PTF names Davis Cup team


ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Tennis Federation (PTF) on Wednesday finalised the Davis Cup team to play against Uzbekistan in early April at the grass courts of the Pakistan Sports Complex.

The PTF recently held trials to select two players for the vacant places in the Davis Cup team, said a press release.

Shahzad Khan and Heera Ashiq will join Aisam ul Haq Qureshi, Aqeel Khan and Muzammil Murtaza to complete them in a team number of five players now permitted.

The selection trials were held on the grass courts of the Pakistan Sports Complex from March 17 to 19.

In the last match, Shahzad Khan defeated Heera Ashiq 6-1, 6-2.  Earlier, Heera had beaten M. Abid by 7-6, 6-3, and M. Abid had won over Shahzad Khan with a score of 6-7, 7-5, 6-3. The two winners will join Aisam ul Haq Qureshi, Aqeel Khan and Muzammil Murtaza to complete now permitted five-player squad.

Aisam is expected to join the team at the end of March or early April upon his arrival from overseas.

According to PPI, PTF President Salim Saifullah Khan said he was keen to have the three top juniors also attend the trials for exposure and experience gained from playing with the top players. However, the plan could not be materialised due to the top junior player Shoaib Khan playing the JDC event in Colombo.

It is planned to invite them again when trials will be held in the future.

With Aqeel Khan and Muzammil already in Islamabad, all players will be travelling to Lahore to play in the Sheheryar Malik National Grass Courts Championships, from the March 25 to 31. It is organised by the PLTA.

The Davis Cup team players will also be holding practice and training sessions during the course of the tournament. The timely tournament in Lahore will allow the players continuity of playing on grass which should be of considerable benefit for all.

On return to Islamabad, they will get another four days of training on grass courts before the Davis Cup tie on April 6 and 7.