Sinan Ashfaq Ahmed (centre) with his coach Abdullah Hatim (left) after winning the gold medal at the Albania Open Taekwondo Championship in Tirana on October 1. Image Credit: Supplied

Dubai: UAE-based Pakistan athlete Sinan Ashfaq Ahmed continued his winning spree as he won the gold medal at the prestigious Albania Open Taekwondo G-2 Championship.

He defeated his Italian player Maggiore Stefano in the semi-final and then beat the Greek player Vailezoudis Michai in the grueling final match to win his gold medal in the under 78kg weight category at the weekend.

Sinan plays for the Sharjah Sports Club and also represent Pakistan at the international championships.

Tough battle

In the final of G-2 Junior under 78 kg category, Sinan won the match after a tough battle. He defeated Michal of Greece 14-10 in the first round. However, the second-round was won by Michael 5-3. But, Sinan fought back brilliantly and won the third and decisive round 8-4 to claim gold in the prestigious event.

“This is indeed a big win for young Sinan as the competition was very tough with athletes participating from around the world,” said Abdullah Hatim, Head Coach of Sharjah Sport Club. Hatim who coached Sinan at the championship, said that Sinan has the potential to shine at more international events.

Meanwhile, President, Pakistan Taekwondo Federation Col (retd) Waseem Janjua and CEO Omar Saeed congratulated Sinan on winning the gold medal. “Players who raise the national flags at the international level are our national assets. Winning a gold medal at Junior level at the international arena is highly commendable. We hope Sinan will continue to win more laurel for the country in future as well,” they said in a statement.

Confidence indeed plays a key role in how Sinan gets on as he competes against the best of international athletes that have the potential to be nurtured into future Olympic champions.

Sinan Ashfaq
Sinan Ashfaq with his coach Abdullah Hatim after winning gold medal at the Albania Open Taekwondo Championship on October 1 Image Credit:

8 gold medals

Sinan Ahmed who just turned 17 in August and is a 3rd Dan Black Belt, has already left a huge mark in the sport. He has entered a total of 17 competitions including 11 international tournaments “The international events were tough due to the higher quality of athletes competing in them,” he said. That has not stopped him from winning a total of 8 gold, 5 silver and 2 bronze medals.

In August this year, he also represented Pakistan in the Junior Taekwondo World Championship in Bulgaria and performed well for his country.

A member of the Pakistan National Taekwondo Team, Sinan said in an earlier interview that he is very proud to represent his country. “It’s amazing really. I hope I will make my country and people proud.”

About his training, Sinan said that he has been doing a mixture of endurance work, stamina and technical training. “Most of the time, I trained at Sharjah Sports Club with the well experienced Taekwondo and fitness coaches in the UAE.”