KARACHI - ANISUDDIN KHAN - To mark the birthday celebrations of late Air Marshal Nur Khan who has been described as “giant among men” and whose contribution to Pakistan Air force, PIA and national and international sports remained unmatched, the Pakistan Post on Monday issued a commemorative stamp to remember the great man.
Nur Khan rendered colossal services for the uplift of national sports of hockey, cricket and squash and enabled Pakistan to reach the pinnacle. Under his tenure as hockey chief, Pakistan won two Olympics, World Cup and Champions Trophy titles with later two tournaments being his own brainchild apart from many new innovations to uplift these sports from decline and decadence. When he became chairman PCB (then BCCP) in February 1980, he made the Asia Cup an enduring reality and introduced neutral umpiring in cricket matches.
He also played a pivotal role in bringing the Cricket World Cup to the subcontinent for the first time. When Nur Khan took over the responsibility of reviving squash in the country, the game saw its zenith. His revolutionary steps for the uplift of the game included introduction of talent hunt scheme which paid dividends and produced a surfeit of world class Pakistan players in the 70s: Qamar Zaman, Gogi Allauddin, Hidayat Jahan, Mohibullah Khan Junior and others. ln 1975, his efforts bore fruit as Qamar Zaman brought back the British Open title to Pakistan after 12 years. He during his short stints as Minister of Education and Governor of West Pakistan made all endeavours to promote education and improve the social fibre of the nation.
Pakistan’s squash greats Jahangir Khan and Jansher Khan were discovered by the PIA when air marshal had the administrative reins of the national career. An ace fighter pilot, a visionary commander and an epitome a leader, Air Marshal Nur Khan emerged on the global landscape a true icon, a legend and a national hero.