National Amateur Championship, the biggest golf event in Pakistan, has been hit by eleventh hour withdrawals of India, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka due to security concern in the wake of March 12 terror attack that killed 45 people and left 100 others injured here.
The tournament, beginning today, was to be contested by the golfers from the three countries besides top Pakistanis.
But the Pakistan Amateur Golf Federation confirmed at a press conference to unveil the event that golfers from India, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh sent in their withdrawals from the event after the recent suicide attacks.
"We had got confirmed entries from foreign golfers from these countries but the Lahore incident made them change their mind," a PAGF official said.
Two suicide bombers struck at a military installation, prompting the provincial Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif to ask the Tehreek-e-Taliban to stop targeting the city.
The PAGF official said the 32 hole championship would now be contested only by Pakistani golfers. Over 100 contestants would take part in the four-day event at Royal Palm.
"It is a big disappointment for us that the golfers from India, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh decided to withdraw but I guess in the existing circumstances they decided what they felt was best for them," the official said.