Phelps skips Olympic prep meet

LOS ANGELES - US swimming star Michael Phelps has withdrawn from a meeting in Atlanta next week he had been planning to use as part of his preparations for the Olympics, organisers confirmed. A statement said Phelps had informed them he would no longer be taking part. "We understand some of you may have purchased tickets to see Michael Phelps. He is no longer able to attend," organizers said. US media reports said Phelps was skipping the meet in order to be with his fiance Nicole Johnson, who is expecting the birth of his first son. Phelps, 30, retired from swimming after the London 2012 games before returning to competition in 2014. He aims to compete in his fifth Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro in August after appearances in Sydney, Athens, Beijing and London, where he amassed a record 18 gold medals.–AFP

 Top players to feature in SN Tennis

ISLAMABAD - Majority of the seeded players have confirmed their participation in the six-day Subh-e-Nau National Clay Court Tennis Championship commencing here at Senator Dilawar Ababs PTF Tennis Complex from May 9. The players, who confirmed participation, include Pakistan No 1 Aqeel Khan, M Abid, Shahzad Khan, Heera Ashiq, M Mudassar, M Muzammil, while top ladies players including Sara Mansoor and Meheq Khokhar also confirmed their entries. SN chairperson Shahida Kausar Farooq said: “This tournament is another step for SN of promoting tennis. For the last 26 years, we have been promoting tennis with a track record of hosting dozens of international, national and domestic events. The clay court tennis events have been revived by SN back in 2003 and since then we are hosting these events regularly.”–Staff Reporter

 National Taekwondo begins tomorrow

ISLAMABAD – Pakistan Taekwondo Federation (PTF) president Lt Col (R) Wasim Ahmed Janjua announced that the National Taekwondo Championship 2016 would commence in Karachi from tomorrow (Saturday). Wasim said more than 400 athletes and officials had would reach Karachi today (Friday) to attend the taekwondo-style opening ceremony which will be graced by Korean Council General of Korean Consulate, Karachi as chief guest. Around 400 athletes from Punjab, KP, Sindh, Balochistan, Gilgit-Baltistan, Fata, Islamabad, Army, Navy, PAF, Railway, Police, Wapda and HEC will vie for top honours during the event. “After successfully conducting the national junior and senior championships last year, we are confident that all athletes, officials and new visitors will try to make this event too, a huge success.”–Staff Reporter

 BSS Champions League concludes

LAHORE – The Champions League of the Beaconhouse School System (BSS) Allama Iqbal Town Campus (AITC) Junior Primary Lahore which concluded here on Thursday. As many as four teams of the BSS including Kasuri House, Jahangir House, Jinnah House and Iqbal House took part in the healthy activities. Jahangir House emerged winners in handball and dodge-the-ball events while Kasuri House clinched the football title. In handball final, Jahangir House thumped Jinnah House 4-2 while in dodge-the-ball event, Jahangir House routed Kasuri House 9-6 and in football event, Kasuri House beat Iqbal House 1-0. National ladies tennis champion Ushna Suhail graced the occasion as chief guest. Principal Beaconhouse AITC Mrs. Rabia Najam, headmistress Samira Ehtesham, physical education teachers Farhan Masood, Ms Quratul Ain and Kamal Khan were also present there. Ushna lauded the spirit of the youngsters and advised them to play with passion and also continue their studies. “If you work hard and play with passion, one day, there will come a time, when you will be representing the country in international events and earn laurels for it,” she motivated the kids.–Staff Reporter