Craig's ranking likely to rise
A place inside the world's 50 best players appears not too far away for Marlborough squash sensation Megan Craig after she won the second professional event of her fledgling career in Australia yesterday.
Seeded sixth for the WSA World Tour's Tasmanian Open in Bellerive, world No 71 Craig knocked over the tournament second and third seeds on her way to the final, where she easily accounted for fourth seed and world No 60 Deon Saffery of Wales in straight sets 11-3 11-9 11-3.
Still just 19, Craig won her first professional event at the Caboolture Open in November last year and this latest triumph broke a frustrating run where she had been unable to advance past the semifinal stage at her past five events on the Australian pro-circuit.
She has two more tournaments before she returns to Blenheim and good performances there could see her push close to the world's top 50 when the rankings are next updated on August 1.
Understandably delighted to win her second pro crown, Craig was in dominant form over the four-day event and dropped just one set on her way to lifting the silverware.
She hammered Australian Melanie Dunn 11-3 11-1 11-1 in the first round on Thursday, before a 11-9 11-6 6-11 11-8 victory over Larissa Huffer, also of Australia, put her through to the quarterfinals for the sixth consecutive tournament.
After a tight first set, Craig pulled away for a 12-10 11-7 11-3 win over third seed and world No 67 Thaisa Serafini, of Brazil, to advance to the semifinals.
In the final four, Craig cast aside second seed and world No 57 Sarah Cardwell, of Australia, 11-5 11-7 11-9 and went on to overwhelm Saffery in the tournament decider.
The Queensland Open, from July 19 to 22, and the New South Wales Open, from July 26 to 28, are Craig's next two assignments before she returns home for the New Zealand Senior Nationals at the start of next month.
- The Marlborough Express
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