The women have everything to play for in the last month of 2014. The women’s World Team Championships began yesterday and the top teams will fight to be world champions on Saturday.
It will be fiercely contested. Egypt, holders, will be seeded one and they had a difficult selection process to deal with considering the depth of class player that is now available to them.
They’ll be tough to beat, with world number 3 Raneem El Weleily leading the side.
England lost to them in a final last time out, but again look strong in depth and they have tough, experienced players. World number two Laura Massaro leads them, and it’s a first World Teams call up for Leeds-based Emma Beddoes.
Malaysia don’t have the depth of the top two teams but that might not matter as the matches are played over three ties, and if Nicol David (world number 1) and Low Wee Wern (world number 7) stay fit and injury free they will be incredibly difficult to break.
Following the world teams comes the World Individual Championships in Cairo, Egypt, where the Egyptian players are sure to be a handful in their own back yard. David is your favourite for that but the younger contingent should be watched.
For the men the British Grand Prix is the last big event of the year, and will be played in Manchester, beginning Thursday and finishing Monday.