Canberra hosted us at the Convention Centre with an appreciative crowd from all over Australia that came to watch top squash being played.
Strong contest right through the event from the first round with a 3-1 match against qualifier Tesni Evans. I came through the second round against fellow teammate Low Wee Wern, then had a close encounter with Alison Waters having to save four games balls in the fourth to eventually win 3-1.
The semis with Madeline Perry was an intense 3-0 match! Being down 6 game balls in the first game of the final with Laura Massaro and to win that game and the match certainly was not an easy task.
My second Australian Open title and onto Malaysia…
A few fun events took place leading up to the CIMB Malaysian Open:
– My sister, Lianne had a baby boy, Jake Ewan Lamb with husband Tim. I became an Aunt for the first time!
– A fun-filled “BackTheBid2020” Squash Flash Mob organized by the SquashStars team at The Curve shopping mall with the WSA and PSA players, and the public.
– Malaysian Open was upgraded to a 32 draw this year.
Exciting yet again as we started at Bukit Jalil for the first two rounds. I played Joshna Chinappa then Donna Urquhart, beating them 3-0 and 3-1 in tight games in both rounds.
Onto the glass court at the Curve, I was up against a firing Annie Au. From being close to 2-1 down, I managed to take it 3-1 instead. Laura Massaro played in similar fashion to Australia during the semis but this time, she took a game off me and I had to work hard to beat her.
Raneem El Weleily in the final was a challenge but from 1-1 in games, she took everything that came her way and won 3-1. The best player on the day won and she deserved the win.
Onto New York…
CAROL WEYMULLER OPEN
Brooklyn Heights has always been home for many of us squash players, staying with local families and being welcomed with such warmth. I was the lucky one that had the Mendez family looking after me. The Heights Casino, run by Linda Elriani, was the showcase of the week.
Round 1 against Kasey Brown was grueling especially in the first game that even winning it 3-0 doesn’t show how high the intensity was during the match.
Alison Waters was into her fourth match of the tournament and our first game went even longer than my match with Kasey. She took it and I came back in the second but she was too sharp in the 3rd and 4th to win it 3-1. Solid performance by Alison.
We, WSA players, carried on the Olympic spirit with our second “BackTheBid2020” Squash Flash Mob: New York Edition at The Promenade in Brooklyn Heights with the local community joining in too.
Then a bus ride to Philadelphia…
First round with Camille Serme comprised of close games but I found my depth better at the end to win. Alison was up next, coming in from a 5-setter the day before and I went into this match giving everything I had. Every point was crucial and I eventually won 3-0.
Joelle King was into her fifth match of the tournament coming into this semis. It was hard work taking the lead at 2-0 but she took her chances and got to 2-2 and 6-0 in the fifth. At this point, I wanted it too much to let it go. I focused on each point and found myself 10-6 up before sealing it 11-7. Couldn’t believe it!
Final with Raneem was at the highest pace I’ve played on the WSA tour these past few tournaments. Raneem attacked at every opportunity and soon after, I stepped forward taking my chances too. Such a tough match but I’m glad to win this U.S. Open title for the first time ever!
Those present caught a glimpse of the video presentation for the “BackTheBid2020” campaign that was shot in London with Ramy and I.
A fun squash video was filmed by U.S. Squash with the WSA and PSA players showing their tough side on the Rocky Steps.
This is all from me for the mean time. If I added what I have been eating throughout that time, it might turn out to be “Nicol’s Eating Adventures” instead!
A lot more squash to come… Next up the World Teams in Nimes, France. Looking forward to it!