Massaro Stretched In Malaysian Open Quarters

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LIVE BLOG: CIMB Malaysian Squash Open Championships

RESULTS: Women’s CIMB Malaysian Open, Petaling Jaya, Selangor, Malaysia

[1] Nicol David (MAS) bt [6] Low Wee Wern (MAS) 11-4, 11-6, 3-11, 11-5 (56m)
[10] Camille Serme (FRA) bt [16] Sarah-Jane Perry (ENG) 11-8, 9-11, 11-3, 11-9 (50m)
[3] Raneem El Weleily (EGY) bt [7] Jenny Duncalf (ENG) 4-11, 11-4, 11-8, 11-5 (39m)
[2] Laura Massaro (ENG) bt [5] Joelle King (NZL) 12-14, 11-9, 11-8, 8-11, 11-3 (69m)

England’s world No2 Laura Massaro acknowledged that Joelle King ‘made it really hard for me’ as she battled for five games to overcome the New Zealander in today’s longest quarter-final of the Women’s CIMB Malaysian Open Squash Championship at the Curve Shopping Mall in Petaling Jaya in Selangor.


Photo Credit : M Roslan Hisam

The second seed from Preston, who had reached the last eight without dropping a game, was pushed from the off by fifth seed King, the 24-year-old world No5 eager to make the semi-finals for the first time.

Massaro (pictured above, right, with King) lost the opener after a tie-break – but fought back to take a 2/1 lead. But again King countered to draw level. England’s recently-crowned British Open champion had the upper hand in the decider, however, finally closing out the match 12-14, 11-9, 11-8, 8-11, 11-3 in 69 minutes.

“I managed to play really well in the fifth game and won that fairly comfortably,” Massaro told later. “The other four games were quite tight.”

“Joelle played great – the match was really tough the whole way through. She made it really hard for me – and that’s what these matches are all about.”

Massaro, in the semis for the second year in a row, now meets No3 seed Raneem El Weleily, the defending champion from Egypt.

England’s former world No2 Jenny Duncalf boasts a 5/3 head-to-head Tour record over El Weleily – and duly took the opening game. But the 24-year-old from Cairo, who won the pair’s last encounter at the British Open in May, began to take control of the match and after 39 minutes wrapped up a 4-11, 11-4, 11-8, 11-5 victory.


Photo Credit : M Roslan Hisam

“It was a really tough match today against Jenny,” said the title-holder (pictured above, foreground, with Duncalf). “I had a really, really, really slow start – but luckily I managed to get back into it.

“You never know how it’s going to go against Jenny – I think we have similar games and tactics. I think I’m very lucky to be through today and look forward to tomorrow.”

Second round giant-killer Camille Serme continued her fine form in the event by beating England’s 16th seed Sarah-Jane Perry 11-8, 9-11, 11-3, 11-9 in 50 minutes. The 10th seed from France caused a mighty upset 24 hours earlier by ousting fourth seed Alison Waters.

“I thought my game was a bit less good than yesterday – but I still managed to win 3/1 and am very happy to be in the semi-finals,” said the 24-year-old European champion from Creteil.

“In the second game, she played really good shots and I lost a bit of my length and made a few mistakes. The fourth was really important and I was so happy to win the last game.”


Photo Credit : M Roslan Hisam

Before a packed crowd at the end of the evening, event favourite Nicol David survived an all-Malaysian clash with fellow Penangite Low Wee Wern (both pictured above), beating the sixth seed 11-4, 11-6, 3-11, 11-5 in 56 minutes.

It was world number one David’s fifth Tour win over Wern – but the first in which the Malaysian No2 had taken a game. David is now one match away from a remarkable 11th successive appearance in the final.

Semi-final line-up:
[1] Nicol David (MAS) v [10] Camille Serme (FRA)
[2] Laura Massaro (ENG) v [3] Raneem El Weleily (EGY)

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LIVE BLOG: CIMB Malaysian Squash Open Championships


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