Commonwealth Games: Chinappa, Pallikal give India maiden squash gold
- POSTED: 03 Aug 2014 01:46
Joshana Chinappa and Dipika Pallikal ensured India's maiden Commonwealth Games squash medal was a gold as they shocked top seeds Laura Massaro and Jenny Duncalf of England with an 11-6, 11-8 win in the women's doubles final.
GLASGOW: Joshana Chinappa and Dipika Pallikal ensured India's maiden Commonwealth Games squash medal was a gold as they shocked top seeds Laura Massaro and Jenny Duncalf of England with an 11-6, 11-8 win in the women's doubles final. The Indian pair won the tactical battle as they pulled the top seeded duo out wide to create gaps in the middle as they achieved a surprise gold despite being 7-2 down in the second game.
"We are really excited, not only for us but for Indian squash in general," said Pallikal, who missed her home Games in Delhi four years ago due to illness. "We have been in the shadows for a very long time and hopefully this can open up to a lot of girls.
"Even when we were down in the second game we still had the belief that we could do it and we never wanted to let go of any point. And I guess that is what made the difference. We could have come out 1-1 and a third game would have been very tough. I think just that desire kept us going. We have come so far that we didn't want to settle for silver. We don't like silver, we like only gold. I don't think it has sunk in yet."
"Hopefully this will bring more recognition to squash in India," added Chinappa. "It's definitely growing leaps and bounds but hopefully now, winning a medal, the government will be that much more excited about the sport as well."
For Massaro this was a second silver medal of the Games after losing out to Nicol David in the singles final but she insisted she was happy with her fortnight.
"I'm not disappointed that we didn't win, we gave it our all and I'm proud of our silver," she said. "I'm more proud of our performance in the doubles, we don't play for four years and for us to come together as a pair with very little competition practice and perform like that on the big stage is something to be proud of. Coming away with two silvers isn't quite a gold, but it's every four years and you do your best in the moment."
England's Alison Waters and Emma Beddoes earned a straightforward bronze medal after comfortably beating Kasey Brown and Rachael Grinham.
Meanwhile David Palmer became the most decorated squash player in the Commonwealth Games after guaranteeing himself two more medals to take his lifetime tally to eight. Australian Palmer has a chance of making them gold as he takes on defending champions Nick Matthew and Adrian Grant in the final of the men's doubles with partner Cameron Pilley after beating English pair Daryl Selby and James Willstrop 11-4, 11-4.
Earlier in the day Palmer made it to the mixed doubles final alongside Grinham with an 11-7, 11-4 victory against compatriots Pilley and Brown. England's Peter Barker and Waters await in Sunday's final after they beat Martin Knight and Joelle King of New Zealand.