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Laura Massaro on a mission in America

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Laura Massaro fights hard to beat Delia Arnold
Laura Massaro fights hard to beat Delia Arnold

Reigning champion Laura Massaro meets England team-mate Emma Beddoes as she launches title defence in Chicago
By HOWARD HARDING – Squash Mad Correspondent

England’s Laura Massaro began the defence of her Windy City Open presented by Guggenheim and EquiTrust Life Insurance Company title in style in Chicago when she beat Malaysian qualifier Delia Arnold in four games on the second day of first round action in the first WSA World Series squash event of the year at the University Club of Chicago.

The former world champion from Preston (pictured above, right, with Arnold), ranked three in the world, recovered from a game down to extend her unbeaten run over world No.28 Arnold, winning 7-11, 11-5, 11-6, 13-11.

Massaro now takes on England team-mate Emma Beddoes, the 16th seed from Leeds. Beddoes had the easiest run through to the last 16 round, barely breaking sweat after her Egyptian opponent Salma Hany Ibrahim conceded their match with just four points on the scoreboard.

There was further English success on the night when Sarah-Jane Perry powered past Nicolette Fernandes, registering her first win over the world No.20 from Guyana 11-6, 11-6, 11-7 after 37 minutes.

World No.16 Perry, who arrived in the USA fresh from victory in Toronto and her surprise British National Championship title success in Manchester – where she beat favourite Massaro to claim the trophy for the first time – now takes on French number one Camille Serme.

1510863_1792148791011085_6567884888916880921_nThe sixth seed from Creteil (right) overcame Canadian No.1 Samantha Cornett 11-6, 11-5, 11-3 in 26 minutes to make the second round for the second year in a row.

Second seed Raneem El Welily, the world No.2 from Egypt who was the 2014 runner-up, eased into the second round after seeing off Danish qualifier Line Hansen 11-3, 11-5, 11-3.

“Only got 25 min on the glass court tonight!!” Hansen told her Twitter followers shortly afterwards. “Raneem was in chop chop mood.”

El Welily, 26, from Cairo, now also faces a fellow countrywoman in the next round when she takes on Omneya Abdel Kawy.

The Cairo-based No.9 seed got the better of Tesni Evans, beating the Welsh qualifier 11-5, 11-7, 10-12, 11-8.

In her maiden meeting with fast-rising Egyptian teenager Habiba Mohamed, Malaysia’s No.7 seed Low Wee Wern needed 65 minutes to secure an 11-8, 9-11, 12-10, 11-6 victory.

“Happy with my 3-1 win against Egyptian Habiba Mohamed today!” tweeted the world No.8 from Penang afterwards. “Looking forward to a rest day tomorrow before taking on Rachael Grinham!”


Windy City Open presented by Guggenheim and EquiTrust Life Insurance Company, University of Chicago, USA

Women’s 1st round (lower half of draw):
[6] Camille Serme (FRA) bt [Q] Samantha Cornett (CAN) 11-6, 11-5, 11-3 (26m)
[14] Sarah-Jane Perry (ENG) bt Nicolette Fernandes (GUY) 11-6, 11-6, 11-7 (37m)
[16] Emma Beddoes (ENG) bt Salma Hany Ibrahim (EGY) 4-0 ret.
[3] Laura Massaro (ENG) bt [Q] Delia Arnold (MAS) 7-11, 11-5, 11-6, 13-11 (50m)
[7] Low Wee Wern (MAS) bt Habiba Mohamed (EGY) 11-8, 9-11, 12-10, 11-6 (65m)
[11] Rachael Grinham (AUS) bt Joey Chan (HKG) 11-6, 2-11, 15-13, 11-6 (41m)
[9] Omneya Abdel Kawy (EGY) bt [Q] Tesni Evans (WAL) 11-5, 11-7, 10-12, 11-8 (44m)
[2] Raneem El Welily (EGY) bt [Q] Line Hansen (DEN) 11-3, 11-5, 11-3 (25m)
2nd round line-up:
[1] Nicol David (MAS) v [Q] Heba El Torky (EGY)
[5] Alison Waters (ENG) v [Q] Victoria Lust (ENG)
[4] Nour El Sherbini (EGY) v [10] Annie Au (HKG)
[8] Nour El Tayeb (EGY) v [13] Madeline Perry (IRL)
[6] Camille Serme (FRA) v [14] Sarah-Jane Perry (ENG)
[3] Laura Massaro (ENG) v [16] Emma Beddoes (ENG)
[7] Low Wee Wern (MAS) v [11] Rachael Grinham (AUS)
[2] Raneem El Welily (EGY) v [9] Omneya Abdel Kawy (EGY)

For all the latest WSA Tour news: wsaworldtour.com

Pictures courtesy of Windy City Open and WSA


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