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PESHAWAR: Consistent national winner Zeeshan Zeb and former Pakistan No 1 Rushna Mehboob clinched the titles while promising Muhammad Ashab Irfan of Punjab took the National U19 trophy in the International Satellite 1000 US $ Men and Women Squash Tournament played here at Qamar Zaman Squash Complex, said a press release issued here on Sunday.

Secretary Higher Education Department, KP Daud Khan was the chief guest who witnessed the three thrill-packed finals of the International Satellite Men and Women and National U19 Tournament organized by KP Squash Association with the collaboration of Pakistan Squash Federation and Directorate of Sports KP.

In the Men final both Zeeshan Zeb and Waqar Mehboob played well and gave each other a tough fight but poor refereeing marred the overall beauty of squash. However, some excellent strokes including perfect nicks, key drops and a lot of smashes were also enjoyed by the sitting spectators.

Waqar Mehboob was up at the end of the first set when he made a quick show of winning the set at 4-11. Waqar was in excellent form and it looked like he would have won the final in straight sets but all of the sudden the dejected Waqar Mehboob lost his patience and gave the final to Zeeshan Zeb.

Zeeshan Zeb, also played well and hit some excellent nicks during the course of the final match witnessed by a jam-packed spectators in the Qamar Zaman Squash Complex. It was the second set when Waqar Mehboob was leading by 3-7 and 4-10 but Zeeshan Zeb came back into the Game and tied the tally first at 10-10, 11-11, 12-12, and 13-13 and then took the set by 15-13.

Waqar and sometimes Zeeshan Zeb have questioned some of the referee decisions in the set but all know at the end the decision of the referee is final either wrong for one or the others, however, both played well.

It was the similar situation in the third set wherein both Zeeshan Zeb (Pak) and Waqar Mehboob (Pak) were stretched to 15-13. Waqar was leading as usual and even reached 2-9 but then Zeeshan came back and tied the tally at 9-9, 10-10, 11-11, and 13-13 and at the end Zeeshan Zeb won the set 15-13. But at 13-all, this was Zeeshan Zeb who showed his excellent form and twice hit a side-wall in as many rallies by taking two vital points and the set to make the tally 2-1.

At 2-1 set lead, Zeeshan Zeb marched into victory and took the decisive set by 11-5 wherein Waqar completely lost his patience by not responding to Zeeshan Zeb shorts and thus Zeeshan Zeb won the set 11-5. The final lasted for 52-minute battle.

In the Women final former national champion and Pakistan No. 1 Rushna Mehboob defeated her top seeded rival Noor Ul Ain Ijaz of Pakistan in straight sets 3-0, the score was 14-12, 11-4 and 11-2.

Only it was the first set in which Rushna Mehboob faced some resistance and both were even stretched to 14-12 before playing a level Game at the set points 8-8, 9-9, 10-10, 11-11, 12-12. Otherwise it was easy sailing for Rushna in the other two sets where she raced up to victory 3-0 in just 20-minute play.

In the U19 Boys final promising Muhammad Ashab Irfan of Punjab recorded victory against injured Khushal Riaz of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. It was the first set wherein Ashab Irfan won by 11-6 in which Khushal Riaz saw his ankle dislocated and third was retired hurt. At the end, the chief guest gave away trophies and cash prizes to the winners and runners-up.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2022

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