ISLAMABAD - Pakistan Squash Federation (PSF) Thursday started training camp for the World Junior Team Squash Championship under the command of head coach Jamshed Gul and Faheem Gul at Mushaf Ali Mir Squash Complex.

Israr Ahmed, M Asim Khan and Suleman Hashmi had already joined the camp while Asian junior individual champion Tayyab Aslam and Syed Ali Mujtaba Bokhari will join it in a day or two.

Talking to The Nation, PSF secretary Group Captain Amir Nawaz said: “There are still four weeks left for the mega event and we have selected a very competitive tem. Tayyab, Israr and Asim are not only energetic but true fighters as well. Tayyab is fresh from his recent Asian Junior success and Ali is in great shape, he had trained very hard with senior players before the Asian Senior Team Championship.”

“We have also invited top female players including Maria Toor, Sammer Anjum, Riffat Khan, Madina Zafar, Saima Shoukat, Sadia Gul, Amna Lateef and Muqadas Ashraf, while senior players camp will start from July 15. We want to retain winning combination, but we have decided to invite Aamir Atlas and Sh Saqib for the camp. In case they perform exceptionally during the camp, things may change and we may decide to change the team, but I am not in a mood to change the winning combination,” he added.

When asked about the female team for the Asian Games and is he satisfied with the female players’ performance in the recently-concluded Asian Senior Team Championship, Amir replied: “Yes, they have produced desired results, but there is always room for improvement. We have invited the present and future of Pakistan squash and I am very open. I will take coach’s advice into account before deciding on the fate of the female team.”

“We are supporting whole-heartedly Nasir, Aamir and other brilliant kids and have planned to invest more on junior players and females as well. We have achieved our first task of climbing to the top of Asia and now our focus has shifted to winning back all the lost glories at the world level. We have chalked out comprehensive long-term plan to regain past squash glory,” PSF secretary said.

“We have provided same facilities to female players which shows our commitment for the game and how much we are composed to the task ahead. We still have a number of world-class players who are capable of defeating top-ranked PSA players. The PSF is on right track and we have hired world's best coaches. Jamshed is a well known figure and same is the case with Faheem Gul. We have decided to appoint Faheem as head of referees and notification in this regard will soon be issued. I am quite confident Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif will soon order to release promised special grant to the PSF which will help the federation regain lost squash glory,” Amir concluded.