NATIONAL squash player S. Sivasangari enjoyed an outstanding October. Now, she’s hoping for an even better November when she competes in the Detroit Pro Classic in the United States today.
The 20-year-old certainly made her presence felt in two top-tier tournaments last month — the US Open and the Women’s World Championships.
In the US Open, the Kedahan stunned the higher-ranked Coline Aumard of France and Alison Waters of England before bowing out against England No 1 Sarah-Jane Perry in the third round.
She continued her impressive form at the world meet in Cairo — knocking out world No 8 Amanda Sobhy of the US before beating Holland’s Milou van der Heijden in the second round.
The Asian Games silver medallist, however, lost a closely contested third-round battle with junior rival and world No 11 Hania El Hammamy of Egypt.
World No 42 Sivasangari, who has had to juggle squash and studies, hopes to bounce back strongly when she takes to the court in Motor City today.
“It’s been challenging for me because I’ve had to cram my schedule and I was just finishing up on my exams,” said the Cornell University student.
“I enjoyed a good two weeks of squash at the US Open and the world meet, so I’m definitely hoping to do well in Detroit.
“I’m not putting too much pressure on myself. I’m just going to give it my all and hopefully get another positive outcome.”
In Detroit, the eighth-seeded Sivasangari has a first-round bye before meeting either Cristina Gomez of Spain or Czech Republic’s Anna Serme.
If she gets through, she is expected to meet second seed and world No 18 Nele Gilis of Belgium in the quarter-finals.
“Honestly, the draw is not too bad as I’ll face Nele if I win my second-round match. She’s pretty good, so it won’t be all that easy,” said Sivasangari.
Meanwhile, national No 1 Ng Eain Yow and Ivan Yuen will lead Malaysia’s challenge in the Men’s World Championships, which will begin in Doha, Qatar tomorrow.
Over in Australia, a large group of national players, led by national No 4 Addeen Idrakie, will compete in the Professional Squash Association (PSA) Challenger 5 Cairns International from today.
World No 93 Addeen is the second seed. The other Malaysian men in the mix are Darren Rahul Pragasam, Ryan Pasqual, Ong Sai Hung, Hafiz Zhafri, Bryan Lim and Amir Amirul Azhar.
Ooi Kah Yan and youngster Yee Xin Ying will compete in the women’s section.