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Squash: David to seek revenge in British Open final

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(Globalpost/GlobalPost)

World number one Nicol David has revenge on her mind after an impressive performance on Saturday saw her carry her defence of the British Open title into the final.

David's 11-5, 11-4, 11-5 win over Alison Waters earned her another meeting with Laura Massaro, whose two victories over the record-breaking Malaysian in Kuala Lumpur this year brought a shocked reaction and a claim that the legend was "in the twilight of her career."

However the 29-year-old looked as good as ever while beating Waters, who had been good enough to beat David in New York in September but was now undone by the champion's ability to cope with constantly varying conditions.

Weather had forced the women's event into three different venues in five days, with two very different types of court and constantly varying temperatures, but David played as if nothing had changed.

Her ability to make the first dart into the front court was more effective than it has ever been, enabling her to win quick points with a daring which might once have been beyond her.

The match lasted only 27 minutes

Asked if she had been in a hurry, she said: "It felt like it, yes. But Alison makes it like that because she plays like that.

"Alison started really strong and I found myself hanging back a bit, when I needed to step forward."

When she was asked about playing in the final and aiming for her fifth British Open title, David affected as if to have forgotten that.

"Oh yes I am in the final," she said. "I have just been focusing completely on trying to win this match. Yes, of course I am pleased to be in the final."

So is Massaro - so much so that she admitted to being affected by the prospect of reaching it for the first time in a British Open, her home tournament.

It made for a nervy, mistake-ridden end to a 8-11, 11-6, 11-8, 11-9 win in what had often been an attractive, creative match against Raneem El Weleily, the brilliant Egyptian against whom she had saved a match point in the World Open semi-final in Grand Cayman in December.

Weleily appeared to have the skills to win on this court but her slightly sleepy brilliance allowed her to let slip leads of 8-7 in the third game and 7-4 in the fourth, and Massaro took advantage, twice hurling bile at the referee for doubtful line decisions.

"It was a little emotional at the end," Massaro admitted. "I was finding it hard in the last few rallies to keep it out of my mind. For a British person to reach the final of the British Open is an amazing thing.

"My head-to-head against Nicol is ridiculously one-sided (in the Malaysian's favour) but I have won a couple of times recently which is an advantage. And I have been working on one or two things at home which may help.

"I love what I am doing. I just want to enjoy each match - and tomorrow I am saving the best for last!"

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http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/afp/130525/squash-david-seek-revenge-british-open-final