David, Massaro and Welily in from at ToC!

“It’s great to be back here in New York in what is one of the most amazing places in the world to play squash,” said Nicol David.

On the opening day of Women’s action at the 2016 J.P. Morgan Tournament of Champions, which for the 1st time in tournament history is offering equal prize money across both the Men’s and Women’s draws, title favourites Nicol David, Laura Massaro and Raneem El Welily, the defending champion, signalled their intentions to triumph on the sport’s grandest stage with a trio of dominant first round performances.

After enduring a series of disappointing results during the second half of 2015 recently deposed No.1 El Welily, for whom victory here 12 months ago laid the foundations for her surge towards dethroning Nicol David and ending the Malaysian’s nine-year rankings reign, hinted at a timely return to form as she breezed past Tesni Evans. The victory sees her move closer to a potential semi-final encounter with in-form Massaro, who took out home hope Olivia Blatchford with a composed performance.

“I’m really happy to be back here in New York,” said El Welily, who came through 11-6, 11-6, 11-5 after 30 minutes. “It’s a great crowd, great venue and great atmosphere to play in and I’m happy with how I played today.

David, who at World No.3 is at her lowest ranking in ten years, returned to form in December with a decisive victory at the 2015 Hong Kong Open and she picked up from where she left off prior to the Christmas break with a destructive victory over England’s Victoria Lust, dropping just seven points throughout the 25 minute match.

Results Women’s 1st round
[1] Raneem El Welily (EGY) bt [Q] Tesni Evans (WAL) 11-6, 11-6, 11-5 (30m)
[10] Amanda Sobhy (USA) bt [Q] Deon Saffery (WAL) 11-5, 11-4, 11-9 (25m)
[14] Delia Arnold (MAS) bt Rachael Grinham (AUS) 7-11, 13-11, 11-7, 11-6 (37m)
[6] Alison Waters (ENG) bt Jenny Duncalf (ENG) 8-11, 11-8, 11-5, 11-8 (37m)
[8] Nouran Gohar (EGY) bt [Q] Yathreb Adel (EGY) 11-5, 11-7, 11-6
Heba El Torky (EGY) bt [12] Joelle King (NZL) 9-11, 11-5, 12-10, 11-9 (42m)
[Q] Coline Aumard (FRA) bt [11] Sarah-Jane Perry (ENG) 14-12, 11-9, 11-4 (56m)
[3] Laura Massaro (ENG) bt [Q] Olivia Blatchford (USA) 11-6, 11-3, 5-11, 11-7 (38m)
[4] Camille Serme (FRA) bt Donna Urquhart (AUS) 11-7, 11-5, 11-9 (31m)
[16] Emily Whitlock (ENG) bt [Q] Misaki Kobayashi (JPN) 11-5, 11-6, 11-9 (36m)
[Q] Mariam Metwally (EGY) bt [13] Dipika Pallikal (IND) 11-7, 12-10, 11-6 (34m)
[7] Nour El Sherbini (EGY) bt [Q] Samantha Teran (MEX) 16-14, 11-2, 11-1 (27m)
[5] Omneya Abdel Kawy (EGY) bt Low Wee Wern (MAS) 11-9, 7-11, 9-11, 11-7, 11-7 (50m)
[15] Joshna Chinappa (IND) bt [WC] Kanzy Emad El Defrawy (EGY) 8-11, 8-11, 11-8, 11-8, 11-7 (59m)
[9] Annie Au (HKG) bt Joey Chan (HKG) 11-9, 11-7, 12-10 (35m)
[2] Nicol David (MAS) bt Victoria Lust (ENG) 11-2, 11-3, 11-2 (25m)

Draw: Women’s 2nd round
[1] Raneem El Welily (EGY) v [10] Amanda Sobhy (USA)
[6] Alison Waters (ENG) v [14] Delia Arnold (MAS)
[8] Nouran Gohar (EGY) v Heba El Torky (EGY)
[3] Laura Massaro (ENG) v [Q] Coline Aumard (FRA)
[4] Camille Serme (FRA) v [16] Emily Whitlock (ENG)
[7] Nour El Sherbini (EGY) v [Q] Mariam Metwally (EGY)
[5] Omneya Abdel Kawy (EGY) v [15] Joshna Chinappa (IND)
[2] Nicol David (MAS) v [9] Annie Au (HKG)