Hopes of a domestic triumph in the Cathay Pacific Hong Kong Open ended yesterday with the defeat of Rebecca Chiu Wing-yin.
Chiu (pictured) took a game off world number one Nicol David of Malaysia in the last 16 before losing 3-1 at Hong Kong Squash Centre.
Despite the scoreline, it was Chiu's best recent performance against the Malaysian, who has now notched up 50 matches without defeat, and is looking forward to her 12th successive title win.
'I do not think there have been too many players who have been able to take one game off her recently,' said the Hong Kong champion, who lost 11-8, 11-5, 8-11, 11-2 in 34 minutes.
'I had a very good match, but she was just too good. The first game was close and I could have won it with a bit more determination. But she was always there to stop me. After I won the third set, she upped the tempo and it was too hard to follow her pace.'
David will meet Omneya Abdel Kway in today's quarter-finals. The Egyptian defeated Mexico's Samantha Teran in straight games.
Hong Kong coach Tony Choi Yuk-kwan was pleased with his charges in the premier HK$1.6 million tournament.
Choi said Joey Chan Ho-ling and Annie Au Wing-chi, who both went out in the first round, showed they had the quality to break into the world's top 20, provided they gained more international exposure, while Liu Tsz-ling looked impressive at the age of 16.
'Our target is next year's East Asian Games and I am happy to see many youngsters coming through in this top event,' said Choi. 'We should have had two more women's players reach the second round, but they were just too young and lacked the experience to get there. But I am confident they can make progress before the Games start in December 2009.'
In the men's event, world number one Amr Shabana of Egypt will be looking for revenge over compatriot Karim Darwish in today's quarter-finals.
The two met in the final of the Qatar Classic three weeks ago when Darwish defeated the defending champion 3-0 to lift the title.
Shabana defeated Stewart Boswell of Australia 3-1 yesterday, while Darwish won in straight games over Peter Barker of England.
On the trot
Nicol David has notched up an impressive half-century winning streak: 50