David Looking To Home Advantage For First 2013 Win
World No.1 Nicol David will be looking to kick-start her 2013 campaign in two weeks in the first WSA World Series event of the year, the CIMB KL Open Squash Championships.
For the first time, the $70,000 World Series Gold event, held at the Berjaya Times Square Shopping Mall, Kuala Lumpur, boasts a 32-player draw and features 24 of the top 30 WSA World Tour players.
Having seen defeat in the final of her first event of the WSA calendar in February’s Cleveland Classic, the seven-time World Open champion will see this event in her home country as the ideal springboard onto seventh successive year at the top of the women’s rankings.
Despite the home advantage, David will face stern challenges as she looks to win the title for the ninth time in ten final appearances. Her closest competitor Raneem El Weleily is seeded second for the event, and the Egyptian will be confident having beaten David to last month’s Cleveland Classic. The world No.2 also saw success on Malaysian turf last year, after clinching the Malaysian Open title against the top seed back in September. El Weleily will face home hope Delia Arnold in the first round, and could meet seventh seedJoelle King or ninth seed Camille Serme in a potential quarter-final clash.
Number three seed Laura Massaro will face American stalwart Latasha Khan in the top half of the first round draw, and could face sixth seed Low Wee Wern or Madeline Perry in the quarters.
Last year’s surprise package in the KL Open was qualifier Nour El Sherbini, who made it through to the semi-finals by beating Jenny Duncalf and Rachael Grinham. This year, the seventeen-year-old is seeded fourth the event, and will face fellow Egyptian Nour El Tayeb in the opening round. The teenager could then face last year’s runner-up Annie Au in round two followed by fifth seed Alison Waters in a potentially difficult draw.
Waters will start her KL campaign against Hong Kong international Joey Chan, whilst sixth seed Low Wee Wern, also of Malaysia, will face Donna Urquhart. Other seeded players Joelle King, Jenny Duncalf, Camille Serme and Annie Au, along with top seeded David, will face qualifying entrants to be confirmed the day before round one.
Qualifying rounds begin on the 26th March, with round one commencing on the 27th.
First Round: Nicol David (MAS) vs Qualifier  Omenay Abdel Kawy (EGY vs Aisling Blake (IRL)  Jenny Duncalf (ENG) vs Qualifier  Dipika Pallikal (IND) vs Qualifier  Laura Massaro (ENG) vs Latasha Khan (USA)  Rachael Grinham (AUS) vs Line Hansen (DEN)  Low Wee Wern (EGY) vs Donna Urquhart (AUS)  Madeline Perry (IRL) vs Qualifier
Emily Whitlock (ENG) vs  Kasey Brown (AUS)
Joey Chan (HKG) vs  Alison Waters (ENG)
Qualifier vs  Annie Au (HKG)
Nour El Tayeb (EGY) vs  Nour El Sherbini (EGY)
Qualifier vs Camille Serme (FRA)
Qualifier vs Joelle King (NZL)
Qualfier vs  Natalie Grinham (NED)
Delia Arnold (MAS) vs Raneem El Weleily (EGY)