Dipika Pallikal

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Dipika Pallikal
Deepika Pallikal.jpg
Deepika Pallikal at Sangarsh launch in College of Engineering, Guindy
Country  India
Born (1991-10-21) October 21, 1991 (age 23)
Chennai, India
Height 1.60m
Turned Pro 2006
Coached by Sarah Fitz-Gerald
Racquet used Technifibre
Women's singles
Highest ranking No. 10 (December, 2012)
Current ranking No. 16 (November, 2014)
Title(s) 7
Tour final(s) 5
World Open QF (2011)
Last updated on: November, 2014.

Dipika Pallikal is an Indian squash player. She is the first Indian woman to break into the top 10 in the WSA rankings. She won 3 WISPA tour titles in 2011 that saw her attain a career best ranking of 13. Later, she bettered that with a top 10 ranking in December 2012.[1] She was runner up in the Tournament of Champions 2012 and reached the semifinals of Australian Open 2012. She won her sixth WSA title by winning the Meadowood Pharmacy Open on February 2013. In the 20th Commonwealth Games held in 2014, Dipika, along with Joshna Chinappa won gold in the squash women's doubles event.[2]

Early life[edit]

Dipika Pallikal, also known as Dipika Rebecca Pallikal[3] was born on 21 September 1991 in a Malayali[4] Syrian Christian family[5][6][7] to Sanjiv George and Susan Itticheria[8] from Kerala, India. She played her first international tournament in London when she was in her sixth grade, and to date, she has won the German Open, Dutch Open, French Open, Australian Open, Scottish Open on the European Junior Squash Circuit.

Professional career[edit]

Pallikal turned professional in 2006,[9] but her career was filled with ups and downs initially. She became more consistent and started notching up winning performances after her brief training stint in Egypt in the beginning of 2011.[9]

She clinched her first of three WISPA titles for 2011 in September by winning the Orange County Open in Irvine, California.[10] She notched up her second in the United States with another WISPA tour event victory.[10] The third came in Hong Kong in the Crocodile Challenge Cup in December 2011 and that took her to number 17 in world rankings.[10] However it was her performance in the World Open that shot her into the limelight. She finished in the top eight. She claimed a ranking of 14 as a result of these victories in February 2012, surpassing the earlier best world ranking by an Indian - 27th by former national champion Misha Grewal in 1995.

In January 2012, she became the first Indian ever to reach the summit clash of a Silver event when she reached the final of the Tournament of Champions squash meet in New York.[11] In August same year, she went one step further when she reached the semifinals of a gold event, the 2012 Australian Open, another first for an Indian.[12]

Pallikal was an integral part of the Indian squash team that finished fifth in the 2012 Women's World Team Squash Championships.[13] India, seeded tenth in the event, defeated higher ranked Netherlands and Ireland in the process.[14] She defeated players like Madeline Perry in the tournament.[15] Joshna Chinappa was another key player in the Indian line-up. In February 2013, She won her sixth WSA title of her career after outplaying Joey Chan of Hong Kong 11-9, 11-7, 11-4 in the final of the Meadowood Pharmacy Open in the Canadian city of Winnipeg.[16]

In December 2012, she broke into the top 10 by achieving a career best of ranking of 10.[1] She became the first Female Squash player to be conferred with the Arjuna Award, India's second highest sporting award in the year 2012.[17] As of Feb, 2014 She is back at no. 10 in the latest Women’s Squash Association (WSA) rankings despite enduring a tough start to the year.[18] At the 2014 Commonwealth Games she along with Joshna Chinappa won the squash women’s doubles gold medal, making it India's first ever Commonwealth Games medal in the sport.[2]

Pallikal trains at the ICL-TNSRA Academy at Chennai under Cyrus Poncha and Major (rtd) S. Maniam. Her coach is the six time world champion, Sarah Fitz-Gerald to whom she attributes most of her recent success.

Career statistics[edit]

Dipika Pallikal with Joshna Chinappa , 2012

Following are the highlights of Pallikal's WSA tour career.[10]

Event Year Result
China Macau Squash Open 2013 Winner [19]
Canada Meadowood Pharmacy Open 2013 Winner
Australia Australian Open 2012 Semifinals
United States Tournament of Champions 2012 Runner Up
Hong Kong Crocodile Challenge Cup 2011 Winner
Netherlands World Open 2011 Quarterfinal
United States Dread Sports Series 2011 Winner
United States Orange County Open 2011 Winner

Awards[edit]

Award Year
Arjuna Award[17] 2012
Padma Shri[20] 2014

Personal life[edit]

She is studying in Ethiraj College in English department (IIIrd year-2012-2013). On 15 November 2013, she got engaged to Indian Cricketer Dinesh Karthik.[21][22] Dipika Pallikal has also been involved in sports based ecommerce; She is a brand ambassador of sports365.in an online store selling sports goods and fitness equipments.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Dipika Pallikal is first Indian to break into top 10". The Indian Express. 2012-01-01. 
  2. ^ a b Vinod, A. (August 2, 2014). "Dipika and Joshna create history". The Hindu. Retrieved 2014-08-03. 
  3. ^ Mentioned in her Twitter page https://twitter.com/DipikaPallikal
  4. ^ http://www.manoramaonline.com/cgi-bin/MMOnline.dll/portal/ep/malayalamContentView.do?contentId=17284975&programId=1073752205&BV_ID=@@@&channelId=-1073750705&tabId=3
  5. ^ "Local Sports News - Malayalee Dipika Pallikal wins in straight games to net sixth WSA title (Picture Album)". Ukmalayalee.com. 1991-09-21. Retrieved 2013-11-30. 
  6. ^ "Dipika Pallikal, the hot girl of Indian squash". Indiatvnews.com. 1991-09-21. Retrieved 2013-11-30. 
  7. ^ "The Curious Case of Dipika Pallikal and Axis Bank | Biharprabha News". News.biharprabha.com. Retrieved 2013-11-30. 
  8. ^ Shown in the Twitter page of the athlete https://twitter.com/DipikaPallikal
  9. ^ a b "Pallikal wins three WISPA titles". jagran.com. 
  10. ^ a b c d "Profile at squashinfo.com". squashinfo.com. 
  11. ^ TOI (2012-01-26). "Dipika Pallikal storms into final of Tournament of Champions - The Times of India". Timesofindia.indiatimes.com. Retrieved 2012-11-14. 
  12. ^ "Dipika reaches Australian Open semifinal". worldsquash.org. 2012-08-17. 
  13. ^ "India finish fifth in World Team Squash". The Times of India. 2012-09-18. 
  14. ^ "India exit squash World Championships". sportal.co.in. 2012-11-16. 
  15. ^ "India upset Ireland in World Team Squash Championship". The Times of India. 2012-09-13. 
  16. ^ PTI Feb 4, 2013, 08.56PM IST (2013-02-04). "Dipika Pallikal wins Meadowood Pharmacy Open - Times Of India". Timesofindia.indiatimes.com. Retrieved 2013-11-30. 
  17. ^ a b "Arjuna Awardees for 2012". Times of India. 2012-08-29. 
  18. ^ IANS Feb 5, 2014, 08.56PM IST (2014-02-05). "Dipika Pallikal returns to top 10 of squash world rankings - Sportskeeda". Sportskeeda.com. Retrieved 2013-11-30. 
  19. ^ "Dipika triumphs". The Hindu. 2013-10-21. Retrieved 2013-11-30. 
  20. ^ "Paes, Gopichand, Yuvraj, Dipika get Padma awards". IANS. Biharprabha News. Retrieved 25 January 2014. 
  21. ^ "Cricket meets squash: Dinesh Karthik is engaged to Dipika Pallikal". The Indian Express. Retrieved 2 December 2013. 
  22. ^ http://ibnlive.in.com/news/cricketer-dinesh-karthik-engaged-to-squash-star-dipika-pallikal/436870-5-23.html

External links[edit]