KUALA LUMPUR: Low Wee Wern’s comeback win at the women’s Malaysian Open is an inspiring story for all athletes.
The 27-year-old, making a return from a career-threatening injury, looked sharp and showed no signs of rustiness as she cruised to an 11-8, 11-7, 11-4 win over world No. 48 Satomi Watanabe of Japan in the final at the National Squash Centre in Bukit Jalil yesterday.
It was only Wee Wern’s second tournament after returning from a knee injury that sidelined her for 20 months. Her first was the National Championship two weeks ago.
Spectators may view Wee Wern’s win as just another career title but personally for her, it has been a long and arduous journey back from injury.
“Satomi gave it her all, she was diving around on court and wasn’t giving up until the end,” said Wee Wern.
“But I’m happy I managed to stick to my game plan and it worked out really well for me this week.
“I’ve made some changes since I lost at the national meet. I worked on a few things and I’m happy that it came back together.”
The former world No. 5 was even on crutches for more than six weeks during her rehabilitation programme, and to come back and win her first PSA (Professional Squash Association) title since 2014 and her first Malaysian Open title is inspiring.
“One of the things I’ve always wanted to do is to inspire many people – it doesn’t have to be in squash, in sports, but life in general,” said Wee Wern.
“When I was out for 20 months, people doubted me and wondered if I would be able to step back on court again and sometimes, even I wasn’t sure if I could get back on court.
“I’ve been in crutches for more than six weeks, I’ve been unable to walk, and to be able to actually start running again and right now winning the Malaysian Open, it’s a long and amazing journey.
“I would not have done it if not for the support of my team and the people who have been with me. Even my sponsors stuck by me for two years when I could not play a single tournament,” said Wee Wern.
And with that behind her, she is now looking to the future as she desires to become a world champion and world No. 1 player.
“Those were my goals for a very long time. I know, there’s still a lot of work to do but I’m determined to make it happen,” said Wee Wern, who will shift her focus to the Tasmanian Open from July 27-28.
“I’m just hoping to keep the body fresh. I have a good physiotherapist. He kept my body in good condition to play six matches in a row.
“I have not done six matches in a very long time, so I’m glad that my body and knee were fine throughout. I’m looking forward to more victories in the future.”
Men: Abdulla Mohd Al Tamimi (Qat) bt Tsz Fung Yip (Hkg) 5-11,12- 10, 11-1, 7-11, 11-5.
Women: Low Wee Wern (Mas) bt Satomi Watanabe (Jpn) 11-8, 11-7, 11-4.