Dipika Pallikal Karthik

Dipika Pallikal Karthik (née Pallikal; born 21 September 1991) is an Indian professional squash player. She is the first Indian to break into the top 10 in the PSA Women's rankings.

Dipika Pallikal Karthik
Dipika Pallikal (India) defeated Jaclyn Hawkes (New Zealand) in the women's semifinals 06 (cropped).jpg
Dipika during the J.P. Morgan Tournament of Champions Squash 2012.
Full nameDipika Rebecca Pallikal
Country India
Born (1991-09-21) 21 September 1991 (age 29)[2]
Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India
Height171 cm (5 ft 7 12 in)
Weight69 kg (152 lb; 10.9 st)
Turned Pro2006
PlaysRight handed
Coached bySarah Fitz-Gerald
Racquet usedTechnifibre
Women's singles
Highest rankingNo. 10 (December 2012)
Current rankingNo. 19 (August 2016)
Title(s)11( 18 finals)
World OpenQF (2011)
Last updated on: 25 August 2018.

Dipika Pallikal came to prominence in 2011, when she won three WISPA tour titles. She broke into the top 10 in December 2012.[3]

Early lifeEdit

Dipika Pallikal was born in Chennai into a Malayali family.[4] She is the daughter of Sanjiv and Susan Pallikal. [5][6] Her mother played international cricket for the Indian women's team.[7][8]

Professional careerEdit

Deepika 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 the same year, she went one step further when she reached the semi-finals of a gold event, the 2012 Australian Open, another first for an Indian.[12]

Deepika 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.[3] 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] In February 2014 she was back at number 10 in the 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.[19] Pallikal picked up her 10th Tour title in January 2015 after triumphing at the Winter Club Open.

At the February 2016 South Asian Games, she was part of the gold medal winning Indian Women's team [20][21][22] She was then defeated in the first round of the 2016 PSA Women's World Championship in April.[23] In May she was part of the silver medal winning Indian Women's team at the Asian Team Championship in Taipei.[24]

Mrs Karthik competed under her maiden name (Pallikal) until 2016, adding her married name for the 2016-17 PSA Season commencing August 2016.[25] Following her second Indian national Title (see below) she continued her good form winning the Australian Open, her 11th PSA title in August 2016.[26]

Dipika 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.

Boycott of National Championship and Triumphant returnEdit

Dipika refused to participate in the National Championship Squash between 2012 and 2015 due to the inequality in prize money where the women's championship winner was awarded only 40% of the prize money of the men's championship winner. [27] Equal prize money was finally agreed to for the 2016 championships where Deepika Pallikal Karthik upset Joshna Chinappa 4–11, 11–6, 11–2, 11–8, winning the title for the second time[28]

Career statisticsEdit

Joshna Chinappa with Pallikal Karthik, 2012

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

Event Year Result
  Winnipeg Winter Club Open 2015 Winner
  Macau Squash Open 2013 Winner[29]
  Meadowood Pharmacy Open 2013 Winner
  Australian Open 2012 Semi-finals
  Tournament of Champions 2012 Runner-up
  Crocodile Challenge Cup 2011 Winner
  World Open 2011 Quarter-final
  Dread Sports Series 2011 Winner
  Orange County Open 2011 Winner


Award Year
Arjuna Award[17] 2012
Padma Shri[30] 2014

Personal lifeEdit

Dipika studied at Ethiraj College for Women majoring in English (IIIrd year-2012-2013). On 15 November 2013, she got engaged to Indian Cricketer Dinesh Karthik.[31][32] whom she married in both traditional Christian wedding style and Hindu wedding style on 18 August 2015 and 20 August 2015, respectively.[33]


  1. ^ SquashHub [@SquashHub] (12 May 2016). "@SquashHub wish Indian team all the best for #AsianTeamChampionship #Squash @indiasquash @DipikaPallikal @kushsquash" (Tweet) – via Twitter.
  2. ^ "Dipika Pallikal (India) Profile". squashinfo.com. Retrieved 19 August 2015.
  3. ^ a b "Dipika Pallikal is first Indian to break into top 10". The Indian Express. 1 January 2012.
  4. ^ "Local Sports News – Malayalee Dipika Pallikal wins in straight games to net sixth WSA title (Picture Album)". Ukmalayalee.com. 21 September 1991. Archived from the original on 3 December 2013. Retrieved 30 November 2013.
  5. ^ "Manorama Online – Home". ManoramaOnline. Archived from the original on 6 August 2014. Retrieved 2 August 2014.
  6. ^ "Dipika Pallikal, the hot girl of Indian squash". Indiatvnews.com. 21 September 1991. Retrieved 30 November 2013.
  7. ^ India / Players / Susan Itticheria – ESPNcricinfo. Retrieved 2 November 2015.
  8. ^ Abishek Mukherjee (20 August 2015). "Susan Itticheria-Dinesh Karthik and other cricket in-laws" – Cricket Country. Retrieved 2 November 2015.
  9. ^ a b "Pallikal wins three WISPA titles". jagran.com.
  10. ^ a b c d "Profile at squashinfo.com". squashinfo.com.
  11. ^ TOI (26 January 2012). "Dipika Pallikal storms into final of Tournament of Champions – The Times of India". Timesofindia.indiatimes.com. Retrieved 14 November 2012.
  12. ^ "Dipika reaches Australian Open semi-final". worldsquash.org. 17 August 2012.
  13. ^ "India finish fifth in World Team Squash". The Times of India. 18 September 2012. Archived from the original on 21 May 2013.
  14. ^ "India exit squash World Championships". sportal.co.in. 16 November 2012.[permanent dead link]
  15. ^ "India upset Ireland in World Team Squash Championship". The Times of India. 13 September 2012. Archived from the original on 21 May 2013.
  16. ^ PTI (4 February 2013). "Dipika Pallikal wins Meadowood Pharmacy Open – Times of India". Timesofindia.indiatimes.com. Retrieved 30 November 2013.
  17. ^ a b "Arjuna Awardees for 2012". Times of India. 29 August 2012.
  18. ^ IANS (5 February 2014). "Dipika Pallikal returns to top 10 of squash world rankings – Sportskeeda". Sportskeeda.com. Retrieved 30 November 2013.
  19. ^ Vinod, A. (2 August 2014). "Dipika and Joshna create history". The Hindu. Retrieved 3 August 2014.
  20. ^ "Squash Rackets Federation of India". www.indiasquash.com.
  21. ^ "PHOTOS: India's gold-glut continues at South Asian Games - Rediff.com Sports". www.rediff.com.
  22. ^ superuser (8 February 2016). "India begin well in the team event of squash in the SAG 2016". sportingindia.com. Archived from the original on 30 August 2018. Retrieved 23 April 2016.
  23. ^ "WWC Update: Au Holds Off Pallikal to Seal Second Round Spot - Professional Squash Association". psaworldtour.com.
  24. ^ "Asian Squash Championships: Indian women go down fighting". 15 May 2016.
  25. ^ "Dipika Pallikal Karthik - Professional Squash Association". psaworldtour.com.
  26. ^ "Al Tamimi and Pallikal Karthik Capture Australian Open Crowns - Professional Squash Association". psaworldtour.com.
  27. ^ "Dipika Pallikal wants equal prize money". The Times of India.
  28. ^ http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/sports/more-sports/others/Dipika-Pallikal-Saurav-Ghosal-clinch-national-squash-titles/articleshow/53255068.cms
  29. ^ "Dipika triumphs". The Hindu. 21 October 2013. Retrieved 30 November 2013.
  30. ^ "Paes, Gopichand, Yuvraj, Dipika get Padma awards". IANS. Biharprabha News. Retrieved 25 January 2014.
  31. ^ "Cricket meets squash: Dinesh Karthik is engaged to Dipika Pallikal". The Indian Express. Retrieved 2 December 2013.
  32. ^ "Cricketer Dinesh Karthik engaged to squash star Dipika Pallikal". IBNLive.
  33. ^ "Dinesh Karthik Gets Married Twice in Three Days... to Dipika Pallikal!". Archived from the original on 1 July 2016. Retrieved 22 August 2015.

External linksEdit