ISLAMABAD - Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ICCI) organised a ceremony to honor former Pakistan squash team head coach Jamshed Gul Khan for his matchless services for the national team during his almost tree-year tenure here at ICCI building on Thursday.

ICCI acting president Shakeel Munir along with vice president M Ashfaq Chatha, Nasir Mehmood Chaudhry, Saeed Ahmed Bhatti, Khalid Chaudhry, Naveed Malik, Nisar Mirza, Akhunzada M Faheem, ex-president Inayat Ullah Mirza, Basil Daud, Sheikh Abdul Waheed and other notables were also present on the occasion.

Speaking at the occasion, Shakeel highly lauded services of Jamshed and described him one of the best coaches the country had produced in recent times. “We are very glad Jamshed took time off from his busy schedule and accepted our invitation.”

“No one can even imagine about scaling heights without paying attention towards uplift of sports. Pakistan’s 65 percent of the total population is based upon youth. We must join hands to help our youth and provide them with every available facility so to help them participate at international level and earn laurels for the country, as without spending a single penny on them, we can't expect even ordinary results from them,” he added.

“Before Jamshed's arrival, Pakistan squash was nowhere. We had ruled the squash world for almost four decades, when the greats like Jahanghir and Jansher Khan were raising the green flag high, but after their retirements, Pakistan squash was at continuous decline. There was no hope and people had almost written off Pakistan as far as squash was concerned, but Jamshed put a new lease of life in it and helped the country will win all the available medals first at Asian level and also at international level. His matchless records speak themselves,” he stated.

“It is very sad to hear instead of rewarding Jamshed for his matchless services, he was sacked for head coach slot, which will prove bad for the game. We would like to request Pakistan Squash Federation (PSF) president Air Chief Marshal Tahir Rafique Butt to reconsider this harsh and unjustified decision and reinstate Jamshed as head coach to ensure Pakistan squash remain on right track,” Shakeel concluded.

Sharing his views, Jamshed thanked the ICCI and Rawalpindi Islamabad Sports Journalists Association (RISJA) for acknowledging his work and honoring him. “I would like to ensure all, I had accepted to coach Pakistan team just with one aim, it is because of squash we have such recognition and respect across the globe. It was too hurting to watch Pakistan squash at its lowest ebb.”

“As everyone is aware during my 34-month stay, I turned almost written off players into the world's best.

They won a number of titles - all the available titles at Asian level both seniors and juniors. Though I am no more head coach of Pakistan squash yet I am always available for the country and will be ready to serve it in any given role. I have some lucrative offers, even my student from Malaysia has contacted me and offered me to join them, but I will decide my future within next few days. For the time being, I am going to Canada for officiating PSA event, but will return soon. I am very grateful to RISJA, as they always support national cause and sports as well,” he added.

“I was very upset as I had firm belief Aamir Atlas Khan and Farhan Mehboob were very good players but they had been wasting their energies. Thanks to almighty, I fulfilled my task and helped them win major games and titles. I also brought into lime light Nasir Iqbal and Farhan Zaman, who were previously nowhere,” Jamshed concluded.

Sharing his views, RISJA chairman Abdul Mohi Shah termed Jamshed’s services for the country remarkable and appreciated the ICCI for inviting different sports personalities and encouraging them time-to-time and hoped this gesture would continue in future too. He also assured his all-out cooperation to the ICCI on behalf of RISJA.