Hong Kong’s Tong Tsz-Wing lifted her first PSA World Tour silverware
of 2016 after coming through a tough five-game encounter with home
hope Rachel Arnold in the final of the IJM Land 4th Penang Women’s
Open, PSA W5 tournament.
Arnold, the World No.62, had advanced to the final after prevailing
over another player from Hong Kong, Lee Ka Yi, in the last four,
while number two seed Tsz-Wing had swept to the final without losing
It was the first time the pair had met in the final of a PSA World
Tour event since the Malaysian Tour Squash V almost a year ago, with
Tsz-Wing triumphing on that occasion too. This time the duo were
facing off in the prestigious Nicol David International Squash
Centre, named after the eight-time World Champion and Malaysian icon
Arnold had the better of the early exchanges and went a game to the
good before a resurgent Tsz-Wing battled pack to take two games
A nail-biting tie-break in a gruelling fourth game then went in
Arnold’s favour as she clawed a game back to level proceedings.
Fatigue began to take its toll on Arnold though as her performance
dropped in the fifth and final game, and Tsz-Wing took full
advantage as she romped to victory for the loss of just three points
to complete a 7-11, 11-7, 12-10, 10-12, 11-3 win to capture the
third PSA World Tour title of her career to date.
“I am happy to win, Rachel gave me a great match like our matches
previously," said Tsz-Wing.
"I would love to come back to Penang for this tournament again.”
Malaysian pair Vanessa Raj and Rachel Arnold advanced to the
semi-final stage of the IJM Land 4th Penang Women’s Open, PSA W5
tournament after earning respective wins over Ho Tze-Lok and Aika
Azman in the last eight.
Raj had the better of the opening exchanges as she surged to victory
in game one for the loss of just three points. But Hong Kong’s
Tze-Lok soon found her way back into the encounter and levelled
things up, before conceding the third to a resurgent Raj.
With the scores delicately poised at 6-6 in the fourth, injury
struck for Tze-Lok and she was unable to continue, handing Raj the
win and a place in the semi-final.
“I played well today, but lost my focus in the second game,” said
“Luckily, I managed to get my focus back. My opponent played well
and hung in there as much as possible. It wasn’t a nice way to win
like that, but I did it.”
Raj will line up against another player from Hong Kong in the last
four, Tong Tsz-Wing, after she overcame Nazihah Hanis with a
comfortable three-game salvo.
Meanwhile, Arnold will also contest her semi-final fixture with a
Hong Kong representative in Lee Ka Yi. Lee saw off Japanese wildcard
Satomi Watanabe, who stunned top seed Teh Min Jie in the first
round, to move to within one win of the final.
“I played her [Azman] two years ago, that was a close match, but for
today’s match, I didn’t play well, but managed to win the match,”
Japanese wildcard Satomi Watanabe produced a sublime performance to
stun pre-tournament title favourite Teh Min Jie in the opening round
of the IJM Land 4th Penang Women’s Open, PSA W5 event.
World No.148 Watanabe went 1-0 down after losing out on a first game
tie-break, but she battled back throughout a series of
tightly-contested exchanges to take the next three games in
succession, securing a superb victory for the 17-year-old against an
opponent ranked 89 places above her in the World Rankings.
Watanabe, who hails from Yokohama, will contest her quarter-final
fixture with Hong Kong’s Lee Ka Yi after she saw off Andrea Lee in
Lee Ka Yi’s compatriot, Tong Tsz-Wing, will also participate in the
last eight courtesy of a 3-0 triumph over Lee Jia Wei and she will
take on Malaysia’s Nazihah Hanis for a place in the semi-final
thanks to her victory over Chan Yiwen on home soil.
Elsewhere, Vanessa Raj is through to the quarter-final of a PSA
World Tour event for the first time in three months, and she will
line up against Ho Tze-Lok, the World No.83 from Hong Kong who
arrowed past qualifier Sara Chew Rou-Yi 3-0.
Rachel Arnold and Aika Azman will face off in an all-Malaysian
quarter-final tie with respective wins over Zoe Foo Yuk Han and Ooi
Kah Yan enabling them to advance.
The final qualifying round of the IJM Land 4th Penang Women’s Open,
PSA W5 tournament saw a Malaysian quartet secure their main draw
berths on home soil at the Nicol David International Squash Centre –
named after eight-time World Champion Nicol David.
Top qualifying seed Andrea Lee overcame local player Nur Aliah
Izzati in four games to reach the main draw. Lee, who hails from
Kuala Lumpur, took the opening game, before Nur clawed the second
back to level scores. It proved to be a short fightback however, as
Lee pressed on to take the next two games without reply to close out
an 11-4, 4-11, 11-4, 11-5 triumph.
Hong Kong’s Lee Ka Yi awaits Lee in the opening round of the main
draw as the latter aims to reach the quarter-final stage of a PSA
World Tour event for the second time this year.
Lee Jia Wei will join her compatriot Lee in the main draw after an
impressive win over Indonesia’s Catur Yuliana. Lee Jia Wei is set to
line up against Tong Tsz-Wing in the first round in what is sure to
be a tough encounter, given that Tsz-Wing is the tournament’s second
Ooi Kah Yan, meanwhile, defeated Wong Heng Wai to seal her main draw
berth and will face off against Aika Azman in the opening day of
main draw action.
Sara Chew Rou-Yi was the other Malaysian player to progress through
the qualifying stages after recovering from 2-1 down to beat Min Ju
Park, and she will go head-to-head with Ho Tze-Lok in round one.