Nicol David & Ong Beng Hee Celebrate Malaysian KL Open Double
and Ong Beng Hee provided the perfect result for their home
nation by winning the women's and men's titles, respectively, in the
CIMB KL Open Squash Championships at Berjaya Times Square
in the Malaysian capital Kuala Lumpur.
In a fierce all-Malaysian final of the men's 5-star PSA Tour
event, Ong Beng Hee proved the latest world rankings correct - rather
than the event's seeding - by beating third seed Mohd Azlan
Iskandar 11-8, 11-10 (5-3), 11-10 (2-0) in 66 minutes.
It was third time lucky for Beng Hee, who was runner-up in 1999 and
2006. Seeded fourth, the Penang-born 28-year-old overtook compatriot
Iskandar in the latest March Dunlop PSA world rankings, moving up to
The KL Open win marks Beng Hee's 11th PSA Tour title
triumph - but his first since winning the Malaysian Open in
Nicol David, the world number one from
Penang, was celebrating her 40th appearance in a WISPA
World Tour final in the climax of the WISPA Gold event in KL.
Furthermore, the 24-year-old defending champion was facing long-time
rival Natalie Grinham in their ninth successive meeting in a
But David, unbeaten since October, was too strong for the former
Australian who was competing in her first event since switching
allegiance to the
Netherlands, where she has been based for the past nine years.
Nicol David stormed to a 9-4, 9-2, 9-2 win in just 35 minutes - not
only picking up her fifth KL Open crown since 2000, but also bringing
her WISPA trophy haul to 26, just one Tour title shy of Rachael
Grinham, Natalie's older sister who boasts 27.
Ong Beng Hee & Mohd Azlan Iskandar Set Up Dream KL Climax
Ong Beng Hee
and Mohd Azlan Iskandar despatched the top two seeds in the
semi-finals of the CIMB KL Open to set up a dream men's final
in the 5-star
squash event at Berjaya Times Square in the Malaysian capital
The women's final will also boast domestic interest when defending
champion Nicol David - in her fifth successive final - takes on
great rival Natalie Grinham, the second seed playing in her
first event under the Dutch flag.
Ong Beng Hee, the fourth seed and twice a runner-up in the event,
faced Australian favourite Stewart Boswell, ranked three places
higher in the world. But the 28-year-old from Penang claimed his
third successive win in six months over the world No14, beating
Boswell 11-5, 11-8, 11-7 in 46 minutes to notch up his 19th
appearance in a Tour final.
Third seed Mohd Azlan Iskandar needed 62 minutes to get the better of
England's second seed
beating the left-hander from London 11-5, 11-8, 11-9. Iskandar,
ranked three places below Grant, is celebrating his 17th
Tour final appearance - and looking for his third KL title win after
last winning the trophy two years ago after beating Beng Hee in the
The top semi-final in the women's
event saw Malaysian superstar Nicol David end the giant-killing
run of unseeded English opponent Alison Waters - to mark up
her 40th appearance in a
WISPA World Tour final!
David dismissed Waters 9-6, 9-4, 9-4 in 37 minutes and is now in her
fourth successive Tour final since November.
David's opponent Natalie Grinham also brought to an end a notable run
by Vanessa Atkinson, the unseeded former world champion from
Netherlands who ousted fourth seed
and eighth seed Omneya Abdel Kawy.
But, in their first meeting since Grinham became a fellow countrywoman
of Atkinson's, the former Australian won 9-0, 9-7, 9-0 in 30 minutes
to set up a 29th Tour final appearance.
Remarkably, the women's climax will be David and Grinham's ninth
successive meeting in a
WISPA final since their memorable 95-minute clash in Belfast in the
World Open final in November 2006.
Waters Waltzes To Grinham Win In KL
England's Alison Waters recorded
the best win of her career when she upset Australia's world No3
Rachael Grinham in the quarter-finals of the CIMB KL Open
to earn a shock semi-final berth in the women's
event at the National Squash Centre
in the Malaysian capital
Just a few weeks after becoming the surprise winner of the British
National Championship title for the first time, the unseeded
London romped to a two-game lead over her experienced opponent from
But third seed Grinham, a former world number one, regained the
initiative by taking the next two games to draw level. However, with
the match moving into a second hour, Waters upped her game to claim a
stunning 9-2, 9-4, 7-9, 4-9, 9-2 victory after 65 minutes.
Waters now faces the toughest opponent in the event - top seed and
local star Nicol David. The world number one from
Penang cruised into the semi-finals with a 9-4, 9-3, 9-4 win over
unseeded opponent Laura Lengthorn-Massaro, also from England.
There was another upset in the lower half of the draw where unseeded
Dutch player Vanessa Atkinson secured her second upset in 24
hours by beating Omneya Abdel Kawy, the No8 seed from
Egypt, 9-3, 9-10, 9-5, 8-10, 9-3. Atkinson now faces her new Dutch
compatriot Natalie Grinham for a place in the final.
An all-Malaysian final is still in prospect in the men's 5-star
event. Fourth seed Ong Beng Hee, currently the highest-ranked
Malaysian - at No17 in the
PSA list - survived the longest men's match in overcoming sixth-seeded
Egyptian Omar Mosaad 11-9, 5-11, 11-2, 11-10 (3-1) in 60
The 28-year-old former world No7 will now face Stewart Boswell,
the top seed from
Australia who was runner-up last year. Boswell beat Pakistan's
Aamir Atlas Khan 11-7, 7-11, 11-9, 11-9.
KL-based Mohd Azlan Iskandar earned the quickest win of the
day, beating fifth seed Jonathan Kemp, from
England, 11-8, 11-5, 11-7 in 35 minutes.
The 25-year-old third seed - winner of the title in 2003 and 2006 -
now takes on Adrian Grant,
the second seed from England who defeated fellow left-hander
Mansoor Zaman, the No8 seed from Pakistan, 7-11, 11-6, 11-5, 11-5.
Contrasting Fortunes For English Girls In KL
The first round action in the CIMB KL Open Squash Championships
produced a remarkable series of shock English results in the women's
event at the National Squash Centre in the Malaysian capital
England number one, became the highest seed to fall when she went down
9-4, 9-6, 9-5 to unseeded Vanessa Atkinson. It was Bailey's
first loss to the former world champion from the Netherlands in seven
meetings over the past two years.
also failed to make her anticipated place in the quarter-finals after
losing 9-1, 9-1, 8-10, 9-6 to lower-ranked
England team-mate Alison Waters.
Then seventh seed
became the only seed to succumb to a qualifier when she crashed 9-2,
9-5, 9-3 to
Hong Kong's Rebecca Chiu.
But unseeded Alison Waters was also joined in the last eight by fellow
countrywoman Laura Lengthorn-Massaro, who pulled off the final
shock of the day by upsetting
New Zealand's sixth seed Shelley Kitchen 9-7, 3-9, 9-1, 7-9,
Second seed Natalie Grinham made comfortable work of her first
outing as a
Netherlands player when she defeated Irish qualifier Madeline Perry
9-1, 9-2, 9-3. The former Australian now takes on Chiu for a
place in the last four.
Fortunes in the men's 5-star
event favoured the seeds as the top eight players made it through to
the quarter-finals. Local stars Ong Beng Hee and Mohd Azlan
Iskandar celebrated victories in opposing halves of the draw -
fourth seed Beng Hee beating Pakistan qualifier Shamsul Islam Khan
11-8, 11-4, 5-11, 11-7, and Iskandar, the third seed, despatching
Egypt's Tarek Momen 11-7, 11-1, 11-6.
Pakistan are also represented on both sides of the draw - following
seventh seed Aamir Atlas Khan's 11-9, 11-9, 10-11 (0-2), 11-9
win over fellow Pakistani Farhan Mehboob, and eighth seed
Mansoor Zaman's 10-11 (0-2), 11-4, 9-11, 11-5, 11-7 victory
against New Zealander Kashif Shuja.
Older Brother Nafzahizam Survives Hometown KL Clash
After two recent Tour defeats by his younger brother, Nafzahizam
Adnan restored family pride by beating Mohd Nafiizwan Adnan
in the qualifying finals of the CIMB KL Open Squash Championships
to earn a place in the main draw of the 5-star PSA Tour event
in their hometown Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia.
Nafzahizam, aged 23 and ranked 123 in the world, recovered from a game
down to upset 21-year-old world No77 Nafiizwan 10-11 (0-2), 11-3,
11-5, 11-10 (2-0) - and joins Australian Matthew Karwalski and
Pakistanis Farhan Mehboob and Shamsul Islam Khan in the
There was Malaysian disappointment in the final qualifying round of
the women's WISPA Gold event when 17-year-old Low Wee Wern
went down 9-2, 9-3, 9-2 to
Hong Kong's experienced Rebecca Chiu.
Chiu came through the qualifiers alongside Ireland's Madeline Perry
and Australians Kasey Brown and Donna Urquhart - who
pulled off a surprise 9-3, 9-3, 9-1 win over Egypt's world No16