ISLAMABAD - Pakistan Olympic Association (POA) president Lt Gen (R) Syed Arif Hasan has sought special dispensation from the Asian Games organisers for the inclusion of Samir Iftikhar in place of Aisam-ul-Haq Qureshi.

Pakistan’s tennis ace Aisam isn’t participating in the Asian Games due to his participation in the US Open in the same dates. The POA chief, in consultation with the Pakistan Tennis Federation (PTF), has decided to include Samir, who is another international-ranked Pakistani player in the USA, to complement Pakistan men’s team for the Asiad, since Samir is very experienced on synthetic courts, the surface to be played in Indonesia. Now the POA, PSB and PTF are awaiting the green light from the Asian Games organisers.

Pakistan tennis teams training camp is in full swing here at the Pakistan Sports Complex for the Games to be held in Jakarta, Indonesia from August 18. The male team including Aqeel Khan, Abid Mushtaq and Muzammil Murtaza is going through intense training under Davis Cupper Inam-ul-Haq, while fourth player Abid Ali Akbar have gone to play ITF Futures in Malaysia and Indonesia and after his return from USA, he will join the camp soon.

Aqeel, as nominated by PTF president Salim Saifullah Khan, will be the playing captain of the team, as the government didn’t allow funds to the PSB to send the earlier-nominated and accredited Inam-ul-Haq as the non-playing captain.

Pakistan women’s team, including Sara Masnoor, Sarah Mehboob and Ushna Suhail, is also trainer hard under the same coach. Sara Mansoor, who is first Pakistani woman to have honour of being ITF Level-II coach, will be the playing captain of women’s team. Khalid Rehmani has been nominated by the PTF at its own expenses for now, to accompany as manager of both the teams.