PETALING JAYA: National squash player Low Wee Wern (pic) showed her mental strength in coping with the loss of a loved one to advance into the second round of the British Open.
Wee Wern packed off England’s Fiona Moverley 11-6, 11-3, 11-6 in the first round and the 28-year-old had no hesitations in dedicating the win to her grandfather who passed away on Monday.
“This match today is for my grandpa,” said Wee Wern on her social media account.
But despite her grief, the Penangite displayed fortitude to overcome the 32-year-old Moverley, who incidently, was playing the last match of her career.
As for Wee Wern, it was the first time she is playing in a major squash tournament after being sidelined for 20 months from 2016 to 2018 by a serious knee injury.
The former world No. 5 has been on a good run of form ending up as runner-up at the Macau Open last month before a semi-final finish at the Asian Individual Championships in Kuala Lumpur earlier this month.
“I’m happy to be back in England and it’s been a while since I’ve played in the British Open and on the glass court as well,” said Wee Wern.
“I’ve had a pretty decent run, so I hope to keep it going.
“Coming back from three knee surgeries is one of the hardest things I’ve ever been through and I’m slowly getting back to where I’ve been before.
“Now I’m trying to keep my body as healthy as possible so that I can play as long as I can.”
Wee Wern, who is now 28th in the world rankings, goes up against current world No. 5 Joelle King of New Zealand in the second round.
The last time the two met Wee Wern lost 9-11, 6-11, 7-11 in the first round of the World Championships in 2015 in Kuala Lumpur.
“Joelle is also coming back from injury and is in the form of her life having won the Manchester Open last week, so I’m looking forward to a good match against her.”
Meanwhile, Malaysia’s men’s hopes ended when both Ivan Yuen and Ng Eain Yow suffered first-round defeats.
World No. 43 Ivan gave the higher ranked world No. 30 Greg Lobban of Scotland a run for his money before bowing out 10-12, 9-11, 12-10, 4-11.
World No. 36 Eain Yow suffered an upset against home favourite and world No. 95 Patrick Rooney, losing 8-11, 10-12, 7-11.
“Ivan played well against Greg as the first three sets were very close and he could have won the match had things gone his way,” said national head coach Ajaz Azmat.