Wednesday, December 13, 2006
posted by PabloPabla at 3:06 pm

Malaysia will have 4 Malaysians in the current Asian Games squash event. Based on latest results, squash queen of Malaysia, Nicol David - who is also the current world champion and world no. 1, will meet Mak Pui Hin of Hong Kong whilst Sharon Wee (Malaysian no. 2) will play Chiu Wing Yin, also of Hong Kong in the other semifinal.

In the men's event, national no. 1, Azlan Iskandar will meet Mansoor Zaman of Pakistan after defeating another Pakistani, Aamir Khan. In the other semifinal, Ong Beng Hee will meet Saurav Ghosal of India.

It would be great if all four Malaysians beat their respective opponents to set up an all-Malaysian final in both the men and women's events. Whilst Nicol is expected to breeze through her opponent in the semi-final (and also expected to win this event), Sharon will have a tougher time against Chiu Wing Yin aka Rebecca Chiu, who was the last winner in the Busan Asian Games 4 years ago. Then, Rebecca upset Nicol to clinch the gold medal. If I am not mistaken, both Sharon and Rebecca are only 3 positions apart in the world rankings, so this match promises to be a tough one.

As for the men, Azlan should have a tough time dealing with Mansoor Zaman though Azlan is the top seed here. Azlan's recent form has not been too good and hopefully, he is peaking the right time. Ong Beng Hee, meanwhile, is expected to beat Saurav Ghosal have not heard before.

Yesterday, Malaysia won only 1 gold medal but 5 silver medals. 4 of the 5 silver medals were won (or rather, 4 gold medals were lost) in the 4 Karate finals. It's about time the squash quartet bring some much needed cheer to the Malaysian contingent, which frankly, I've been quite disappointed with their performances todate. Or is it because we are not good enough?

At least, the consolation is that the medals are won this time by Malaysian born athletes rather than naturalised Malaysians. I mean, what satisfaction can we get (apart from being higher on the medals table) when we offer citizenship to foreign athletes so that these athletes will compete in Malaysian colours and earn us a medal just for pride's sake? Imagine giving citizenship to Liu Xiang just so that he will run as a Malaysian athlete and win the gold medal in the 110 metres hurdles event. Yeah, he won. So what? It would have been different if he migrated to Malaysia when he was a child, grew up, started running the hurdles and became a champion.

Meanwhile, I shall stay glued for the latest results.

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