* Nicol David *(Mas) bt  Natalie Grinham (Ned) 11/9,
11/4, 11/6 (44m)*
 Jenny Duncalf* (Eng) bt  Samantha Teran (Mex) 11/9, 11/4,
She’s been World no.2 for most of the last three years, it’s surprising
that *Jenny Duncalf* had never reached a World Open final. Having never met
*Samantha Teran* before in tournament, or even friendly, play it was not
surprising that the opening exchanges of the first World Open Squash 2011
semi-final at the Luxor Theatre in Rotterdam were cagey as both players
probed to find weaknesses. There was little to separate the players for
most of the first game before Duncalf played two immaculate rallies to take
the lead 11/9. She was always ahead after that, despite the best efforts of
Teran, who worked tirelessly to try and hang into the match.
However, the Englishwoman was determined to seize this opportunity, and
from 8/7 in the third an error was followed by two winners to seal victory.
The muted celebration and look of relief on Duncalf's face was evidence of
the frustration of never having previously reached this stage. "It was
maybe a bit tentative at the start but I felt more comfortable after I'd
taken the first, that was massive," admitted Duncalf.
"I'm just thrilled to reach the world open final, if there was one match
you'd choose to be in, that would be it."
*Nicol makes another*
<http://www.worldopensquash2011.com/semipics/today.40.jpg>In *Nicol David*, the five-time champion who will be aiming to break
Sarah Fitz-Gerald's record.In comparison to the first semi-final, both
David and *Natalie Grinham* knew each other well having already contested
two World Open finals amongst the 28 meetings between the two of them.
However, there were comparisons with the first match. A tight first game, a
comfortable second and a third where a comeback threatened but not quite
delivered. Even the scorelines were just one point apart, but the story was
the same, and the top seed prevailed. "It was a bit like deja vu all over
again," joked Nicol, "but playing Natalie again on her home turf, with a
big crowd like this it was always going to be difficult, and winning that
first game was crucial."You can't afford to think about it being a World
Open semi-final, and breaking records or anything like that, you just have
to treat it as another tournament, keep your focus and play each match as
it comes."It great to play in such a fantastic venue and I think the crowd
was even noisier tonight than in Amsterdam!"
photo Getty Images
photo Getty images