World's no 1 player says world federation not doing enough

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Chennai, Dec 10 (UNI) Egypt's world number one squash player Amr Shabana today blamed the World Federation for not doing enough to lift the image of the sport vis a vis other sports where the professional players earned a lot more.

Talking to newspersons on the sidelines of the 21st ICL world men's championship here, Amr alleged that the world body as well as the various associations were not doing their bit to ensure that squash is taken to television like other professional sports like football, cricket, hockey or even winter Olympic disciplines like figure skating.

The maximum prize money in professional squash is 32,000 dollar in a tourney in Kuwait, he pointed out.

''The World Federation is not doing enough on these fronts'', he charged. Amr said there was no way that squash would be an Olympic sport soon as being touted. ''They (International Olympic Council) must come to us not the other way round'', he said sarcastically.

Amr said very little was being done to lift the sport vis-a-vis the rich talent of professional squash players around.

Asked which form was more difficult to prepare team or individual competition, the southpaw said the preparation was the same.''Only difference is in team events you are not laying for money. You are playing for your country. In that sense, it is different.'' Asked if he was confident that Egypt would be able to snatch the title from England, Amr said, ''We were confident of doing it easily, but it would be difficult with two of our players on the injured list.'' ''But we still have a chance although it would be tough'', he added.

UNI

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