Karachi: Pakistan’s top wrestler Inam Butt has blamed the government for not qualifying in the Tokyo Olympics.
In an exclusive interview with ARY News, Inam said that the government completely ignored wrestling and he had to invest his own money to somehow qualify in the Olympics.
“Not a single penny I received for the World Wrestling Championship in 2019. Had I played that event, I would have qualified in the Tokyo Olympics,” Inam said.
“I wrote several letters to Pakistan Sports Board (PSB) but there was no funding from them,” he added.
Inam gave an example of other countries, which organized safe and secure training camps for their athletes in the current situation of COVID-19.
“We haven’t had a training camp for the last three years, I invested all my savings to fulfill my dream to play in the Olympics but I failed,” Inam shared.
“We didn’t get proper training facilities and after the COVID-19 pandemic, the situation got tougher for us. Sporting activities got banned and gyms, indoor training facilities even our Akharas were closed. Without proper training, how can we give results?” Inam questioned.
On the other hand, the wrestler disclosed that he got citizenship offers from various countries but he turned them down just for his country.
“Korea, Australia, Norway, and Denmark were the countries who offered me nationality but I turned down their requests. Whoever I am today is just because of Pakistan and how can I go and play for them,” he said.
It must be noted that Inam recently bagged a bronze medal in Asian Olympic Qualifiers. He had to participate in Asian Wrestling Championship in Almaty, Kazakhstan but he withdrew himself due to fitness issues.
Inam has won gold medal for Pakistan at the 2010 Commonwealth Games, bronze medal at the 2014 Asian beach Games, gold medal at the 2016 South Asian Games, gold medal at the 2016 Asian Beach Games.
He bagged silver medal at the 2016 Commonwealth Wrestling Championship, gold medal at the 2017 World Beach Wrestling Championships, gold medal at the 2018 World Beach Wrestling Championships, Silver medal at the 2017 Commonwealth Wrestling Championship