ISLAMABAD  - Pakistan Squash Federation's inefficiency to timely act cost Pakistan's top squash players dearly as Nasir Iqbal, Aamir Atlas, Farhan Zaman and Danish Atlas Khan were deprived from participating in the $52,000 CIMB Malaysian Open starting today in Malaysia.

According to details, these players had deposited passports with the federation a month ago but federation kept on sitting on the passports giving one reason or another and promised players would be handed over passports on 10th of this month. But despite repeated reminders and requests of players precious time was wasted and at the end players were told passports have not arrived yet from the embassy. With PSF secretary Amir Nawaz in Namibia with the junior team and there is no one who could follow the visa process.

The PSF can’t realise the price, the players have to pay for missing this event. First of all, high-flying Nasir will not only be deprived of some precious points, which could have taken him close to world No 30 rankings, but now not only Nasir but Farhan and Danish will also be facing possibility of points plenty for not informing the organisers timely and there is every possibility they will be given zero points, which will badly affect their current PSA rankings. Only Aamir Atlas managed to escape from plenty as he had withdrawn his nomination timely.

At one end, the federation is making tall claims of taking the players’ PSA rankings very seriously and doing whatever they can to provide them with maximum PSA events and also promised to take Nasir into top 20 by the end of this year. But on the other hand, sheer negligence on part of the PSF of arranging timely visas clearly indicates how much it is serious about the players’ world rankings.  The inside sources have confirmed to this scribe that Malaysian visas could have been easily arranged and as all the players had deposited their passports well before time but lack of coordination between the federation and the embassy resulted in non-availability of visas for the players. Now a fine looms large on the players, the sources concluded.