Wee Wern keeps chin up after early exit in New York

  • Squash
  • Wednesday, 15 Jan 2020

PETALING JAYA: National No. 1 Low Wee Wern did not get a dream start in her season-opening tournament but the Penangite is not too perturbed.

She was shown the exit in the first round of the Tournament of Champions in New York after going down 4-11, 11-9, 4-11, 11-8, 9-11 to Julianne Courtice of England last week.

She will now shift her focus to the Carol Weymuller Open in Brooklyn (Jan 22-27), Cincinnati Gaynor Cup (Feb 20-24) and Windy City Open in Chicago (Feb 27-March 4).

“It was a frustrating start for me. I have not played in any tournament since October last year and I was very scrappy. It was a tough loss to take but it’s just the start of the year, so I’ve gotta chin up and keep working for the next one,” said the 29-year-old.

“My target is to make the last 16 in the Carol Weymuller, which I have not played in since 2013 ... I’m heading into unfamiliar territory but I’m looking forward to playing matches and tournaments again, which is what I need.”

Wee Wern was once ranked fifth in the world in 2014 but three knee surgeries due to anterior cruciate ligament injuries between 2015 and 2017 kept her away from the court for 22 months.

She dropped to below 250 in the world rankings.

After overcoming depression and injuries, she made her comeback at the National Squash Championship in 2018 and clawed her way back to world No. 24 and national No. 1.

She now aims to break into the top 15 in 2020 and for that, she needs to discover her old form.

Wee Wern is also looking forward to leading the women’s team in the absence of the retired Datuk Nicol David in the Asian Team Champion-ship (March 25-29) and the World Team Championship (Dec 15-20) in KL.

“It’s been a tough journey, to say the least ... some even thought I would never play squash again after three surgeries but I am back now, and I am doing everything I can to play top-level squash again,” said Wee Wern.

“We also have two major team events which are the Asian teams and World teams, so that would be good events for me to play more matches and to lead the team for the first time since Nicol’s retirement.”

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