KARACHI: Pakistan's six-member golf squad landed in the Chinese city of Hangzhou, hoping to give its best in a star-studded golf competition of the 19th Asian Games.
The Pakistanis have fielded an all-amateur team consisting of three men and two ladies in the Asian Games golf contest which will feature some of the top international professionals. The golfing action will take place from September 28 to October 1.
Lahore's Qasim Ali Khan and Salman Jehangir and Karachi's Omar Khalid Hussain will represent the country in the men's individual and team events while Lahore sisters Rimsha and Parkha Ijaz will be competing in the ladies individual and team events. Malik Kamran, Manager Golf of the Pakistan Golf Federation (PGF) is the team manager.
The squad flew from Islamabad on Sunday night and reached Hangzhou on Monday via Beijing. This is the first time in Asian Games history that professionals have been allowed to compete in the golf events. This has allowed countries like South Korea, Japan, India and hosts China to field their best professionals in a bid to win medals. The golf events will carry at stake a total of 12 medals including four golds.
Pakistan are among 26 nations featuring in the men's events of the Asian Games.
South Korea's Sungae Im leads a stellar field of 82 players in the men's team and individual events. Im is a former PGA Tour Rookie of the Year and has twice on the Tour. He was joint runner-up at the 2020 Masters.
Other leading players include Si Woo Kim, Anirban Lahiri, Shubankar Sharma, We Ashun, Wenyi Ding, Khanh Hung Le, Danthai Boonma, Taichiro Ideriha, Taichi Khoand SSP Chawrasia.
In the ladies event, China's Ruoning Yin, the reigning World No.1 leads a field of 40 players from 16 countries. Other leading players include Aditi Ashok, Eila Galitsky, Tiffany (Ting-Hsuan) Huang, Avani Prashanth, Minsol Kim, Jiyoo Lim, Hyunjo Yoo, Saki Baba and Mizuki Hashimoto.