Harinder Pal Sandhu

Phuket (Thailand), Nov 14: India were assured of at least three medals in the squash competition of the Asian Beach Games here as men’s top seed Harinder Pal Sandhu along with Kush Kumar and, in the women’s category, Aparajitha Balamurukan entered the semi-finals Thursday.

Squash is making its debut at the Beach Games where competitions are being held in 26 disciplines. After the washout Wednesday, rain was no barrier Thursday as play eventually resumed on the outdoor courts at the scenic Karon Beach. Sandhu, Kush and Aparajitha will feature in the semi-final matches which will be held Saturday after a day’s rest Friday. The event is being conducted on a novel 7-point-best-of-3-games format.

Sandhu, who was part of the Indian men’s team which won the gold medal in the 17th Asian Games in Incheon, was given the honour of being the flag-bearer for the Indian contingent at the opening ceremony.

The results (India matches):

Men (Quarter-finals): Harinder Pal Sandhu bt Navid Aleksabek (Iran) 7-1,7-2; Kush Kumar bt Phuwis Poonsiri (THA) 7-2,7-4. Pre-quarter-final: Kush Kumar bt David William Pelino (PHI) 7-5, 7-2.

Women (Quarter-finals): Aparajitha Balamurukan bt Si Yu Duan (CHN) 7-2, 7-4.