Stories about sports

Why the U-19 disaster is bound to occur again

Pakistan under-19 cricket team’s dismal performance in the ongoing Under-19 World Cup shouldn’t come to us as a surprise. The state of affairs of sports in Pakistan has been such lately that this was bound to happen eventually. Having said as much, we still feel disappointed because of the recent excellent performances by our U-19 team in the event. While Pakistan’s senior team had their worst World Cup campaigns in 2003 and 2007 (they came back home after the first round on both occasions), the U-19 team brought home the World Cup in 2004 and 2006. They were semi-finalists in ...

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London Olympics 2012 opening ceremony: Unconventionality at its best

The long awaited London Olympics 2012 opening ceremony finally took place last night! Had it not been for the convincing tweets from literally everyone on my Twitter timeline, I don’t think I would have watched it, but I’m glad I did. Here are some tweets that tempted me to tune in to watch one of the most glorious Olympics opening ceremonies I’ve ever seen. Faizan Lakhani @faizanlakhani Genius, that was really unexpected selection to lit the Olympic cauldron, liked it. #OpeningCeremony #London2012 Farrukh Not Farooq @Karafornication The whole London Olympics ceremony is basically the opening theme of Game Of Thrones Salman Ahmed Khan @SAKsays Totally entranced by the opening ceremony of #London2012 olympics !! So I’ve decided ...

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Euro 2012: So Poland and Ukraine can host but not Pakistan?

The UEFA‘s decision to choose Poland and Ukraine as hosts for the Euro 2012 was dealt with criticism and rightfully so: The two countries are known for their hostile attitudes. Poland, where 96.7% of population is pure Polish, is ranked number 14 in the list of the most racist countries in Europe. Ukraine, which has a whopping 78% of pure Ukrainians, has bagged the 23rd position on the list. However, we were not aware of the situation regarding racism in Ukraine and Poland before the release of the famous BBC documentary “Stadiums of Hate”. ...

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The misery of being a Pakistani sports reporter

Often I think about what I would write in my suicide note. I can’t really write that I killed myself out of boredom or the fact that being a sports journalist in Pakistan is equal to being dead. But you can’t kill something that is already dead, so I’d say that being a sports journalist is like being undead. I realised I’m undead last week right in the middle of the dancing and celebrating with my fellow Chelsea supporters, when I felt the need to kill myself, understanding that covering Pakistani football for two years has never given me a ...

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Finally, Chelsea!

It took nine long years, eight different managers (and more than £60 million in compensation for the termination of their respective contracts), innumerable player signings worth millions and several occasions of heartbreak, but at long last, Roman Abramovich’s Chelsea have finally gotten their hands on the European Cup. A penalty shoot-out victory over Bayern Munich ensured the illustrious trophy went to Stamford Bridge (or indeed any London club) for the very first time. The talismanic touch of interim coach Roberto Di Matteo worked again as his team defied the odds to win ...

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They paved paradise, and put up a cricket stadium and golf course

There was some good news for the city’s sports fans following the announcements that new “world-class” cricket and golf facilities are going to be set up in Shakarparian. Hundreds of thousands of cricket fans would be especially enthused by the knowledge that the capital will finally be home to a cricket stadium as would a dozen-odd golf fans. But I kid. Golf has more than a dozen fans in the city. Maybe even a few hundred. While a cricket stadium has been a long-standing dream for many Islamabadis, a bit of an odd one considering the relative proximity of Rawalpindi Cricket ...

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What the Pakistan Premier League should look like

The dream of Pakistan Premier League (PPL) has finally become a reality: the Chairman of the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB), Zaka Ashraf has declared that this event will be held in October.  Here’s what I think the event should look like. Name To be really honest, I would like a unique name for our tournament. Case in point; Spain’s La Liga and Australia’s Big Bash, two unique names which almost every sports fan knows. And frankly there are too many Premier Leagues in our region. Why not something in Urdu? Total number of teams  There are speculations that 16 teams will feature in the event, which is ...

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Why Imran Nazir should be on the T20 team

Imran Nazir, a talented right-handed batsman and consistent performer in the T20 format, is desperate to get selected for the Pakistan T20 squad. While there are plenty of reasons which prove that he deserves to be part of the team, the PCB cannot give one as to why he should be dropped.    If the PCB is of the opinion that Imran Nazir was given chances but he failed to prove himself, I would like to ask them if he has ever failed in the T20 internationals. It just doesn’t make sense to drop him from the T20s when it was the ODI ...

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Good riddance to Imran Farhat!

When Mohammad Ilyas announced his resignation following the series between Pakistan and England, I was a content man. Not because Mohammad Ilyas wasn’t going to be part of the PCB selection committee going forward, but because his resignation signaled the end of Imran Farhat’s career. It has been cause for suspicion that Farhat’s inclusion in Pakistan’s squads has been due to dear daddy-in-law, and with him no longer selecting the team now, Farhat was likely to be dropped. This was made official when Pakistan’s new chief selector, Iqbal Qasim, announced Pakistan’s squad for the upcoming Asia Cup. I was doubly satisfied when not only Farhat, ...

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Why Ponting was dropped and Tendulkar wasn’t

The month of February saw two greats being met with two different fates. Both Ponting and Tendulkar have not been pulling their weight in the ODIs recently but while one was dropped from the ODI team and his career in the format all but ended, the other got a life line to go to Bangladesh and participate in the Asia Cup. Australia is a country where tough decisions are taken in a stride and selectors are ruthless and unforgiving. As Steve Waugh and Mark Taylor found out before Ponting, reputation counts for little when a team is being picked. If you ...

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