Waters Waltzes To Grinham Win In KL

6 Mar 08

England's Alison Waters recorded the best win of her career when she upset Australia's world No3 Rachael Grinham in today's quarter-finals of the CIMB KL Open to earn a shock semi-final berth in the women's WISPA Gold event at the National Squash Centre in the Malaysian capital Kuala Lumpur.

Just a few weeks after becoming the surprise winner of the British National Championship title for the first time, the unseeded 23-year-old from London romped to a two-game lead over her experienced opponent from Queensland.

But third seed Grinham, a former world number one, regained the initiative by taking the next two games to draw level. However, with the match moving into a second hour, Waters upped her game to claim a stunning 9-2, 9-4, 7-9, 4-9, 9-2 victory after 65 minutes.

Waters now faces the toughest opponent in the event - top seed and local star Nicol David. The world number one from Penang cruised into the semi-finals with a 9-4, 9-3, 9-4 win over unseeded opponent Laura Lengthorn-Massaro, also from England.

There was another upset in the lower half of the draw where unseeded Dutch player Vanessa Atkinson secured her second upset in 24 hours by beating Omneya Abdel Kawy, the No8 seed from Egypt, 9-3, 9-10, 9-5, 8-10, 9-3. Atkinson now faces her new Dutch compatriot Natalie Grinham for a place in the final.

An all-Malaysian final is still in prospect in the men's 5-star PSA Tour event. Fourth seed Ong Beng Hee, currently the highest-ranked Malaysian - at No17 in the PSA list - survived the longest men's match in overcoming sixth-seeded Egyptian Omar Mosaad 11-9, 5-11, 11-2, 11-10 (3-1) in 60 minutes.

The 28-year-old former world No7 will now face Stewart Boswell, the top seed from Australia who was runner-up last year. Boswell beat Pakistan's Aamir Atlas Khan 11-7, 7-11, 11-9, 11-9.

KL-based Mohd Azlan Iskandar earned the quickest win of the day, beating fifth seed Jonathan Kemp, from England, 11-8, 11-5, 11-7 in 35 minutes. The 25-year-old third seed - winner of the title in 2003 and 2006 - now takes on Adrian Grant, the second seed from England who defeated fellow left-hander Mansoor Zaman, the No8 seed from Pakistan, 7-11, 11-6, 11-5, 11-5.

Men's quarter-finals:
[1] Stewart Boswell (AUS) bt [7] Aamir Atlas Khan (PAK) 11-7, 7-11, 11-9, 11-9 (48m)
[4] Ong Beng Hee (MAS) bt [6] Omar Mosaad (EGY) 11-9, 5-11, 11-2, 11-10 (3-1) (60m)
[3] Mohd Azlan Iskandar (MAS) bt [5] Jonathan Kemp (ENG) 11-8, 11-5, 11-7 (35m)
[2] Adrian Grant (ENG) bt [8] Mansoor Zaman (PAK) 7-11, 11-6, 11-5, 11-5 (40m)

Women's quarter-finals:
[1] Nicol David (MAS) bt Laura Lengthorn-Massaro (ENG) 9-4, 9-3, 9-4 (28m)
Alison Waters (ENG) bt [3] Rachael Grinham (AUS) 9-2, 9-4, 7-9, 4-9, 9-2 (65m)
Vanessa Atkinson (NED) bt [8] Omneya Abdel Kawy (EGY) 9-3, 9-10, 9-5, 8-10, 9-3 (50m)
[2] Natalie Grinham (NED) bt [Q] Rebecca Chiu (HKG) 9-7, 9-2, 7-9, 9-3 (51m)