KARACHI: Pakistan on Tuesday unveiled its weightlifting squad for the Commonwealth Games slated to be held in Gold Coast, Australia, from April 4-15.
The weightlifters are Nooh Dastagir Butt (+105kg), Abu Sufyan (69kg), Commonwealth top seed in snatch Talha Talib (62kg), Usman Amjad Rathore (94kg) and Abdullah Ghafoor (56kg).
Jameel Akhtar (105kg) and Haider Ali (77kg) have been kept in the reserve squad. A senior official of Pakistan Weightlifting Federation (PWF) told ‘The International News’ that the reserve athletes’ fortunes would be decided in a few days.
“They are very much under consideration. They have received some injuries and have been given some time to recover. Hopefully they soon achieve top fitness and are ready for the tour,” the official said.
He said that all seven weightlifters have qualified for the Commonwealth Games. “Yes, all have qualified,” the official said.He said that the weightlifters were training hard at the Pakistan Sports Complex, Islamabad, under the supervision of coaches Ilyas Butt and Ali Aslam.
“They are undergoing tough training. All are young but experienced and we are very confident that they will do well in Australia,” the official said.PWF is expecting a couple of gold medals from its touring party.
In the last Commonwealth Games, held in Glasgow in 2014, Pakistan’s performance in weightlifting was not good. Mohammad Shehzad (56kg) narrowly missed a silver medal, eventually finishing at the fourth place.
In the Gold Coast spectacle, Pakistan, besides weightlifting, will take part in swimming, athletics, badminton, wrestling, table tennis, squash, boxing, wrestling and hockey.An 89-member Pakistan contingent is scheduled to feature in the quadrennial event.