Indian squash player Dipika Pallikal has dropped a rung to be 12th in the latest world rankings for women in which Malaysian squash legend Nicol David has retained the top spot.

Dipika, however, remains the highest-ranked Indian in the Women’s Squash Association rankings.

David has maintained the top spot despite her unexpected loss in the semi-finals of the World Championship held last month.

David, who missed out on a record eighth title in front of a huge home crowd in Penang, extended her unbroken reign as world number one to 93 months dating back to August 2006.

The new world champion Laura Massaro has closed in on David at the second spot in the latest rankings but it is the Malaysian who continues to hold the pole position.

Egypt’s Raneem El Welily also maintained her position as the world number three while Joelle King jumped to a career-high number four to become the highest-ranked New Zealander for more than 10 years.

But it is Egyptian teenager Nour El Sherbini who celebrated the most astonishing rise in the April rankings.

At 27 in last month’s rankings, the 18-year-old appeared in Penang unseeded, then proceeded to dismiss a succession of higher-ranked players — including fifth seed King and the No.4 seed Alison Waters — before claiming the biggest scalp of all in David to become the youngest finalist in the 35—year history of the event.

The run sees El Sherbini leap 14 places to No.13.

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