Asian games: Squash continues to shine in post-Nicol era

06 Oct 2023 03:10pm
The women squash team with their gold medals - FILE PIX
The women squash team with their gold medals - FILE PIX
HANGZHOU - The Squash Racquets Association of Malaysia (SRAM) is optimistic of the future based on the Hangzhou Asian Games achievement, the first Asiad in the post-Nicol David era.

Coaching director Major (rtd) S. Maniam said SRAM is extremely pleased and happy with the three gold, one silver and one bronze medal feat, surpassing its two medal target, when the challenge draw curtain at the Hangzhou Olympic Sports Centre Squash Court here, yesterday.

Despite not having squash legend Datuk Nicol David, after the ‘Greatest of All Time’ retired in 2019, the national team still managed to emerge as the top nation in the Asian Games squash competition.

Commenting on the accomplishment of Ng Eain Yow, 25, and S. Sivasangari, 24, in clinching men’s and women’s individual gold medal yesterday, he said both the players are young and capable of contributing more to the country in the next few years.

Maniam also commended mixed doubles pair Mohammad Syafiq Mohd Kamal-Aifa Azman, who had to settle for silver after a hard-fought battle against top seeds Dipika Pallikal-Harinder Pal Singh Sandhu before going down 10-11, 10-11.

"In the next Asian Games, we will try to equal the results here. We will not rest on our laurels, we never have. We will always try to work as hard as we can to produce the results we need.

"Both Eain Yow and Siva are still young, they have at least one or two more Asian Games to go. We have young Aira Azman, who is in our team at only 19, while we already have some young players coming up in the men’s as well, so the future is definitely bright,” he said.

At the 2018 Jakarta-Palembang Games in Indonesia, the national team finished second behind Hong Kong with 2-1-2 haul, while the best achievement was in 2010 Guangzhou edition in China with 3-1-2 feat.

Only four-gold medals was in competition previously, as the mixed doubles event just made its debut in the Hangzhou edition - BERNAMA
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