December 25, 2016

Golden era of Pakistan snooker ends with Alamgir Shaikh’s tenure

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By Syed Khalid Mahmood
(Pakistan News & Features Services)

Alamgir Anwar Shaikh, having completed a couple of successful four-year tenures as the President of the Pakistan Billiards & Snooker Association (PBSA), will not taking part in the upcoming elections of the national body due to take place on December 28.

In accordance with the National Sports Policy, which restrains any official from retaining the same slot for more than eight years, Alamgir Shaikh has not filed nomination for the quadrennial elections. 

The PBSA, which is affiliated to the Pakistan Sports Board (PSB), has been hailed as one of the best performing sports federations of the country over the years, having produced positive results on a more consistent basis than any other sport, besides cricket. 

The game of snooker, it may be recalled, was revived in a big way in 1988 when Ali Asghar Valika took up its leadership and went from strength to strength. 

He not only changed the nomenclature of the governing body of cue sports from the Billiards Association of Pakistan (BAP), which was dormant for the preceding decades, to the Pakistan Billiards & Snooker Association (PBSA) but brought about a revolution which witnessed phenomenal growth for snooker in particular all over the country. 

In a matter of years, Pakistan came to be recognized as one of the major snooker nations, enabling it to be a preferential venue for global and continental events. 

Asghar Valika, whose administrative and organizational qualities earned him worldwide acclaim, quit the leadership of the PBSA in 2008, ironically to fulfill the obligations of the National Sports Policy. 

His successor, Alamgir Shaikh, having worked with him for a long time in his team, sustained the momentum and built a stronger platform for cue sports during the next eight years which witnessed more activities at national and international levels. 

Once again it’s the National Sports Policy, prompting another change of guard in the PBSA. The newly elected President, however, will be hard pressed to emulate the accomplishments of his last couple of predecessors, Asghar Valika and Alamgir Shaikh, both of whom are credited to have taken cue sports to very high level.

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