kazakhstan on August 23 to feature in the event.
“The World Championship is one of the highest levels an athlete can perform at in judo. It will also be a big opportunity for our athletes to earn a spot in Rio Olympics next year,” he added.
Ahmed was more optimistic about Shah’s chances to qualify for Rio saying that the athlete currently ranked 62 out of the total 295 in the world and if he managed to win his first two contests he would qualify for Rio.
Just two months before Shah was at 44th number but he lost his ranking points as he remained unable to participate in three recent international events due to his university commitments in Tokyo where he recently won All Universities Championship.