Nicol David sails into quarter-finals of British Open in 35 minutes

PETALING JAYA: It was all too easy for world No. 1 Nicol David as she moved into the quarter-finals of the British Open at the KC Stadium in Hull, England, on Wednesday.

Nicol, bidding to win her fifth British Open title, took just 35 minutes to overpower England’s Sarah Kippax 11-2, 14-12, 11-2 in the second round.

It was a typical power-packed performance by the defending champion, who will turn 30 in August.

Nicol took the first set 11-2 in double quick time in the chilly British weather.

But Kippax, buoyed by an upset win over Holland’s Natalie Grinham in the first round, staged a comeback in the second and even held game point.

Nicol, who thrives playing under pressure, duly saved game point before raising her game to ease home 11-2 in the third.

“It’s so good to play in the glass court ... it’s the first time for us here in this setting, so we’re all pretty excited to be here,” said Nicol.

“The difference betweeen this court and the one in the first round at Pontefract is that we have to work extremely hard in every rally ... for every point.

“Sarah was feeding off the crowd in the second set and began to ride on the momentum. So, I had to make sure I took that game and come back stronger in the third.”

The Penangite will face world No. 6 Joelle King of New Zealand today for a place in the semi-finals.

The lanky King also had a fairly easy second round match – ousting newly-crowned Asian champion Annie Au of Hong Kong 11-5, 11-7, 11-5 in 27 minutes.

“I knew Annie was lethal with her short game, so I kept her out of her attacking positions and made my lead early,” said King.

Other second round matches saw 12th seed Kasey Brown of Australia staging an impressive comeback from two sets down to beat rising English star Sarah-Jane Perry in five sets.

Fourth seed Alison Waters also took the hard road as she threw away a two-set lead before regaining composure to score an 11-2, 11-4, 8-11, 7-11, 11-4 win over Aussie veteran Rachael Grinham.

In the men’s event, Egypt’s Tarek Momen continued his rise to the top with a superb 9-11, 11-4, 11-6, 11-9 upset win over seventh seed Peter Barker of England.

World No. 11 Momen will take on France’s fourth seeded Gregory Gaultier, who had no problems beating India’s Saurav Ghosal 11-8, 11-13, 11-7, 11-0.

Home favourite Nick Matthew also progressed after beating Holland’s Laurens Jan Anjema and faces reigning KL Open champion Karim Darwish next.

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Sport , squash , British Open , Nicol David


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