KUALA LUMPUR: Squash Rackets Association of Malaysia (SRAM) will be banking on their two newly-crowned Asian Games champions – Ng Eain Yow (men’s singles) and S. Sivasangari (women’s singles) – to challenge for podium finishes at the 2028 Olympic Games in Los Angeles (LA 2028).
SRAM coaching director Major (Rtd) S. Maniam is optimistic that Eain Yow, 25, and Sivasangari, 24, will be at their prime and be among the world’s top 10 players when LA 2028 comes around.
“Right now, Eain Yow is in the top 20 while Sivasangari, despite being ranked 37th, is playing like a top-20 player.
“I believe these two players have the potential to be among the world’s top 10 in five years and, probably, stand a chance to win medals for Malaysia in Los Angeles,” he told Bernama when contacted.
Apart from Eain Yow and Sivasangari, Maniam also believes that the Azman sisters of Aifa and Aira as well as up-and-coming men’s singles player Ameeshenraj Chandaran could be among the medal contenders or even be in the world’s top 10 by then.
As much as they want to be among the medal contributors in LA 2028, Maniam said SRAM will sit down and discuss with the National Sports Council and Olympic Council of Malaysia regarding plans to help their players excel in LA.
Meanwhile, Maniam said SRAM are over the moon over the International Olympic Committee (IOC) Executive Board (EB)’s decision to approve squash (singles event) as one of five additional sports to be included in the world’s biggest Games on Friday (Oct 13).
The other four sports to be featured in Los Angeles are baseball/softball, cricket (T20), flag football (a variant of American football) and lacrosse (sixes).
Maniam added that the squash fraternity was delighted to know that all the hard work put in by the World Squash Federation over the past decades has finally paid off, with squash now recognised by the IOC and set to make its debut in the 2028 edition of the Olympic Games. – Bernama