Nicol David defeated Laura
Massaro in straight games in the WSA Cayman Islands
World Open 2012 to become World Champion for the seventh
For the second successive year, the World Open was to be
decided by a Malaysia versus England finale, this time
featuring world No.3 Laura Massaro.
David had dispatched last year’s finalist Jenny Duncalf in
straight games in the semi-finals, as well as 2010 finalist
Omneya Abdel Kawy in round one. Further defeats of Annie Au
in round two and a four game win over Madeline Perry ensured
that the Malaysian was able to defend her six World Open
By contrast, Massaro experienced over three hours of
court-time on her way to the final, including a dramatic
five-game thriller against second seed Raneem El Weleily in
the semi-final, and a 51-minute effort to dispatch local
hero and qualifier Nicolette Fernandes in round two.
has been on the receiving end of an upset from Massaro,
losing to the Englishwoman in both the Singapore Masters and
the Cleveland Classic in 2011, but the world No.1 has
avenged these losses with six wins over Massaro in WSA
events in 2012.
The defending champion made a solid start to her fifth
successive World Open final, establishing a three-point lead
which was held for the majority of the first game. Massaro
attempted to close the gap after a tentative start to her
first World Open final, but David was too far ahead and
closed out the first game 11-6.
The second game was much closer, with the Englishwoman
matching David’s line and length game plan, whilst causing
some problems for her opponent. The Malaysian’s response to
a challenge is to simply up the pace and she did just that.
She weathered the storm created by Massaro’s pressure,
before coming through the business end of a pivotal second
game to extend her lead.
David refused to falter in her dominance, and the experience
of six previous World Open finals weighed heavily to her
advantage. She ran out another early lead in the third
game, and a dejected Massaro settled into the game too late
to do any serious damage to her opponents 5-point lead.
stroke and a tin gave the 29-year-old from Penang
championship-point and she leapt on a loose Massaro shot to
drive home her seventh World Open title.
“I can’t believe it,” exclaimed a delighted David. “I’m so
pleased with my game tonight. Laura played so well and was
pushing me on every point, I just couldn’t relax at any
time, she played a brilliant match today.
“I was focused, but I had to step up another gear to win
today. I just wanted to win so much. To win again in
Cayman and that seventh world title… I wanted it all!
“It’s been a great experience here again, I’ll try to see a
bit of the island tomorrow before I leave! Thanks to Dan [Kneipp,
Promoter], the sponsors and organisers, and the fantastic
Cayman crowd, we feed off their energy, and they all do it
better than anywhere else we go."
Normally a successful WSA World Tour Gold event in
spring-time, Grand Cayman this year hosted the $165,000
World Open event that has previously been held in Rotterdam,
Sharm El Sheikh, Amsterdam and Manchester.
2012 has been a near perfect season for David, finishing
just one event shy of a World Series clean-sweep after
losing out to Raneem El Weleily on home soil in the
Malaysian Open in September. The Malaysian also lost out in
the Carol Weymuller Open in New York later that month, but
returned in emphatic style to claim the elusive US Open in
Philadelphia. Claiming not only the one World Series title
that had eluded her, it was also David’s 63rd WSA World Tour
title, which moved her above the record held by Sarah
Fitz-Gerald of 62. David finishes 2012 with an incredible
65 WSA titles to her name, with eight of them coming in the
last 12 months.
reached the final of the Cayman Islands World Open
final last night, after beating No.2 seed Raneem El
Weleily in a thrilling five-game encounter.
As is often the case, El
Weleily took a few minutes to get her eye in while Massaro
quickly extended a four-point lead. Once the Egyptian’s
shots began working however, she stormed through a quick
first game, closing it out with Massaro able to register
just one more point.
The Englishwoman fought her
way back into the match, establishing runs of points and
claimed the second game to level the match. She never quite
got a foothold in the second game, staying with her opponent
but always a point or two behind, until the world No.3 saved
four game-balls to force the tiebreak. El Weleily would
close out the game after two Massaro volleys clipped the
A dominant fourth-game went
in Massaro’s favour, with the Egyptian unable to register
any real threat, before setting up a nail-biting fifth game
reached match-ball first, and was disappointed when a let
decision was given instead of a stroke against her opponent.
Weleily stayed strong to force the tiebreak, but both
players were showing signs of nerves as the errors continued
to creep in at the wrong time, before two mistakes from the
23-year-old from Alexandria sent Massaro through to her
first World Open final.
“We’ve been taking turns at
winning and swapping in the rankings all year, so it’s
fitting that there was just a couple of points between us in
the whole match,” an emotional Massaro said later.
“You always know with Raneem
there are going to be patches where she hits winners, you
just have to hang in and come through them. It feels great
to reach the World Open final, I’m so happy!”
“Now it’s all about getting
the right preparation for tomorrow. I haven’t been to swim
with the Dolphins yet, it looks like [husband] Danny will
have to go on his own now!”
Massaro will be joined by
world No.1 Nicol David in the World Open final, with
the Malaysian on the prowl for her seventh World Open title
in eight years. The top seed defeated Jenny Duncalf
in her semi-final contest, in a repeat of last year’s World
Open final in Rotterdam.
Duncalf, keen to set the
record straight after a humbling 0-11 loss in the third game
of last year’s final, made a steady start to last night’s
match, feeling her way into the contest and registering some
The Malaysian was made to
work throughout the opening exchanges, but maintained a
small lead as the game progressed and took three points in a
row to claim the first game. David’s ability to return to
court and further increase the pace, saw the Englishwoman
begin to struggle and the top seed extended a strong lead in
the second before closing it out. A similar pattern
occurred in the third game, with the scurrying retrieval and
powerful hitting simply too good for the former world No.2,
as David progressed to her seventh World Open final in
“Jenny was playing some
great shots at the start, I just couldn’t tell where the
ball was going next and I wasn’t able to play my own game,”
“I really had to up my game
to stay in it, and thankfully I got it all together as the
match wore on.
“It’s great to be in another
final here, especially the World Open! Laura and I both
know we have to step up our games for tomorrow, so it should
be a great battle.”
fought back from a two game deficit to make her second successive semi-final in
last night’s WSA Cayman Islands World Open quarter-final round.
Her compatriot, No.4 seed Alison Waters
claimed a scrappy first game in which both players struggled to find and
maintain a decent length. It was the second game which really set the stage for
the gripping contest between the two friends. A cat-and-mouse affair saw
Duncalf come from behind to take the lead late in the game, but Waters regained
her composure to force the tie-break. The pair then continued to mix
enthusiastic attacking play with a number of unforced errors as the score rose,
with neither player able to finish of the other.
Waters finally took the game 19-17 to extend her
lead, but Duncalf had found a foothold in the match and she stormed back onto
court to dominate the proceedings for the next two games, not allowing Waters a
Little separated the pair in the deciding game,
reflected in the 9-all score-line. Two exciting rallies went in favour of
Duncalf, the last a tin from a laboured movement by Waters, and ensuring that
the lower seed makes her first WSA semi-final of the year – her first since last
year’s World Open!
“It was a bit scrappy at the start, but in the
second I was starting to feel much better,” Duncalf explained
post-match. “And even though I lost it I felt the momentum had turned towards
“I’m delighted to win, a bit disappointed for Al
too, but not that much! We all love playing here, the whole vibe is great and
it makes you feel so relaxed on court - and it wasn’t too hot tonight which was
In a repeat of last year’s Rotterdam World Open
final, Duncalf will now play Nicol David in the semi’s, following the
Malaysian’s four-game victory over 2008 World Open semi-finalist Madeline
The six-time World Open champion made a quick
start to the match, leaping to a strong lead before finishing off the first game
with Perry barely able to register a threat. The Irishwoman settled more in the
second however, causing problems for the top seed but not quite finding the
finishing quality. The third was similar but Perry stormed through to claim a
narrow game in her favour, before David returned to up the pace even further and
close out the win.
doubled England’s hopes of a first World Open title since 1999, after coming
from a game down against Low Wee Wern to make her debut in the semi-final
of the event. The No.3 seed got off to a sluggish start against the young
Malaysian, who had to pull out of last month’s Hong Kong Open with an injury.
Leg strapped up, Wee Wern sprung to an early
lead in the match, doing just enough to stay ahead of her opponent and closed
out a competitive first game. Massaro returned on court with a definite
strategy, and forced boasts and drops to the front of the court in order to test
the injured leg of the seventh seed. This proved enough for the Englishwoman to
see off the win against Wee Wern, and she took the following three games in a
much more comfortable fashion.
“She gets so many balls back, whenever I play
her I have to try to keep my aggression up, that’s where all the “cmons” help,”
“I’ve become better at dealing with the pressure
of being expected to win over the last couple of years and that’s helped me
improve my consistency and my ranking.
“I’m so pleased to make a first World Open
semi-final, I’ll just take each match as it comes now.”
Massaro will now face Raneem El Weleily
in the semi-final, in a third versus second seed battle. The Egyptian played
out the quickest match of the evening as she faced four-time World Open
runner-up Natalie Grinham.
With both happy to play short, attacking
rallies, the points amassed quickly in the opening game through a combination of
efficient winners and tins in equal measure. El Weleily broke the mid-game
deadlock to extend a lead to 10, and it was only a matter of time before the
world No.2 found that last winner to finish the game off.
The second was an even closer contest, with the
players level up to 9-all before the Dutchwoman squandered her chance to level
with a tin and a stroke in favour of her opponent. Despite another strong start
to the match Grinham was ultimately unable to prevent El Weleily from hitting
her winning shots, and the tie ended in just 26-minutes with the Egyptian
reaching her first World Open semi-final.
“I played better today than I did yesterday, and
I’m thankful for that,” said Raneem. “Natalie has great racket skills and it’s
always difficulty trying to stay focused and consistent when you play her so I’m
pleased I managed to do that today.
“I’m really happy to make a first semi-final and
I hope I can play as well tomorrow and make the final.
“I haven’t seen much of the island so far, but
I’ve seen lots of photos of the other girls with the dolphins. I haven’t been to
see them yet, and I hope I don’t get the chance to!”
claimed the surprise result of the evening in yesterday’s second half of
the WSA Cayman Islands World Open split round two draw.
The former world No.2 dispatched fifth seed Joelle King in a
five-game cat-and-mouse thriller, in which neither player was able to
settle into a consistent error-free performance.
The first four games were shared evenly between the pair, with King
twice taking the lead against the four-time World Open runner-up. It
was the experienced 11th seed who had the edge in the deciding game
however, and Grinham said after the match, that she likes playing as the
“That was very tough,” she said, “I’ve come here from freezing
conditions and it’s soooo hot here!
“I made the World Open semis last year, but my results have been up and
down, I’m just happy that I’m playing well. I like being the underdog,
there’s no pressure on me then, so I’ll take that scalp.”
The Australian-born, Netherlands international will now face second seed
Raneem El Weleily in tonight’s quarter-final round. The Egyptian
got off to a shaky start against Indian favourite Dipika Pallikal,
who took the first game. As both players continued to look for winners,
the Egyptian’s ability began to show and she found her range increasing
causing problems for the No.13 seed.
Weleily’s range improved, and Palikal found herself unable to combat the
world No.2’s attacking range and lost the next three games by increasing
“We have very similar games and it’s always close between us,” Weleily
said later, “she had me all over the court for a while so I’m pleased to
be able to come through to win it like that, it was far from an easy
Low Wee Wern became the second Malaysian to reach the Cayman
Islands World Open quarter-finals after a narrow three-game win over
Kasey Brown. The Australian took a while to settle into the match,
and will be haunted by the numerous unforced errors that plagued her for
the first two games.
A more steady approach saw better results in the third game, and she
held game ball to re-establish herself in the contest, but was unable to
see it through as Wee Wern came back to force a tie-break. The
Malaysian offered no second chances and finished off the game on her
first opportunity to claim the straight-games win.
“It’s always tough against Kasey, she never gives up and was getting
closer all the time,” the Malaysian told SquashSite.
“The pace seemed to get faster and faster but you can’t afford to slow
down against any of the top girls.
“I’m used to playing in conditions like this, which might have been an
advantage to me. I can play fine with my leg strapped [after a hamstring
injury in Hong Kong], but I’m glad to be able to get through in three.”
Wee Wern will now face third seed Laura Massaro, who played out
an extremely close three-game win over home-hope Nicolette Fernandes.
Fernandes matched her higher ranked opponent all the way in the first
game, but just lacked the finishing edge to her game as two tins allowed
the world No.3 to take the narrow first game 11-9. A similar contest
ensued in the second, as Fernandes refused to allow the Englishwoman to
run-away with proceedings, but was unable to prevent Massaro from
doubling her lead.
In the third game, the scores tied at 3, 4, 5 and 6-all with the
Guyana-born player showing the form of her career, but the quality of
the Englishwoman proved to substantial, and she claimed six out of the
remaining seven points to end the 51-minute contest.
With home hopes dashed, local hero Fernandes spoke of her World Open
experience: “I’m thrilled with my tournament, disappointed it’s over
obviously but I’ve never had support like this anywhere, a lot of the
girls have told me they’re jealous. The crowd believed in me and made me
believe in myself - I’m going to take this experience and run with it.
“It didn’t feel as though I was the number 40 playing the number 3, it
was just a couple of points in each game, that’s what it felt like to me
“I had to cancel my flight, so I don’t even know if I’ll get home for
Christmas, but it’s been well worth it!”
Massaro was quick to praise her opponent after the match, saying:
“Nicolette has had a fantastic tournament, and that shows you just what
a bit of home support can do for you.
“She pushed me all the way in each game, it just shows you can’t take
anything for granted as the level is so close these days.
“Nicol will be tough for anyone to beat, but until you get through to
play her, you just have to take each match as it comes.”
Round Top Half
Downed By Experienced Perry
ensured her place in the WSA Cayman Islands World Open quarter-finals
last night, following a consummate performance against the teenage No.8 seed
Nour El Sherbini.
Perry, seeded tenth for the event, got off to a
flying start against the higher ranked Egyptian and stormed to a first game lead
with Sherbini managing just two points in response. The second game started in
similar fashion, with the Irishwoman taking another strong lead, but Sherbini
began to get in to the match, chipping away at the deficit to draw level at
9-all. Experience and confidence in her game saw Perry extend her lead to two
games, and tied again at 9-all in the third, she claimed a stroke either side of
an unforced error from the teenage to book her quarter-final place.
“When we played in the British Open the court was
really cold and I knew these conditions would suit me more but I didn’t expect
to get a start like that,” Perry saidafter the
match. “At 7-0 I had to try to keep my concentration as I knew she’d be coming
back into it.
“I’m really pleased to get through here, my form
has been a bit up and down but this is the world open and I really like coming
here, so I wanted to be able to perform here.”
Perry will face six-time World Champion Nicol
David in the quarters, following the top seed continuing to power past her
opposition. Her deconstruction of ninth seed Annie Au took just
25minutes, with the Hong Kong interntional managing just eight points in the
Hunting her seventh World Open title, the
Malysian said afterwards: “It’s great getting back here. I love the court and
the setting, so it’s nice to be playing here again, especially in the World
Open. The last three years here have been memorable for me but this is the big
one and everyone will be going for it and stepping their game up.
“I’m just happy to be playing well and looking
forward to the quarter-finals, taking it one match at a time and enjoying it
continued her quest for a successive World Open final appearance after
navigating a tricky second round clash against Camille Serme of France. Serme
put in the performance of her career last month by reaching the Hong Kong Open
final, but was unable to exert any lasting dominance on a much warmer court
The Englishwoman narrowly claimed the opening
game on the tie-break, using her experience to shut out Serme in the final
stages. She then doubled her lead by claiming a quick run of points from which
the Frenchwoman was unable to recover. The young 14th seed hit back however,
claiming the third game and increasing the pressure on the former world No.2.
But Duncalf wasn’t to be deterred, and established a strong lead at the
mid-stage of the fourth game. Serme’s comeback was again thwarted as her
opponent made use of all four corners of the court and closed out the win to
push her in to the quarter-finals.
“I think I played well enough to win,” Duncalf
said post-match. “Camille’s been playing well so to get her in the second round
was tough, she always makes you work hard, but I feel like I’m playing at the
moment better than I have for most of the year.
“I’m pleased to be back here, pleased to get
through, and pleased to have a rest day now!”
Duncalf will face an all-English quarter-final
round next, following No.4 seed Alison Waters’ defeat of Samantha
Teran. Teran was the surprise package of last year’s Rotterdam World Open,
reaching the semi-finals as fifteenth seed. But the Mexican was unable to work
similar magic on this occasion as Waters got off to a flying start to take the
A closer second game was forced to a tie-break
by the determined Teran, but the Englishwoman, who missed out on last year’s
World Open with an Achilles injury, held firm during the important points to
double her lead. Waters’ confidence was evident throughout the third game,
hitting accurate lengths without reply from her opponent and the match was
concluded in under the half-hour mark.
Waters explained after the
match: “Sam’s a tough character, and she came back at me well in the second.
Thankfully I managed to see that one out which was crucial, as on this court I
knew that at one-all it could become a real battle.
“Taking the second decided the match really, so
it’s good to get through in fairly quick time.”
Round two continues later
today from Grand Cayman…
Shocks Former World Champion In Caymans Opener
Nicolette Fernandes stunned former world champion Rachael Grinham
in round one of the WSA Cayman Island World Open.
The world No.48 from Guyana fought back from two games and match-ball down
against the 2007 World Champion, to claim an unlikely second round place in
front of a home crowd.
A tense affair was described with relief afterwards by Fernandes, as the
29-year-old told SquashSite: “I'm just so happy, and grateful, and
thankful for everything.
"You have to believe you can win, even if you don't expect to. I don't even
remember saving those match balls in the third, but when I got to 10/6 in the
fifth and she started coming back I just told myself to keep playing the way I'd
played to get to that point.”
Low Wee Wern went a game down to English qualifier Sarah Kippax in
their round one clash, but the Malaysian settled down to win the next three
games too progress to round two. She will face Australian Kasey Brown,
who saw off the challenge of US qualifier Latasha Khan in straight
Three English players will feature in the second round of the World Open. Alison
Waters ensured her progression after cruising past local wildcard entrant
Marlene West in 19-minutes, whilst No.3 seed Laura Massaro defeated
Columbian qualifier Catalina Pelaez, in also just shy of 20-minutes.
Last year’s World Open runner-up Jenny Duncalf had to regain her
composure as compatriot Sarah-Jane Perry hit back after losing the first
game, with a dominant 11-1 second game retaliation. Duncalf’s experience
brought her quickly back to focus however, and the No.6 seed will progress to
Camille Serme of France in round two.
Samantha Teran defeated qualifier Lauren Briggs in straight games
to set up a clash with Alison Waters, whilst Massaro will face round one
giant-killer Nicolette Fernandes.
Six-time World Champion Nicol David got her World Open campaign off to a
good start, as she navigated a tricky first round match against Hong Kong Open
semi-finalist, Omneya Abdel Kawy. David was able to progress after three
games, and will now face Annie Au, who beat Line Hansen 3-1.
Tour veteran Madeline Perry took 44-minutes to dispatch unseeded Egyptian
Nour El Tayeb in four games. The Irishwoman clinched a second game
tiebreak before dropping the third, but recovered to see off the match and book
her round two place against another Egyptian, teenager Nour El Sherbini.
Sherbini defeated Canadian hopeful Samantha Cornett in straight games to
ensure her second round place.
Fifth seed Joelle King booked her round two place after beating Joey
Chan in 27-minutes. The Kiwi, who earned an 11-0 ‘bagel’ in the first game,
will now play experienced Natalie Grinham of the Netherlands. Grinham
recovered from a game down to beat Australian Donna Urquhart.
Second seed Raneem El Weleily was forced to four games following a gutsy
effort from unseeded Aisling Blake. The Egyptian said after
the contest: “I don't recall playing Aisling before, but I know she's been
improving and getting some good results recently. She played really well and I
had to work hard to win that.”
Weleily will face Dipika Pallikal in round two of Cayman Islands Open,
following the Indian’s narrow three-game win over Malaysian qualifier Delia
Qualifying Seeds Through To World Open Main Draw
The top five
seeded players for the 2012 WSA Cayman Islands World Open qualifying
rounds all progress to through to the main round draw with few upsets.
Having received a bye through the first round of qualification, top seed
Delia Arnold ended Welsh hopes of World Open representation by defeating
Tesni Evans in straight games. The Malaysian will face 13th seed Dipika
Palikal in the main draw.
English pair Lauren Briggs and Emma Beddoes progressed in
three-game wins after also receiving first round byes. Joining them is
compatriot Sarah-Jane Perry who defeated Guyana-national Ashley
DeGroot and Egyptian Heba El Torky to make her first ever World Open
main draw. Perry will face fellow Englishwoman Jenny Duncalf in the
first round, whilst Briggs lines up against Samantha Teran of Mexico and
Beddoes will play Camille Serme of France.
World No.226, Catalina Pelaez shocked audiences as the she first defeated
Kylie Lindsay of New Zealand, followed by Lauren Selby to become a
surprise inclusion in the Cayman Islands first round draw. “I was enjoying
being able to run, but I think I relaxed a bit in the third,” admitted Catalina,
“and she was putting me under a lot of pressure in the third with her dropshots.
I was getting a little tired, so I was happy to be able to win!”
The 21-year-old Columbian will now play third seed Laura Massaro.
Samantha Cornett represents the sole Canadian interest for the Open,
after defeating Lisa Aitken of Scotland in straight games. Despite the
3-0 scoreline, the match was closely contested, and Cornett said after her win: “I knew it would be a hard, fast game as we
both play that way. I think I play better when it’s fast like that so I was
quite happy to play her at that game. I’m really pleased to qualify in my
second World Open, I’ve been getting a lot of snorkelling in but I need to do
some serious practice now!”
The Canadian now progresses to the main draw where she will face the teenage
prodigy and eighth seed Nour El Sherbini.
Nicolette Fernandes defeated Misaki Kobayashi, ranked just six
places above her in the WSA World Rankings, in a close five-game battle. Having
already beaten Coline Aumard of France in her opening qualifier, the
Caribbean favourite will now play World Open stalwart Rachael Grinham of
“You guys have no idea how much pressure you put me under!” said a delighted and
relieved Fernandes. “It’s great to be playing in front of a home crowd like
this, but I’m a nervous wreck. I had a shoulder injury after the last CASA
championships here last year, it’s been a long road back but it’s all coming
together now and I’m really excited to make the main draw of the World Open,
right here in the Caribbean!”
Latasha Khan qualified for the main draw, after beating Egyptian
Yathreb Adel in four games. The American veteran is one of sixteen
different nationalities to feature in the WSA Cayman Islands World Open first
Seeded For Seventh World Title
Nicol David is seeded first as she looks to retain
her World Open champion status in the Cayman Islands next month in the
WSA 2012 Cayman Squash World Open from 13-21 December.
The first four days of the event will take place at the South Sound
Squash Club, before the action moves to an all-glass court on
Festival Green on Camana Bay.
The Malaysian world No.1, who claimed her six World Open titles in Egypt,
England, Ireland, China, and twice in the Netherlands, also has three Cayman
Open titles to her name. She is poised to attempt her seventh World title,
but faces a tough first round opponent in former world No.4 and 2010 World
Open runner-up Omneya Abdel Kawy of Egypt. One of the pair could
face ninth seed Annie Au in round two, should the Hong Kong national
defeat unseeded Jaclyn Hawkes.
Currently enjoying her highest ranking on the WSA World Tour, Raneem El
Weleily is seeded second for the event, having never made it past the
second round in her previous ten World Open campaigns. Now enjoying the
form of her life, the Egyptian will play Aisling Blake in the first
round, before potentially meeting No.13 seed Dipika Pallikal in round
Missing out on the No.2 seeding by just one month, Laura Massaro is
seeded as No.3 and will face a qualifying opponent in the opening main
round, and could face 2007 World Open champion Rachael Grinham in the
Having finally fought back to the top end of the women’s game, Alison
Waters has had a successful year regaining full-fitness after a lengthy
Achilles injury. She returned to the No.4 ranking in November, and is
seeded fourth for the event. She will face local wildcard entrant
Marlene West, who reached her highest WSA ranking of 71 in 2010. Waters
could then meet last year’s semi-finalist Samantha Teran in the
second round, should the Mexican overcome her qualifying opponent.
Another success story of 2012, Joelle King raised her highest ranking
this month to grant her fifth seed position for her third World Open. She
will play Joey Chan of Hong Kong in the first round, and could see
either No.11 seed and four-time runner-up Natalie Grinham or Donna
Urquhart in round two. The New Zealander could also meet Raneem El
Weleily in the quarter-finals, should both players progress.
Last year’s World Open runner-up Jenny Duncalf is placed at sixth
seed, and is drawn to face a qualifier in the first round. The Englishwoman
could then play Camille Serme of France in the second round, with the
possibility of facing fellow Englishwoman Alison Waters in the
Seventh seed Low Wee Wern, currently placing her highest ranking on
the WSA World Tour, will face unseeded Sarah Kippax in the first
round, with the possibility of meeting twelfth seed Kasey Brown in
round two and Massaro in the quarters.
After becoming the youngest ever World Series finalist in May’s British
Open, Nour El Sherbini rose to No.5 in the world, but currently sits
at No.8. Also seeded eighth in the draw the Egyptian, now 17-years-old,
will play a qualifying entrant in the opening round, before facing tenth
seed Madeline Perry, should the Irishwoman defeat Nour El Tayeb.
Players from 24 nations are due to take part in the qualifying and main draw
events, and upsets can happen at every stage along the way. Last year third
and fourth seeds Madeline Perry and Rachael Grinham fell in round two,
whilst Perry, Natalie Grainger, Laura Massaro and Natalie Grinham all
saw early exits in 2010. This year just 34 rankings points separates the
world numbers’ 4 and 8, so competition between the top seeds has never been
higher and there will surely be some surprises along the way.