Shah Hussain rises to 39th spot in Olympic rankings
KARACHI: Eyeing a Tokyo 2020 Games seat, Pakistan’s Japan-based judoka Shah Hussain has further boosted his Olympic ranking as he jumped to 39th spot from previously held 44 as per new rankings.
This is also the highest ever ranking for any South Asian judoka. Shah has already achieved Olympic seat through continental quota as he is Asia’s top seed in the 100 kilogramme category but the issue is that he will have to maintain his ranking till the end of the qualifiers in May 2020 if he is to feature in Olympics.
Shah recently had a solid Osaka Grand Slam where he lost to World No 4 and world champion of 2017 Aaron Wolf from Japan in the pre-quarter-final. He secured 160 points in this highest level contest after World Championships. With this he accumulated 904 points thus far ahead of his rivals from Asia.
“Pakistan Judo Federation (PJF) is not sending anyone apart from Shah who is being sent alone without a coach,” Pakistan Judo Federation’s (PJF) president Col Junaid said.
“Shah missed Australian Grand Prix this month due to visa issue. In start of next year he will suffer another set-back as the first Grand Slam is being held in Israel and he cannot feature in that event,” Junaid said. “However PJF has planned to send him to a six-week tour of Europe in February to March where he will not only attend IJF training camp but will also participate in all Grand Prix and Grand Slam tournaments,” he said.
Junaid said that on his request, one month ago the federal minister for IPC Dr Fehmida Mirza had reportedly approved Rs 1.5 million for his participation in qualifiers from August to December 2019 but nothing has been released so far.