Malaysia’s Nicol David marks a unique achievement in the history of squash tomorrow (1 November) when she tops the Women’s World Squash Rankings for the 100th consecutive month – becoming the first woman or man to hold the world number one ranking unopposed for more than eight years.
David first reached the top of the Women’s Squash Association (WSA) world rankings in January 2006, aged 22. After slipping to No2 in April, the 31-year-old from Penang (pictured below after winning the 2014 US Open) reclaimed pole position in August 2006 and, following a run which now boasts 77 WSA World Tour titles including a record seven World Championship titles, David reaches the latest milestone in her remarkable career.
“To be the number one in the world for 100 consecutive months is simply remarkable, in particular taking into consideration that she is only 31 years young,” said WSA CEO Tommy Berden. “Nicol’s achievements are unique within the global sporting community and it’s great for the sport to have an ambassador like her.”
Fellow Malaysian HRH Prince Tunku Imran, President of the Commonwealth Games Federation and President of the Olympic Council of Malaysia, said: “What a great achievement. Nicol continues to be a great inspiration for Malaysian sport. Her attitude, commitment, sportsmanship and professionalism has made her a living legend in our country.
“Many congratulations to a great champion and wonderful human being.”
Asian Squash Federation President David Mui, MH, JP, added: “Every one of us at ASF is very proud of Nicol for her historic achievement in the squash world and we believe that she as a role model will keep inspiring numerous youngsters making squash as their career. We also wish her to continue to make history in the coming future.”
Christopher Brodie, General Manager of the Squash Racquets Association of Malaysia, commented: “Congratulations to Nicol on her successive 100th month as the world No1 and hopefully many more months to come! Nicol continues to be such an inspiration for us all and is truly an icon for squash and sports in Malaysia.”
Liz Irving, the former world No2 from Australia who is David’s coach, said: “It has been an amazing journey working with Nicol. Her preparation and professionalism stand alone. I feel very privileged to be a part of it. Being 100 months as world No1 is a real testament to her drive and dedication to the sport.”
Fellow Australian Sarah Fitz-Gerald, the former world No1 whose five-world-title record David bettered in 2011, added: “Nicol … what an amazing champion this young lady is …. 100 months and still going strong! If records aren’t crashing, she’s creating them!”
While England’s Laura Massaro retains second place in the November WSA rankings, ahead of third-placed Egyptian Raneem El Welily, it is another Egyptian Nour El Sherbini who leaps five places to take over the No4 position.
El Sherbini, the 18-year-old from Alexandria who is the youngest player in the world top 20, celebrated her return to the WSA Tour after a knee injury layoff by reaching October’s Delaware Investments US Open final as the seventh seed.
England’s Emma Beddoes celebrates a career-high ranking in the November list: A quarter-finalist in the recent Macau Open and Carol Weymuller Open – on both occasions unseeded – Beddoes rises two places to 18.
A trio of Egyptian teenagers record notable career-high rankings in the new rankings – 17-year-old Nouran Gohar moving up two places to 22; 15-year-old Habiba Mohamed Ahmed leaping 10 places in two months to 24; and 18-year-old Salma Hany Ibrahim jumping 14 places since September to a best-ever 26.
Now with eight players in the top 30 for first time, Egypt will be looking forward to significant home success in the 2014 World Championship inCairo in December.
November top 20 (inc. points average):
|3||||Raneem El Welily||EGY||1,984|
|4||||Nour El Sherbini||EGY||1,318|
|7||||Low Wee Wern||MAS||1,033|
|8||||Nour El Tayeb||EGY||1,000|
|11||||Omneya Abdel Kawy||EGY||769|
For the complete WSA ranking list, see www.wsaworldtour.com