Tournament of Champions 2014

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17-24, 2014

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Men's Event


Dominant David Claims First Tournament of Champions Title

World number one Nicol David claimed her first J.P. Morgan Tournament of Champions title with a resounding 11-4, 13 -11, 11-8 victory over world No2 Laura Massaro on the iconic glass court in Grand Central Terminal in New York.

"The ToC is huge," said the Malaysian superstar after the triumph over her English rival in the climax of the Women's Squash Association (WSA) Gold event. "There is something in the air here. I get goose bumps every time I walk into Grand Central."

There was a buzz and eager sense of anticipation among the crowd as they took their seats under the majestic chandeliers in Vanderbilt Hall for the women's final. This was the first time the most dominant player in women's squash over the past seven years had competed in the Tournament of Champions and the first time in a decade that the two top players in the sport would contest the final.

"In that first game, both of us were figuring out how the ball was going to play this evening," David said. "The ball got faster as we were playing, and I was able to play some good, low attacking shots."

In what seemed like the blink of an eye, the 30-year-old from Penang had notched the first game, 11-3.

Massaro was the attacker at the start of the second game. After getting coaching advice from her husband Danny, the English No1 took a 7-2 lead by playing more aggressively and moving up in the court. Just as it looked as if Massaro was well on her way to levelling the match, David dug in and began chipping away at the second seed's lead.

"As soon as Nicol's back in the game at all, she's like a dog with a bone," said 30-year-old Massaro, the only player on the current Tour who has beaten David five times. "She doesn't let go."

The seven-time world champion reeled off six straight points to move ahead 8-7. Massaro evened the score at eight-all. At 9-10, Massaro saved a game ball, but David converted the next game ball opportunity to open up a two-game lead.

"I just kept telling myself, 'keep going, keep going, keep going'," said David about her come-from-behind second game win.

At the start of the third, the players exchanged points until David surged ahead, 7-4. Massaro fought back to 6-7 and then saved two match balls when her opponent took a 10-6 lead. But the top seed was not to be denied the one major title missing from her collection, and closed out the championship 11-8 in the third game.

"I wanted this title badly," said David. After the match, she basked in the glow of the majestic chandeliers and the appreciation of a squash-savvy crowd who savoured the opportunity to see this great champion in action, up close, on the ToC glass court.

Even though she now has 72 WSA titles to her name and has been at the top of the rankings for 90 consecutive months, the 2014 ToC champion is still enthralled with her sport: "I have learned so much from this sport, and I am continuing to learn," said David.

When asked her most important lesson, David replied: "How to trust myself and do what I am capable of."

The fortunate spectators at the 2014 J.P. Morgan Tournament of Champions were thrilled to witness that capability as Nicol David did what she does better than anyone else in the world - win yet another squash championship.

The Court At Grand Central Terminal

. Draw

. Final
Semi Finals
Quarter Finals
1st Round
. Qualifying
Qualifying Finals
1st Round Qualifying

2014 Men's Event

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Tournament of Champions 2014
Women's Draw
17-24 Jan, New York, $25k

Grand Central Terminus, New York 

Round One
21 Jan
22 Jan
23 Jan
24 Jan
[1] Nicol David (Mas)
11-4, 11-4, 11-6 (25m)
[Q] Annie Au (HKG)
Nicol David
11-5, 11-3, 11-4 (32m)
Low Wee Wern
Nicol David
11-8, 11-8, 12-10 (45m)
Alison Waters
Nicol David
11-4, 13-11, 11-8 (46m)
Laura Massaro
[8] Low Wee Wern (Mas)
11-6, 11-7, 11-5 (27m)
Latasha Khan (Usa)
[7] Jenny Duncalf (Eng)
11-5, 11-9, 6-11, 9-11, 11-4 (63m)
[Q] Sarah-Jane Perry (ENG)
Sarah-Jane Perry
11-5, 11-6, 11-2 (28m)
Alison Waters
[4] Alison Waters (Eng)
11-3, 11-9, 11-6 (25m)
[Q] Amanda Sobhy (USA)
Madeline Perry (Irl)
8-11, 4-11, 11-6, 11-6, 11-9 (49m)
[3] Raneem El Weleily (Egy)
Madeline Perry
11-8, 11-4, 11-13, 11-8 (52m)
Camille Serme
Camille Serme
11-5, 3-11, 11-6, 11-9 (63m)
Laura Massaro
Natalie Grinham (Ned)
11-13, 11-6, 11-4, 11-7 (38m)
[5] Camille Serme (Fra)
Kasey Brown (Aus)
11-2, 11-7, 11-7 (25m)
[6] Joelle King (Nzl)
Kasey Brown
9-11, 13-11, 11-3, 11-7 (52m)
Laura Massaro
[Q] Rachael Grinham (AUS)
11-2, 8-11, 11-7, 11-7 (44m)
[2] Laura Massaro (Eng)

Qualifying Finals:
Annie Au
(HKG) bt Dipika Pallikal (IND) 11-8, 11-9, 11-5 (33m)
Amanda Sobhy (USA) bt Nour El Sherbini (EGY) 6-11, 10-12, 11-8, 11-6, 11-5 (57m)
Rachael Grinham (AUS) bt Line Hansen (DEN) 12-10, 11-7, 11-2 (31m)
Sarah-Jane Perry (ENG) bt Omneya Abdel Kawy (EGY) 12-10, 2-11, 12-10, 9-11, 11-7 (67m)

1st Qualifying Round:
Dipika Pallikal (IND) bt Emily Whitlock (ENG) 11-6, 11-8, 11-6 (31m)
Annie Au (HKG) bt Donna Urquhart (AUS) 11-7, 11-3, 12-10 (27m)
Nour El Sherbini (EGY) bt Sarah Kippax (ENG) 11-13, 11-8, 11-6, 11-5 (60m)
Amanda Sobhy (USA) bt Cecelia Cortes (USA) 11-3, 11-4, 11-4 (19m)
Line Hansen (DEN) bt Sabrina Sobhy (USA) 11-5, 11-8, 6-11, 12-10 (47m)
Rachael Grinham (AUS) bt Joe Chan (HKG) 11-6, 4-11, 11-13, 11-9, 13-11 (53m)
Sarah-Jane Perry (ENG) bt Olivia Blatchford (USA) 12-10, 11-3, 11-8 (33m)
Omneya Abdel Kawy (EGY) bt Fernanda Rocha (ARG) 11-0, 11-3, 11-4 (19m)

Semi Finals

Top Seeds David & Massaro Make Tournament of Champions Final

The top two seeds will contest the final of the J.P. Morgan Tournament of Champions after Malaysian favourite Nicol David and England's world No2 Laura Massaro survived testing women's semi-finals of the Women's Squash Association (WSA) Gold event at Grand Central Terminal in New York.

There may have been sub-zero temperatures on the sidewalks of New York City but inside Grand Central Terminal in New York City the heat was on - in the all-glass squash court in Vanderbilt Hall, where four of the five top-ranking WSA players battled for the privilege of competing for the coveted ToC title.

First match was Massaro against fifth seed Camille Serme. Going into the match, Massaro said she actually felt like the underdog: despite being ranked higher than her opponent, Massaro had lost to the French player three of the last four times they had played. And, after her quarter-final victory over Madeline Perry, Serme said she was indeed feeling confident going into the semis.

Massaro came out of the starting gates on fire, winning the first game 11-5. Consistently hitting tight shots and good depth, the 30-year-old from Preston in Lancashire was able to control the T and attack every opening that came her way.

"A video of that game should be watched by anyone who wants to understand how to construct a winning point," said former England national coach David Pearson after the match. "That was the single best game I have ever seen Laura play."

The game was closer than the score would indicate as each player retrieved and attacked and was loathe to give even an inch to her opponent.

It was Serme that was on fire in the second game, jumping out to 6-0 lead before winning the game 11-3. The 24-year-old from Creteil, near Paris, maintained her position in the front court, using short front corner attacking shots and high lobs to force Massaro to scramble and retrieve.

The third game was an early seesaw battle with the lead exchanging hands several times until Massaro broke it open at 8-6, winning the game 11-6.

The fourth was up for grabs. Serme took the early lead at 4-0, and maintained it through to 7-5. Massaro reasserted herself to regain the lead. At nine-all, Serme hit a tin and then Massaro delivered a serve at match-ball that died in the nick at the back of the court.

"I just really wanted to be able to enjoy being on court. My goal was to be relaxed and use the whole court," said Massaro, now in the 27th WSA Tour final of her career. "I am excited to be in the finals; finals day is always a big occasion, but especially here in NYC where the crowds are so great."

In the evening's second match, world No1 Nicol David defeated Alison Waters, the fourth seed from England, in three hard-fought and closely-contested games.

"It was pretty close all the way," said David after the 11-8, 11-8, 12-10 victory which takes the 30-year-old from Penang into her seventh WSA World Tour final in a row - and the 91st of her career.

"I had to put the pressure on with good depth. I really found the front corners of the court today as well. After two rounds of play on the glass court, I always see the ball better."

The final will mark David and Massaro's 25th WSA Tour meeting since their first in 2005 - and their second in a row on US soil. Massaro is the only player to boast five wins over the Malaysian superstar - the most recent famously being in last year's British Open final in May.



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World No1 Nicol David defeated the fourth seed Alison Waters

Quarter Finals
Serme Subdues Perry To Make Tournament of Champions Semis

French number one Camille Serme overcame a frozen ear and a mid-match case of nerves to thwart Irish champion Madeline Perry's effort to unseat a higher-seeded player at the J.P. Morgan Tournament of Champions for the second time.

Serme, making her maiden appearance in the Women's Squash Association (WSA) Gold event at Grand Central Terminal in New York, admitted to being concerned going into the match because Perry held a 6-1 career record against her.

Walking the three blocks from the Westin Grand Central Hotel to the glass court in Grand Central Terminal in bitterly cold New York weather, without a hat, Serme - who has lost only to world No1 Nicol David since August 2013 - said her ears had literally frozen by the time she arrived at the tournament venue. By match time, the ear had thawed and the Frenchwoman was sufficiently warmed up to take an early 5-1 lead in the first game, managing to maintain her edge to win the opener 11-8.

The second game was all Serme, who took a 2/0 lead in the match by winning the game 11-4. In the third, the world No5 from Creteil, near Paris, had three match balls at 10-7 - and celebrated a premature victory on one of those when she gave a jubilant fist pump thinking she had hit a winner.

But Perry, the 36-year-old world No7, ran the ball down and won the point. "I got nervous," said Serme after the match. "It came in my mind that I had only beaten her once." Perry snatched the game 13-11 to keep the match alive.

The 14 times Irish champion from Belfast had pulled off an improbable, come-from-behind, victory after being down by a similar score in the opening round against Raneem El Welily, the third seed from Egypt. She thought she could do the same again.

Her top-ranked French opponent, however, had other plans: "I knew that I had to stick to my tactical plan," Serme revealed later. The plan, which had worked in the first two games, was to slow down the pace. "I did not want to give her any opportunities to hit the ball hard which she does so well. And I had to play my shots when I had the opportunity."

The agile and nimble 24-year-old executed her plan well and won the fourth game 11-5 to close out the match.

The "happy and relieved" Serme, whose coach and trainer are in NYC for the championships, is thrilled to be in the ToC semi-finals - as much because she is as eager to improve as she is to win. "It's good to keep winning," Serme said as she cooled down on the stationary bike after the match. "This way my coaches can see what I have to improve on."

Serme's semi-final opponent will be second seed Laura Massaro of England. A few millimetres and two tins by her New Zealand opponent Joelle King were all that stood between the English number one and a two-game deficit.

Kiwi King had played authoritative and confident squash to win the first game 11-9, and had game ball at 11-10 in the second. A drop shot from the sixth seed barely clipped the tin to even the game at 11 points each and Massaro managed to eke out the victory 13-11.

At the break between games, Massaro's husband and coach Danny told her: "Just relax, enjoy being out there." The world No2, who acknowledged having a strong self-critical nature, took the advice to heart. "After all, I won't be able to do this forever, so I should enjoy it while I can," said Massaro. The difference when she got back on court was stunning. She won the third game 11-3 and the fourth 11-7.

Alison Waters earned her trip to the ToC semi-finals when she ended the run of English compatriot Sarah-Jane Perry, a qualifier who upset England's No7 seed Jenny Duncalf in the first round. "The key to the match was making sure that I stayed in front and didn't allow SJ to play her shots," said the fourth seed from London after her efficient and 'never-in-doubt' 11-5, 11-6, 11-2 victory.

Waters should be fresh for her semi-final match given that her match time for the two opening rounds combined totals less than an hour. The British champion will probably need as much energy as she can muster as she will be taking on top seed Nicol David who defeated fellow Malaysian Low Wee Wern in three games.

The world No1 had another busy NYC day: David participated in a photo shot with men's world No1 Nick Matthew for the announcement of their appointment as official Laureus Sport For Good Ambassadors. The 30-year-old from Penang also attended the ToC Inaugural Women's Leadership Luncheon honouring former WSA player Natalie Grainger before returning to her hotel to prepare for her evening match. None of these activities, however, distracted the Malaysian superstar from the primary reason for her presence in New York City - to win her maiden ToC trophy!

Super-focused and finely-tuned, David defeated her younger national rival 11-5, 11-3, 11-4 to record her 25th Tour match victory in a row since losing last May's British Open final to Laura Massaro.

When asked if she ever gets bored with squash after so many years playing and being No1 (since August 2006), David's answer was emphatic: "No. I just get more and more into it, especially these last few years when I feel like I truly understand the game," explained the Malaysian who this month marked her 90th consecutive month at the top of the world rankings.

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Camille Serme overcame a frozen ear and a mid-match case of nerves to thwart Irish champion Madeline Perry

Nicol David defeated fellow Malaysian Low Wee Wern

Alison Waters ended the run of English compatriot Sarah-Jane Perry

Laura Massaro of England Records A Win Against Her New Zealand opponent Joelle King


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1st Round

Nicol David Delights New York Squash Fans

Despite the stormy and snowy evening, world No1 Nicol David thrilled her fans in New York City with her long-awaited debut at the J.P. Morgan Tournament of Champions on the iconic ToC glass court at Grand Central Terminal.

The Malaysian superstar demonstrated her complete mastery of all facets of the game of squash as she defeated Hong Kong's Annie Au 11-4, 11-4, 11-6 in the opening round of the first Women's Squash Association (WSA) Gold event of the year.

David had been quite busy since arriving in the Big Apple and her itinerary on Monday included a visit with renowned modern artist Frank Stella, who has also been a squash promoter. "It was fascinating to hear him talk about how he comes up with his ideas," said the squash star who likes to draw in her free time. Nicol also made time to visit the young women participants in StreetSquash, a Harlem-based youth enrichment programme.

"But as soon as David entered Vanderbilt Hall to play on the Grand Central glass court, her razor-sharp focus was all about squash," reported event spokesman Beth Rasin. "The seven-time World Champion was deliberate in every step of her pre-match preparation and when she stepped on court, there was no question as to who was the boss out there."

David's match strategy was classic - hit the ball to good length, and then place it short. "The corners on the court are pretty dead which worked to my advantage," said the 30-year-old from Penang later. "Annie can be dangerous when she gets the ball in the middle of the court and I definitely did not want to let her in the match."

David's quarter-final opponent will be her younger countrywoman Low Wee Wern who despatched American veteran Latasha Khan 11-6, 11-7, 11-5. "It was a bit scrappy out there," said the Malaysian number two. "It took a little while for me to find my length."

Low is experiencing the good and the bad of starting the year with a personal best world No6 ranking. "It is good to be ranked six in the world, but there is also the pressure to keep my ranking high," said the young Malaysian, who is now looking forward to her quarterfinal contest with David.

"I saw Nicol win the World Junior Championship in 2001 in Penang when I was 10 years old," noted the 23-year-old whose hometown is also Penang. "To now be able to challenge her on court instead of sitting outside watching her play is a true privilege."

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Nicol David Will Play Low Wee Wern in The Quarter Finals

Perrys Power Into Tournament of Champions Quarters In New York

English qualifier Sarah-Jane Perry and unseeded - and unrelated - Madeline Perry of Ireland advanced to the quarter-finals of the J.P. Morgan Tournament of Champions at Grand Central Terminal after scoring stunning upsets in the opening round of the Women's Squash Association (WSA) Gold event in New York City.

Perry, the world No7, dropped the first two games in her afternoon match against third seed Raneem El Welily, the world No3 from Egypt who seemed to be in complete control after her 11-8, 11-4 lead.

But, from the very start of the third game, Perry (pictured above in action with El Welily) was a different player. The 36-year-old pushed up several feet and started playing attacking shots much as her Egyptian opponent had done in the first two games.

"She's really a better player than me in terms of skills," said Perry later. "So I realised that I just had to stay positive, enjoy myself and do something different than my usual conservative game."

The change in Perry's strategy worked exceptionally well as she took a 10-3 lead in the third game, before winning it 11-6. The fourth was more of the same and Perry won the game by the identical score. Welily, 25, from Cairo, reasserting herself at the start of the decider, taking an 8-5 lead.

But the WSA Tour veteran from Belfast was not about to give up against her younger opponent and scrambled to move ahead 9-8. After Welily tied the score at 9-9, both players dug in their heels and played the point of the day as each covered all four corners of the court and Welily retrieved several seemingly irretrievable balls. After the young Egyptian hit a cross court from the deep forehand corner, Perry flew forward to hit an attacking backhand dead nick volley - clinching the match on another attacking backhand volley.

"I still can't believe it," said Perry in her post-match interview. "I just hope that one of the photographers got the picture of that backhand volley at nine-all!"

After gathering her thoughts, two-time ToC semi-finalist Perry added: "I'm obviously delighted. I was completely outplayed for the first two games and completely turned it around and played some great squash.

"I had some trouble with my knee for a few months after the summer which disrupted my training but trained well for the last couple of months and felt much better. I love the court and the amazing venue!"

Fifth seed Camille Serme will be Perry's quarter-final opponent after the French number one advanced with a 3/1 victory over two-time defending champion . The Dutch star won the first game 13-11 by hitting an extensive variety of shots and using the lob exceptionally well.

Serme - who has lost only to world No1 Nicol David since August 2013 - admitted to being surprised by her 35-year-old opponent's first game strategy.

The world No24 from Creteil, near Paris, adjusted in the second by playing more length. "I just tried to be more patient, which wasn't so easy," said Serme. It may not have been easy, but the adjustment worked and, after taking an 8-3 lead, Serme won the second 11-6.

A number of uncharacteristic errors from Grinham - who confessed to getting nervous - and excellent court coverage by Serme, gave her the third game 11-4. The five-time French champion sealed the victory after winning the fourth 11-7. As a wistful Grinham stood by the stands watching the next match later, she said: "I really wanted to have another chance to play on this court."

Qualifier Sarah Jane Perry, looking remarkably relaxed and confident, earned her trip to the quarter-finals in her maiden appearance in the event with a seesaw five-game victory over seventh seed and England team-mate Jenny Duncalf. Perry, the 23-year-old world No17, controlled the first game with good length and accuracy.

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Sarah-Jane Perry's Victory Over Jenny Duncalf


Camille Serme 1st Round Win Against Natalie Grinham


Alison Waters Through to Round Two Along With Madeline Perry Below



Joelle King of New Zealand dominated her match against Australian Kasey Brown

In the second, the lead exchanged hands several times until Perry closed out the game 11-9. Duncalf, the world No9 who has been ranked as high as two in the world, cut down on her errors in the third and fourth to even the match at two-all. Deliberately slowing the pace in the fifth, Perry was the beneficiary of more unforced Duncalf errors, winning the game 11-4 to take the match.

"It is easier to be relaxed when you are the underdog," said Perry, who is just returning to the WSA Tour after a three month injury hiatus. "I certainly wasn't expected to win." As for the confidence factor, Perry added: "I know I am playing well and you have got think you can win; otherwise, what's the point of playing?"

Perry will now face countrywoman Alison Waters. The fourth seed played in front of the most vocal crowd of the day - the Harvard University women's squash team who had turned out in force to support their number one player Amanda Sobhy, ranked 18 on the WSA Tour.

Waters, who defeated US number one Sobhy 11-3, 11-9, 11-6, was unfazed by the partisan fans. "I quite enjoyed the loud crowds - it is much more fun to play for them."

Waters completely contained the American star, who had survived a tough five-game qualifying match the night before. "Amanda is very strong and can be a dangerous player if you let her have the ball in the middle of the court," said the three-time British national champion. "So my strategy was to keep her in the back of the court and out of the middle."

It was a strategy that worked. "Ali was hitting her targets really well," admitted Sobhy. "I was scrambling most of the time."

In the day's other matches, sixth seed Joelle King of New Zealand dominated her match against Australian Kasey Brown, the newly-elected Women's Squash Association president. King's quarter-final opponent will be world No2 Laura Massaro of England who defeated Australian veteran Rachael Grinham - two days before her 37th birthday - in four games. 


Official Website:


Qualifying Finals:

US Star Sobhy Succeeds With Main Draw Berth At Grand Central

US hope Amanda Sobhy came back from the brink of defeat in the final women's qualifying round of the J.P. Morgan Tournament of Champions at the Princeton Club in New York to defeat Egypt's Nour El Sherbini in five games and advance to the main draw of the Women's Squash Association (WSA) Gold event being played on the ToC glass court in Grand Central Terminal.

Sobhy, a junior at Harvard University where she is the women's team number one, had lost the first two games and was down 0-5 in the third. "I thought of all my friends whom I had promised could see me play on the glass court in Grand Central and how I would be letting them down if I didn't win this match," Sobhy said. "So I just focused on one point at a time."

With her Harvard teammates cheering loudly, the 2010 World Junior Champion started turning the tables on Sherbini, a three-time world junior title-holder. Having felt stiff and tight in the first two games, Sobhy figured out how to relax a bit on the court and gained a foothold in the match by winning the third game 11-8. The 20-year-old from New York, who is playing college squash and professional squash along with balancing the rigorous Harvard academics, was buoyed by her teammates' support and took further command of the match, winning the last two games - 11-6, 11-5.

Sobhy, who is undefeated in college play, will face England's fourth seed Alison Waters on the Grand Central glass court in the first afternoon session of play.

Hong Kong's Annie Au and Australia's Rachael Grinham also earned trips to the Grand Central glass court with 3/0 victories over India's Dipika Pallikal - the highest-ranked player in the qualifiers - and Denmark's Line Hansen, respectively. Au drew Asian rival Nicol David, the top seed from Malaysia, whom she will play Tuesday evening. Veteran Grinham, a former world No1 who joins sister Natalie in the main draw, will take on world No2 Laura Massaro on Monday evening.

The longest qualifying match was played by Sarah-Jane Perry of England and Egypt's Omneya Abdel Kawy who, in their maiden encounter, engaged in a seesaw battle for the last qualifying spot. "It was a hard match and a little contentious," admitted Perry, who jumped out to a 5-0 lead in the first game but had to fend off a game ball before winning 12-10. "We both really like to hold our position in the middle of the court." The second game was all Kawy who found her rhythm and sprinted to an 11-2 game win.

Perry, who is playing her first tournament since October after being sidelined with a fractured vertebrate, eked out another 12-10 tiebreak in the third. Kawy promptly turned around to win the fourth and even the match. In the fifth, Perry took a 9-5 lead and won the game 11-7.

The 23-year-old Englishwoman's first round opponent is countrywoman Jenny Duncalf, the seventh seed. Perry, who defeated Duncalf in the English Premier League two weeks ago, was delighted with the draw.

1st Round Qualifying

Sobhy Leads Home Hopes In Tournament of Champions Qualifiers

US number one Amanda Sobhy single-handedly led home hopes through to the qualifying finals of the Women's JP Morgan Tournament of Champions in New York after beating compatriot Cecelia Cortes in the first qualifying round of the Women's Squash Association (WSA) Gold event at the Princeton Club.

Bidding for a second successive appearance in the main draw of the event at Grand Central Terminal in New York - where she made the quarter-finals in 2013 - Sobhy despatched 24-year-old Cortes 11-3, 11-4, 11-4 in just 19 minutes.

The 20-year-old from New York, ranked 18 in the world, will now face Egypt's Nour El Sherbini, ranked just two places higher.

Former world No4 El Sherbini is making her first appearance on the WSA Tour since May last year after suffering a series of injuries. The 18-year-old from Alexandria defeated England's Sarah Kippax 11-13, 11-8, 11-6, 11-5 in 60 minutes.

India's world No12 Dipika Pallikal, the highest-ranked player in the qualifying draw, beat England's Emily Whitlock 11-6, 11-8, 11-6 and will now face Hong Kong's Annie Au for a place in the main draw for the third year in a row. Au defeated Australia's Donna Urquhart 11-7, 11-3, 12-10.

Tour veteran Rachael Grinham made the qualifying finals after recovering from 2/1 down to beat Hong Kong's Joey Chan 11-6, 4-11, 11-13, 11-9, 13-11.

The 36-year-old former world No1 from Australia will now take on Dane Line Hansen - who put paid to double Sobhy interest in the next round by beating Amanda's younger sister Sabrina Sobhy 11-5, 11-8, 6-11, 12-10.

England's Sarah-Jane Perry, also making her Tour comeback after an injury-break, beat Olivia Blatchford of the USA 12-10, 11-3, 11-8 and will now line up against Egypt's Omneya Abdel Kawy.

Kawy, bidding for a fourth appearance in the championship since 2002, took out Argentina's Fernanda Rocha 11-0, 11-3, 11-4.







Nicol David Relishes Tournament Of Champions 'Highlight'

Malaysian squash star Nicol David is set to make her long-awaited debut at this week's JP Morgan Tournament of Champions in New York - and admits that competing in the Women's Squash Association Gold event at Grand Central Terminal will be "the highlight of the year".

David, the 30-year-old from Penang who has topped the world rankings since 2006, heads a star-studded field which features all but one of the top 20 women in the world. Following two days of qualifying, the women's championship gets underway next Monday (20 January), leading to the final on Friday (24 January).

"The Tournament of Champions definitely is the highlight of the year and what better way to play my first tournament of the year than at Grand Central Station in New York City," said David as she prepared to leave her Amsterdam base for New York.

"I'm really thrilled to be part of this tournament for the first time in my career and can't wait to absorb the atmosphere that is in store for us. I've been to Grand Central just to visit the place during my stay in New York and it has such a buzz to it. I can't imagine how the buzz is going to be as I step onto the glass court there. Can't wait to get going already."

Top seed David meets a qualifier in the opening round before a likely quarter-final clash with fellow Penangite Low Wee Wern, the No8 seed. English opposition could then line-up for the favourite, with Alison Waters and Jenny Duncalf, the fourth and seventh seeds, respectively, also lying in the top half of the draw - and second seed Laura Massaro heading interest in the lower half of the draw.

Natalie Grinham could well represent the tournament's 'dark horse'. The Dutch number one is unseeded, but boasts an eight-match unbeaten run at Grand Central after winning the title in 2012 and 2013.

The world No10 from Almere faces France's No5 seed Camille Serme, ranked two places higher, in the opening round. The winner will face either Ireland's Madeline Perry or Egypt's No3 seed Raneem El Welily.

World’s Greatest Squash Stars Will Light Up Grand Central Terminal
New York, NY, December 11, 2013. “The action on the glass court in Grand Central Terminal at the 2014 J.P. Morgan Tournament of Champions will be electrifying,” said John Nimick, president of Squash Engine, Inc., the tournament promoter, as he announced the draws for the world’s largest spectator squash event. “Virtually all of the world’s top-ranking men’s and women’s players are entered, representing 23 nations and six continents. In the men’s draw, we have five returning titleholders in the hunt for the title – all of whom have been ranked #1 in the world. Nicol David, the Malaysian superstar who has been ranked #1 in the WSA Women’s World Tour rankings world for the past seven years, will be making her ToC debut.”   
The women’s 16-player draw, a Women’s Squash Association (WSA) Gold event, has the top 11 ranking players and a wild card entry. The qualifying tournament, which will determine the remaining four main draw spots, features 12 of the remaining top 24 players and four local players.    
The men’s 32-player draw, a Professional Squash Association (PSA) World Series event, features 23 of the top 24 world ranking players and one wild card entry. The remaining eight spots will be determined by a 32-player qualifying draw. 
Nicol David, who has maintained the #1 WSA world ranking since January 2006, will be the odds on favourite to claim the ToC title in her inaugural appearance at Grand Central. The 30-year-old Malaysian won five of the eight WSA tour events she played in 2013. Laura Massaro of England, ranked #2 since March, defeated David twice in 2013, winning the CIMB KL Open and the Allam British Open. Third-ranked 24-year-old Raneem El Welily of Egypt is a two-time World Junior Champion who defeated David in the year’s first tournament. England’s Alison Waters, Frenchwoman Camille Serme and Joelle King of New Zealand complete the top six seeds. Former US champion Latasha Khan of Seattle, Washington has the wildcard entry, while two-time intercollegiate champion and former world junior champion Amanda Sobhy of Seacliff, NY will play the qualifying draw.  
Headlining the supremely talented roster of top contenders in the PSA men’s draw is defending champion and three-time ToC titleholder, 26-year-old Ramy Ashour of Egypt, who became the youngest Tournament of Champions winner when he won the title in 2008 at age 21. Ashour, ranked #1 in the world since May 2012, will be supplanted in January at the top of the rankings by 2012 ToC champion Nick Matthew. The 33-year-old Englishman will be carrying into the ToC the momentum of a brilliant year end success which saw him win the World Open for the third time in November and capture his first Hong Kong Open title in December.
Frenchman Gregory Gaultier, the 2009 ToC champion who went toe-to-toe with Ashour in the five- game 2013 ToC final, has been ranked #2 since June 2013 and defeated Matthew to win the 2013 US Open title in October.  Mohamed El Shorbagy, the 22-year-old Egyptian, served notice in 2013 that he will be a title contender. He notched victories over higher ranked players Matthew, James Willstrop and Karim Darwish en route to two PSA titles and his highest world ranking, #4, in December. Rounding out the top six seeds are two former world #1 players, England’s James Willstrop, the 2011 ToC champion and Egypt’s Karim Darwish, who has been a top 10 player since October 2007. Princeton University graduate Todd Harrity, the first American in 21 years to win the US Intercollegiate Singles Championship when he took that title in 2011, will receive the tournament’s wild card entry.
Celebrating 17 years of competition among the world’s best squash players in Grand Central Terminal, the J.P. Morgan Tournament of Champions is the focal point of Squash Week in New York City. Men’s qualifying matches will be played on January 15 and 16; women’s qualifying matches will be played January 18 and 19.  From January 17-19, 2014, the Grand Open tournament, presented by NY Squash and a qualifying event for the US National Skill Level Championships, will feature more than 200 amateur players competing at several NYC squash clubs. Participants from New York City urban youth enrichment charities StreetSquash and CitySquash will participate in clinics with the tournament competitors on the ToC Glass Court.
Tickets range in price from $8 to $170 and may be purchased at
J.P Morgan, a global financial services company, is returning as the Platinum title sponsor of the tournament for the sixth year.  Lexington Partners, a sponsor for 15 consecutive years, is the event's Gold sponsor for the sixth year.  Comcast l NBC Universal and S&P Capital IQ, (a division of McGraw Hill Financial) are Silver Sponsors.  The J.P. Morgan Tournament of Champions is supported by Big Brothers Big Sisters of NYC, The Campbell Apartment, Columbia Presbyterian Hospital, Dunlop, Brandix and Red Bull.  The Westin New York Grand Central is the tournament's Official Hotel. The tournament’s official charities are the urban youth enrichment programs StreetSquash and CitySquash. The J.P. Morgan Tournament of Champions is operated by Squash Engine, Inc., an affiliate of longtime management company Event Engine, Inc., the largest commercial squash promotional company in the world.   








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