10:07 pm
20 May 2024

Nicol David Completes Second Calendar Year As World Number One

3 Dec 2008

While Malaysia's Nicol David completes her second full calendar year as world number one in the new December Women's World Squash Rankings, Londoner Alison Waters makes notable progress by moving to a career-high No5 to become the highest-ranked English player for the first time in the list published by the Women's International Squash Players' Association (WISPA).

Nicol David maintained her overwhelming dominance of the women's world game last month by winning the Cathay Pacific Hong Kong Open title for the third time in a row - bringing her career Tour title haul to 34, but, more significantly, her year's title tally to ten! The 25-year-old from Penang also extended her unbeaten Tour record to 53 matches in more than a year.

Alison Waters has made marked progress since joining the WISPA World Tour in 2000. The 24-year-old claimed three unexpected semi-final berths in WISPA Gold events in Malaysia, Korea and the Netherlands this year and became British National champion for the first time at the beginning of the year.

After beating Natalie Grinham to reach last month's Hong Kong Open final, Australia's Rachael Grinham returns to third place in the new list, just behind her younger sister who now represents the Netherlands.

There are welcome returns to the top ten by New Zealander Shelley Kitchen and Ireland's Madeline Perry. Aucklander Kitchen reached last month's Carol Weymuller Open final in New York against the odds and moves up to nine.

It is more than a year since Perry was last in the top ten. The 31-year-old from Belfast, who has battled back to form after suffering a serious head injury just over a year ago, secured a semi-final berth in October's World Open as the 14th seed - and followed this with an unexpected quarter-final finish in the Qatar Classic.

Three players are celebrating career-best rankings in the new list - and two their debuts in the top 20. England's Lauren Briggs moves two places to a best-ever 18 and 19-year-old Raneem El Weleily leaps four places to become the second highest-ranked Egyptian at 19, overtaking compatriot Engy Kheirallah for the first time.

But Hong Kong's Annie Au, also 19, becomes the youngest player in the top 20 after moving up to 20. The teenager, who is currently leading the Hong Kong attack with distinction in the Women's World Team Championship in Cairo, has already notched up three WISPA titles this year, in Chinese Taipei, Australia and India.

1 [1] Nicol David MAS
2 [2] Natalie Grinham NED
3 [4] Rachael Grinham AUS
4 [3] Natalie Grainger USA
5 [6] Alison Waters ENG
6 [5] Jenny Duncalf ENG
7 [8] Omneya Abdel Kawy EGY
8 [9] Laura Lengthorn-Massaro ENG
9 [11] Madeline Perry IRL
10 [12] Shelley Kitchen NZL
11 [10] Vanessa Atkinson NED
12 [14] Isabelle Stoehr FRA
13 [13] Kasey Brown AUS
14 [7] Vicky Botwright ENG
15 [15] Rebecca Chiu HKG
16 [16] Jaclyn Hawkes NZL
17 [18] Samantha Teran MEX
18 [20] Lauren Briggs ENG
19 [23] Raneem El Weleily EGY
20 [21] Annie Au HKG

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