Home > Sport > Other Sports
Thursday March 7, 2013 MYT 12:00:00 AM
Thursday April 18, 2013 MYT 1:23:30 AM
by kng zheng guan
PETALING JAYA: A “pop-up” squash court initiative across the United Kingdom to promote the sport and create awareness has earned the thumbs up from national No. 1 Ong Beng Hee.
With the bid for the Olympic spot gaining momentum, many empty retail spaces in shopping malls are being converted into temporary squash courts, with qualified coaches giving free lessons.
That has caught many shoppers by surprise and Beng Hee, who trains in Leeds, believes it is a good move to create awareness and he believes that it could be done in Malaysia too.
“I think the situation here in England is quite similar to that in Kuala Lumpur, in the sense that squash is slowly losing popularity,” said Beng Hee.
“There aren’t enough professional leagues and the money is barely sufficient ... so, it really calls for a movement in promoting squash.
“To me, I think it’s good that there are people who are actively trying to promote squash, especially during this Olympic decision year.
“Stuff like this does create awareness and, hopefully, it’ll help in getting squash into the 2020 Games. Perhaps something like this could be done back in KL too.”
For the record, squash is fighting hard with seven other sports – wrestling, wushu, karate, baseball/softball, wakeboarding, sport climbing and roller skate – to make it to the final round of the International Olympic Council (IOC)’s selection process.
Only three sports will make it to the final round and the IOC will decide in Buenos Aires, Argentina, in September whether to drop wrestling as a core sport and accept a new sport or to stick with wrestling for the 2020 Games.
Meanwhile, the 33-year-old Beng Hee is targeting a good showing at the Kuwait PSA Cup, which begins tomorrow, in order to boost his ranking.
“I just want to win my first round match because I really need some points to go up the rankings. Also, it’s crucial that I do well to prepare for the CIMB KL Open and the Asian Championship,” said the world No. 22, who faces Egypt’s Omar Abdel Aziz in the first round.
“I’m not placing too much expectation on myself. I just want to win as many matches as possible. Besides, it would be nice to take on Mohamed El Shorbagy again ... if I can get past my first two rounds.”
Tags / Keywords:
Others, Sport, Sport, Sport, squash, Ong Beng Hee, Olympics
Nicholas Tse fan takes adoration to new heights
KL Gurney Training Centre edge Penang opponents to clinch blind football champion title
Nicol’s record perch at the top of the world rankings is cause for celebration
Ambit3 Sport: Multisport tracking with this Suunto
Poles apart? Finalists at World Pole Dancing Championships say it's serious sport
Rossi wins in Argentina after Marquez crashes out
Olympics-Paris City Hall backs 2024 Games plan
President calls Paris 2024 bid 'exemplary'
Brazil's Olympic host Rio has phones cut due to unpaid bills
Support for Boston Olympics bid rises, opposition strong -poll
Britain's Jockey Club makes healthy profit in 2014
Thirty years of Lafite
May 7 decision if High Court can hear Gerakan’s suit
Mobile messaging can cut hospital readmissions
Copyright © 1995-2015 Star Publications (M) Bhd (Co No 10894-D)