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European U19 Championships 2010
27-Mar to 04-Apr, Vienna

[1] England beat [5] Wales 3-0
1 Ben Coleman 3-0 David Haley              11-3, 11-4, 11-3
2 Charles Sharpes 3-0 Sam Fenwick        11-3, 11-4, 11-3
3 Millie Tomlinson 2-0 Hannah Davies      11-9, 11-7 DR

Playoff 3/4
[2] France beat [3] Czech Republic 2-1
1 Lucas Serme 3-0 Daniel Mekbib            11-2, 11-7, 11-6
2 Arthur Monieu 0-3 Zbynek Standera      10-12, 7-11, 8-11
3 Cyriel Peltier 3-1 Anna Klimundova       11-13, 11-9, 11-8, 11-5

Teams – The Final

England have regained the title they lost last year by beating Wales 3/0 convincingly in the final. The result was pretty much inevitable from the start, but the Welsh were not going down without a fight. Unfortunately for Robbo’s team, the English were not about to make life easy for them either.

Ben Coleman was in top form and you could see how he was enjoying himself on court. He took the first match for England 11/3 11/4 11/3 against David Haley.

Charles Sharpes sealed the win for his country with a win over Niall Driscoll. Funnily enough he won with exactly the same score line as Ben.

As the girls match was a dead rubber the Welsh gave reserve Hannah Davies her chance to play and she made nearly as many points as the boys did in the first game. Millie Tomlinson was stronger though and took the match 2/0.

So that was that for 2010. It is going to feel a little quiet here in the club this week and in a lot of ways it’ll be sad to see everyone leave after being together for 10 days.

There shall be no more stuff to read here about toffee crisps, lent or brain surgeons. The sauna is waiting for me and my shirt is ironed, so I shall just leave you with a simple sentence, that I think coveys my current state of mind.

I’m off to the bar!!

Team Results

"I am really proud of our squad – to have come through the whole tournament without dropping a game is quite an achievement, I don't think that's ever been done before.

"We've had a really strong team here who have really performed all week, and having James Willstrop here has been an inspiration to all the players.

"He kindly agreed to use the week he had off to join us here – and it's given the players a huge boost having him around. For all of them, it's their aspiration to become a player like James.

"But congratulations go to Wales for reaching the final for the first time – they've had a superb week. We'd been gearing up all week to play France in the final, so it was a great achievement for Wales to beat them in the semis to make the final.

"Even though we've got a great record in this event, it's never straightforward to win it each time: You have to keep focussed and make sure there are no slipups or mistakes – you have to pay attention to detail."

England Coach

"Obviously it was a good tournament for the Welsh Team as this was the first time Wales has reached the U19 European final. The team was seeded fifth and this I felt was a realistic seeding - possibly generous after looking at our form in the individual event.

"Hence, their performances in the team event was very pleasing, with all the players playing to their maximum in critical matches. As Wales won a bronze medal last year, this silver medal has been confirmation that the players and Welsh system does appear to be producing players who have the skill, fitness and maturity to handle this occasions.

"England today were a class above us and unfortunately we were not able to match them in the final, but we enjoyed the opportunity the final presented and the players are all aware they have much work to do if they wish to win this event one day. We look forward to the event next year as we have all but one player available and hopefully we can produce another shock or two!"

Wales Coach

Team Results

Teams – Semis

I have had to make a big decision today. This is not easy for me, but I feel it is necessary. At the final party tomorrow night, I will wear a shirt!

Anyone who knows me knows I hate wearing shirts. Problem is that I felt so underdressed at the dinner after the individuals, that I feel I ought to make an effort. All I need now is someone to iron one for me!

Semi Finals:

England vs. Czech Republic

First match to England. Ben Coleman beat Daniel Mekbib 3/0 with comparative ease although the Czech had his chances to take the first. Girls individual champion Carrie Ramsey took on Czech girl Natalie Babjukova in the second match and sailed to a 3/0 win, sending the England team to the final once again. The last match was a dead rubber match between Charles Sharpes and Ondrej Uherka which went Charles’ way 2/0.

France vs. Wales

Lucas Serme gave David Haley little chance in the first string match and put his team 1/0 up. Tesni Evans then took the tie to a decider with a 3/0 victory over Melissa Alves. So once again it was down to Sam Fenwick for the Welsh. Would he be the hero again, or would Paul Bonabesse shatter the welsh hopes?

And it had to go the distance. Five very even games, long rallies and hard fought points. The crowd were enjoying the tussle and both teams looked nervous. In the end both players were exhausted and at 11-all in the fifth it could have gone either way. Two more long rallies and Sam clinched it for the Welsh! This will be the first time the welsh have been in an U19 final.

We have one day left to go here in Vienna. Tomorrow is Easter Sunday, so I will be up at the crack of dawn hiding eggs, chocolates and presents around the garden. Then I believe there is some sort of party, but before that I am really just looking forward to a sauna and a beer after tomorrow's final!


Ben Coleman 3-0 Daniel Mekbib             13-11, 11-6, 11-5
Charles Sharpes 2-0 Ondrej Uherka       11-5, 11-3 DR
Carrie Ramsey 3-0 Anna Klimundova     11-6, 11-6, 11-2

[5] WALES beat [2] FRANCE 2-1
David Haley 0-3 to Lucas Serme           2-11, 5-11, 8-11
Sam Fenwick 3-2 Paul Bonabesse         13-11, 11-5, 2-11, 7-11, 12-10
Tesni Evans 3-0 Melissa Alves              11-9, 13-11, 11-7


The championship referee is responsible for organising refs for each match. I decided that the winners of each pool would referee the 10 o’clock matches. Adjacent to that the other players of the team could train.

This was accepted by the teams, but the England team had some team selection, or whatever to attend to, so I accepted that I would mark the first game of the tie for them. I’m English so no-one can say that the English did not ref a match. The last match was a dead rubber and was duly reffed by Messrs Campion and Willstrop, while on the court next door Chris Robertson was doing his duty for Wales (see photos).

The quarters are finished and England will take on the Czech Republic in the semis tonight at 5pm. The other semi, also on at 5 will be between France and Wales.

Semi-Finalists. Coaches comments:

England: James Willstrop

We have a good group of players here, a really good unit. There is a good atmosphere amongst the players and they are doing the job they came to do. We are expected to do well, but we have to make sure that the players are fit, pick up no injuries and go fit into the bigger matches.

Czech Republic: David Talpa

Now we have to play England and we must be realistic. Our aim before the championships was third position, so till now we are satisfied. All our players are in good form so we will give everything we’ve got this evening.

France: Fred Lecomte:

We played well this morning in the quarter finals after the pressure yesterday. It will be a tough semi against Wales and we will have to perform to reach the final. We are looking forward to it.


That was a good win now. Tesni continues to produce the goods when we need it and Sam played a much more mature game today. He did really well to beat an opponent he lost to in the individual event. We have young players here who will also be involved next year and it’s great for them to be playing with a chance of a medal.

Just a quick one before the semis. Check out the tattoos that Irish girl Cathryn Abernethy has been doing. Now that is an amazing talent.

Team Results

[1] ENGLAND beat [7] NETHERLANDS 3-0
1 Charles Sharpes-Rick Penders 11-7 11-4 11-6
2 Robert Downer-Marc Ter Sluis 11-8 11-5 DR
3 Millie Tomlinson-Tessa Ter Sluis 11-5 11-9 11-3

1 Daniel Mekbib-Rudi Rohrmüller 7-11, 6-11, 3-11
2 Zbynek Standera-Valentin Rapp 11-6, 11-7, 11-8
3 Anna Klimundova-Caroline Sayegh 11-2, 11-7 11-7

[5] WALES beat [6] SWITZERLAND 2-1
1 David Haley-Lukas Burkhart 11-6 4-11 8-11 5-11
2 Sam Fenwick-Marco Graziotti 11-7 11-9 11-7
3 Tesni Evans-Agapi Kazamia 11-5 11-9 11-8

[2] FRANCE beat [9] BELGIUM 3-0
1 Lucas Serme-Tom de Mulder 11-7, 11-6, 11-7
2 Arthur Moineau-Cedric Peeters 11-1, 11-9 DR
3 Cyrielle Peltier-Nathalie Philipsen 11-3, 11-3, 11-3

9-12 Quarters:
[8]Scotland-[10] Slovakia 2-1
1 Greg Lobban-Miroslav Celler 4-11, 11-2, 11-6, 11-9
2 Douglas Kempsell-David Kubicek 11-8, 11-2, 11-3
3 Mhairi Charlton-Andrea Malinova 5-11, 7-11, 11-5, 9-11

[12]Spain-[11] Ireland 1-2
1 Hugo Varela-Gary Power 2-11, 5-11, 11-9, 9-11
2 Alberto Perez-Theo Anderson 7-11, 11-6, 5-11, 7-11
3 Marina de Juan-Cathryn Abernethy 13-11, 11-4, 11-4

[13] Denmark-[14] Austria 1-2
1 Phillip Tran-Marcus Greslehner 9-11, 10-12, 11-8, 9-11
2 Kristian Nielsen-Daniel Nagel 11-4, 14-12 DR
3 Millie Jensen-Sandra Polak 2-11, 3-11, 8-11

[17] Finland-[18] Hungary 1-2
1 Vile Hiltunen-Benedek Sebok 8-11, 7-11, 9-11
2 Joonas Honkanen-Gabor Szabo 11-4, 11-7 DR
3 Emilia Soini-Fatime Farkas 11-9, 10-12, 8-11, 3-11

Team Results

England Blog,
Day Two ...

Getting through the pool stages and into the final 4 without dropping a game is just what we wanted going into the semis. The presence of James Willstrop is keeping spirits high, and keeping us on our toes! He's great to have around, and of course we are taking every piece of advice he can give us.

A strict fining system in place throughout the group saw Ben Coleman fined for serving down in his first cap for England in the first rally of the first point, of his first match! (sorry ben!)

Last night we went into Vienna centre and had a team meal at an Italian restaurant which is always nice. With some good food inside us we are ready for this afternoons semis against Chech Republic, lets hope we can keep it going!

Carrie Ramsey
England Team

Teams-Day 2

I have been asked to dedicate this entry to someone who is not with us for the team event. According to his coach he is one of the funniest and nicest guys you could ever meet.

I would like to introduce you to Charmin’ Seamus Harmon (his own description of himself).

Eddie Murphy, the Irish coach, explained to me that he is the only person who makes you laugh while just standing there doing nothing. You can’t fault his effort on court either. In one incident he turned from the ‘T’ and dived to reach a ball in the back right-hand corner. He missed the ball unfortunately and explained to everyone afterwards why, “I forgot to swing at it!”

Seamus loves to play the game and was gutted to have to leave after the individuals. I’m sure he’ll be disappointed to have missed meeting the guest coach from England. After a long season and in need of a break, James Willstrop offered his services to David Campion and is accompanying the team for the next few days here in Vienna. The England junior team will certainly benefit from his experience and such a personality in the camp can only help to build team morale.

The pool matches were completed today and the quarter final line up is pretty much as expected. Fifth seeds Wales beat Germany 2/1 in the last tie. Tesni Evans came from 10/3 down in the forth to take the game 12/10 and the match for the Welsh.

That group win ensures them of avoiding the Czechs in the quarter finals. The Belgians just qualified for the quarters on count back by beating the Fins 2/1 in the last tie of the day. That result pushed Finland back to fourth. Had they won, they would have been second in the group and assured of a top 8 place.

Quarters (12.00):
[1] England v [7] Netherlands
[3] Germany v [4] Czech Republic
[5] Wales v [6] Switzerland
[2] France v [9] Belgium

9/12 Quarters (10.00)
[8] Scotland v [10] Slovakia
[12] Spain v [11] Ireland
[13] Denmark v [14] Austria
[17] Finland v [18] Hungary

One other person who I feel worthy of a mention today is Chris Robertson. I remember him saying 11 years ago, that he hoped that that would be his last European U19’s. So here we are, and he is back again as he has been every year since. I have to apologise to him though for my blog. He was back in Wales for the individuals, but reading about it made him feel like he was here.

He said that he would not be reading it any more, which means I can write what I like about him.

Or are you secretly reading on Robbo?

If you are, I’ve heard a whisper that you challenged the Irish team to a bowling match last year and I was just wondering how you got on?

Watch this space for further details………


01 Apr, Team Event Day One:
Teams-Day 1

Andy Holland reports

I was informed this morning by the wife that as it is still Lent and this close to Easter I should keep off the beer. She is right, but one has to make sacrifices in this life and it would not be common courtesy for me to not have a beer with our team event referees. So I will regrettably be forced to drink a beer before I head home tonight!

Now, after four days of being stuck in the club when the sun was shining outside, we were subjected to a day off with rain!! Typically on the first day of the team event, it’s absolutely gorgeous weather. Well, you can’t have everything I suppose, but at least it dried up a bit in the afternoon yesterday.

Most of the players looked fresh and ready to go again and to be fair the coaches also look pretty relaxed. This, considering they were woken at 7am by the sound of drilling this morning, is a good sign.

England are seeded top for the team event. Second seeds are France with the Czechs and Germans at three and four respectively. Other than that, I can’t see any other teams really making an impact.

Only really one surprise today; the Scots (8) lost a close fought tie with Finland (17). 14 year old Emilia Soini nicked it 11/9 in the fifth against Morgan McGuire to secure a 2/1 win.

The other stuff ...

Apart from that I do not really have anything to report and I have generally been sitting around waiting for results to come in. This gives me far too much time to conjure up something for you guys to read.

I have been considering what I would do were I to win the lottery. Would I invest money in the game of squash, or would I just be greedy and squander it all on fast cars and women?

As I’m married I guess I’d leave out the women part, but were I to invest in squash, what would I wish to fund? A classy PSA event would be something special; I could put a glass court up in front of Vienna’s Rathaus, or before the palace of Schönbrunn. The question though is what impact would that have on the sport in Austria?

I believe that it would be more constructive to invest in the grass roots of the game first, although combining that with a large event would be ideal; the work beforehand within the schools, mini court events, roadshows, etc. building up to the main event one maybe two years later.

Promotion is the key some say, but money is the biggest problem we have. The love of the game is there, but financially squash is not a profitable business here in Austria at least.

With this event we should just about break even. We need an investor as I don’t expect to win the lottery, nor am I one of Didi Mateschitz’s (Austrian Red Bull guru) best mates!

Maybe though I can find some lunatic with an oversized bank account who wishes to part with the readies, but till then we shall just plug on with what we have, and continue to make attempts at securing sponsoring and funding.

However, our friend who can do everything better with his eyes closed (the brain surgeon as he has been dubbed), has apparent ideas to have us all thrown out on our ears, so maybe I’ll be looking for another job in a few months, instead of making plans for developing the sport!

I must stay positive and as a Portsmouth supporter I have to be. I am still hoping for FA Cup glory at least this year and perhaps I will win the lottery, then I can retire in the summer and watch from the sidelines, sipping at cocktails beside the pool.

Yeah, dream on buddy!!

Team England Blog ...

After an interesting day off at the zoo in Vienna, spending a long while making friends with a polar bear and becoming enemies with an orang-utan, we have all snapped back into playing mode.

Team spirits are high, after two impressive straight game wins against Israel and Belgium today. With an early finish we are left with the evening to relax and indulge in some team bonding.
Another early start in the morning, facing Finland then onto Scotland in the afternoon. Of course we are hoping for a repeat performance tomorrow so some food and get an early night!

Tue 30th, Finals:

Carrie Ramsey (Eng) bt Millie Tomlinson (Eng)  
       6/11, 11/6, 11/7, 5/11, 11/3 (75m)

Lucas Serme (Fra) bt Rudi Rohrmueller (Ger)  
        6/11, 11/3, 11/,8 11/6 (60m)


Tournament Site

I have been pleased over the last few days with the amount of spectators we have had in the club and they were treated to two classic finals tonight.

Millie and Carrie delivered a great match which kept swinging back and forth. Both players play a very similar game and have played each other on so many occasions that it was always going to be tight.

Millie took first blood and sealed the first game 11/6. The second game seemed to stick at 2-all for an eternity. I think the tally was about 8 let decisions before one of them made another point. This was a real English squash, both players pushing each other around the court searching for an opening.

At 2-all in games (after 70 minutes) it was anybody’s match, but Millie seemed to tire a bit towards the end. You could see Carrie’s realisation that she could do it and took the fifth convincingly 11/3 after just a few more minutes, to become European champion. This was the first time she had ever beaten Millie and what a time to do it!

Cyrielle Peltier of France took the bronze medal after beating Julianne Courtice in five.

Lucas and Rudi went into the first few rallies at about 300 miles per hour. This paid in Rudi’s favour as Lucas made too many errors and simply did not get into his stride. In the second Lucas began to find his game and settled down, forcing Rudi to make the mistakes.

By the third game you could see signs that Rudi was getting frustrated, he was constantly under pressure to make the points and was looking out of the glass for some inspiration from his German team mates after each point. Lucas was then in control of the match. He’d seemed almost emotionless from the start and that works in his favour. After one hour of play we had our champion.

Charles Sharpes took 3rd with a 3/0 win over England compatriot Ben Coleman.

And that ends the individuals. I feel it has been a good event till now and amazingly we have had no real hiccups. The food has been good, the bus shuttle efficient, the players on time (not for reffing however, but that kept me fit running around looking for them after they’d lost!!) and the beer at the end of the day has been real nectar!

Just to finish off, the best shot of the week had to be James Earles’ crosscourt nick to take 5th place against Daniel Mekbib. He surprised even himself with that.

I’m writing this very late, I missed the last underground and had to grab a taxi to the station to catch the last train. As I fall asleep, I ponder about why it is that some people are fascinated with the length of mild green chillies.

Mon 29th, Semi-Finals:

   Millie Tomlinson (Eng) bt Julianne Courtice (Eng)  11/4, 11/3, 12/10
   Carrie Ramsey (Eng) bt Cyrielle Peltier (Fra)       11/7, 12/10, 11/5

   Lucas Serme (Fra) bt Charles Sharpes (Eng)      13/11, 11/7, 10/12, 11/9
   Rudi Rohrmuller (Ger) bt Ben Coleman (Eng)     8/11, 11/4, 12/10, 11/8i

Monday ... semi-finals

Why is it that when you are confronted with squash all day long, that you lay in bed at 1am and think about it too? Not only that, but spend the whole night dreaming about it!!! I fell out of bed last night as I chased after someone who should have been reffing!

The positive thing is that I’ve found something to write about, as my creativity begins to dry up after a few days. I don’t envy guys like Steve who have to write this stuff day in, day out.

I also feel bad about not being able to give more people a mention. One thing that really is great, is being around so many friendly people with a common interest. Yes, running tournaments is a lot of work, but it is also an enjoyable challenge.
Tonight was semi-final night and I figured that I’d probably not get a lot of chance to see anything. Therefore I organised a couple of guest authors. Here are their reports:

Myself on Millie Tomlinson and Julianne Courtice:

England were ensured of a finalist even before the matches started this evening. Millie Tomlinson, top seed for the girls was expected to win this match and started fast, pushing her opponent around the court and pressurising consistently. Julianne was not going down with a fight however and had her chances to take the third game. Millie remained cool and took the match 3/0.

Rob Downer (with a little help from Paul Hornsby.) on Lucas Serme and Charles Sharpes:

Charles began the match at a strong pace pressurising his opponent. Lucas soon settled into his rhythm and signs of his well know grit and determination appeared,

Lucas controlled the rallies from the middle of the second game and established a 2/0 lead. At two games down it seemed an incredibly tough task for the Englishman to get back into the match. Charles showed true grit and after a few rare errors from Lucas took the third 11/9. The fourth was a physical, but fair tussle, with both players showing each other mutual respect. Lucas held strong out came out the eventual winner 3/1.

Paul Hornsby on Carrie Ramsey and Cyrielle Peltier:

An entertaining match between two gifted players, who move well and like to vary the pace. The French girl took an early lead, but Carrie soo n settled and after a run of winners went on to win the first 11/7.

The rallies were more contested in the second with most ending however with unforced errors. Cyrielle clawed back from 9/4 down to eventually force a tie-break, but Carrie took held her nerve and sealed the second. Going there from strength to strength she went on to win 3/0.

Myself on Rudi Rohrmüller and Ben Coleman:

This was always gonna be a toughie, with both players playing attacking and physical squash. There was a lot of contact during this match and the referee was pretty active. Ben took the first game 11/8, then back came Rudi with an 11/4 in the second. That was when this really became a battle. Both players showed real determination and neither gave an inch. With half the crowd cheering Ben with on every point (and decision) and the other half for Rudi respectively.

At 2/1 for Rohmüller and 8 all, the ball broke! This seemed to inspire the German for a last push and he sealed the win after around 90 minutes of play.

I wish I had taken a better look at the trophy, because I am trying to remember how often we had a European under 19 boys final without English participation!

Finals day tomorrow and then finally some time to relax. I think I’ll take the train home tomorrow after the final dinner and with a bit of luck someone will buy me a drink. I know one or two people who owe me a pint or three. You know who you are!!


Tournament Site


Tournament Site

Sunday Diary ...
One upset and 130 matches to go ...

I hope you are all sitting comfortably in front of your computer screens, or on your iPhones. Maybe with a hot chocolate (if so I can recommend adding marshmallows!), or maybe you’re sipping at a cold one. Whatever you may be doing, you are about to be surprised!

I have a report for you on the quarter-finals! And there has been an upset!

Eight semi final places were up for grabs, with five of them going to English players! The two players spoiling the party for the English boys were Lucas Serme and Rudi Rohrmüller.

The first boys quarter-final was Serme against James Earles. Lucas was pushed for a while, losing the first 12/10. James put up a hard fight, but finally went down in 4. Rohrmüller cruised through powerfully in 3 games against the Czech Republic's Daniel Mekbib.

In the all English quarter-final, Charles Sharpes booked his semi final place with a 3/0 victory over Nathan Lake. Ben Coleman also won in convincing style against Rick Penders of the Netherlands, who put out Robert Downer in the last 16.

Three semi-final places were taken by the English girls, but only after some tough battles. Millie Tomlinson was taken to four by a feisty Tesni Evans, Julianne Courtice (who replaced Emily Whitlock at the last minute) came through 12/10 in the fifth after a real tussle with Melissa Alves of France, while Carrie Ramsey eased past Anna Klimundova in three.

The last match of the day between Kim Hay and Cyrielle Peltier of France was delayed about 45 minutes after some long matches and it had to go all the way.

Kim could make it a quartet of English semi-final places with a win, but soon found herself 2/0 down. She fought back to take the match to a decider, but Cyrielle would not give in and after some superb retrieving (and a couple of awful errors at the end from both girls), the French girl finally took it 11/9 in the fifth.

So we now only have another 130 individual matches left to play.

Today we had a late finish and as I write the players are rushing to catch the last bus. The coaches are downing their beers (probably alcohol free as coaches don’t drink obviously!), an English girl is taking her food back to the hotel in a bucket and one of our Refs has just smashed his racket!

So sleep tight and don’t let the bed bugs bite, especially if you’re reading this in the morning and if you are … GET UP AND PUT THE KETTLE ON!!


Lucas Serme (Fra) bt James Earles (Eng)              10/12, 11/9, 11/3, 11/4
Charles Sharpes (Eng) bt Nathan Lake (Eng)         9/11, 11/6, 11/2, 11/3
Ben Coleman (Eng) bt Rick Penders (Ned)            11/1, 11/5, 11/4
Rudi Rohrmuller (Ger) bt Daniel Mekbib (Cze)       11/4, 13/11, 11/6

Millie Tomlinson (Eng) bt Tesni Evans (Wal)           12/10, 9/11, 11/4, 11/4
Julianne Courtice (Eng) bt Melissa Alves (Fra)        11/5, 11/6, 4/11, 10/12, 12/10
Carrie Ramsey (Eng) by Anna Klimundova (Cze)   14/12, 11/7, 11/7
Cyrielle Peltier (Fra) bt Kim Hay (Eng)                  12/10, 11/8, 7/11, 8/11, 11/9

Saturday Diary ...
Chocolate, Beer, Knees ...

Reporting on events seems to me to be something of a bore. It’s always the same; he won this, she won that, he was in devastating form, scintillating drop shots, attacking lobs (joke) etc.

I was also wondering however, if most people would prefer to have more of that reporting style. I find it easier to blog and as I have had positive feedback I shall try to keep on the same wave. So sorry to those who do not approve, but I’m no journalist and unfortunately as championship referee, don’t get a lot of time to watch the matches.

I was reading a blog from a BBC reporter a few weeks ago and he was covering the League Cup final at Wembley. Most of his blog however contained his in depth description of his lunch consisting of a bacon sandwich and a Toffee Crisp. Which leads me nicely on to an interesting topic for me; favourite chocolate bars!

I’ve been in Austria for many years now and still prefer Dairy Milk to any other chocolate. It was suggested to me that your favourite bar is that first one you remember eating as a child. I guess that maybe true. So once again thanks to Rob!

As far as squash is concerned maybe the answer lies there within, as to why many of us play the game. Once you try it, you enjoy it, fall in love and it remains your favourite sport for ever and ever, or until your knees give in! I seem to have that same notion when it comes to beer, and after too much of that my knees also give way!!

There have been no surprises today (bit of squash talk here!) and all matches are running on time.

The players are behaving themselves and till now, no one has thrown anything out of the hotel window (memories of 1999 coming back here. The culprits from then know who they are and I shall mention no names for fear of serious embarrassment).

All matches but one went with seeding, but some have had close calls. The Refs are doing a fine job, but as I said all pretty calm till now. Tomorrow is another day and the matches will be longer as the games get tighter.

So I’m off for some grub and wonder who will keep people’s spirits up tomorrow by tripping over the bottom row of the seating ...



Tournament Site

Friday 26th, Day One Diary:

Weird day!! I’ve just read that some guy thinks he can do my job with his eyes shut! You may think he’s just “avin’ a Laugh!”, but no, the really funny thing is that he’s deadly serious. Mad obviously, but serious none the less. He wouldn’t even find the keyhole to open the office door with his eyes open, let alone closed!

I don’t want to bother you with the politics of squash in Austria (just getting something off my chest), but I’d have loved to watch this guy put the seating gallery together this morning for one. My biceps are killing me. Best training I’ve had in years and bear in mind that the club is on the 7th floor!!

I guess though that I still feel better than my colleague Michael Khan. His bones creak on daily basis as it is. He’s gonna be sore tomorrow.

So, enough drivel!
All is going smoothly till now, but then we haven’t started yet! Most players have arrived safely, but the Welsh have no luggage!! We’ve surprisingly had only ONE withdrawal (we had over 20 for the Austrian Junior Open in the last week alone!!). Emily Whitlock has been knocked out by a stomach bug and cannot participate. Bad news for her, so a get well soon message here from us. Best wishes also go out to Markus Ristic, who was due to help us out in the tournament office, but was taken ill with heart problems on Tuesday. He’s on the mend so we hope to have him back soon.

It’s been a long but productive day, so I’m off to the managers meeting and opening dinner, to press gang a couple of players into blogging a bit for Squashsite and see if any Welsh baggage has turned up!

And just to finish off today as a private footnote:-

Thanks for the Dairy Milk Mr. Downer. Congrats to Nick on the win. Great effort, especially after that marathon yesterday. And by the way, no mention of a bar yet Miss Beddoes, except the chocolate form of course!!

More to come……

An organiser's dream nightmare

The sun is blazing down on me and I have a chilled cocktail in my hand. As I sip at the blended fruits and stare up at the blue sky, I am thankful for the 1 million Euro I was able to invest in the European Juniors and all the help that I’ve received.

For the first time ever the tournament organiser has actually had nothing to do! Everyone has been so helpful and taken on all the work. “Put your feet up lad, we’ll do it for you. Just relax and watch us work”

Oh the joy of that lottery win! After this is over I’ll pay back everyone in kind and remember how at the beginning I…..strange noise…..getting louder in my left ear……the phone is ringing……the phone is…..that’s not the phone…….it’s the alarm clock……alarm clock……ALARM CLOCK!!!!! Damn!

That’s the end of another crazy dream. It’s Monday morning and there is one hell of a lot to do! Bleary eyes!! Get me a coffee!!

The European U19 Junior Championships start this weekend in Vienna.

Top seeds for the individuals are France’s Lucas Serme and Millie Tomlinson of England, but both can expect some pretty stiff competition. Over 100 future young stars are descending on us and the preparation is in full swing.

No, I did not win the lottery, I do have to do the work myself and yes, I am running around like a blue ar….um….er….. idiot.

Still, should be good fun when it all starts. Watch this space for more reports, photos and general drivel from me!

See you all in Vienna ...

Tournament Site

Andy's Austrian Junior Open Diary

Men's 1st round draw:
[1] Lucas Serme (FRA) bye
[17/32] Philip Riedl (GER) v Richard Nadvornik (CZE)
[17/32] Marcus Greslehner (AUT) v Joonas Honkanen (FIN)
[9/16] Lukas Burkhart (SUI) v Dimitri Diamadopoulos (ITA)
[9/16] Miroslav Celler (SVK) v Georgy Beeckman (BEL)
[17/32] Alex Christensson (SWE) v Sebastian Koberl (AUT)
[17/32] Lowie Brabants (BEL) v Gabor Szabo (HUN)
[5/8] James Earles (ENG) v Mark Povlsen (DEN)
[5/8] Nathan Lake (ENG) v Joel Siewerdt (SUI)
[17/32] Philip Tran (DEN) v Jan van der Herrewegen (BEL)
[17/32] Paul Bonabesse (FRA) v Rory Birtwistle (ENG)
[9/16] Zbynek Standera (CZE) v Alberto Perez Pomares (ESP)
[9/16] Arthur Moineau (FRA) v Thomas Messerer (AUT)
[17/32] Martin Svec (CZE) v Ville Hiltunen (FIN)
[17/32] Nyall Driscoll (WAL) v Ramon Gubi (HUN)
[3/4] Charles Sharpes (ENG) bye
[3/4] Ben Coleman (ENG) bye
[17/32] Hugo Varela Campo (ESP) v Cedric Kuchen (SUI)
[17/32] Ondrej Uherka (CZE) v Svante Sandell (SWE)
[9/16] Theodore Anderson (IRL) v Manuel Kurzwell (AUT)
[9/16] Rick Penders (NED) v Kristian de Silva Nielsen (DEN)
[17/32] Damien Volland (FRA) v Aitor Zunzunegui (ESP)
[17/32] Valentin Rapp (GER) v Lars Klaening (NOR)
[5/8] Robert Downer (ENG) v Dario Bosch (SUI)
[5/8] Daniel Mekbib (CZE) v Tom Lucas (NED)
[17/32] Marco Graziotti (SUI) v Daniel Nagel (AUT)
[17/32] Sam Fenwick (WAL) v Marc ter Sluis (NED)
[9/16] Tom de Mulder (BEL) v Dominik Penkov (SUI)
[9/16] David Haley (WAL) v Tatu Knuutila (FIN)
[17/32] Benedek Sebok (HUN) v Seamus Harmon (IRL)
[17/32] Tim van der Pluijm (NED) v Lukas Levinsky (CZE)
[2] Rudi Rohrmuller (GER) bye

Women's 1st round draw:
[1] Millie Tomlinson (ENG) bye
Jennie Lindstrom (SWE) v Marina de Juan (ESP)
[17/32] Tereza Svobodova (CZE) bye
[9/16] Julia Lecoq (FRA) bye
[9/16] Ilona Lagerweij (NED) bye
[17/32] Franziska Hennes (GER) bye
Fatime Farkas (HUN) v Amalie Bornaes (DEN)
[5/8] Tesni Evans (WAL) bye
[5/8] Melissa Alves (FRA) bye
Nikki van der Heijden (NED) v Emilia Soini (FIN)
[17/32] Veronika Jirkova (CZE) bye
[9/16] Sandra Polak (AUT) bye
[9/16] Hannah Jane Davies (WAL) bye
[17/32] Tessa ter Sluis (NED) bye
Anja Kaserer (AUT) v Monica Menegozzi (ITA)
[3/4] Julianne Courtice (ENG) bye
[3/4] Carrie Ramsey (ENG) bye
Jennifer Hegarty (IRL) v Fabienne Oppliger (SUI)
[17/32] Sabrina Rehman (AUT) bye
[9/16] Ashley Tidman (FRA) bye
[9/16] Caroline Sayegh (GER) bye
[17/32] Denisa Peleskova (CZE) bye
Sara Esperon (ESP) v Millie Jensen (DEN)
[5/8] Anna Klimundova (CZE) bye
[5/8] Cyrielle Peltier (FRA) bye
Cathryn Abernethy (IRL) v Matilda Ravn-Holm (SWE)
[17/32] Marika Doubravova (CZE) bye
[9/16] Andrea Malinova (SVK) bye
[9/16] Agapi Kazamia (SUI) bye
[17/32] Natalie Babjukova (CZE) v Nele Gilis (BEL)
Nana Frederiksen (DEN) v Laura Lagerweij (NED)
[2] Kimberley Hay (ENG) bye

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