It is like the old times: Joshna on partnering Dipika after 4 years

Dipika took a three-year sabbatical from the sport and last played alongside Joshna at the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games in 2018, where the women’s doubles combination clinched a silver medal.
Joshna Chinappa at a promotional event in Chennai on Thursday
Joshna Chinappa at a promotional event in Chennai on Thursday

Joshna Chinappa can’t wait to share the court with the returning Dipika Pallikal Karthik at the World Doubles Squash Championships, which is scheduled to be hosted in Glasgow (Scotland) between April 5 and 9. Dipika took a three-year sabbatical from the sport and last played alongside Joshna at the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games in 2018, where the women’s doubles combination clinched a silver medal.

“It is nice to have Dipika back,” Joshna told DT Next after unveiling the ‘ASICS Lite Show Collection’ at a store here on Thursday. “The preparation has been good. I have been practising with Dipika for the last four months at the ISA (Indian Squash Academy). I also trained with my mixed doubles partner Vikram Malhotra, who was in Chennai for a few days. All of us look forward to playing well at the Doubles Championships,” said Joshna.

“We (referring to Dipika and herself) struck a partnership instantly. I did not play with her for four years. She came back to play a few months ago. We have so much fun while playing together on court. It is like the old times; nothing has changed. She has been playing really well and training hard. We seem to get along well on court [despite the break].” Joshna, who stands 14th in the PSA women’s singles rankings, is also motivated to flourish at the Birmingham Commonwealth Games and the Hangzhou Asian Games. While the CWG will be held in July-August, the AG will take place in September.

“[2022] is one of our (Indian squash’s) biggest years. Playing at the 2022 Commonwealth and Asian Games was always the plan. We (the Indian players) are lucky to be part of both. The CWG and the AG give us a platform to do well and win medals for India,” said Joshna. “As one grows older, one needs to take extra care of things like recovery, strength training etc. I have been working with a wonderful team, which has been helping me stay in the best shape physically and mentally,” added the 35-year-old Joshna, who turned professional nearly a decade ago.

Before signing off, Joshna spoke about her association with ASICS. “It (the brand) has been supportive; it has been providing everything I need on and off the court.”

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