Goliath David leads Duncalf to the slaughter

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 10 November, 2007, 12:00am
UPDATED : Saturday, 10 November, 2007, 12:00am

World number one Nicol David marched into the semi-finals of the Cathay Pacific Hong Kong Open in great style after registering a straight-games victory over Jenny Duncalf of England last night.

In a one-sided match, the 24-year-old Malaysian needed only 24 minutes to tear her opponent apart with a convincing 9-3, 9-2, 9-2 win at Hong Kong Squash Centre.

'After two days at the glass court, I know how to work it better,' said David, who has yet to drop a game in three rounds of play.

Still smarting from her surprise second-round defeat in the World Open two weeks ago, David will meet Vicky Botwright, also from England, in today's semi-finals, which will be held inside a shopping mall in Diamond Hill.

'It will be a different environment but I like it because more people can watch the game and the atmosphere will be great,' said David, who won her first Hong Kong Open title at the same shopping mall last year.

She beat Botwright 3-0 when they last met at the Singapore Open in August, but David will not take things for granted at the HK$1.6 million tournament. 'It's a new game and a new tournament and I have to be ready if I want to win again,' she said.

Sixth seed Botwright, meanwhile, pulled off a major surprise in her quarter-final as she ousted newly crowned world champion Rachael Grinham of Australia 5-9, 9-6, 10-9, 9-4. 'She just played a better game than me and a lot of girls are very close these days,' said Grinham, the number three seed. 'You've got to play your best to win. I tried today but she just punished every mistake I made and I could not do anything.'

Grinham family interest was maintained in the tournament by Natalie Grinham, who beat Omneya Abdel Kawy of Egypt 9-0, 9-3, 9-2.

The younger Grinham will now meet American Natalie Grainger, who beat England's Alison Waters, winning 9-5, 9-6, 9-5.

In the men's event, world number one Amr Shabana of Egypt beat compatriot Wael El Hindi 7-11, 11-7, 11-8, 11-7), to set up a clash with Australian David Palmer, who trounced Egyptian Karim Darwish 11-4, 11-7, 11-6.