KARACHI: Pakistani quartet for Muhammad Asif, Babar Masih, Muhammad Sajjad and Asjad made history as they took the IBSF World 6-Red Team Championship 2017 title, and finished second, respectively in Hurghada, Egypt on Thursday night.
Pakistan-2, comprising of the former IBSF World Champion Asif and Babar, defeated Pakistan-1’s Sajjad and his student Asjad 5-4 in a thrilling final.
Meanwhile, Babar won bronze for Pakistan in the individual championship too. “It was a tough competition for me and for other players,” Babar told a website. “I want to dedicate this win, the performance in both events, to my parents and all Pakistanis who supported us. We’ll always need their best wishes. We’ll be giving our all for the country in the future too.”
Pakistan-1 beat Wales in the semi-finals, while Pakistan-2 outplayed Ireland to reach the final in the 36-team event. Babar had lost his semi-final in the individual championship to India’s Kamal Chawla, however, he said that he wanted to win the team championship even more after the result in the individual event.
“It wasn’t easy with 36 teams competing against us in the tournament,” said Babar. “Hong Kong were very difficult to beat in the team event, and of course Sajjad and Asjad gave their best in the final. It was very heartening to share the podium with Sajjad and Asjad. The feeling was out of this world.”
On the other hand, Sajjad, who won the Asian 6-Red Championship last month, felt that it was more about Pakistan getting the title than him losing the final to Babar and Asif. “Just the fact that the best players in the IBSF circuit are from Pakistan is exhilarating,” said Sajjad.
“In the 6-reds we are the most dominant force and by the end of the match we had nothing but smiles on our faces. All of us were determined to give our best shot going into the final. We lost by a very small margin, but this defeat doesn’t feel too bad, honestly.”
Sajjad has been revived his form this year, after struggling for almost three years to make his mark internationally again, however, behind his success this year, there is a tragedy. Agencies