Your retirement brought an end to nearly 50 years of domination by Pakistan in the sport of squash, what were the reasons behind such a dramatic downfall? You see, at the time when I started playing squash, the sport was filled with extremely competent players. I don’t doubt the potential, talent, skill or competency of modern day players, but I believe the younger generation simply lacks will, ambition, patience, discipline and temperament to push themselves to the limit. I remember I used to undergo rigorous training sessions, which sometimes stretched to six consecutive hours. I don’t see boys putting in the hard yards today, which is why there has been a dearth of quality players. You won the World Open for a record eight times. How did you maintain such high level of fitness and consistency? It’s just like I mentioned earlier, had I not been physically sound or well-trained, I wouldn’t have won all these matches and tournaments. Which according to you has been your most significant achievement till date? How have your achievements changed you as a person? Winning the World Open for a record eight times is definitely an achievement I cherish to this day. These achievements grounded me further and made me more confident. I believe whenever a person achieves something, they become more confident and sure about themselves. You had an intense rivalry with Jahangir Khan that never left a chance for anybody else to compete for the top slot, what made Pakistanis world beaters then and what are the players lacking now? Once again, I would say that fitness plays an extremely important role in making one a champion. We trained as if there was no tomorrow and were really into the game. If we could find a solution for this negligence in our current breed of aspiring squash players, then yes, we could be world champions again. Tell us about some of your endeavours post retirement? Are you satisfied with the way legends are treated in the country? I played a lot of exhibition matches post-retirement as well. These matches were held internationally. Jahangir Khan and I have started a squash coaching and mentoring academy in Islamabad, where we coach and counsel aspiring squash players and give them the confidence, training and boost they require. Being former world #1 champions, we ensure that wherever we go, we promote ambition and spirit. It may sound odd to you, but we honour our heroes much better than the West does. “I don’t see boys putting in the hard yards today, which is why there has been a dearth of quality players” What is the future of squash in Pakistan? What can be done to win back the lost glory? I see a great future as there is immense potential in our current lot. I’m a very positive person. However, I see so many skilled young squash players, and there is so much potential in them, but they are lazy and run every time they are told to undergo extensive training. They are well aware how important a role fitness plays in getting a player anywhere. They want to take the easy way out; play as per their timings and mood but dream every night of being champions. I have tried in making them understand but it’s their job at the end of the day to realise and take action. What does it mean to be Pakistani for you? What is your vision for the country? I owe all my championship wins to my country. Pakistan has produced heroes and legends ever since its inception. It’s a powerful country and I’m so proud of my countrymen. Pakistan is the country that produced Hashim Khan. I myself have won eight World Open championships and six British Open championships. I was one of the most-respected British Open champion. “It may sound odd to you, but we honour our heroes much better than West does” We at Daily Times consider you one of our national heroes. Who are some of yours? The only name that comes to my mind right now is former squash player Qamar Zaman. Achievements World Champ Jansher Khan is a former world #1 professional Pakistani squash player. He has won the British Open six times. Jansher Khan’s skill of movement singled him out from competitions, holding “all the top squash experts in awe”. Jansher’s retirement brought an end to nearly 50 years of domination by Pakistan in the sport of squash. He won a total of 99 professional titles and was ranked the World #1 for over 10 years. Coaching Expert Jansher along with former World #1 squash player Jahangir Khan, has started a squash coaching and mentoring academy in Islamabad for young aspiring squash players. Under their counselling and mentorship, Pakistan recently won the World Junior Squash Championship 2016 in Poland.