Melbourne, 23 July, 2023 (GNP): In a momentous achievement, young prodigy Hamza Khan won the World Junior Squash Championship by defeating Egypt’s Mohamed Zakaria 3-1 in Melbourne, Australia, becoming the first Pakistani champion to achieve this feat in nearly four decades.
After 37 years, Hamza finally captured the championship with scores of 10-12, 14-12, 11-3, and 11-6. The last Pakistani player to lift this title was Jansher Khan in 1986.
Congratulating the nation over the victory of Hamza Khan, PM Shehbaz said “Hamza Khan has made the memory of Jansher Khan’s victory in the 1986 World Junior Squash Championship afresh. The nation pays tribute to Hamza Khan for hoisting the Pakistani flag once again in the world of squash.”
Earlier, in a thrilling semi-final match, Hamza Khan qualified for the final by defeating French opponent Melvil Scianimanico. Hamza won the match with an impressive scoreline of 11-8, 11-4, 10-12, 9-11, and 13-11.
Hamza and the French player engaged in an 81-minute battle. Since Aamir Atlas in 2008, Hamza was the first Pakistani player to make it to the final championship.
🎙 "Pakistani Squash is back!"
— World Squash (WSF) (@WorldSquash) July 23, 2023
Earlier in the tournament, Hamza Khan exhibited exceptional skill as he outplayed Malaysia’s Joachim Chuah, securing a place in the quarter-finals with a hard-fought victory of 11-8, 9-11, 11-7, and 12-10.
Adding to his impressive run, Hamza dominated the round of 16 clash against Netherlands’ Samuel Grates, securing a resounding victory of 12-10, 11-6, 11-3, and 11-7.
On the other side, Pakistan’s Huzaifa Khan, another contender in the championship, faced a tough USA opponent, Rishi Srivastava. Huzaifa won two sets in a row with scores of 11-8 and 11-8, showcasing his skills and determination. However, his run in the pre-quarterfinals was put to an end as Rishi won the final set with a score of 11-9.
A total of three talented Pakistani players, including Hamza Khan, Moeen-ud-din, and Huzaifa Ibrahim Khan, participated in the championship, demonstrating Pakistan’s commitment to nurturing squash talents on the international stage.