By Paul Osborne

World Squash Federation ambassadors Cameron Pilley and Low Wee Wern have visited Papua New Guinea as part of the 2014 WSF Ambassador Programme ©WSFWorld Squash Federation (WSF) ambassadors Cameron Pilley and Low Wee Wern have taken a trip to Papua New Guinea in an effort to boost the nation's bid for success ahead of the 2014 Commonwealth Games and 2015 Pacific Games.

Papua New Guinea's capital city of Port Moresby is set to host the 2015 Pacific Games on the anniversary of the nation's 40th year of independence.

It was Port Moresby that Pilley, the Australian number one and world number 17 men's singles player, and Low, Malaysian women's world number seven, visited as part of the 2014 WSF Ambassador Programme.

The initiative was set up three years ago and aims to promote squash in regions where the sport is still in early development.

The players were joined by Australian squash coaches Nathan Turnball and Marc Forster as they led a number of coaching and refereeing workshops.

As well as this, the two squash professionals staged a number of exhibition matches and training clinics for schoolchildren, with a range of training sessions also staged with members of the national men's and women's Commonwealth Games squads who will be competing in Glasgow next month.

Low Wee Wern (left) visited Papua New Guinea as part of the 2014 WSF Ambassador Programme as the organisation looks to support the development of squash in the country ©WSFLow Wee Wern (left) visited Papua New Guinea as part of the 2014 WSF Ambassador Programme as the organisation looks to support the development of squash in the country ©WSF



Despite sending a record eight-strong squash team to the Commonwealth Games, President of the Papua New Guinea Squash Federation, Edmond Pereira, admitted the team will not win any medals.

"We cannot expect medals in Glasgow - our goal is to give our players international exposure," he said.

"Only a couple of our players have played on the international stage, so this ambassador visit and the competition in Glasgow will give our players the chance to raise their game.

"Our target is the 2015 Pacific Games here in Port Moresby - participating in the Commonwealth Games is part of the build up to that.

"We want to maximise the benefit of home advantage.

"We have a number of gold medals in our sights."

With a relatively inexperienced squash team, Papua New Guinea is hoping to use Glasgow 2014 as a stepping stone to success at the 2015 Pacific Games, which will be held at Port Moresby for the third time ©WSFWith a relatively inexperienced squash team, Papua New Guinea is hoping to use Glasgow 2014 as a stepping stone to success at the 2015 Pacific Games, which will be held at Port Moresby for the third time ©WSF


Although a relatively inexperienced team, one of Papua New Guinea's rising stars, 15-year-old Linette Vai, trains alongside Low in Penang, Malaysia, and will be the nation's biggest hope at both the Commonwealth and Pacific Games.

"Linette's game has improved considerably since she moved to Penang," said Pereira.

"She is already our number one player."

In preparation for the Pacific Games, which will be making their third appearance in Port Moresby, three new state-of-the-art squash courts are set to be built at the Port Moresby Racket Club.

The Games are estimated to see more than 3,000 athletes and 1,000 officials from 22 countries participate in 28 sports from July 4 to 18, 2015.

Contact the writer of this story at paul.osborne[email protected]


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