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Houston Hosts Champion Fiberglass Texas Open Gold
Howard Harding reports...

WSA WORLD TOUR NEWS

Houston Hosts Champion Fiberglass Texas Open Gold

7 April 2014

One of the longest-established events on the Women's Squash Association World Tour celebrates Gold for the first time in Houston this week when the Champion Fiberglass Texas Open opens its doors to 11 of the world's top 20 women at The Downtown Club at the Met in the USA's fourth largest city from 8-13 April.

The 2014 WSA Gold 50 championship marks the 13th staging of the event which has alternated between Dallas and Houston each year since its launch in 2002.

Malaysia's world No7 Low Wee Wern is seeded to win the title for the first time - but will face stiff competition from three former champions, including title-holder Madeline Perry, the world No8 from Ireland; France's Camille Serme, the 2012 champion now ranked six in the world; and Australia's former world number one Rachael Grinham, the champion in 2004 and 2011 who made her Texas Open debut in the inaugural event in 2002.

Home hopes will be led by New York's Amanda Sobhy, the 20-year-old Harvard University student who celebrates a career-high world No15 ranking this month.

"Having a Gold level, the first time here, is a tribute how much squash has grown in the last two years in this city," said John Leavy, President of the Houston Squash Racquets Association, the championship hosts. "The sponsors have gotten together and decided to show off how much they want this sport to match the exciting growth of Houston.

"Taking over the HSRA one and a half years ago, I received 1-2 mails, or calls monthly, about where to play squash and how newcomers could get involved. That number is up to between 12-15 monthly with questions about our squash community.

"The HSRA, along with our long-time partner Champion Fiberglass, is excited to see the talent we have been able to attract this year.

"Not only many veterans that have played here before - such as Camille Serme 2012's winner here - but also Madeline Perry, 2013's winner in Dallas.

"Returning is Rachael Grinham and Kasey Brown, and Donna Urquhart. But also the ladies knocking on the top players door such as Low Wee Wern, Sarah-Jane Perry, and especially Nour El Sherbini, a surprise at the recent Worlds," added Leavy.

"All players will be treated to entrance to the US Clay Court Tennis Championships, a wonderful Wednesday night party at one of the sponsor beautiful homes, swag bags with many goodies, and a "special" tournament treat!

"The HSRA is ready to show off to the world how we can put on a show equalled to other top cities. Streaming video will be available starting April 10th hosted by www.livestream.com Please tune in, or stop by, to see some exciting sport being played."

1st round draw:
[2] Madeline Perry (IRL) v Qualifier
[6] Kasey Brown (AUS) v Qualifier
[4] Dipika Pallikal (IND) v Qualifier
[5] Annie Au (HKG) v Nicolette Fernandes (GUY)
[8] Rachael Grinham (AUS) v Joshana Chinappa (IND)
[3] Camille Serme (FRA) v Amanda Sobhy (USA)
[7] Omneya Abdel Kawy (EGY) v Qualifier
[1] Low Wee Wern (MAS) v Sarah-Jane Perry (ENG)

For all the latest WSA Tour news: wsaworldtour.com

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