Malaysian squash queen Nicol David bagged her best birthday present by winning a gold medal in the women's squash singles at the 2018 Asian Games at Gelora Bung Karno Squash Stadium on Sunday.
The world number nine, who celebrated her 35th birthday on the same day, was pushed to the limit by national compatriot S. Sivasangari before prevailing in a five-set thriller 11-13, 11-9, 5-11, 11-6, 11-8.
With her victory, Malaysia had two gold medals in the bag in Indonesia, together with the first gold won through women’s trio bowling on August 22.
Speaking afterwards, an elated Nicol was happy to claim her fifth Asian Games singles gold medal, having won four times in 1998, 2006, 2010 and 2014.
She finished as runner-up at the 2002 edition in Busan after losing to Rebecca Chiu of Hong Kong.
"I knew that today's match would be tough, considering Sivasangari had beaten two top ranked players en route to the final," she said after the match.
"After three sets, I knew that I had to bring all my experience out and step up my game in the last two sets to clinch the victory.
Nicol added that it would be her final Asian Games.
Nevertheless, the Penangite was delighted to see more Malaysian junior players making their marks at the international stage especially the Asian Games.
Malaysia had also won one bronze medal in the men’s individual competition after Nafiizwan Adnan lost to Max Lee of Hong Kong in the semi-finals match yesterday.
The national squad will continue their medal hunt in both men’s and women’s team event on Monday.
For the record, Malaysia won back-to-back gold medal in the women’s team event in 2010 and 2014, besides finishing as runnes-up in the men’s team event in 2010 and 2014.
Sun Aug 26 2018
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