Islamabad—Pakistan’s Farhan Mehboob lifted the $25,000 Serena Hotels-Chief of the Air Staff International Squash Championship, defeating countrymen Farhan Mehboob 3-1 in the final here at Mushaf Squash Complex, Islamabad on Monday.
World number 106 Farhan Mehboob from Pakistan won the first 11-9 set after a thrilling contest.
He won the second set 11-6. But he conceded the third set 6-11 to world number 52 Farhan Zaman, who bounced back, displaying superb technique and stamina. Farhan Mehboob took the fourth and final set 11-5 to emerge victorious.
Chief of the Air Staff Air Chief Marshal Sohail Aman, President Pakistan Squash Federation (PSF) awarded trophies and prizes to the winner and runner-up of the Championship.
Squash legends Qamar Zaman and Jahangir Khan also attended the closing ceremony along with civil and military dignitaries and sports lovers from the twin cities.
Talking to media after lifting the trophy, Farhan Mehboob said the win had raised his confidence and he would try his level best to win future events also.
“My performance is the result of efforts made by our federation for the uplift of squash in the country,” he said.
Farhan Zaman said he had worked to earn each and every point in the match.
“Though I’ve lost the final, I’m happy as the title is with Pakistan,” he said.
Serena Hotels became the title sponsor for the Championship under its Sports Diplomacy initiative, when it decided three years ago to revive the legacy of squash in Pakistan. Since the inception of the Serena Hotels-Chief of Air Staff International Squash Championship, there has been a remarkable increase in the interest for local squash tournaments and championships. The outcome of these initiatives was that in August this year Pakistan won the 2016 World Team Junior Squash Championships after beating defending champions Egypt.
Mr. Aziz Boolani, CEO of Serena Hotels, said, “Sports Diplomacy is an integral part of Serena’s efforts to build stronger relations with communities. Pakistan has a tradition of excellence in many sports but competitive sports require the support of organizations through sponsorships and promotion. Earlier Pakistani squash players were the best in the world and we hope to bring back the laurel seen. Serena Hotels with the Pakistan Air Force and the Pakistan Squash Federation will continue to work towards the revival of our legacy through Passion for Squash.”