ISLAMABAD: Pakistan started off on a winning note against Thailand in the Davis Cup Asia-Oceania Group II final which started here from Friday.
Aqeel Khan defeated Thai opponent Wishaya Trongcharoenchaikul 6-3, 6-4, 6-4 in the opening singles match, while Aisam ul Haq Qureshi outclassed Kittiphong Wachiramanowong 6-1, 6-0, 6-4 in the second singles match of the day.
The three-day tie is being played at the Pakistan Sports Board Complex in Islamabad from September 15-17.
According to Aisam, this is the best Pakistan Davis Cup team available and all players have prepared well for the mega final.
“It is very good to see the revival of international sports activities in Pakistan,” he said, praising the International Tennis Federation (ITF) for allotting the Davis Cup final to Pakistan.
He said Pakistan has a chance to qualify for Group I.
“Doubles is the key to win in the Davis Cup tie,” said Aisam, hoping that the ITF grants more international tournaments to Pakistan in the days to come.
Pakistan team includes Aisam, Aqeel Khan, Shahzad Khan, Muhammad Abid and captain Mohammed Khalid.
Aqeel Khan, meanwhile, said he wanted to play his part in Pakistan’s victory in the Davis Cup final against Thailand.
The tennis star told APP that he has a very good understanding with Aisam in the doubles and hopefully, the team will beat Thailand in the final.
“We are fully prepared for the mega event and would display top performance against Thailand,” he said.
He also praised Pakistan Tennis Federation (PTF) for their enormous efforts in bringing talented youth to the fore.
“PTF has been working on various future programmes in order to dig out the young talent,” he said.
The Thai team said it expected a tough competition. “We feel we have an edge over Pakistan in singles while Pakistan is good in doubles category,” team captain Vittaya Samrej said.
The Thai team includes Wishaya Trongcharoenchaikul, Kittiphong Wachiramanowong, Sanchai Ratiwatana and Sonchat Ratiwatana.
Pakistan were given the chance to host Davis Cup ties after 12 years, as the ITF had kept the country on the list of unsafe venues.