PETALING JAYA: National No. 2 Mohd Nafiizwan Adnan gave a better account of himself, but still fell short in the final of the Victorian Open squash championships in Melbourne.
Nafiizwan, the second seed, found top seed Max Lee of Hong Kong too hot to handle as he went down 9-11, 3-11, 5-11 in 44 minutes on Sunday.
On Saturday, the 28-year-old Nafiizwan was engaged in a titanic battle with fourth seed Martin Knight of New Zealand. Nafiizwan won 11-5, 14-12, 9-11, 10-12, 11-7 in 89 minutes and the energy-sapping semi-final clash took a toll on him in the final.
With the defeat, Nafiizwan, the 2011 Asian champion, is still winless on the Professional Squash Association (PSA) Tour this season. The Terengganu-born player, who has seven PSA Tour titles, last tasted victory in the Irish Open in April last year.
“I was feeling quite low on energy in the final. I felt really tired after my semi-final win on Saturday,” said Nafiizwan.
“It does bother me that I haven’t won a tournament in a while. I just need to keep doing the right things and the win will come when the time is right. I just need to stay positive and look ahead,” he added.
Five other Malaysians – Ivan Yuen, Sanjay Singh Chal, Mohd Addeen Idrakie, Mohd Hannan Tarmidi and Mohd Syafiq Kamal – also took part in the men’s event but they were all beaten in the earlier rounds.
In the women’s event, national No. 3 Delia Arnold managed to reach the semi-finals before losing 3-11, 7-11, 9-11 to Australia’s Donna Urquhart.
Urquhart went on to win the title when she downed compatriot and former world champion Rachael Grinham 12-10, 14-12, 12-10 in the final.