Wee Wern set sights on pinnacle of squash

Low Wee Wern (right) together with Satomi Watanabe (left) in action during the Malaysian Open squash championships at Bukit Jalil squash centre. — Picture by Hari Anggara.
Low Wee Wern (right) together with Satomi Watanabe (left) in action during the Malaysian Open squash championships at Bukit Jalil squash centre. — Picture by Hari Anggara.

KUALA LUMPUR, July 22 — Low Wee Wern’s comeback trail is nothing short of remarkable.

With her first ever Malaysian Open secure by beating Satomi Watanabe 11-8, 11-7, 11-4  the Penangite’s now aiming for the No 1 spot in world squash.

After 20 months of being off the court due to multiple surgeries on her left knee, Wee Wern has reached two finals since her returning to competitive play on July 4th.

She had previously lost a tough five setter on July 8 at the National Championship finals to S. Sivasangari, the top player in the country after Nicol David.

In less than two weeks not only did she beat Sangari in straight sets in the semifinals of the Malaysian Open yesterday, it was her fifth match in five days as she had to qualify for the main draw due to her low ranking of 254.

Despite that she still had the stamina and strength to challenge players currently active on tour. Something truly remarkable.

“It’s always been my goal to not just get back to No 5 but to be world No 1 and world champion,” said Wee Wern.

“Obviously with the injuries there were doubts if I’d get back to the top 10. However I have a very good team with me. Aaron’s (Soyza) been with me since I was 11 and since there’s still a lot of work to do he’s stuck with me for the next few years as we chase those targets,” added the 27-year-old.

It’s hard to find someone who after three surgeries, multiple roadblocks hampering her comeback, numerous tests on the knee from the medical team at the National Sports Institute (NSI) and intense rehab programs still wants to comeback to the fold and is doing everything she can to achieve those dreams.

It’s a story of redemption and willpower that should be an example and inspiration to us all.

“One of the things I’ve always wanted to do is to inspire people be it in sports or in life,” said the 27-year-old.

“People doubted my ability to return on court. Even I had my doubts, especially when I was in crutches for six weeks unable to walk. Having gone through the whole process of learning to walk and run again and now to win the Malaysian Open has just been a long journey.

“I couldn’t have done it without my team and a big thanks to my sponsors who stuck with me for these two years.

“Now we have to look forward to the Asian Games. I’m in the team event and we have a strong team led by Nicol. She’s one of the best role models and I’m looking forward to rekindling the team spirit and travelling with them after so long.”

Wee Wern flies to Tasmania, Australia tomorrow for the Tasmanian Open before returning to Malaysia to prepare for the Asian Games were Nicol’s the defending singles gold medalist and Malaysia are the defending team champions.

The men’s title went to Qatar’s Abdulla Al-Tamimi who beat Hong Kong’s Tsz Fung Yip 11-5, 10-12, 1-11, 11-7, 5-11. — AFP

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