Yasir training hard to qualify for Paris 2024

Alam Zeb Safi
Friday, Jun 09, 2023

LAHORE: Eyeing next year’s Paris Olympics qualification and to achieve a few more short-term goals, Pakistan’s No 2 javelin thrower Mohammad Yasir Sultan is working hard here at the Punjab Stadium under the supervision of his coach Fayyaz Hussain Bukhari. Yasir, who has done his Masters in Physical Education from Punjab University, undergoes training under Fayyaz for three hours daily, besides doing some extra training to achieve his goals. “Yes, I am completely focused on my training,” Yasir told ‘The News’ in an interview.

He said that he has set his eyes on qualifying for the 2024 Paris Olympics. “Although time is short nothing is impossible and inshaAllah I will try my level best to make it to the next year’s Olympics,” Yasir said. “If I am unable to achieve the short-term goal then qualifying for the 2028 Olympics will be the next target inshaAllah. I am committed and will do it,” said Yasir, who gave tough time to Olympian javelin thrower Arshad Nadeem in the 34th National Games in Quetta by pulling off his personal best performance with a stunning throw of 77.50m to claim silver for WAPDA. Arshad, battling fitness issues, managed 78.02m to claim gold.

“Improvement is that when you do your personal best,” Yasir said. “For the last three years or so I was stuck around 75m. I started training under Fayyaz Bukhari and did my personal best which further motivated me,” Yasir said. Besides Olympics, Yasir has also set his eyes on featuring in the Asian Championships and Asian Games. He will also be seen in the trials for the Asian Championships to be held here at the Punjab Stadium on June 11.

“My aim is to feature in the Asian Championships and also in the Asian Games. This is my immediate target and am working on that,” Yasir said. The Asian Championships will be held next month in Thailand. The Asian Games will be conducted by China in Hangzhou from September 23 to October 8. Yasir said his coach Fayyaz Bukhari has caught his faults and is working on them. “My coach Fayyaz Bukhari identified a couple of faults and is working on them. I have improved whicho helped me do my personal best. When I overcome these faults then I am hopeful it will further help me,” he said.

He said lack of facilities impede athletes’ growth. “We lack facilities. You know we don’t have international standard javelin and when we go abroad for competitions we use them and it creates issues as we are not used to using them at home,” Yasir pointed out. He said if he meets the standard then he deserves to feature in all major events. “If you feature in international events you will improve. This is the only way to develop as an athlete,” Yasir said.

He said that he will continue working under Bukhari. “Yes, I have been attached with Bukhari with my heart and isnahAllah will keep working under him as it is benefiting me,” Yasir said. He said he is also learning from Olympian Arshad Nadeem. “Yes, I try to learn from him and want to know how one performs,” said Yasir, who is the younger brother of Army’s steeplechase athlete Faisal Sultan, who put him on track to become a javelin thrower.

“I was healthy and so Faisal bhai gave me javelin and now this game has captivated me so much that I am all the time thinking about my training and how to achieve my goals,” Yasir said.