Pak wrestlers to leave for Rio qualifiers on Friday

ISLAMABAD: A five-member Pakistan wrestling team will proceed to Istanbul, Turkey on Friday to chip in the world qualifying round, scheduled to take place there from May 6-8.

“This is the only remaining qualifier where winner and runner-up in each weight category will make it to the Rio. I’m optimistic we’ll be able to get a couple of tickets for the Games,” Secretary Pakistan Wrestling

Federation (PWF) Arshad Sattar told APP on Wednesday. “Besides our Commonwealth Games gold medallist Muhammad Inam (86kg), we are fielding Mohammad Bilal (57kg), Qamar Abbas (65kg), Asad Butt (74kg) and Zaman Anwar (125kg) in the Turkey qualifiers,” he said.

“These qualifiers offer a golden chance to our grapplers to make it to the Rio as most of the world’s best athletes have already qualified for the Games and now they will not be facing tough challenge,” he said.

The PWF secretary said that the federation was suffering from shortage of funds and it was with great difficulty that it had managed funds to send athletes for Turkey qualifiers. “Wrestling is the only game left, which can help the country secure a berth in Rio Games. If proper attention is given, Pakistan has great potential to excel in this game,” Sattar added.-APP