By our correspondent
LAHORE: Qatar on Sunday broke Pakistan’s giant killing run when they defeated the Green-shirts 3-1 in the quarter-finals of the men’s volleyball event of the 19th Asian Games in Hangzhou.
Following the defeat Pakistan will now face India in the fifth position match on Tuesday (tomorrow). India, meanwhile, were crushed by eight-time champions Japan in the other quarter-final.
Qatar will face Iran and Japan will lock horns with China in the semi-finals on Monday (today).
Qatar-Pakistan quarter-final was interesting with the former showing great maturity which enabled them to down a very competitive Pakistan being coached by Brazilian Issanaye Ramires Ferraz.
Pakistan did not click in the middle block which was the weakest zone throughout the event. And on Sunday when it mattered the most Pakistan lost the way and wasted a very golden opportunity to break into the top four after so many years.
Pakistan had a fine start and put Qatar under terrific pressure but after 20 points the Issanaye’s charges failed to hold their nerves and narrowly lost the set 26-24. A winning start in the tough game always matters and losing ground there eventually proved too costly for the Green-shirts who had entered the quarter-finals after three straight wins against Mongolia, Chinese Taipei and strong South Korea.
In the second set Qatar, carrying mostly foreign players, showed great resolve and did not give more room to the Pakistani spikers to penetrate. They won the set 25-19 to take a 2-1 lead. In another tough set Pakistan achieved success 25-23 and it was now 2-1. Qatar, who have a vast experience of playing around the world and with a much better league at home, then marshalled their troops and made little errors to down Pakistan 25-18 to seal the game 3-1 and so qualified for the semi-finals..
The set score was 26-24, 25-19, 23-25 and 25-18 in Qatar’s favour.
Taekwondo: Pakistan taekwondo fighters eliminated at various stages in the poomsae event of the quadrennial event which began at the Linian Sports Culture and Exhibition Centre.
In the men’s individual poomsae round of 16 Aqdas Ullah Qadeer was beaten by Nepal’s Bahadur Prem Limbu by a narrow margin. Aqdas secured 101 points while the Nepalese claimed 102.3 points.
Meanwhile in the women’s individual poomsae round of 16 Naila was off to a fine start when she downed Saudi Arabia’s Medhat Abrar Bukhari. However Naila then narrowly lost in the quarter-finals to Japan’s Yuiko Niwa just by a difference of 4.06 points.
Naila scored 100 points while her opponent secured 104.06 points.
This was the first time that poomsae was part of the Asian Games.
Meanwhile Pakistan’s top fighter and medal hope Haroon Khan will compete in the -58 kilogramme round of 16 on Monday (today). He will face the winner of the fight between fighters from Mongolia and Kyrgyzstan on Monday (today).
Haroon has got bye in the round of 32.
Sailing: Pakistan continued to falter in the sailing competitions being held at the NBX Sailing Centre.
In the 470 class Pakistan’s crew, carrying Nadine Xerxes Avari and Mehboob, finished seventh in the seventh and eighth race. They overall also stand at the last seventh spot in the event carrying seven participants.
In the girls ILCA 4 Zoya Asad Ali finished seventh in the seventh race and eighth in the eighth race which carries eight contestants.
After eight races she trails at the seventh position.
In the boys ILCA 4, carrying 12 participants, Javed Raphael finished 11th in the seventh race and ninth in the eighth race.
Rowing: Pakistan’s duo of Asad Iqbal and Muzammil Shehzad on Sunday finished overall ninth in the lightweight men’s double sculls when they finished third in the Final B with 6:43.84.
On Monday Zahid Iqbal will compete in the men’s singles sculls final B while Pakistan’s quartet, including Amjad Baig, Asad Iqbal, Zahid Iqbal and Muzammil Shehzad, will compete in the final B.
Swimming: Pakistan also had a disappointing start in swimming with Ahmad Durrani and Amaan Siddiqui faltering in their events.
In the men’s 200m Individual Medley Mohammad Ahmad Durrani, who lives in the UAE, finished at the 19th spot out of 27 contestants in the heats by clocking 2:15.10 while Amaan Siddiqui clocked 2:18.65 in the same event to finish overall at the 22nd spot.
In the men’s 100m freestyle Mohammad Ahmad Durrani clocked 53.96 seconds to finish overall at the 33rd spot in the pack of 44 contestants while Amaan ended at the 36th place with a time of 55.03.