Sunday, October 1, 2023

Penang World Open draw revealed

Nicol and Laura seeded to meet in World Championship final

The draw for the delayed 2013 Women’s World Championship was announced publicly in Malaysia today, with defending champion and top seed Nicol David set to begin her quest for an eighth world title against unseeded Englishwoman Emma Beddoes in her home state of Penang next month. 

David, who may need to negotiate past French number one Camille Serme and world number four Alison Waters to make her ninth consecutive WSA final, has won the last five titles at the prestigious event with her last defeat coming at the hands of retired Australian Shelley Celia Kitchen in 2007.

The 30-year-old from Malaysia will also be gunning for her eighth WSA title in a row following her victory at the Cleveland Classic earlier this month and will be looking to extend a 35 match unbeaten streak. 

World number two Laura Massaro, who last defeated David at the British Open in May 2013, is seeded to meet the Penang ace in the final, but may need to negotiate past home favourite Vanessa Raj and fellow Englishwoman Jenny Duncalf to advance into the last eight. 

Third seed Raneem El Weleily also occupies the bottom half of the draw and could meet Indian number one Dipika Pallikal in the second round; provided both players advance at the expense of qualifiers first.

Elsewhere, former world number four Nour El Sherbini faces WSA President and world number 12 Kasey Brown in the pick of the first round matches, while former world number one and 2007 champion Rachael Grinham squares off against Guyana number one Nicolette Fernandes, who attained a career high 19th in the February world rankings.

In an all-British clash, seventh seed Madeline Perry plays world number 24 Sarah Kippax, while fourth seed Waters faces a tricky test against Joshana Chinappa of India. 

World Open

Picture by Michael Catling

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