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Indian squash team feels like a family: Dipika Pallikal

CWG gold-winning squash ace says team support in Glasgow did the trick for her and Joshna Chinappa who are otherwise very lonely on the professional circuit

New Delhi: India's squash ace Dipika Pallikal said that having the whole team and family supporting her and doubles partner Joshna Chinappa courtside spurred them on to win gold at the Glasgow Commonwealth Games recently.

This picture of the Indian squash team at the Glasgow CWG was tweeted by Dipika Pallikal
This picture of the Indian squash team at the Glasgow CWG was tweeted by Dipika Pallikal 

Historic medal
Pallikal-Chinappa beat England's Jenny Duncalf and Laura Massaro 11-6, 11-8 to give India its first CWG medal in squash last week. Both Indians play squash professionally, but representing the country is a different feeling, said Pallikal.

"Travelling around the world on the professional tour can be lonely. You are doing everything on your own. But being with the Indian team gives you a family feeling. Joshna and I were together on and off the court for more than two weeks and had the men's team supporting us too.

India squash ace Dipika Pallikal during a promotional event in Chennai recently. Pic/PTI
India squash ace Dipika Pallikal during a promotional event in Chennai recently. Pic/PTI 

That helped immensely and so did Dinesh's presence," said the 22-year-old Chennai-based player, referring to her fiance and Indian cricketer Dinesh Karthik, who flew to Glasgow to watch her play.

It's now or never
The World No 10 hopes her medal will helps popularise the sport. "I hope our win inspires kids to take up squash, and sponsors start investing in Indian squash. If we are not able to make things better now, then I don't see it ever happening in the future," added Pallikal.

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