KAJANG: Early preparations for the national squash squad to the 2028 Los Angeles Olympic Games (LA28) are being worked out as part of Malaysia’s hunt for the first Olympic gold to be offered by the sport, said Youth and Sports Minister Hannah Yeoh.

She said the squash squad need to be thoroughly prepared as Malaysia have set their sights on the first gold in squash when the sport makes its debut in LA28.

“We are holding discussions with squash groups first on the kind of top-up services they require, whether local or overseas training.

“We are also talking with SRAM (Squash Racquets Association of Malaysia) to ensure they start preparations now. They all desire to bring back the first Olympic gold in squash,” she said.

She told reporters this after attending the Kuala Lumpur-level 2024 Yellow Ribbon Project at the Kajang Women’s Prison here today.

Four squash players are listed under the Road To Gold (RTG)-Fast Track programme - Ng Eain Yow, S. Sivasangari, Aifa Azman and Aira Azman.

Apart from the squash players, young divers Bertrand Rhodict Lises and Enrique Maccartney Harold are also under the RTG-Fast Track programme.

Asked about the safety of the Malaysian contingent to the 2024 Paris Olympics following the political uncertainty in France, Hannah gave an assurance that the Youth and Sports Ministry (KBS) would give priority to their safety.

She said KBS has made preparations and the Olympic Council of Malaysia (OCM) is always in contact with the International Olympic Committee (IOC) regarding the latest developments in Paris.

“The safety of our athletes and contingent, including support staff, is our priority.

“So we are always getting information from OCM and IOC. We have made preparations and been briefed on the matter. We hope everything will go well,” she added.