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Saturday, September 25, 2021

Australian Open: Nicol David retains title

Alan Thatcherhttps://squashmad.com
Founder of World Squash Day, Squash Mad and the new Squash 200 Partnership, building clubs of the future. Founder of the Kent Open and co-promoter of the St. James's Place Canary Wharf Classic. Author and Public Speaker.

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Nicol David and Laura Massaro in action in the final

David retains Australian Open title

Nicol David won her 62nd WSA World Tour title after retaining the Hi-Tec Australian Open in Canberra, Australia.
The world No.1 took 44-minutes to see off the challenge of Englishwoman Laura Massaro, who forced the Malaysian to a gruelling 17-15 tiebreak in the first game.

Massaro, the only player to have defeated David in a WSA World Tour final since 2009, was looking to repeat her 2011 Cleveland Classic result where she stunned David in a four-game defeat.

But the six-time World Champion held firm after chasing down the first game tie-break and settled in to retain her title in straight games.

David began the event with a surprising four-game win over young Welsh player Tesni Evans, before comfortably seeing off fellow Malaysian Low Wee Wern in round two.  She was again tested in four games as Alison Waters attempted to throw out the reigning champion, and led after the first game but David proved too strong after a 15-13 fourth game.

It was the wake-up call David needed however, and she breezed past Madeline Perry in the semi’s and into todays final.

David recounted the first game after the match: “It was hard to get Laura off my back today.  I had to really get stuck in there, it was mentally and physically tough,”

“In the second I started to get in front and was able to start serving and gaining control. I just knew I wasn’t letting that first game go, it was close, I’m just so glad to win it three-love.”

Earlier in the week, Dipika Pallikal made history as the first Indian player to reach the semi-final of a WSA World Tour Gold event, whilst Amanda Sobhy also upset the odds with a quarter-final appearance after downing seeds Joey Chan and Jenny Duncalf.

Final:

[1] Nicol David (MAS) bt [3] Laura Massaro (ENG)          17-15, 11-2, 11-6 (44mins)

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