– A WISPA RELEASE –
Malaysia’s world number one Nicol David will compete for the first time on home soil next month when she bids to win her sixth title at the CIMB Women’s KL Open Squash Championship in Kuala Lumpur.
The $53,500 championship, the second WISPA World Tour Gold event of the year, will get underway at the National Squash Centre in Bukit Jalil on 17 March, leading to the final on an all-glass court at Berjaya Times Square – a vast shopping and entertainment centre in the Malaysian capital – on Saturday 20 March.
Nicol David, 26, from Penang, is enjoying a remarkable career since topping the women’s world rankings uninterrupted for the past 43 months. Indeed, aged just 15, David reached the second Tour final of her career at the KL Open in July 1999 – since when she has made the final on nine occasions, winning her nation’s prestigious title a total of five times.
But the Malaysian star’s title bid last year came to a shock end when she was beaten by US rival Natalie Grainger in a dramatic five-game final.
David is seeded to reclaim the title – in the absence of world No6 Grainger who is still recovering from injury.
But there will be stiff competition in the star-studded field – none more so than from Jenny Duncalf, the second seed from England who twice beat the Penangite in successive events at the end of last year.
David will hope to be in the opposite half from England’s Alison Waters, the third seed who is undefeated so far this year after winning two successive WISPA titles at the Harrow Greenwich Open and Burning River Classic in the USA – then returning home to beat higher-ranked Duncalf in the British National Championship final last week.
Egypt’s title bid is led by long-time David rival Omneya Abdel Kawy, the fourth seed from Cairo who has reached four Tour finals in as many months.
The top eight seeds are: 1 Nicol David (MAS); 2 Jenny Duncalf (ENG); 3 Alison Waters (ENG); 4 Omneya Abdel Kawy (EGY); 5 Madeline Perry (IRL); 6 Laura Massaro (ENG); 7 Vanessa Atkinson (NED); 8 Kasey Brown (AUS).
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