DUNCALF REACHES HONG KONG SEMI-FINALS

Yorkshire’s Jenny Duncalf today qualified for her first WSA Tour semi-final since last October, when she cruised into the last four of the $25,000 HKFC International in Hong Kong.

The 32-year-old third seed from Harrogate marked her first Tour encounter with the Netherlands’ Milou van der Heijden with a straight-games victory in 38 minutes.

The world no.16 – who triumphed 11-8, 11-6, 11-8 – now plays world junior champion Habiba Mohamed, after the 15-year-old Egyptian shocked second seed Rachael Grinham 3/0.

Meanwhile in the $25,000 PSA Tour event running alongside the women’s tournament, Surrey’s Tom Richards bowed out at the quarter-final stage after a brave effort against top seed Max Lee.

The sixth seed from Walton-on-Thames had never previously lost to the Hong Kong no.1, but it proved third time lucky for Lee, who squeezed home 6-11, 11-0, 15-13, 16-18, 11-5 in 68 minutes.

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Croatia caps WSF Ambassador trip

WSF Ambassadors Nicol David and Borja Golan concluded their Eastern European trip with a two day visit to Zagreb in Croatia.

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A 7.00am start on the opening day saw David & Golan discussing the appeal of squash live on the HRT1’s “Good Morning Croatia” – and less than an hour later, the WSF Ambassadors were welcomed in the Zagreb Town Hall by the city’s dynamic Mayor Milan Bandic.

The group’s next appointment was with the Croatian Olympic Committee and Vice President Morana Palikovic Gruden. “Squash is a great sport,” said Ms Gruden, who is also Chairwoman of the Women in Sport Commission.

Media interest in the sport’s Zagreb visit continued back at the city’s biggest club SquashTower where a press conference attracted a variety of media.

In addition to further TV interviews the WSF Ambassadors also undertook a variety of press interviews – one of which resulted in a 3-page colour feature on David in the weekly news magazine NACIONAL.

David, a ‘veteran’ of all but one of the WSF Ambassador visits, said: “This is my first time in the Balkan region and the moment I landed at our first stop in Belgrade, I knew I was going to experience something pretty special. The thing that stands out the most is their passion for squash just from their enthusiasm and commitment to the sport.

"I came to the Balkans not knowing what to expect but after the whole week, I’ve just been truly inspired by the lovely people that have shared their joys and struggles to make things happen for squash in their country. I hope that our WSF Ambassador Programme will help them get more awareness within their country to grow the sport further.

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HKFC Quarter-Finals

While the top four seeds will contest the men’s semis at HK Football Club, there was a big upset in the women’s draw …

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