Nicol David in cruise control, Laura Massaro struggles at CWG

Last Updated: Saturday, July 26, 2014 - 10:44

Glasgow: Top seeds Nicol David and Laura Massaro moved into the last eight of the Commonwealth Games women`s squash tournament on Friday, but in dramatically contrasting circumstances.

While Malaysian number one David cruised through with a 11-7, 11-6, 11-5 victory over Megan Craig of New Zealand, Massaro found the going far tougher against spirited Nicolette Fernandes of Guyana.

Massaro eventually emerged as a 11-7, 7-11, 11-4, 15-13 victor but found life difficult due to the 11th seed`s tenacity.

"It was tough," Massaro, who plays Low Wee Wern of Malaysia next, said. "Nicolette is a good player at the best of times but sometimes when she pulls on that Guyana shirt on she goes to an extra level.

"I was a bit nervous to start with. I started the day feeling a bit down and then thought: `Why am I not nervous? I should be nervous -- it`s the Commonwealth Games. I probably made myself more nervous and went too far.

"I was frustrated with myself, I did not play freely. I was hitting the ball to the back a lot, I wasn`t flowing or playing attacking, free squash.

"I know if I play like that again I will probably lose. I need to find a way of relaxing, I don`t want to not enjoy it."

David will play Jenny Duncalf of England in the quarter-finals on Saturday with David feeling at home in Glasgow.

"You definitely grow into the tournament," she said. "You just want to be out there after the hype and it`s a great feeling to be out there. My quarter-final will definitely be a step up and I`ll have to bring my `A-game`."

New Zealander Joelle King, who won women`s doubles and silver in the mixed doubles in Delhi four years ago, also secured her place in the quarter-finals with a four-game win over India`s Joshana Chinappa.

In the men`s singles, it was another good day for the three top seeds from England who all made it to the last eight.

Top seed and reigning champion Nick Matthew saw off Scotland`s Alan Clyne, who was involved in a titanic tussle with Harinder Pal Sandhu on Thursday, 11-4, 11-5, 11-8 on a day where both players were celebrating their birthdays.

Matthew next plays training partner Chris Simpson, who is representing Guernsey.

"I know Chris well," Matthew said. "We share a coach, David Pearson, he trains in Harrogate so I know him very well. He`ll be hungry. He just missed out on the England team and he`s playing for Guernsey. He carried the flag as well so he will be up for it and it should be a great match."

Second seed James Willstrop beat Martin Knight of New Zealand 11-5, 11-5, 11-5 and will now play Ivan Yeun of Malaysia.

Another Englishman, third seed Peter Barker saw off Mohd Nafiizwan Mohd Adnan of Malaysia 11-7, 11-6, 11-3 to set up a meeting with Cameron Pilley of Australia.

AFP

First Published: Saturday, July 26, 2014 - 10:44

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