Aisam, Aqeel aiming for victory in Davis Cup clash with Indonesia

LAHORE - Tennis luminary Aisam-ul-Haq Qureshi expressed unwavering determination on Friday as he vowed to lead his team to success in the upcoming Davis Cup World Group II tie against Indonesia. 

The two-day face-off between the two nations is set to com­mence today (Saturday) at the Aisam-ul-Haq Tennis Pavilion, Pakistan Sports Complex in Is­lamabad. Spearheading Paki­stan’s formidable squad are Aisam-ul-Haq and the nation’s top-ranking player, Aqeel Khan. 

Complementing this dynamic duo are Pakistan’s second-ranked player, Muhammad Shoaib, along with Muhammad Abid and debu­tant Barkat Ullah. Ensuring the team’s strategic prowess is for­mer Davis Cup player Mushaf Zia, serving as the team’s coach, while Muhammad Shahid takes on the role of team physio. 

Addressing the media during a press conference at a local ho­tel, Aisam commented, “Despite the persistently humid weather, our team has diligently pre­pared for this tie. We are fully committed to securing victory.” While emphasizing that Paki­stan does not underestimate their Indonesian counterparts, he acknowledged the advantage of competing on home turf. 

Aqeel Khan echoed these sentiments, underlining the im­portance of the Davis Cup tie in evaluating their own strengths and weaknesses ahead of the Asian Games. He stated, “There is a substantial distinction be­tween practice sessions and fac­ing a formidable opponent. 

“After the culmination of the Davis Cup, we will swiftly journey to China for the Asian Games. I believe we are in prime condition to achieve a com­mendable standing in this pres­tigious sporting event.” Aisam and Aqeel are set to represent Pakistan in the tennis discipline at the Asian Games, scheduled to take place from September 23 to October 8 in Hangzhou, China. 

The Indonesian Davis Cup contingent, comprising three players, a captain, and a coach, has already arrived in Islam­abad. Their team roster features David Agung Susanto, Ignatius Anthony Susanto, and Gunawan Trismuwantara. Wirjawan Sugi­harta assumes the role of playing captain, while Suharyadi manag­es the team, and Robby Sudrajat serves as the Strength and Con­ditioning Coach, with Suharto fulfilling the role of Masseur. 

Overseeing the tie as the ITF Referee is Hany Hamied Ali ElKhafief from Egypt, with chair umpire Gianluca Mos­carella from Italy and second chair umpire Ivan Yovchev from Bulgaria also present in Islam­abad. Chief of Umpires Essam Maher Mohammad Saleh ar­rived in the city late Thursday to ensure fair play throughout the competition. In the midst of preparations, the official draw ceremony for the tie was con­ducted, graced by the presence of President of Pakistan Tennis Federation (PTF), Senator Salim Saifullah Khan, who extended his best wishes to both teams for the impending showdown. 

As per the match schedule, the action-packed tie will com­mence with the first singles match at 11:00 am today, fea­turing Aisam Qureshi against David Agung Susanto, followed by the second singles match be­tween Aqeel Khan and Gunawan Trismuwantara. The doubles match is scheduled for tomor­row (September 17) at 11:00 am, with Muhammad Shoaib and Muhammad Abid facing off against Gunawan Trismuwanta­ra and Anthony Susanto.

ePaper - Nawaiwaqt