Squash fraternity turn out in full force to perform flashmob
mainly from The Star
PETALING JAYA: The squash fraternity turned out in full force to perform a flashmob at The Curve in Mutiara Damansara here yesterday in a bid to get squash into the 2020 Olympics.
The event started at 7pm, with world No. 1 Nicol David leading all the women players out in their matching red and white outfits.
“I had the idea of creating more awareness for squash and, with my friends back in Penang, we decided that it would be great to do a flashmob and we basically decided to go ahead with it,” said the Malaysian squash queen who has topped the world rankings since 2006.
“All the top players, guys and girls, were excited to do this and come together to show that we deserve to be in the Olympics.
“Watching the London Olympics this year was really heart-breaking,” added 29-year-old David. “I watched it every single day and not being there just didn’t seem right.”
The WSA players danced to Nicki Minaj’s “Starships” before joining up with their male counterparts and members of the public for a rousing finale to Beyonce’s “Run The World”.
The IOC will convene in Buenos Aires next year to decide which one of the eight sports – squash, baseball, wushu, karate, roller sport, wakeboarding, sport climbing and beach soccer – gets into the 2020 Olympic Games.
“Wow! It went really well. It was a good turnout and I’ve been getting really good feedback from everyone. I think all the players also had a really good time,” enthused Nicol.
World No. 13 Kasey Brown agreed with Nicol, saying that the flashmob was a good way to expose the sport to the public.
“Hopefully it’ll create an impact for the bid. The flashmob was a good movement for a good cause and it should create the awareness that we are seeking,” said Kasey.
The flashmob crew represented a veritable ‘who’s who’ from the world of squash, including Australians Rachael Grinham, a former world champion and world No1, world No6 Kasey Brown and former five-time world champion Sarah Fitz-Gerald; Egyptians Karim Darwish and Mohamed El Shorbagy, four and eight in the men’s world rankings, and women’s world No2 Raneem El Weleily; Indian number ones Saurav Ghosal and Dipika Pallikal; England’s Laura Massaro and Jenny Duncalf, Alison Waters and Adrian Grant, ranked 3, 4, 9 and 15, respectively; Mexico’s highest-ranked player of all-time Samantha Teran; plus representation from countries including hosts Malaysia, France, Switzerland, Czech Republic, Ireland, Denmark, Netherlands, New Zealand and Scotland.
A flash mob (or flashmob) is a group of people who assemble suddenly in a place, perform an unusual and seemingly pointless act for a brief time, then disperse, often for the purposes of entertainment, satire, and artistic expression. Flash mobs are organized via telecommunications, social media, or viral emails.
The term, coined in 2003, is generally not applied to events and performances organized for the purposes of politics (such as protests), commercial advertisement, publicity stunts that involve public relation firms, or paid professionals. In these cases of a planned purpose for the social activity in question, the term smart mobs is often applied instead.
WSF CEO Andrew Shelley was delighted to hear of the flashmob initiative: “Squash is lucky to have such a pro-active group of elite athletes who will do almost anything to convince the IOC decision-makers that the sport would be a really positive addition to the Games programme.
“And for them it would mean everything to be part of it.”