ISLAMABAD - Light contact world champion Syed Haider Mannan has urged the sponsors to come forward to help him participate in the highly prestigious European Kickboxing Championship 2015 to be organised by World Kickboxing Council (WKC) in Manchester, England from July 19.

Talking to The Nation, Mannan said: “I have spent a whopping Rs 180 million from my own pocket to win medals and raise Pakistan flag high in countless international events. Despite being residing in UK for the last 25 years, I always preferred Pakistan, the country of my birth. When it comes to participate in international events and when Pakistan national anthem is played, it gives me joy, which I can't express in words. Despite hefty and lucrative offers from Britain to represent them and get in return a huge amount, I always turned down their offers, but now, I am totally dependent on sponsorship. If no one steps forward to help me, I will not be able to represent Pakistan firstly which will deprive the country of medal.

“Whenever I participated in an international event, despite being 55, I always managed to win medal. Now the ball is in government’s court, as I never demanded a single penny from government or private sector, but now after getting hopeless from my own resources, I made that request,” he said.

He said that he knew Bahria Town Malik Riaz was a very big hearted person and always lent a helping hand to sports personalities, whenever they were in need. “I have requested Malik Riaz to help me in fulfilling my ambitions of taking Pakistani youth to world kickboxing championship in Portugal in October. This is the time for taking timely decision, as if my request is turned down, I will be heartbroken and will be left with no other option, but to pack up from Pakistan and permanently reside in UK.”

“I once again request Inter Provincial Coordination (IPC) minister Mian Riaz Hussain Pirzada, PSB DG Dr Akhtar Nawaz Ganjera, and persons like Malik Riaz to step forward and help me in fulfilling my ambition of participating and winning gold medal for Pakistan. I would also like to appeal to banks, multi-nationals Coca Cola, departments like Wapda, Army, Police and others to lend a helping hand, as it is my promise I will not disappoint them and return with a medal,” Mannan concluded.