Pakistan Federation Baseball (PFB) will field strong under-18 (U-18) and under-12 (U-12) outfits in the BFA Asian championships to earn spots in the coveted WBSC Baseball World Cups.
Both the continental championships are scheduled to be held in Chinese Taipei during this year.
The U-18 Asian Baseball Championship will take place in Kaohsiung from September 6 to 12, while the U-12 Asian Baseball Championship will be staged in November in Tainan. Eight best Asian teams will feature in their respective age division event. Top two teams from each event will make it to the world cups, taking place next year. The dates and venues for world cups will be announced after the conclusion of Asian and other continental championships.
“Our preparations for these events are underway even amid ongoing coronavirus pandemic while adhering to the safety guidelines. We know the importance of these championships. Hence, we’ve intensified training of our players,” PFB President Syed Fakhar Ali Shah told APP on Friday.
According to Fakhar, ten players of national under-18 team were undergoing training at a camp in Khyber Agency under the supervision coaches Amin Afridi and Shafiq Afridi. “Both Amin and Shafiq are members of Pakistan senior basketball team but we also utilize their services as coaches for our junior teams,” he said. “These ten players belong to Khyber Agency, hence we’ve arranged training camp for them in their own area. They are highly talented boys. We’ve been focusing on them for the past seven to eight years. They’ve also enough international exposures as they’ve been representing the country in under 12 and under 15 events.”
He said training camp for the rest of players was underway at Bahria Academy Lahore under the supervision of national coach Aqib Sherazi. Fakhar claimed that Pakistan under-18 team was one of the strongest world team. “We are pinning high hopes on this team. If it succeeds in outclassing Japan, Chinese Taipei and Korea, who are currently among world’s top five sides then our world ranking will be increased significantly,” he said.—APP