I was excited about playing the KL Open as Ive been to this tournament every year since I turned professional. It is a huge credit to CIMB to have supported this event for so long. I had been training hard in the lead up to this event both in the USA, with coach, Rod Martin and in Australia at the AIS. I knew I had a tough draw, facing Laura Massaro, who was undefeated so far this year but I was looking forward to the challenge.
In this first round encounter, I started off strong, trying to move Massaro around and trying to dictate play. Laura is a very consistent and solid player, who makes very few errors so I knew I would have to win points by playing an aggressive and attacking style. She took the second game but I was able to close out a tight third game and come back from a bad start in the 4th to get it to a tie break. She fought off multiple match balls which shows her tenacity and mental toughness under pressure but I was able to win the 4th game 15/13.
The quarter finals saw me come up against World Number 1 and fellow Squash Stars ambassador, Nicol David. It seemed that the physicality of the first match took a bit out of me and I was not as sharp as I would have liked coming into the match. Nicol uses her speed very well and is great at taking time away from her opponents so I had to become more attacking to put her under a bit more pressure. This worked well and I was able to take the 3rd game 11/6, which was the first time I had taken a game off the World Number 1 in a WISPA event. However, I was not able to maintain my momentum and after a few errors in the 4th game, Nicol won the match 3/1.
Although losing in the quarter finals of this tournament, I felt I played well throughout and shows that my hard work is starting to pay off.
I now am heading back to Brisbane for a weeks training with the Australian Institute of Sport and look forward to working with newly appointed coach, Anthony Ricketts. I then head to my base in New York before travelling to the Cayman Islands for the next WISPA event (it’s a tough life)