Au determined to keep top 10 ranking
Hong Kong's top player, Annie Au Wing-chi, says she will need to need be at her best in the second half of the year if she wants to maintain her world No 6 ranking.
The 23-year-old, who lost in the quarter-finals of last month's British Open, is determined to finish at least in the top eight in her remaining tournaments this year. 'I achieved some very good results in the second half of last year, so I have to do the same this time around if I have to hang on to the No 6 ranking,' she said (pictured). 'It's not going to be easy because I have now become a target of many other players. They have nothing to lose when they play against me which will make my life much more difficult.'
Au first broke into the world's top 10 in May last year after she won the Buler Challenge Cup in front of her home crowd. She defeated Dona Urquhart of Australia in the final after a thrilling five-game match. She was also the first player from Hong Kong to reach a World Series gold event final when she lost to world No 1 and home favourite Nicol David of Malaysia in a tournament in April.
The World Team Championships in November, followed by the Hong Kong Open and the World Open in December will be Au's major targets this year.
Meanwhile, she will be defending her title for the third time in a row at the Crocodile Hong Kong Championships, which begin at the Squash Centre this week. Her task has been made easier after her main rival, Joey Chan Ho-ling, pulled out of the tournament due to injury.
In the men's event, members of the newly crowned East Asian team champions - Max Lee Ho-yin, Leo Au Chun-ming and Dick Lau Siu-wai - will battle it out for the national title.