Squash Mad

US OPEN: Nicol David masters Massaro in marathon

Nicol David savours her moment of triumph

Nicol David savours her moment of triumph

By ALAN THATCHER

Nicol David lifted the US Open title after a marathon battle with England’s Laura Massaro.

Top seed  David, from Malaysia, fought back from 2-1 down in games to overcome the world No.2 from Lancashire.

Victory required 84 minutes of compelling, often physical squash, and became the first US Open to go the full distance in 10 years.

The opening two games went to tie breaks, with David winning the first 13-11 and Massaro taking the second by the same score.

Massaro won the third 11-7 and will be asking questions of herself as to why she let slip a commanding lead in the fourth game.

Leading by two games to one, and ahead 7-4, the title seemed there for the taking.

But David showed what a true professional she is by producing a spell of dominant squash to win the fourth and take the final to five before a packed crowd at the Drexel University.

Massaro continued to fight, but David took the deciding game 11-5 to record her second US Open title.

It was the longest match between these two great rivals. Massaro will feel she should have won, and she did incredibly well to back up an 86-minute battle in her semi-final yesterday.

David will be relieved at her ability to dig deep and summon up the courage, commitment and composure to fight her way back into a position of control.

As a background debate raged about women players enjoying the benefit of equal prize money, this match provided a perfect illustration of the merits of that decision.

“It feels fantastic, it means a lot to win that match and to win another U.S. Open title,” said David.

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“It’s been such a journey this year. I knew Laura was playing well, and I would have to dig deep. When I was down in the fourth, she maybe stepped off it a little, I just knew I had to keep going and going to the last point.

“Liz [Irving] helped me such a lot, she gave me the confidence to go in there, to know I could do it, and she and the team in Amsterdam have been doing that for the last ten and a half years.

“This is such a fantastic event, all credit to US Squash, the sponsors and the venue, making the prize money equal is putting the women’s game where it deserves to be and we all look forward to coming back for the next ten years!”

[1] Nicol David (MAS) bt [2] Laura Massaro (ENG)  13-11, 11-13, 7-11, 11-8, 11-5 (84m)

 

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Let's get physical: Nicol David crashes into Laura Massaro in the US Open final

Let’s get physical: Nicol David crashes into Laura Massaro in the US Open final

Posted on October 19, 2013

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About The Author

Alan Thatcher

Lifelong sports journalist and squash lover. Event promoter, coach, author, voice artist. Founder of World Squash Day.

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