Chorley squash star Laura Massaro was beaten by long-time rival Nicol David in the final of the 2015 Cathay Pacific Sun Hung Kai Financial Hong Kong Open.
It was a scintillating performance from Malaysia's David to win 3-0 and bring the Englishwoman’s 14 match unbeaten streak to an end and claim an unprecedented 10th consecutive Hong Kong Open crown in the process.
Competing in her 100th PSA World Tour final the Malaysian came into the match with the knowledge she hadn’t lost here since 2004 and played with the confidence and aura that epitomised her style during a record 109-month streak as World No.1 as she controlled the court to hit an astounding 30 winners during the 39 minute encounter.
“Winning the title in Hong Kong tonight for the tenth time means so, so much to me,” said David, the current World No.3, who’s last major title triumph came in December 2014 when she lifted the 2014 World Championship.
“I love playing here and it’s a very special place for me. I really wanted to win this title and end the year strongly so winning tonight was extra special. I enjoyed every minute on court.
“I felt good and I think that was one of my best performances in quite a while. I know she’s a fighter who comes back strong but I wanted it so badly today that I think that was the difference. I wanted to attack from the start and just give it everything I had to get my hands on the trophy.
“This tournament has been one of the best I have ever played and from now on it’s all upwards. If I keep playing the way I’m playing and performing well then I know titles will start to come again.”
Massaro, who will become World No.1 in January for the first time after winning three tournaments this season and reaching the final here, said: “It was a high quality match and I tried to fight for every point but it was just too much in the end.
“The first game was crucial and it could have been a different match if I’d taken that one but Nicol was playing at her best today, and I was a little off my best, and that was ultimately the difference.”