Malaysian raiders stake claim on Aus Open

by admin on February 14, 2014

Next week ’ s $140,000 Australian Open will feature even more international insurgents after Malaysian stars Siti Zalina Ahmed and Norhashima Ismail earned passage into the main draw of the women ’ s pairs today, progressing unscathed through the last chance qualifying battlefield. Darebin International Sports Centre has been a happy hunting ground for the pair, with Amend already boasting the 2007 Australian Open women ’ s singles title at the venue, in addition to the blue ribbon singles gold medal at the 2006 Melbourne Commonwealth Games – where Ismail took gold in the women ’ s triples. Despite their credentials, the duo will face a tough test at the Southern Hemisphere ’ s most lucrative bowls event, when they take to the green for the women ’ s pairs opening rubber on Tuesday. The pair will encounter 2006 Australian Open singles title winner Julie Keegan and 1996 world champion Carmen Anderson in the first round for their troubles. Anderson will again be representing Norfolk Island in this year ’ s Commonwealth Games and remains the island ’ s sole medallist after winning the women ’ s singles bronze medal in 1994. A number of Ahmed and Ismail ’ s Malaysian teammates also qualified for places in next week ’ s event. Commonwealth Games hopeful Emma Firyana Saroji will feature in the women ’ s singles after securing one of only four places available. The 2012 Asian Champion in both women ’ s singles and pairs, Saroji will begin her Australian Open single ’ s campaign against Australia A squad member, and Western Australian young-gun Kristina Krstic. 2010 Commonwealth Games bronze medallist Fairul Izwan Abdul Muin is part of a men ’ s fours team set to take to the green next Tuesday evening. He also earned one of ten spots in the men ’ s singles draw, alongside fellow Malaysian Muhammad Azwin Suhaim who has been drawn against two time Australian Open winner and tournament favourite Leif Selby. The 2014 Australian Open action ignites from 8.30am on Sunday, February 16 through to Thursday, February 20 at Victoria ’ s Darebin International Sports Centre. Free to view living streaming of the fours, pairs and singles finals will be available via from 12.30pm on Thursday. Caption: Siti Zalina Ahmed has earned passaged into another Australian Open