Rachel Arnold in (left) in a file photo. She lost to Hong Kong's Vanessa Chu in the SSJM semi-final 11-6, 9-11, 6-11, 11-13.
PETALING JAYA: Youngster Rachel Arnold missed out on her first Women’s Squash Association (WSA) Tour final of the year after falling to Hong Kong’s Vanessa Chu in the semi-finals of the fifth leg of the Malaysian Tour Squash Circuit (SSJM) in Penang.
Rachel, the world No. 83 and third seed, found unseeded Vanessa too hot to handle and went down 11-6, 9-11, 6-11, 11-13 in the semi-finals on Saturday. The loss means Rachel, a finalist in the NSC Series No. 1 and No. 2 last year, will have to wait a little longer before tasting success on the WSA Tour.
The reward for 19-year-old Vanessa, the world No. 123, is a showdown against world No. 81 Farah Abdel Meguid of Egypt in Sunday’s final.
Fourth seed Farah stunned top seed Eun Chan-ahn of South Korea 8-11, 11-8, 12-10, 11-5 in the other semi-final.
In the men’s division, national No. 2 Mohd Nafiizwan Adnan kept up his excellent record in the circuit by reaching his fourth final.
The world No. 36, a winner of three SSJM titles this year, was too strong for compatriot Elvinn Keo. Nafiizwan won 11-9, 11-8, 11-13, 11-6.
He will meet surprise package Valentino Bon Jovi Bong in the final.
Valentino led former world No. 10 Mohd Azlan Iskandar 3-11, 3-11, 12-10, 11-6 when the latter retired due to an injury.