Srinagar, Apr 10:Waseem Feroze, a well-known footballer has singed two-year contract with a top football club of India, East Bengal. Waseem who was part of Muhammedan Sports Kolkatta this season in I-league was selected by East Bengal after his brilliant performance. Before joining Muhammedan Sports, Waseem was part of JK Bank football team. But he resigned in 2008 and went to Kolkatta to play for top football leagues. Waseem has played in three national school games for his state. In one of the nationals, he captained J&K team and under his leadership team was able to put on good show. He started playing club level football from Novelty Sports, where he was taught the basic of the game by international footballer of the Valley, Ishfaq Ahmad. After Novelty, he moved to Food and Supplies team and then to JK SRTC. It was in SRTC, where he came into limelight. The SRTC team was under revival at that period and had started to win most of the championships. Waseem’s role was exceptional as defenders always play an important role in win. From SRTC, he moved to JK Bank. If JK Bank dominated football arena in the state in last two years, Waseem was one of the main reasons. He has played in four Santosh Trophy tournaments at Delhi, Kerala, Haryana and JK. Besides, he has participated in number of other national level tournaments. In East Bengal, Waseem will join valley’s international footballer Mehraj-ud-Din Wadoo who is already part of the team from last three years.
Srinagar, Apr 10: In a significant development, a coach from J&K would train a national level zonal team. National Cricket Academy (NCA) Bangalore run by Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has appointed a well-known player and coach of valley, Idrees Gundroo to train East Zone Under-16 team. It is for the first time that a coach from J&K was selected for any zonal team. “We are happy to inform you that you have been appointed as coach of zonal camp for East for under-16 team which will function from April 17 to May 22 at Infosys ground, Bubnehswar, Orisssa. Former test international Atul Gaikwad will be the head coach,” reads the letter sent by Director operations, NCA, Dav Whatmore In to Idrees. Whatmore who was impressed by his skills during 12-day level two-specialization coaching course held at Bangalore in January this year has made the selection of Idrees. “In the course we were given specialized training in fielding, fitness, wicket keeping, batting, spin and fast bowling. In the camp there were coaches from all over India and from JK me and Ghulam Muhammad Bhat participated,” Idrees said. There are only 200 level two-cricket coaches in India at present. “Only 200 people have qualified level two coaching of NCA till date. Ghulam Muhammad and myself feature in the list,” he said. Expressing his happiness over the selection, he thanked J&K Cricket Association (JKCA) president Dr Farooq Abdullah for supporting him. “It is an honor for me and I think my bowling impressed Whatmore. The JKCA president and secretary were criticized for sending only two coaches to the course. They always defended the decisions and I proved them correct,” he said. Meanwhile, JKCA has congratulated Gandroo for his achievement. JKCA general secretary, Saleem Khan said, “We are really happy to see our coach getting national recognition. Now we can proudly say that we have a national level coach.” Idrees started his coaching career in 2003 with 10-days level-two coaching at NCA Bangalore under the supervision of former England fast bowler and well-known coach Frank Tyson. In 2006, he participated in week-long fielding training camp in Mumbai under the guidance of former South African great, Jonty Rhodes. In 2008, he participated in level-two refresher course under the super vision of Whatmore at NCA, Bangalore. Apart from coaching, Idrees represented JK from 1980 to 2000, playing 20 Ranji tests. He could have played more but in 1989 he left cricket when conflict started in JK. He rejoined in 1997. From 2003, he is also selector of JK Ranji team. Asked why JK team is not performing well at national level tournaments, he said, “Main reason is we don’t have infrastructure and the players lack commitment. We have talent, but players don’t work hard.” “Players practice only during Ranji season and don’t concentrate on physical fitness which is main criteria of selection in modern cricket,” he said.
Srinagar, Apr 9: The Islamia College of Science and Commerce celebrated its annual Sports Day on Thursday. The College felicitated the players who had won medals in various inter-college events in 2008. They were awarded with track suites and merit certificates. Willayat Hassan, final year student was adjudged as player of the year for his all round performance in 2008. Principal of the College, Dr Saleem Khan who was chief guest on the occasion distributed prizes among the winners. “The function was scheduled to be held last year, but was postponed due to some unavoidable reasons. It is tradition of our College to excel in sports arena, but from last 3-years the performance of our players has improved manifold. If you can’t find name of Islamia College in front or other pages of newspapers, you can find it regularly in sports pages.” “Not only boys, our girl students have also brought laurels for the College. For the benefit of players, we will do every thing to improve the infrastructure. We always give players better facilities. We have built separate building for physical education department with facilities like billiards, snooker, table tennis and gymnasium,” he said. Dr Khan said that for gymnasium equipments they don’t have adequate space. “For separate gymnasium facility, we have sent proposal to Human Resource Development Ministry, which we hope would be sanctioned shortly.” Earlier convener Sports Board of the College, Prof KA Mahajan hailed the students for their achievements. “Our students have made us proud in every competition and print media has always highlighted those achievements,” he added. Football coach of Kashmir University, Sajid Dar and Sports Council volleyball coach, Muneer Ahmad were also felicitated on the occasion. In 2008, Islamia College dominated almost all the inter-college events. They started the campaign by winning inter-district rugby championship and followed it inter-college road race. They also won Yousuf Memorial Cricket tournament, inter-college football tournament, inter-college table tennis men, inter-college badminton men and inter college basketball championships. The college has been dominating inter-college aquatic events for last several years and they continued that tradition by winning overall championship 8th straight time last year. The college also lifted first inter-college Kayaking and Canoeing championship. In inter-college cricket championship, the college ended up runners-up. Apart from that seven players of the college were selected for inter-University football tournament while four were selected for inter-University cricket tournament.
Players felicitated Owais Shah, Amir Aziz, Shabir Bhat, Mohsin Ramzan, Umer Nabi, Asif Banday, Wajid Khan, Shahid Sidiq, Shabir Ahmad, Mir Mohsin, Wasim Raza, Shahnawaz, Aijaz Dar, Umer Mohsin, Umer Sofi, Younis, Muhammad Jibran Gul, Wasim Khan, Khursheed, Faisal Parvez, Gowher Yaqoob, Junaid Hussain, Syed Aamir, Mir Masroor Hamid, Abrar Ahmad Khan, Amir Farooq, Saleem Yousuf, Ubaid Majeed, Inayat Ali, Bilal Ahmad Sofi, Amir Farooq Dar, Aiman Rashid Dar, Showkat Ahmad Bhat, Aadil Bashir, Umi-Un-Adnan, Arif Sidiq, Sajjad, Rameez Manzoor, Jehangir, Willayat Hassan, Imran Hassan, Liyakat Hussain, Iqbal Hassan, Yasir Farooq, Amir Yousuf, Asif Farooq, Muhammad Irfan, Javaid Hassan, Abid Hassan, Aga Asgar Ali, Sumair Mukhtar Faheem Khan, aftab-ul-Maroof, Amir Khan, Shafat Ahmad, Ubaid Bashir, Sajad Maqbool, Ubair Riyaz, Zahid Hussain, Gowhar Nazir, Zubair Rashid, Isam Wani, Iqra Sidiq, Huda Pandit, Majida Khurshid, Umer Nabi and Basim Umer.
Srinagar, Apr 8: The pathetic condition of only playing field in Lasjan area on outskirts of city puts question mark over the working of State Sports Council. The playing field, near bye pass bridge is only ground for players of Athawajan, Lasjan, Pandrethan, Pantha Chowk, Mehjoor Nagar and Padshahi Bagh. But the field remains submerged in water for most part of the year and only one part remain dry in June, July and August. Silver Star Football Club and Friends Club are some of the popular teams of the area who practice in the ground. “As major portion of the field remains water logged for most part of the year, teams have to wait for their turn to practice here,” said, Muneer Ahmad, a player. He blamed sewerage drain that empties into the field. “The sewerage drain of the adjoining areas empties into the filed. Even watchman hut of Sports Council remains submerged,” he said. Cricket players are the worst sufferers due to the condition of the field. “We are never able to play or hold any tournament in the field. Only some football matches are played here during summer months,” said a local cricketer, Adil Hussain. “Playing area is very big and if given due attention, it can become one of the finest playing fields of the valley. Even SSC has not been able to maintain the area where they have built watchman hut. What will they do to whole field?” he asked. An official of the SSC on the condition of the anonymity said that not a single penny has been spent on the ground in the last few years for maintenance. Sports Officer Kashmir, MS Baba admitted that the condition of the ground was pathetic. “The stadium is in low lying area and sewerage drains of the adjacent localities that directly flow in it make things worse. Those drains never allow field to get dry and even our Chowkidaar hut remain flooded. The field is only playable for football as the side where cricket matches are played always remain submerged,” he said. Asked why SSC has been unable to maintain the field, he said, “ In next few days, we will start earth filling. But that is a short-term remedy. For long-term action the big plan is needed.”
Srinagar, Apr 8: The district Srinagar inter-school martial art games concluded at Sheri-Kashmir Indoor Stadium, here, on Wednesday. On the concluding day, demonstrations of Sqay, Judo, Taekwon-do and Kick Boxing were held. Apart from demonstrations the competitions of Judo were also held. Around 2000 players from 82 schools of the district participated in the event and all of them were present in the Stadium on concluding ceremony. Director Youth Services and Sports department (DYSS), Muhammad Shafiq Raina, who was the chief guest on the occasion distributed prizes among the winners. He also distributed scholarships of Rs 10,000 each among the 13 Kashmir province players who had bagged medals in National School Games. Linton Hall School emerged out as overall winner by bagging 12 gold, 9 silver and 15 Bronze medals while British School emerged runner-up with 10 gold, 10 silver and 9 bronze medals. On occasion the director said, “I had never thought that martial art games will be huge popular in the Valley. I’m sure that the day is not far when the valley will dominate martial arena at national and international level.” “As Director, I assure you that for betterment of players and sports I’ll do whatever is possible,” he said. Earlier deputy-director DYSS, Kashmir, Gulshan Ara announced that department will organize inter-district martial art games from April 21-24. “Like Srinagar district, inter-school martial art games competitions are going on in other districts of the province as well. We will organize inter-district competitions from April 21 to 24 in which medal winners of the districts of Kashmir province will compete against each other,” she said Those who were awarded scholarships of Rs 10, 000 included Umaisa Nazir of New Convent School, Jamsheeda Yousuf of Girls Higher Secondary (GHS) Amira Kadal, Iqra Mushtaq of GHS Nawakadal, Shaista of GHS Nowhatta, Ateeb Bin Fayaz of British School, Zeeshan Hafiz, Sibgat Mubarak of British School, Baba Firdous of Higher Secondary School Jawahar Nagar, Dilshada Akhtar of GHS Hazratbal, Saima Hameed, Wamik and Rahil from Burn Hall School and Samia of Mallinson School. In Judo, Fasal Maqbool, Rameez Aslam, Kasir Farooq, Mion-ul-Islam, Aamir Farooq, Aadail Dar, Zubair, Humaira Nisar Bhat, Insha Maqbool, Farhana, Nisar, Sumaira Aslam, Bilal Ahmad, Ahana Hameed, Shaziya Riyaz, Waseem Hassan, Irfan lateef, Muhammad Fazil, Waseem Ahmad Khan and Waseem Ahmad Rather bagged gold medals while Qazi Shamas. Adnan Farooq, Waseem Akram, Rayees Mehraj, Danish Bilal bagged silver medals.
Srinagar, Apr 7: Daffodil Team emerged winners in the state level golf championship organized by J&K Tourism department as part of weeklong Tulip Festival at Royal Springs Golf Course here on Tuesday. Valley’s veteran golfer and former bureaucrat, Nazir Ahmad Khan, inaugurated the tournament. More than 100 golfers from Kashmir Golf Club, Royal Springs Golf Course, BSF Golf Club, Army Golf Club and Police Golf Club participated in the event. Former bureaucrat SRS Madni led the Daffodil Team while Nazir Ahmad Khan captained Tulip Team. On the occasion, Director, Tourism Kashmir, Farooq Ahmad Shah said, “The championship is part of the week-long Tulip Festival organized at Siraj Bagh. During this part of the year, golf activities were not being organized at this level but Tulip Festival gave us chance to organize it. Currently in the Valley Royal Springs Golf course, Tulip Garden and Gulmarg attract foreign high spending tourists.” For taking full advantage of Tulips, which are in full bloom, Shah said, “We’ve started festival which kicked off with Golf championship. In the festival, apart from Golf activities like Kashmiri folk song, sale of handicrafts and savor of Kashmiri cuisines (Wazwaan) were also held” he said. The Director said that in coming months national and international level golf tournaments would be organized. “We’ve got international standard of golf course in shape of Royal Springs which is among the best in world. To take its full advantage we are going to start big campaign all over world and as part of that we are going to organize International and national level championships” he said. “The international level championship will automatically help RSGC to get place at international golf circuit which it deserves,” he added. After the inauguration of the Tulip festival at Siraj Bagh, secretary tourism and culture, Tanveer Jahan and Shah distributed prizes among the players.
Srinagar, Apr 5: To encourage the local footballers of the Valley, New JK Roadways has decided to sponsor Iqbal Sports Club from 2009 session onwards. “I’m not a footballer, but I love the game so much that I want to keep myself involved with it someway. My company will bear all the expenses of players of Iqbal Sports and Young Iqbal. We will provide them uniforms, refreshment and traveling expenses,” New JK Roadways owner, Muhammad Maqbool Lone, said in press conference, here. He said that he has other plans also for the upliftment of the game, ‘but the formal announcement would be made later.’ “I’ve plans to introduce of academies at larger scale but for that I need to make proper planning. I’m already sponsoring one football academy at Eidgah, but that is on smaller scale” Lone said. He regretted that no office bearer of J&K Football Association was present at the function, despite being invited. “If we have to improve standard of football, politics and sports have to be separated. We should avoid politics and try to give our best to uplift the standard of the game,” he suggested. Earlier, patron Iqbal Sports, Bashir Malik said, “Iqbal Sports was formed in 1980 and players of various departmental teams are products of our club. All these years, the club didn’t receive any assistance from the government. We run it on individual contributions. But now as the New JK Roadways is going to sponsor club activities, I think players will get better facilities and performance will improve.”
Srinagar, Apr 2: With slight rainfall, Tourist Reception Center (TRC) ground gets submerged into water and gives look of a swimming pool instead of playing field. Due to rain on Thursday night, almost whole TRC ground got submerged. The water has severely affected the football and cricket playing area as that portion is on lower side. Rainwater from the Zero Bridge side, which is slightly higher in level, has got accumulated on the center of the field. Various sports bodies and persons have criticized the State Sports Council (SSC) for the condition of the ground. J&K Football Association accused SSC of turning field into a ‘swimming pool.’ “Last year SSC allowed dumping of sand extracted from the Jehlum in the ground. Though the condition of the ground was always miserable, dumping made it worse. The material was dumped on Zero-Bridge side, which became higher in level than the main central field. With slight rain the central field gets submerged as water from higher level gets accumulated there,” a senior JKFA official said. He said that, SSC doesn’t spend any money for maintenance of the ground. Due to broken gate, people park vehicles in the field. Activists of different political parties also find it easy place to park vehicles. Sports Fraternity of Dalgate (SFD) accused SSC of playing with careers of future generation. SFD, vice-president, said, “It seems that SSC has agenda to destroy the sports fields of the Valley. Instead of maintenance, SSC makes things worse by allowing dumping, exhibitions and parking of vehicles in the fields.” He requested chief minister, Omar Abdullah to personally look into the plight of sports fields of the Valley. When contacted Sports officer, Kashmir blamed choked and damaged UEED drain that runs through the ground for the water blockade in the ground. “The drain is totally choked and damaged. We requested UEED authorities several times, but they did nothing to repair it,” he said. “The ground is well leveled and it is only water from drain that gets accumulated in center. Within next few days we will start final leveling work and after that rainwater will not accumulate anywhere. But drain water can,” he added. He assured that gate would be also repaired in next few days.
Srinagar, Mar 31: Jammu Kashmir will host 31st National Arm Wrestling championship. The event would be held in Srinagar from June 19 to 23. Indian Arm Wrestling Federation (IAWF) has allowed J&K Arm Wresting Association to host national meet in which 300 players from 20 states are expected to participate. Giving details about the mega event, general secretary, of the Association, Riyaz Ahmad said, “It is first time that our state will be hosting national event. We have short listed Sheri-Kashmir Indoor Stadium and Tagore Hall and the participants would be lodged at Youth Hostel, which is in close vicinity to both the expected venues.” “The competitions would be held in both men and women category. IAWF is also thinking of including the junior categories and if that is finalized then it will be bigger than what we are currently planning as the number of participants would be much higher” he said. He said that the special attraction of the event would be the competitions of physically challenged persons and senior citizens. Arm wrestling is the only sports discipline in which physically challenged competitors compete with equal competitiveness. About the arrangements, former Mr Bangalore and president of the Association, Tanveer Ali Irfan said, “Earlier the event was scheduled to be held in first week of May, but due to Lok Sabha elections we were forced to reschedule it. We were waiting for re-conformation of dates.” He said that Association is approaching the corporate houses for sponsorships. For selecting the state contingent open selection trials would be held soon, “We’ve huge potential in arm wrestling and that is why we are going to conduct open selection trials. We want to give chance to every talented player at the national event,” Irfan said. About the arm wrestling as a sport he said, “ Arm wrestling competitions are not as simple as it seems to spectators, but involves a test of one’s physical strength, willpower and skill as upper body strength and muscle power of the arms come into play. The competitions themselves are quite tough, with two opponents facing each other across a specially designed wrestling table, provided with elbow and touch pads. The right or left hand of the rival is gripped as may be the case and the other hand grabs the hand pegs. When a competitor’s hand is pinned on the touch pad on either side, the competition is over. Though there is no time duration for the competitions, the world arm sport federation has formulated 30 rules to make it more interesting and tougher.” Irfan regretted that arm wrestling is not recognized sports despite being played in India from 1977. “ It was in 1977 the IAWF was founded and it is affiliated with the World Arm Sport Federation. The game is very popular in countries like the USA, Canada, China, Indonesia, Germany, France, Russia, Britain, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Armenia, Malaysia, Netherlands, Israel and Egypt” he said. “The first World championship was held in Canada in 1979 in which over 50 countries participated. India had hosted the World Meet thrice in 1980, 86 and 1997. Arm Wrestling was a special exhibition event in the 1994 World Games, and had won the appreciation of all” he added.
Pampore, Mar 26: The only playing field in this saffron town of Pampore in Pulwama district is in shambles; courtesy State Sports Council apathy. “The SSC does nothing to maintain the ground which has turned it into a cesspool. The ground remains water logged for most part of the year,” said Nazir Ahmad, a local player. “Even during the period when play is possible, players have to remove shoes and trousers in order to reach middle of the field. Neither it is swimming pool, nor a playing field, it is something in between” he said sarcastically. The stadium lacks drainage system. “The condition of the ground poses big question on the working of SSC and its engineering wing. For last several years, they have not been able to make it playable. Last year Government tried to convert the ground into a park which was resisted by the locals,” he added. Local residents also blame SSC authorities of allowing some people to encroach a portion of ground. “Some portion of the ground is encroached by the residents who live around it,” they alleged. A local cricketer Aijaz Hussain said that the SSC authorities are least bothered about the sole playing ground. “Being centrally located and on the main road it can become a high class stadium, but it needs a little maintenance from SSC. They have made stadium without proper planning and spent lots of money on it,” Aijaz said. Sports officer Kashmir, MS Baba admitted that the condition of the ground is bad. “The stadium is in low lying area and rain water has no outlet. But we will soon do earth filling under the chief minister’s 100-day program. Once that is complete I think the problem would be over.” He also admitted that adjacent residents tried to encroach some portion of the ground “but the move was halted by SSC.”
Srinagar, Mar 21: Sports fraternity of the Valley flayed J&K State Sports Council (SSC) decision to allow J&K Khadi and Village Industries Board to hold exhibition in the Tourist Reception Center Ground. Terming the decision as unfortunate, J&K Football Association (JKFA) spokesman said it would make condition of already dilapidated field worse. “The condition of the ground is already miserable and exhibition will make it worse,” said JKFA official, Fayaz Ahmad Sofi. Two years back government was contemplating to convert the ground into Tulip Garden. But the decision was later revoked after JKFA and other sports organizations of the Valley launched agitation against it. “That time the government assured that the field would be maintained like Polo Ground central and spectators stands would be erected. Also it was promised that no exhibition, parking and political rally would be allowed in the ground” Fayaz said. “But the promise proved a hoax. Holding of exhibitions will turn it into a cesspool and now it would require huge money to restore it to playing condition,” he added. Fayaz alleged that SSC is allowing exhibitions in the ground for monetary benefits. The JKFA official warned SSC that they would launch an agitation against the decision. Sports Fraternity of Dalgate (SFD) that organizes cricket and football tournaments in the Ground accused SSC of playing with the future of players. “Two days back when we saw poles being erected in the Ground, we were shocked to see permission by SSC to organize 10-day exhibition,” said chairman, SFD, Umer Hayat. “Already our tournaments have been halted due to the water logging in the field and as the weather improved they have erected exhibition tents and space for parking,” he added. Players from Dalgate, Sonwar, Rajbagh, Khayam, Nehru-Park, Kohna Khan depend entirely on TRC ground. “The exhibition organizers have dug huge lanes in and around the tents and they have made arrangements of parking inside the field which will make the condition of the field worse. I’m sure that SSC will have to spend more amount of money than they earned from exhibition,” he said. Brazilian football coach, Marcos also was sad to see ground being used for other than sporting purposes. “Playing fields should not be used for other activities at any cost.” Sports Officer, Kashmir, MS Baba while defending the decision, said, “We have allowed exhibition on non-playing area and it will not affect the main ground. We charge Rs 15,000 per day which is a department to department transaction.”