David in Bid to Overtake Grinham in Seoul
Malaysia’s world number one Nicol David is seeded to reach her 52nd WISPA World Squash Tour final in this week’s $60,000 Women’s Seoul Open in South Korea, thus moving ahead of her long-time rival Rachael Grinham to boast more Tour finals than any other current player.
But it is the second-seeded Australian whom David is expected to line up against in Sunday’s climax on an all-glass court at Hyundai I-Park Yongsan Plaza in Seoul.
The 2009 Seoul Open, the third WISPA Gold event of the year, is in its third year in the Korean capital. The championship has attracted a star-studded field, including seven players from the world top ten. Nicol David, runner-up in 2007 and champion last year, is looking to record a hat-trick of successive final appearances.
The 25-year-old from Penang faces a qualifier in Wednesday’s opening round and is expected to meet 2007 champion Natalie Grinham, the third seed, in the semi-finals. The world No4 - Rachael Grinham’s younger sister - arrives in Seoul fresh from victory in the European Individual Championships, the 31-year-old’s first title success since becoming a Dutch national last year.
Grinham senior also takes on a qualifier in the first round - with the draw predicting a semi-final clash with England’s No4 seed Jenny Duncalf.
The 2009 Seoul Open, only the fourth Tour event to be staged in South Korea, is helping to raise the profile of Squash in the country.
Mr Yoon Hong-Geun, Chairman of sponsors Genesis-BBQ, explained: “The Seoul Women’s Open will again help us to promote squash in Seoul and we hope that the all-glass court and television programmes will help us see squash become an official Olympic sport.”
1st round draw:
 Nicol David (MAS) v Qualifier
 Alison Waters (ENG) v Song Sun-Mi (KOR)
 Natalie Grinham (NED) v Qualifier
 Kasey Brown (AUS) v Samantha Teran (MEX)
 Madeline Perry (IRL) v Jaclyn Hawkes (NZL)
 Jenny Duncalf (ENG) v Qualifier
 Shelley Kitchen (NZL) v Rebecca Chiu (HKG)
 Rachael Grinham (AUS) v Qualifier
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