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Tuesday December 31, 2013 MYT 7:52:00 PM
Tuesday December 31, 2013 MYT 8:01:06 PM
by kng zheng guan
Clean sweep. The Malaysian junior squash players won all the eight titles at state in the Pontefract Junior Open which ended Monday.
PETALING JAYA: Malaysia stamped their class with a complete sweep of all eight titles at the Pontefract Junior Open squash championship at the Pontefract Squash and Leisure Club in England.
On Sunday, Ong Sai Hung (boys’ Under-15), Mohd Hafiz Zhafri (boys’ Under-13), Aifa Azman (girls’ Under-13) and Jessica Kheng (girls’ Under-13) were victorious in the lower age-group titles.
The next day, Malaysia clinched another four titles.
Reigning British Junior Under-15 champion Ng Eain Yow downed Mohd Farez Izwan 11-4, 11-5, 11-3 in an all-Malaysian final for the boys’ Under-17 crown.
Andrea Lee, the Asian Junior Under-15 and Kuala Lumpur Junior Under-17 champion, completed an outstanding year by beating England’s Amber Peacey 11-4, 11-5, 11-5 for the girls’ Under-17 title.
Mohd Syafiq Kamal was the next to go court. He survived a gruelling test against top seed Jack Cooper of England to win the boys’ Under-19 category. Syafiq, the Asian Youth Games individual silver medallist, held his nerve to win 7-11, 11-2, 12-10, 9-11, 11-9.
In the last match of the day, 14-year-old S. Sivasangari showed her potential by edging out fellow Kedahan Nazihah Hanis 11-8, 8-11, 8-11, 11-8, 11-9 for the girls’ Under-19 title.
It was a top performance by the players and they can now look forward to the British Junior Open, which starts in Sheffield tomorrow, in high spirits
“It was a great way to end the year,” said delighted national junior coach Andrew Cross.
“We’ve already had one British Junior champion and runner-up this year, followed by five Asian Junior titles, the Asian Youth Games success and now a complete sweep here.
“The youngsters are playing really well and we’re grateful to Terry Dudley (event organiser) and everyone at the Pontefract club for letting us compete.
“Now we hope the kids will be able to carry on their form into the British Juniors.
“It will be a lot tougher, but so far they are all hitting their marks. It has been a great week so far,” added Cross.
Malaysia’s main challenge in the British Juniors will be led by Sivasangari in the girls’ Under-15 category and Eain Yow in the boys’ Under-17 event.
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