World Juniors, Poland (6-17 Aug’16)
Aug 17, 2016 Leave a comment
The Indian juniors, a mix of raw and experience, had left Indian shores for Bielska-Biala in Poland for the World Junior Squash Championship with a touch of confidence. There were 11 of them (including five girls) for the initial Individual competitions phase. This was Egyptian Coach Achraf El Karargui’s first assignment and he too looked pleased with the talent in hand and expected a ‘ surprise or two’. There were solid performance by the boys with (9/16) Velavan Senthilkumar losing in the quarters and missing a medal. He had hoped to go farther that quarters, showed his fight against the second seed Eain Yow Ng of Malaysia, even grabbed a game. But the Malaysian who thereafter became the World Junior Champion had that extra in him to outpoint the lanky Indian. Earlier, aside from Velavan, two others, Adhitya Raghavan and Abhay Singh (incidentally all are from the ISA Chennai) reached the round of 16 and 32 in the 128-draw event. The other three Robin Singh Mann, Aryaman Adik and Ranjit Singh fell after giving a good account for themselves. However the girls, all five of them, Akanksha Salunkhe, Sunayna Kuruvilla, Ashita Bhengra, Jui Kalgutkar and Adya Advani, went out on the first day itself.
At the World Junior Team Championships in Poland, the Indian boys team finished in a commendable 6th position equalling the 2014 performance.
Velavan, Abhay, Adhitya & Rajith got off to a great start topping their pool with victories over Argentina, New Zeland and hosts Poland. Thereafter, a close encounter
did the country proud by finishing 6th at this World event. Coach Ashraf and Deepak accompanied the team.