SRAM to conduct inquiry into players’ dismal show


PETALING JAYA: Squash Rackets Association of Malaysia (SRAM) are planning to conduct a formal inquiry on the dismal showing of the national team in the world team championship, which ended in Vienna on Saturday. 

Malaysia were seeded eighth but finished in 14th place in the 30-team competition after losing to Switzerland 1-2 on Saturday. 

The SRAM secretary, Wong Ah Jit, said: “We won't accept any excuses. We want to get to the bottom of this. We will have a formal enquiry to find out what happened. 

“We will start our enquiry once national coach Raymond (Arnold) returns later this week.” 

In the group stage, Malaysia beat Pakistan 2-1 and Italy 3-0. But they were beaten 1-2 by unseeded Hong Kong in the second round. 

Ong Beng Hee defeated Hong Kong's number one Faheem Khan 9-5, 9-1, 9-7 but Mohd Azlan Iskandar and Kelvin Ho failed to deliver the points. 

Kelvin lost to Roger Ngan (6-9, 2-9, 0-9) while Azlan was beaten by Wong Wai Hang (4-9, 9-7, 7-9, 0-9). 

The defeat by Hong Kong sent Malaysia to the classification playoffs for 9th-16th place. They were beaten 0-3 by Holland and had to play in the playoffs for 13th-16th place where they beat Germany (2-1) and lost to Switzerland (1-2). 

“I am very annoyed over the defeat by Hong Kong. Azlan failed to live up to expectations. He is ranked 32nd in the world but lost to a player ranked 222nd. And Kelvin lost to a junior player,” said Ah Jit. 

“We spend a lot of money on them for training and international tournaments. 

“What's the use of investing so much money and time if players simply can't perform in big tournaments such as the World Team Championships,” said Ah Jit. 

Ah Jit is also concerned with Sharon Wee's recent dismal performance. She failed to make the main draw of the British Open last month. 

In the Ottawa International last week, Sharon, who was the top seed lost to a qualifier, Tamsyn Leevey of New Zealand, 9-7, 0-9, 9-0, 8-10, 0-9 in the first round. 

“All the players will be back home in December for a review. They have to justify the portion of the financial grants they have been receiving,” said Ah Jit. 

RESULTS  

13th-14th: Switzerland bt Malaysia 2-1(Lars Harms bt Ong Beng Hee 9-3, 9-3, 9-5; Andre Holderegger lost to Mohd Azlan Iskandar 9-10; 1-9, 3-9; Marco Datwyler bt Timothy Arnold 9-2, 10-8; 9-4, 9-6). 

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