KUALA LUMPUR, June 28 — Aifa Azman has been chosen in place of S Sivasangari to pair with Rachel Arnold in the women’s doubles squash event at the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games, next month.
This was confirmed by Squash Racquets Association of Malaysia (SRAM) director Major (Rtd) S Maniam who explained that the reshuffle had to be made without involving the addition of new athletes.
“Rachel Arnold who was supposed to partner Sivasangari will now partner Aifa Azman in the women’s doubles.
“Syafiq Kamal who was to partner Aifa Azman in the mixed doubles will now partner Ong Sai Hung in the men’s doubles. Syafiq will continue to play singles,” he said in a statement today.
Sivasangari, who was chosen as the national flag bearer at the Games in Birmingham along with powerlifting athlete Bonnie Bunyau Gustin, reportedly suffered head injuries in a crash involving a lorry and a car on the Maju Express Highway at 3.46am on Sunday.
The 23-year-old was believed to be a passenger in a Proton Saga BLM car that rammed into the back of a one-tonne lorry before skidding and catching fire.
Meanwhile, when contacted by Bernama about the gold target for the women’s doubles event in Birmingham, Maniam said: “(The target) will not be retained, because it’s very difficult without Sivasangari.
“So we are hoping to at least get a medal, no matter what the colour,” he said, adding that he was optimistic that the national squash athletes would be able to perform well as they still had about a month more to train.
The Birmingham Commonwealth Games are scheduled to take place from July 28 to August 8.
The following is the latest list of squash athletes for the Games:
Ng Eain Yow
Mohammad Syafiq Mohd Kamal
Ng Eain Yow-Ivan Yuen
Mohammad Syafiq Mohd Kamal-Ong Sai Hung
Aifa Azman-Rachel Arnold
Chang Yiwen-Noor Ainaa Aimani Ampandi
Muhammad Addeen Idrakie Bahtiar-Noor Ainaa Aimani Ampandi — Bernama