PETALING JAYA: Malaysian squash queen Nicol David is simply an unstoppable force in Hong Kong.
The Penangite demolished England’s Laura Massaro 15-13, 11-5, 11-3 for her 11th Hong Kong Open crown – in her 100th Professional Squash Association Tour final – at the Hong Kong Squash Centre.
Nicol has yet to lose in Hong Kong since 2005, extending her winning streak on the island nation to a remarkable 55 matches. It is also her 80th career title – but only her second of the year since the Cleveland Classic in February.
“I really can’t believe it ... this is a special place to me and winning the title in Hong Kong again means so much to me,” said an emotional Nicol.
“I was basically running on adrenaline. Laura was so tough ... I had to focus and give it all I had,” said Nicol, who fired 30 winners compared to just eight by Massaro.
“I felt good too, I think that was one my best performances in quite a while. Laura is a fighter, but I wanted it so badly today ... so I attacked from the start.
“The fans here are also amazing. I really like coming back here as I get to feed off the crowd, which gave me an extra push to the end.”
The 32-year-old Massaro can at least take consolation from the fact that she’ll be the world No. 1 in January – becoming only the third Englishwoman after Lisa Opie and Cassie Jackman to achieve that feat.
“It was a high-quality match ... I tried to fight for every point but it was too much in the end. Nicol was at her best,” said Massaro.
In men’s event, defending champion Mohamed El Shorbagy retained his title by beating Australia’s Cameron Pilley 11-8, 11-6, 11-8.
“Cameron’s had a great run here but I’m pleased to be able to stop him and retain the title,” said the 24-year-old.