Top Seeds David & Duncalf In Hong Kong Final
The world's top two women squash players Nicol David and
Jenny Duncalf will line up in Sunday's final of the Women's
Cathay Pacific Sun Hung Kai Financial Hong Kong Open after
prevailing in the semi-finals of the $74,000 WISPA World Tour
event, the seventh WISPA Gold championship of the year, in
the world number one from Malaysia looking for a sixth successive
title win in Hong Kong, survived two close games with career-long
rival Rachael Grinham before beating the Australian 11-9,
11-9, 11-5 on an all-glass court erected in the Plaza Hollywood
shopping centre in Kowloon.
"Rachael and I have played each other so many times over the years,"
explained David after their 30th Tour clash since April 2000. "I
knew she would come out firing, and I just had to try and stick with
her. Fortunately I managed to sneak the first two games and held my
game together in the third.
"It's great to make another final here in Hong Kong in front of such
a great crowd," added the Penangite on the eve of her 62nd WISPA
survived an all-English mach against her national team-mate
Alison Waters, avenging her loss in this year's British
National Championship final to beat the world No4 11-4, 11-4,
"I'm pleased with that," said the 27-year-old from Harrogate, now in
her 16th Tour final - five of which have been against Nicol David.
"We usually have very tough matches, and I was a bit concerned after
having such a tough match yesterday, but she didn't play as well as
she would have liked.
managed to stretch out leads in the first two, and pulled a few back
in the third, but she can play better than that.
"I'm really happy to be in the final here for the first time."
will be Duncalf and David's fourth meeting in a Tour final this
Duncalf Survives Hong Kong Marathon
England's world number two Jenny Duncalf secured her
anticipated place in the last four of the Women's Cathay Pacific
Sun Hung Kai Financial Hong Kong Open - but only after coming
through a 79-minute five-game marathon against eighth seed Kasey
Brown in the quarter-finals of the $74,000 WISPA World Tour
squash event, the seventh WISPA Gold championship of the
"That's the best Kasey's ever played against me," admitted a
relieved Duncalf after her 10-12, 11-7, 11-9, 11-13, 11-8 win. "I
had game balls in both the games I lost, which was a bit of a
downer, especially the first - but I managed to regroup.
"It was so dead on there. I was struggling to find the balance
between defence and attack, and I even thought of asking for the
ball to be changed. It's been bouncy on there in practice, but not
The 27-year-old from Harrogate will now face England team-mate
Alison Waters for a place in the final. Fourth seed Waters
extended her unbeaten run against Omneya Abdel Kawy by
beating the fifth seed from Egypt 9-11, 11-1, 14-12, 11-6.
The other semi-final will herald the 30th WISPA Tour meeting - and
fourth in Hong Kong over the past five years - between Nicol
David, the top seed from Malaysia, and Rachael Grinham,
the No3 seed from Australia.
David, the world number one chasing her sixth successive Hong Kong
title, recovered from a game down to defeat England's seventh seed
Laura Massaro 7-11, 11-4, 11-4, 11-4, while Grinham, twice a
runner-up, saw off sixth seed Madeline Perry 12-10, 14-12,
was the disappointing end of a fine run of form from Ireland's
Madeline Perry who won the biggest Tour title of her career at
the Australian Open earlier in the month.
"After taking the first I was ahead in the second, but when she came
back to 9-6 I didn't expect to win it," admitted Grinham. "I just
tried to make her win the points rather than give them away, so
having a 2/0 lead was a good bonus for me.
thought I was playing well, working her front and back, and she got
a bit tired in the third. It's also harder to get yourself up when
you're 2/0 down. I was more confident with a 2/0 lead so I just kept
going for it."
dejected Perry responded: "She played really well, and her drops
were just ridiculous!"
Birthday Girl David Chases Down Chiu In Hong Kong
Birthday girl Nicol David had to fight for her place in the
quarter-finals of the Women's Cathay Pacific Sun Hung Kai
Financial Hong Kong Open after being taken to four games by
local star and long-time Asian rival Rebecca Chiu in the
second round of the $74,000 WISPA World Tour squash event -
the seventh WISPA Gold championship of the year - in Hong
The world number one from Malaysia, bidding to win her sixth
successive title in Hong Kong, was celebrating her 27th birthday -
and her 26th clash with Chiu since meeting the former Hong Kong
number one for the first time in the 1998 Asian Games final.
David was tested for 42 minutes before finally clinching the 11-6,
11-8, 9-11, 11-9 victory which takes the title-holder into the last
was definitely expecting a hard match," David said afterwards. "The
last time I played on my birthday was in the Asian U13s!
"Rebecca had nothing to lose, so she just went for it, especially in
the third and fourth. I made a few errors and my focus went up and
down a little. The fourth could have been anyone's but fortunately
she made a mistake at 9-all."
David now plays Laura Massaro, the No7 seed from England who
ended Lisa Camilleri's dream run by despatching the
Australian qualifier 11-3, 11-6, 11-0 in just 19 minutes.
the first day in the event's history that two players from Hong Kong
have contested the last 16, there was further local disappointment
when the current number one Annie Au also crashed out.
But the 13th seed twice levelled the match against higher-ranked
Omneya Abdel Kawy before the fifth seed from Egypt moved up a
level in the decider to record an 11-9, 1-11, 11-6, 4-11, 11-5
victory after 41 minutes.
Camilleri Causes Maiden Hong Kong Open Shock
Australian qualifier Lisa Camilleri claimed an unexpected
place in the second round of the Women's Cathay Pacific Sun Hung
Kai Financial Hong Kong Open after upsetting 14th seed
Isabelle Stoehr in the opening round of the $74,000 WISPA
World Tour squash event - the seventh WISPA Gold
championship of the year - in Hong Kong.
The 27-year-old from Melbourne was competing in her second Gold
event of the year after a run of seven successive WISPA Tour titles
on home soil. Ranked 32 in the world, Camilleri recovered from a
game down to beat Stoehr, the world No19 from France, 8-11, 11-5,
11-4, 7-11, 11-4.
"I'd never played Isa before, but I did a bit of training with her
in Melbourne last week," Camilleri said afterwards. "She has such
good racket skills, if I left anything short I was in trouble, but
when I managed to get my length working I felt more in control.
haven't even looked to see who I play next - this is definitely my
best win ever!"
fact, the Queenslander will face Laura Massaro, the seventh
seed from England who provided the only domestic disappointment by
beating Hong Kong number three Joey Chan 11-8, 11-7, 6-11,
It was the only low note on the best ever day for
local women in the event as two Hong Kong players secured places in
the last 16 for the first time.
the 13th seed who recently became the country's top-ranked player,
despatched Dutch qualifier Orla Noom 11-6, 11-9, 11-5 in just
28 minutes - then 16th seed Rebecca Chiu, the long-time No1
who made her Hong Kong Open debut back in 1993 and has played
in the championship every time since, battled to a 50-minute 7-11,
11-6, 11-8, 12-10 win over experienced English opponent Tania
"The support from the crowd was great, it gave me lots of energy,"
said a delighted Chiu, the 31-year-old world No18. "After the first,
my coach told me I needed to volley more, to make her do more work,
and it paid off."
Chiu will now face her career-long Asian rival Nicol David,
the world number one from Malaysia who beat England's Sarah
Kippax 11-1, 11-5, 11-4.
"I've been in the same spot for the last three years, so I guess
I'll have my annual match with Nicol next," added the local star on
the eve of her third successive second round meeting with David in
the Hong Kong Open. "I beat her once in the Asian Games,
but otherwise the record doesn't look very good for me!"
Hopes Dashed In Hong Kong Qualifiers
Hopes of extra local interest in the main draw of the Women's Cathay
Pacific Sun Hung Kai Financial Hong Kong Open were dashed when all six
Hong Kong players crashed out of the qualifying finals of the $74,000
WISPA World Tour squash event, the seventh WISPA Gold
championship of the year.
was responsible for the most unexpected downfall when the world No74 from
South Africa defeated Elise Ng, ranked 52 in the world, 11-9, 11-4,
troubled by a shoulder injury over the past two years, is battling to regain
the form which took her to a career-high world No28 in 2008 - and is now
celebrating her first appearance in a WISPA Gold event since making the main
draw of the Hong Kong Open in 2007.
coming into this tournament was to qualify, so I'm happy to have achieved
that, and I'd like to get my ranking back up to where I don't have to,"
Swartz explained afterwards. "I knew it wouldn't be easy though, Elise is a
good player - but we've played a few times before so I knew what to expect."
faces England's Alison Waters, the No4 seed, in the first round. "I'm
looking forward to playing Alison again; I played her last time I was in the
main draw here!"
Song Sun-Mi will celebrate her second successive appearance in a WISPA
Gold event after beating Hong Kong's Tong Tsz-Wing 11-8, 11-7, 11-6.
The 20-year-old from Kyung-Do will now line up against Australian Kasey
Brown, the No8 seed.
the qualifying disappointment, Hong Kong interest will be well-served in the
main draw by Annie Au and Rebecca Chiu - seeded 13 and 16,
respectively - and unseeded Joey Chan.
made her maiden appearance in the event in 1993, will take on England's
Tania Bailey, while Au will face Dutch qualifier Orla Noom. Chan
will also face an English challenge, from No7 seed Laura Massaro.
Players Shine In Hong Kong Open Qualifiers
players will contest all but two of the Women's Cathay Pacific
Sun Hung Kai Financial Hong Kong Open qualifying finals after a
great display by Hong Kong teenagers in the $74,000 WISPA World
Tour squash event - the seventh WISPA Gold championship
of the year.
impressive 11-6, 11-7, 11-8 win over compatriot Karman Siu
will take 14-year-old Ho Tze-Lok into the final round, where
she will meet India's Dipika Pallikal, the second
highest-ranked player in the qualifying competition.
other end of the draw, 15-year-old Ho Ka Po also got the
better of a fellow Hong Kong countrywoman when she beat Szeto Ka-Hei
12-10, 11-4, 11-8.
standing in the way of Ho Ka Po making her debut in a WISPA
Gold event is England's Emma Beddoes, the world No33 who
arrived in Hong Kong fresh from title victory in last week's
Hamptons Open in the USA.
Amr Shabana & Nicol David Aim For High Fives In Hong Kong
and Nicol David will be gunning for their fifth successive
titles at the Cathay Pacific Sun Hung Kai Financial Hong Kong
Squash Open when the world’s top players return for one of the
biggest annual sporting events in Hong Kong from 23-29 August.
David, the world number one from Malaysia, is seeded to claim a
record fifth women's title in the $74,000 Women’s International
Squash Players' Association (WISPA) Gold event - while Shabana,
the third seed from Egypt, will be hoping to equal the record five
titles in a row won by legendary Pakistani Jansher Khan from
1987 to 1991 in the $147,500 PSA World Tour championship, the
fifth PSA Super Series event of the year.
early round matches will take place at Hong Kong Squash Centre
in Admiralty before the tournament moves across the harbour to
Diamond Hill in Kowloon for the semi-finals and finals,
which will be held in a specially erected, state-of-the-art,
all-glass court at Plaza Hollywood. Players will be given a
brand new experience of playing in front of the big crowds that
visit the shopping mall - one of the busiest in Hong Kong.
England's new world number one Nick Matthew, who was forced
to withdraw from the 2009 event with an ankle injury, is top
seed in the men's event. Runner-up in 2004, the 29-year-old from
Sheffield faces a qualifier in the opening round before a predicted
semi-final confrontation with title-holder Shabana.
David opens her 2010 campaign against England's Sarah Kippax
and is expected to face English rival Jenny Duncalf, the
world No2, in the women's final.
Speaking after the draws were made, Hong Kong Squash Chairman
David Mui said: "Special thanks to our joint-title sponsors
Cathay Pacific Airways and Sun Hung Kai Financial, whose support has
contributed greatly to our success. I would also like to thank our
co-sponsors: Crocodile, Prince, Perrier, Fujifilm, Buler Swiss
Watch, Lotus Tours and Plaza Hollywood.
delighted that we attracted all the world best players including our
local players, Annie Au, Rebecca Chiu, Joey Chan, Dick Lau and Max
Lee, who will, I am sure, have the full support of the home crowd."