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David determined to win

Recently crowned World Open champion Nicol David seeks to carry her consistent run of success into the 2008 Qatar Classic in a bid to retain the title she won last year, when the top-ranked player squares up to Dominique Llyod-Walter in the first round match at the Khalifa Squash Complex tomorrow.

The current World number one is fresh from World Open title, she won in England this month, which she was determined to regain after having lost her grip over it last year, to add to the titles she won in 2005 and 2006.

Nicknamed the ‘Duracell Bunny’ she had earlier regained the British Open title this year. The twin major titles which she had targeted before the start of the season.

However, the Malaysian will be taking it match by match, here in Qatar.

“Ultimately, it will be getting used to the conditions, trying to give your best and a matter of playing well on a particular day,” she said.

On her first-round opponent, Dominique, she said: “I have played her only once some years back, so I will have to work out everything together. I do not know much about her game.” The twenty-five-year-old feels that the preparatory work she undertook to tie up the lose ends of her game before the start of the British Open, should hold her good for the entire season.

“The last few months had been crucial for me in preparing for the two major tournaments- British Open and World Open. But, Qatar Classic, Hong Kong squash Open and World Team Championship are the other events which I have on my radar of success.”

David who expressed her reservation over the new 11-point system, going into the World Open said that she is getting used to the new point system.

“You have to mentally sharp, straight away in the 11-point scoring system and do not allow your concentration to flounder. If you are down, there is not much time for recovery, and by the time you try to bounce back, it is all over. But I hope to do my best and have been trying to adjust to the changes.”

But she favours the idea of the nine-point system for the juniors.

“I would love the junior players to have the 9-point system of scoring which we enjoyed as juniors. The old system gives an opportunity for the juniors to bounce back, if they are down in a game.”

David, who has won the World Open on four occasions and has an amazing 31 WISPA Tour titles against her name. Recently she became the youngest Malaysian to be conferred with Datukship in her home state of Penang. Datuk, is the Malaysian senior order of chivalry title an equivalent of a British knighthood.

“I’m happy that the Penang State appreciates my achievements and supports me in my squash career. The honour conferred on me is a motivation for young junior players from Malaysia and will also motivate me for more success. I am delighted that my success has been noticed by the state and the honour will serve as an added incentive to achieve greater success.”

And she sees many junior players from Malaysia dominating the game in the coming years.