Pakistan narrowly lose final to India
ISLAMABAD: Pakistan bagged the silver medal in Asian Men’s Netball Championship 2017 after narrowly losing 50-51 to India in the final on Sunday in Kuala Lumpur. Pakistan’s Mohammad Akhtar scored 26 points while Abid Ali scored 24. Earlier, an unbeaten Pakistan had edged past a strong Singapore side in the semi-final on Saturday to set up the grand finale with arch-rivals India, who had defeated hosts Malaysia in the other semi-final. Pakistan had beaten Sri Lanka, Malaysia, Singapore, Hong Kong in round games to reach the semi-finals.
Interestingly, Pakistan defeated traditional rivals India 70-41 in the round-robin matches of the tournament, which kicked off on Wednesday. The netball squad of Pakistan comprised Mohammad Akhtar (captain), Samad Masood (vice-captain), Mehboob Shah, Ali Raza Fareed, Muhammad Khursheed, Abid Ali Ansari, Haris Kamal, Masoon Abbasa, Yawar Khan, Zahid Iqbal, Muhammad Rizwan and Naseeb Raza. Mudassar Razak was the team’s manager with Anwar Ahmed Ansari as the coach. Muhammad Riaz was the assistant manager. Pakistan had won silver in the First Asian Men’s Netball Championship 2016. The host team Malaysia defeated Pakistan 35-34 in a close competition, which was held at Dewan Serbaguna Complex Quarters, Kuala Lumpur, last year.
Published in Daily Times, December 18th 2017.