3:54 pm
21 Feb 2019

Bailey Back At Best Ever Ranking

27 Feb 2007

While Nicol David of Malaysia retains her world number one ranking in the new March Women's World Rankings, published today by the Women's International Squash Players' Association (WISPA), England's Tania Bailey moves up to four to return to the career-best position she first achieved exactly four years ago.

The 27-year-old from Lincolnshire was laid low for almost three years following this career-high ranking, in what she has described as 'a real rollercoaster experience' after first sustaining a knee injury in a minor road accident. After surgery on her knee, Bailey was troubled by a virus "which just wouldn't go away".

The England international's ranking plunged to 19 before she was finally able to resume her squash career and fight her way back to the top. In 2006, after winning her maiden British National title in February, Bailey picked her first WISPA title for more than six years at the Vassar College Class of 1932 Open, then reached the finals of the Malaysian Open and Hong Kong Open later in the year.

Australia's Grinham sisters Natalie Grinham and Rachael Grinham hold onto second and third place, respectively, in the new list, while Bailey's England team-mate Vicky Botwright rises to No5, also equalling her best-ever position.

Another English player Laura-Jane Lengthorn not only makes her top ten debut in the March rankings, but also becomes the third highest-ranked Englishwoman for the first time. The 23-year-old from Preston rises to 10, overtaking compatriots Alison Waters, at 11, and Jenny Duncalf, at 12.

Meanwhile, Vanessa Atkinson has fallen four places as a result of losing her bumper haul of points from February last year that now drop off. They included those from winning the CIMB Kuala Lumpur Open, which is scheduled to begin in two weeks time - and at which she will hope to do well to climb again.

Lower in the list, Australia's Kasey Brown moves up to a career-best No17 ranking after reaching the final of the Mayfair Lakeshore Open this month in Canada.

Playing two events in February after slipping out of the top 20 for the first time for four years was clearly the inspiration needed by Isabelle Stoehr to revitalise her career. The 27-year-old French champion won both events - the Mayfair Lakeshore Open and Des Pyramides Open in her home country - to leap back to 17 in the March list!

1 [1] Nicol David MAS
2 [2] Natalie Grinham AUS
3 [3] Rachael Grinham AUS
4 [5] Tania Bailey ENG
5 [7] Vicky Botwright ENG
6 [6] Natalie Grainger USA
7 [9] Omneya Abdel Kawy EGY
8 [4] Vanessa Atkinson NED
9 [8] Madeline Perry IRL
10 [11] Laura-Jane Lengthorn ENG
11 [10] Alison Waters ENG
12 [12 Jenny Duncalf ENG
13 [13] Engy Kheirallah EGY
14 [14] Shelley Kitchen NZL
15 [15] Rebecca Chiu HKG
16 [17] Kasey Brown AUS
17 [21] Isabelle Stoehr FRA
18 [16] Annelize Naude NED
19 [18] Sharon Wee MAS
20 [19] Dominique Lloyd-Walter ENG

For the complete WISPA ranking list, see www.wispa.net