Chorley’s world No.4 Laura Massaro has got her 2016/17 PSA Dubai Squash World Series Finals campaign off to a winning start.
The 33-year-old defeated two-time winner Nicol David 2-0 (12-10, 12-10) in the iconic Dubai Opera on day one in a best-of-three games clash.
Preston-based Massaro and David have contested one of the sport’s most fascinating rivalries of recent times.
David led the head-to-head record 22-8, having won their last meeting at the 2015 Hong Kong Open.
The match started tentatively, with both players struggling to find their lines and making errors.
But it soon developed into a free-flowing affair, with Massaro fighting back from three game-balls down to take the first game by a 12-10 margin and she claimed the second game by the same scoreline to claim two valuable points in Group B.
“I didn’t realise no one else had dropped a game,” she said.
“It was tight and in that second game when I was in front I was thinking that I would be gutted if I lost that one and it went to three.
“I’m really happy to close it out in the end.
“You know you’ve got three matches either way and you’ve got to do your best in all of them.
“If I’d lost I would have had a bit of an uphill battle for the next game and the one after.
“But a victory under my belt doesn’t mean anything at this point unless I can get at least one more win.
“I’m off to a good start, but that’s all it is really – a start.
“In a best- of-three it helps you a little bit to know that you did it well last year.”
Massaro will play British Open runner-up and compatriot Sarah-Jane Perry in her second fixture in the round-robin format.