Former Pakistan cricketer slams admins for small Tokyo contingent; Shadab Khan pledges to help before next OLY

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The Pakistan contingent march during the Tokyo Olympics Opening ceremony. (Source: InsideTheGames)

Tokyo: At a time when most of the Asian countries have sent big contingents for the ongoing Tokyo Olympics, Pakistan has come under severe criticism from national cricketers for sending only 10 athletes in a country of 220 million. They will be competing across six events.

However, it didn’t go well with former cricketer Imran Nazir who took to twitter to vent out his frustration blaming the administrators involved. Nazir posted a picture comparing the 2012 London Olympics contingent and the current one with a text, “This is actually sad. Just 10 athletes from a country of 220 million people. To everyone who is responsible for Pakistan’s such decline in sports, SHAME ON YOU!”

He didn’t stop there. “We don’t lack talent in our country, we lack people in charge with vision to take sports to next level,” Nazir further tweeted. Just when all of these were going on, weightlifter Talha Talib produced a spectacular performance in the men’s 67kg category to finish fifth at the Tokyo Olympics missing on a bronze medal by just two kilograms.

Talib’s show prompted spinner Shadab Khan to come forward and urge the sponsors and administrators to take due note and provide the athletes with adequate requirements. “Pakistan is proud of Talha Talib. Urge sponsors and sports administration to help athletes like Talha, they have the potential to bring home Olympic medals and make Pakistan proud if given the facilities and financial support. #SupportAthletes #OlympicGames,” Shadab tweeted.

He further pledged to set up a fundraiser to help Pakistan’s athletes prepare for 2024 Paris Olympics. “Within the next year, I pledge to set up a fund for Pakistan’s Olympic’s athletes in preparation for the next Olympics. Looking at people like Talha Talib, we all should play our part in supporting Pakistan’s heroes. Please join me for Pakistan,” he wrote.

Hosts, Japan has one of the largest contingents with 552 athletes while China too has a huge pool of athletes taking part. India has sent a contingent of 128 athletes – the country’s largest till date in the history of the Olympics.

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