Squash: Hoping to match Incheon

India has medalled at all Asian Games since 2006, the best haul coming in Incheon in 2014, when it won one gold, two silver and one bronze. It won’t be easy to match that at Jakarta-Palembang amid tough competition from Hong Kong, Malaysia and Pakistan.

Dipika Pallikal (R) returns a shot against compatriot Joshana Chinappa (L) during the women's squash singles quarter-final match of the 2014 Incheon Asiad   -  AFP

India has participated in squash in all editions of the Asian Games since it was introduced in Bangkok in 1998, and the country has a decent record in the sport – one gold, two silver and five bronze medals, the first being Saurav Ghosal’s bronze in the men’s singles at Doha 2006. India has medalled in all subsequent editions of the Asian Games, the best haul coming at the 2014 Incheon Games, where the men’s team won gold, women’s silver and Ghosal won the men’s singles silver and Dipika Pallikal the women’s singles bronze.

India will be hoping to match that, but it will not be that easy. There will be tough competition from Hong Kong, Malaysia and Pakistan._

“Saurav Ghosal will be the top seed in the singles based on current world rankings. I hope he does well,” said squash coach Cyrus Poncha.

Retaining the men’s team gold also will be quite difficult, he said. “Hong Kong will be the title contender as it will be seeded higher than us,” he said. As far as the women is concerned, Poncha hoped that Joshna Chinappa and Dipika Pallikal get a medal in singles and the team reaches the final.” Malaysia and Hong Kong will be the favourites in the women’s,” he said.

 

Teams

Men: Saurav Ghosal, Harinder Pal Singh, Ramit Tandon and Mahesh Mangaonkar

Women: Joshna Chinappa, Dipika Pallikal, SUnayana Kuruvilla and Tanvi Khanna