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Pakistan at Asian Games

Our hockey team and boxers have outshone the athletes of other disciplines

Pakistan at Asian Games
Mehrullah Lassi.

In around seven-decade history of the Asian Games, Pakistan has accumulated 197 medals: 44 gold, 63 silver and 90 bronze.

Pakistan’s performance in hockey remained excellent. Since debut of the sport in 1958, Pakistan have missed the medal just once. It was in 2002 Busan Asian Games when Pakistan finished fourth. Starting with a gold medal in 1958, Pakistan have claimed eight gold, three silver and three bronze medals.

Boxing is the other sport in which Pakistan had a tight grip in Asia largely because of the efforts of Professor Anwar Chowdhry who helped Pakistan keep growing in the sport for around four decades. Pakistan grabbed 60 medals in boxing in the Asian Games: six gold, 20 silver and 34 bronze.

In the initial few editions athletics kept bringing the lion’s share of medals for the country. Army made an enormous contribution. Most of the medals were fetched by athletes from Army. Overall in athletics Pakistan have won 39 medals: 14 gold, 13 silver and 12 bronze.

Pakistan have been a force in wrestling as the nation claimed 34 medals in the Asian Games: six gold, 14 silver and 14 bronze. In sailing Pakistan have three silver and two bronze; in kabaddi two silver and five bronze; in yachting five gold; in squash two gold, three silver and two bronze; two gold in women cricket and one bronze in men’s cricket.

Pakistan also have one silver and two bronze in weightlifting; one gold and four bronze in snooker; and one silver and two bronze in tennis.

Pakistan won badminton bronze in men’s team championship in 1978 Bangkok edition.

In cycling Pakistan claimed two silver and one bronze in 1958 and a bronze in equestrian in 1982.

Pakistan got bronze medal in volleyball when they finished third in men’s volleyball competitions in 1962 Jakarta Asian Games.

Let’s take a look at Pakistan’s performance in each Asian Games.

In Manila in 1954, Pakistan got five gold, six silver and two bronze, finishing at the fourth place out of 19 nations.

Of the five gold, four came in athletics and one in wrestling. The athletics golds were claimed by Abdul Khaliq (100m), Sharif Butt (200m), Mirza Khan (400m hurdles) and Mohammad Nawaz (javelin throw).

In athletics Pakistan also got four silvers, through Mohammad Aslam (200m), 4x100m relay, Jalal Khan (javelin) and Mohammad Iqbal (hammer throw).

The country’s fine grappler Deen Mohammad won the only wrestling gold in flyweight. Wrestler Abdul Rasheed got silver while Mohammad Amin and Mohammad Ashraf captured bronze medals. Weightlifter Iqbal Butt got silver in this edition.

In 1958 edition Pakistan got six gold, 11 silver and nine bronze and ended the event at the sixth place out of 20 nations.

In athletics, Pakistan won five gold, four silver and four bronze medals in the discipline. The celebrated sprinter Abdul Khaliq (100m), Mubarak Shah (3000 m steeple chase), Ghulam Raziq (100m hurdles), Mohammad Iqbal (hammer throw) and Mohammad Nawaz (javelin) got gold.

Abdul Khaliq also claimed silver in 200m, while Mubarak Shah (10,000m), Jalal Khan (javelin), and Mohammad Ayub (discus throw) got silvers. The bronze medals came through Ramzan Ali (long jump), Malik Noor (hammer) and Allah Ditta (pole vault).

In boxing, Pakistan got two silver and two bronze medals. Sultan Mehmood (middleweight) and Khalid Mumtaz (heavyweight) got silver medals, while Mohammad Nasir (bantamweight) and Bait Hussain (lightweight) snared bronze in their respective weights.

Pakistan also claimed 4000m team pursuit silver in cycling, silver in 2000m tandem race and a bronze medal was won by rider Shah Rukh in 1000m sprint.

The hockey team got a gold medal on its debut. Wrestlers Mohammad Akhtar, Sirajuddin and Mohammad Nazir got silver and Shujauddin and Mohammad Bashir claimed bronze medals in their respective weight categories.

In 1962 Jakarta Asian Games Pakistan got eight gold, 11 silver and nine bronze medals, finishing fourth out of 16 nations.

Grapplers showed great talent, snaring three gold, seven silver and four bronze medals. Faiz Mohammad, Mohammad Niaz and Mohammad Saeed were the gold medalists; Sirajuddin got bantamweight silver in both freestyle and Greco-Roman; Mohammad Akhtar claimed featherweight silver in both freestyle and Greco-Roman; Mohammad Bashir clinched welterweight silvers in both freestyle and Greco-Roman. Ghulam Rasool got lightweight bronze in both freestyle and Greco-Roman. The other two bronze medals were won by Faiz Mohammad and Mohammad Niaz.

In athletics, Pakistan won two gold, three silver and two bronze medals. Mubarak Shah got both the gold medals by finishing first in 3000m steeple chase and 5000m. The silver medals came through Ghulam Raziq (110m hurdles), Mohammad Yousuf (marathon) and Mohammad Nawaz (javelin). Allah Ditta and Mohammad Iqbal claimed bronze in pole vault and hammer throw, respectively.

In this edition, boxers Mohammad Safdar (lightweight) and Barkat Ali (heavyweight) claimed gold medals; Gul Mohammad (bantamweight) got silver; while Ghulam Sarwar Junior (flyweight) and Ghulam Sarwar Senior (lightweight) got bronze medals.

In hockey, Pakistan once again clinched the gold medal. Pakistan won the bronze medal in volleyball.

In 1966 Bangkok edition, Pakistan got two gold, four silver and two bronze, finishing 11th out of 18 nations. The country’s brilliant hurdler Ghulam Raziq once again did well, snaring 110m hurdles gold. Boxers Abdul Rehman and Mohammad Ghaznavi got silver medals, while the two bronze medals in boxing came through Khaliq and Barkat Ali.

In hockey, Pakistan got silver, while wrestler Mohammad Bashir got gold and Mohammad Saeed finished with wrestling silver.

In 1970 Bangkok Games, Pakistan got one gold, two silver and seven bronze medals, ending 13th out of 18 nations.

Pakistan reclaimed the title in hockey. Mohammad Younis got 1500m athletics silver, while Norman Brinkworth (400m hurdles) and Yousuf Malik (hammer throw) got bronze. Wrestler Sardar Mohammad and Maroof Khan also won bronze.

In 1974 Tehran Asian Games, Pakistan got one gold and two bronze in athletics, four bronze in boxing, gold in hockey, bronze in tennis and bronze in wrestling to end at the 11th spot out of 25 nations.

In 1978 Bangkok edition, Pakistan claimed four gold, four silver and nine bronze, finishing at the eighth spot out of 25 nations. Pakistan retained hockey gold, won two boxing gold medals besides taking one silver and three bronze in this discipline. The country also snared yachting gold, one bronze in badminton, one silver and three bronze in wrestling, one bronze in weightlifting and one silver and one bronze in tennis.

In the 1982 edition, Pakistan claimed three gold, three silver and five bronze, claiming the eighth place out of 33 nations. The hockey team retained the crown. Two gold medals were won in yachting. The nation won two silver and five bronze in boxing and one silver in equestrian.

In 1986 Seoul Games, Pakistan got two gold, three silver and four bronze to finish eighth out of 25 nations. Pakistan clinched two silver and three bronze medals in boxing, silver in hockey, one gold and one silver in wrestling and a gold in yachting.

In 1990 Beijing Games, Pakistan finished seventh out of 37 nations through four gold, one silver and seven bronze.

In 1994 Hiroshima edition, Pakistan ended 22nd out of 42 nations by claiming four silvers and six bronze.

In 1998 Bangkok edition, Pakistan ended 16th out of 42 nations by virtue of gold medals in snooker and squash, four silver and nine bronze medals.

In 2002 Busan Games, Pakistan finished at the 23rd spot out of 44 nations through Mehrullah’s gold in boxing (Pakistan’s last in Asian Games), six silver and six bronze medals.

In 2006 Doha Asian Games, Pakistan finished at a poor 31st place out of 45 nations. They won silver in kabaddi and three bronze (hockey, squash, wushu).

In 2010 Guangzhou edition, Pakistan claimed gold in hockey, squash, women cricket; silver in squash and wushu; and bronze in snooker, men cricket and kabaddi.

In the last edition held in Incheon, South Korea, in 2014, Pakistan finished at the 23rd place out of 45 nations by virtue of gold in women’s cricket, silver in hockey and one bronze each in boxing (Mohammad Waseem), kabaddi and wushu (Syed Maratab Ali Shah).

Pakistan athletes are set to feature in 36 disciplines in the 18th Asian Games, which are scheduled to be held from August 18 to September 2 in the Indonesian cities of Jakarta and Palembang.

There are chances of medals in hockey, kabaddi, wushu, judo and ju-jitsu.


Alam Zeb Safi

Alam Zeb copy
The writer is a sports reporter at The News International. He may be reached at [email protected]

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