Squash sensation Anahat Singh (14 years old) is all set to make her senior debut at the Commonwealth Games for India as the youngest member of the team.
The teenager Anahat Singh started her journey at the age of 6 by playing badminton and winning several tournaments in Delhi. Later, at 8, she started playing squash and soon became No. 1 in the girls Under-11 category maintaining her ranking throughout.
It was a dream come true moment for 14-year-old Anahat Singh when she got selected for India’s squash squad for the 2022 Commonwealth Games in Birmingham. A rare honour for someone so young.
At just 14 years old, Anahat Singh is already making a name for herself in badminton. Singh will have the opportunity to showcase her talents on the international stage when she competes in the Commonwealth Games. As the youngest player in the tournament, Singh will be under immense pressure to perform well. However, she has already shown that she has what it takes to compete with the best of the best. With her talent and determination, there is no doubt that Singh will continue to make waves in the CWG 2022.
Hear what Anahat Singh’s message to the Indian contingent that she is travelling to Birmingham with:
Hear Anahat Singh’s message to the Indian contingent that she is travelling to Birmingham with❗️
Are you excited to watch this young squash sensation at the highest level? 😍#B2022 #CWG2022 #AnahatSingh #Squash #TeamIndia pic.twitter.com/Dxrl03en5H
— Women's SportsZone #B2022 (@WSportsZone) July 19, 2022
Anahat’s desire to meet India’s most decorated shutter doesn’t come as a surprise considering she played badminton before deciding to make a career out of squash.
As a 6-7 seven-year-old, the Delhi-based girl saw the likes of PV Sindhu, Saina Nehwal, and Lee Chong Wei play in the Indian open at the Siri Fort Complex, and since then she has not been able to flush badminton out of her system.
Tani Vadehra Singh, mother of Anahat Singh said, “She loved badminton but as parents, we travel with Amira for tournaments and Anahat did not want to be left alone in the house. That also played a big part in her switching to squash from badminton.”
Anahat said by referring to the accomplished duo of Joshna Chinappa and Dipika Pallikal, “I used to play badminton before and I have watched Sindhu play in Delhi. I hope I get to see her during the games. On the squash front, it is really exciting as well. The players I have looked up to, I will be playing and travelling with them.”
Anahat Singh’s elder sister Amira Singh is a squash player who contributed immensely to Anahat taking up the sport. Anahat followed her sister around in the initial years when the girls were coached by Amjad Khan. Since then she has attended training camps with a lot of coaches including Shahid Zaman Khan and Stephane Galifi. During the lockdown, her parents built her a makeshift court in their home so she could play when all clubs were closed.
Anahat Singh expressed feelings toward Commonwealth Games 2022, “Really excited because I have to play senior professional players who have had enough experience and journeys. They told me what to expect from a big opportunity like the Commonwealth games, so I will get another couple of days to train with the team before flying to Birmingham and I’m really excited about that.”
Others who will be making their commonwealth debut, include Velavan Senthilkumar and Abhay Singh, who will feature in the men’s doubles event.
Saurav Ghosal, Joshna Chinappa, and Dipika Pallikal, who has carried the Indian flag in the squash world for the past 15 years, will be medal contenders in multiple categories.
Dipika Pallikal is one of the most well-known squash players in India and has become so through the immense amounts of skill she has for the sport. Over time, she has slowly and steadily paved her road to becoming one of the greatest squash players to have come out of India and has become a name that is known not only in India but also throughout the entire world.
As she is one of the top squash players in the world. One of the best Indian female squash players in recent history, Dipika comes from a family that has heavy ties with sports, as her mother, Susan Pallikal, used to play cricket for the Indian women’s team, on the international level, and was quite famous herself.
Joshna Chinappa is ranked 17 among women, and Ghosal is number 15 among men.
The 35-year squash ace, who recently won the women’s doubles title at the World Doubles championship in Glasgow, also said she and Dipika Pallikal Karthik with whom she triumphed in the worlds were a very strong team. In the Gold Coast edition four years ago, the duo settled for silver, Dipika and Saurav had secured silver in mixed doubles. Dipika is not yet back to playing singles.
Harinder Pal Sandhu, who suffered a career-threatening back injury in 2018, is back in action and will be playing doubles alongside Ramit Tandon.
Likewise these seniors, Anahat Singh has made great achievements, she won the prestigious US Junior Squash Open in Philadelphia on December 22, Anahata is the first Indian woman to win this tournament. She beat Egypt’s Zaida Marei in the girls’ under-15 category.
Anahat Singh wins all six of her under-19 trial matches without dropping a game
It’s an astonishing achievement for one so young, but it is totally based on merit. Coached by Indian squash legend Ritwik Bhattacharya, Anahat has taken the squash world by storm with her phenomenal results during the past three months, playing with distinction, fire, and brilliance. She produced an outstandingly consistent performance level at the Indian Women’s Team Trials in April.
Anahat was the number one performer in the Under-19 Girls Trials with yet another incredible display of squash. She won six matches without dropping a game.
Since last year she has been training with former Indian No.1 Bhattacharya at the Start Academy and also with her father Gursharan, who is totally hands-on in planning her training and development. She is also supported by the Virat Kohli Foundation and Dunlop India.
India Squash Squad For CWG 2022
Men Singles: Saurav Ghosal, Ramit Tandon, Abhay Singh
Women Singles: Joshana Chinappa, Sunyana Kuruvilla, Anahat Singh
Women’s Doubles: Dipika Pallikal/Joshna Chinappa
Mixed Doubles: Saurav Ghosal/Dipika Pallikal, Ramit Tandon/Joshana Chinappa
Men’s Doubles: Ramit Tandon/Harinder Pal Singh Sandhu, Velavan Senthilkumar/Abhay Singh