KUALA LUMPUR: National squash legend, Datuk Nicol Ann David is of the view that the national squash players need more exposure through participation in international tournaments to reach the level she did in her heyday.
Nicol, who holds the record for being the longest female player to be ranked number one in the world for 112 months since 2006, said it will also allow them to gain the experience of battling with other top players in the world, thus helping them to improve on their current performance.
“Overall, their level is quite good, but there is still a lot of room for improvement, including by giving exposure to compete with the best players in the world before they can achieve the success I have achieved before,“ she told Bernama recently.
The eight-time world champion said the most important thing is the cooperation of all parties including the Squash Racquets Association of Malaysia (SRAM) and the National Sports Council in ensuring that the national players can perform at the best level.
Based on the world ranking of the Professional Squash Association, the country’s best player at the moment, S. Sivasangari, is ranked 18th after collecting 3,050 points.
About S. Sivasangari, Nicol is optimistic that the player who was involved in a road accident last June, will be able to get back to her usual performance soon.
“After meeting her recently, I see that she is still eager to train hard. It is hoped that she will not rush (in the training sessions) and follow the instructions given as best as possible because I am sure she can rise (up again),“ she said.
Meanwhile, Nicol informed that she is currently busy managing and training 60 children from low and medium income families in the foundation she founded, the Nicol David Organisation (NDO).
She also expects to receive 60 more schoolchildren to participate in the programmes at NDO, which also offers English language tutorials run by the United States Embassy in Kuala Lumpur, next month.
Nicol hung up her racquet in June 2019. – Bernama