World Junior Squash Championships: Kush Kumar to lead the Indian team in Namibia
Asian junior runner up Kush Kumar, an Indian Squash Academy trainee will lead India’s charge in the 2014 WSF World junior squash championship which is to be held in the southern African country of Namibia from August 10 to 21.
This is the first time that Namibia is hosting a world championship. The competitions will be organised in the capital city of Windhoek at the Wanderers Squash Club and a new multi-sport complex which has come up for the occasion. The championship will include men’s and women’s individual events to be followed by the team competitions.
Kush Kumar, who was instrumental in helping India gain a bronze (India’s best show till date) in the team event in the previous edition held two years ago in Qatar, has been given 3 / 4 seeding and a first round bye. Other members of the side are Madhav Dhingra , Vijay Kumar Meena , Velavan Senthilkumar (recent winner of Pioneer Cup U-17 event) and Harshit Kaur Jawanda, (national U-19 girls champion). Avinash Bhavnani (coach) and Cyrus Poncha (National coach) are accompanying the team.
The Squash Rackets Federation of India invited two ‘sparring partners’ to Chennai in preparation of the India players participating at the Commonwealth Games and World Junior Championship 2014 from July 7, 2014 for a duration of 4 weeks.
Mohamed Reda (World ranked 48) & Mazen Sabri (World ranked 34) both from Egypt were invited and this proved very beneficial for the players.
Diego Elias, a 17-year-old from Lima, is favourite in the men’s event – and seeded to become the first ever world squash champion from Peru, while Egyptian Nour El Sherbini, who became the sport’s youngest ever world champion after first winning the women’s world junior (U- 19) title in Chennai 2009 – aged just 13 – is now competing for the final time and going for a record fourth title.
More than 150 players from 30 nations are expected to compete in the championship, Namibia is only the third African country, after Egypt and South Africa to host a world squash championship.