Malaysian Open 2011: Vying For The Last Two Spots

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[2] Jenny Duncalf (ENG) bt [8] Camille Serme (FRA) 14/12, 11/5, 11/8 (39 mins)

Jenny just too good.

The battle between World No. 2 and World No. 9 started off pretty evenly with the girls matching each other poin- fo- point all through the first game. While there were some wow moments with some nice cross-court drives by Camille at 7-6 and an especially fantastic killer volley by Jenny at 12/12, both players made some  uncharacteristic mistakes as they found their footing. Jenny took the game narrowly at 14/12 as Camille hit the ball out.

Jenny raced off to a 3/0 start in the second game and although Camille had some nice comebacks, she was making more errors than she would have liked, making her frustrated, leading to even more errors. Jenny drove a few shots along the walls of the court that Camille seemed to have trouble with, and the second seed took the game at 11/5.

The third game looked astonishingly similar to the second as Jenny led 3/0 with Camille trying to play catch up. Low drives by Jenny were spot on, raking in points for her as she looked more dominant and while Camille’s fighting spirit was still there, she seemed to have taken the back seat as Jenny took control of the game. In the end, it is the Englishwoman who will be contesting for her first title of the year as she wrapped up the third 11/8.

[1] Nicol David (MAS) bt [7] Omneya Abdel Kawy (EGY) 11/9, 12/10, 11/4 (45mins)

Nicol presses on to the finals with a straight set win over Omneya.

These two have been playing each other since the dawn of time, or so it seems. They have played each other since junior days and have had many battles on the senior tour too. The first game was characterized by tins, as both girls took turns to enlighten each other with the red light feature that comes on as the ball hits the taboo spot on the squash court – the tin!

The game was pretty much neck-to-neck with Omneya playing her tricky shots with typical hard-to-read Egyptian wrist movements, while Nicol used her pace to her advantage with strong drives. To add spice to this match, the chief referee kept making unnecessary calls, stopping play, causing dissatisfaction to both players on many ocassions. Omneya even got a conduct warning in the second game for her constant arguing with the ref.

While Omneya stayed put around the T, Nicol was forced to run around her to take shots. There was also a big clash in the second game when Omneya backed right into Nicol, causing her to lose balance and almost fall. Nevertheless, the Duracell Bunny was back on her feet soon enough. The first game was close at 11/9, the second one even closer at 12/10. But in Nicol fashion, she made sure that there would be no room for any comeback by her opponent. Being down 3/1, Nicol gathered 8 points in a row and went on to seal the third game with a convincing 11/4 win.

Head down to The Curve tomorrow to witness the top two women players squash for victory at the Malaysian Open final!

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