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Wednesday February 5, 2014 MYT 8:54:00 AM
Wednesday February 5, 2014 MYT 5:36:51 PM
Nicol David in a file photo. She defeated Hong Kong's Annie Au in the Cleveland Classic final.
PETALING JAYA: Malaysian squash queen Nicol David was supreme once again as she broke apart Hong Kong's Annie Au to claim the Cleveland Classic crown Wednesday morning (Tuesday night in US).
The world No. 1, who was beaten in last year's final by Egypt's Raneem El Weleily, had no such problems against reigning Asian champion Annie at the Cleveland Racquet Club in Pepper Pike, Ohio.
After gaining the initiative from a close first set, the seven-time world champion was all business as she swept Annie aside for a 13-11, 11-5, 11-6 win.
This win marks Nicol's seventh straight title since the Malaysian Open last and it is also her second this year following the Tournament of Champions (TOC) triumph in New York last month.
Incredibly, it was also Nicol's 73rd Women's Squash Association (WSA) Tour title, from her 92nd career final.
“It’s really a great feeling to win this title ... it’s just hard to describe how this winning feeling is actually,” said Nicol on www.squashsite.co.uk.
“To work that hard in training and to have it pay off on court just means so much.”
Annie meanwhile attributed Nicol’s incredible pick-ups as key to her triumph.
“Nicol’s a top player and no matter how I played the ball, she just went on and retrieved it,” said the diminutive left-hander.
The 30-year-old Penangite will now enjoy a few weeks of rest before returning to the US, to compete in the Windy City Open from Feb 24-March 3 in Chicago.
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