Pakistan contingent’s chef-de-mission to the Tokyo Olympics Brig Zaheer Akhtar expressed his displeasure over missing a golden opportunity of winning a medal that could have been a Gold even, as highly talented Arshad Nadeem was capable of touching the 90-meter mark, had he and his coach stayed focused on achieving the ultimate goal prior to the finals, reports Abdul Mohi Shah for The News.
“Nonstop social media usage by Arshad and his coach in between the qualifying and final rounds turned out to be the main reason behind this failure,” said Brig Zaheer.
Talking to The News from Tokyo, Brig Zaheer said Arshad looked set to topple even the best as he gave an early indication of his talent during the qualifying round.
“When he sent javelin to over 85 meters in the qualifying round, Indian coach who trained the Gold medalist Chopra was on record to have said that Arshad was the biggest threat to his athlete, having all the potential to win even Gold. Such was the impact of his qualifying round performance where he hardly put his full effort and yet he reached over 85. The Indian camp was wary of Arshad and his potential.”
Brig Zaheer said despite clear instructions, both Arshad and his coach Fayyaz Bokhari were seen using social media uninterruptedly. Later, it was learnt that they even sent premature videos back home halfway into the competition, which “surely was an act of total indiscipline”.
The contingent’s chef-de-mission said he had absolutely no doubt in Arshad’s inborn talent.
“His coach was even talking on the telephone when finals were going on but I don’t know to whom he was talking to. That is the reason why Arshad did not know that time was running out for his final throw. His half-hearted last attempt was made in haste. With J Vetter already out, it should have been a direct contest between Arshad and Chopra for a Gold medal. Sadly that could not happen more due to Arshad and his coach’s excessive use of social media in between the qualifying round and finals.”