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Grasshopper Cup 2013
22-27 Apr, Zurich, Switzerland, $35k


[4] Alister Walker (Bot) 3-2 Daryl Selby (Eng) 
           11/4, 5/11, 12/10, 9/11, 11/2 (102m)

Walker dethrones Selby in Zurich

Botswana's Alister Walker became the new Grasshopper Cup champion as the fourth seed, who overcame top seeded Borja Golan in a two-hour-plus semifinal, beat defending champion Daryl Selby - ranked 14 in the world compared to Walker's 13 -in a four-game final in front of a packed crowd at the Grasshopper Club in Zurich.

Mark Meyer reports, photos by Helen Ree

The Grasshopper Club was fully packed and ready at 5 p.m. to witness another epic battle between the two finalists, whose joint squash history reached back to their junior days, 15 years ago.

Daryl had won their last encounter last December in Hong Kong in 5 and was above that the current holder of the Grasshopper Cup title. Alister on the other side was hungry for revenge, motivated by his big win yesterday against the number one seed, Borja Golan, in the semis.

Ali took first blood (11/4) and was 4/3 up in the third when the tide started to turn. Daryl – in his unique style - clawed his way back in to the game, taking one point after another and playing without making a mistake (11/5). The third set was a very close one, Daryl winning it in the tie break by 12/10.

Those viewers who thought, Daryl - "The Wall" - would now take command and Ali would start to fade, were to be disappointed: Ali always stayed in the game, kept a his high pace up against Daryl at all time and making him run all over the court, especially placing his backhand drops with great touch an precision.

Although Daryl never gave up, it was Alister who finally snatched the fourth with 11/9. Daryl, who had apparently up to then never lost a match on that court in Switzerland, finally faltered and was unable to keep up with Alistres high pace game and after 102 minutes of intensive and great squash it was Alister Walker who emerged as the new Grasshopper Cup champion (11/2).

The 130 spectators enjoyed squash at a very high level and witnessed two great athletes.

The win marks Walkers 7th PSA title, to add to the All-Africa championship he won in February.

What they tweeted

Congrats @alisterWALKER. Played a great match today and deserves this title. Gave everything I had but came up just short.


@DarylSelby great tournament, comeback from 8-0 in the quarter and dominant display in the semi. Things went my way today.


Grasshopper Cup 2013
22-27 Apr, Zurich, Switzerland, $35k
Round One
24 Apr
25 Apr
26 Apr
27 Apr
[1] Borja Golan (Esp)
11/5, 11/9, 5/11, 11/4 (56m)
Ryan Cuskelly (Aus)
[1] Borja Golan
11/6, 11/2, 12/14, 11/3 (65m)
[LL] Andrew Wagih
[1] Borja Golan

11/7, 11/8, 9/11, 14/12 (124m)

[4] Alister Walker

[4] Alister Walker


11/4, 5/11, 12/10, 9/11, 11/2 (102m)


Daryl Selby

Simon Rosner (Ger)
[LL] Andrew Wagih (Egy)
11/6, 9/11, 11/5,11/6 (43m)
Andre Haschker (Ger)
Mathieu Castagnet (Fra)
[LL] Kristian Frost (Den)
11/4, 11/7, 8/11, 11/5 (76m)
[Q] Eddie Charlton (Eng)
[Q] Eddie Charlton
11/9, 11/4, 11/7 (55m)
[4] Alister Walker
[4] Alister Walker (Bot)
11/8, 11/8, 11/8 (37m)
[Q] Harinder Pal Sandhu (Ind)
[Q] Jonathan Kemp (Eng)
11/6, 5/11, 11/7, 11/5 (47m
[3] Laurens Jan Anjema (Ned)
[3] Laurens Jan Anjema
11/5, 11/8, 11/9 (63m)
Grégoire Marche
[3] Laurens Jan Anjema

6/11, 11/5, 11/5, 11/2 (68m)

Daryl Selby

Adrian Grant (Eng)
11/6, 5/11, 11/3, 11/9 (58m)
Grégoire Marche (Fra)
Daryl Selby (Eng)
11/0, 11/4, 11/9 (28m)
[Q] Muhd Asyraf Azan (Mas)
Daryl Selby
9/11, 6/11, 11/3, 11/9, 11/9 (98m)
Nicolas Mueller
Nicolas Mueller (Sui)
9/9 rtd
[2] Tom Richards (Eng)
23-Apr, Qualifying Finals:  

Jonathan Kemp (Eng) 3-0 Mazen Hesham (Egy)                       11/6, 11/2, 11/3 (22m)
Eddie Charlton (Eng) 3-2 Kristian Frost (Den)        11/5, 11/9, 4/11, 5/11, 12/10 (96m)
Muhd Asyraf Azan (Mas) 3-1 Jan Koukal (Cze)                       11/6, 11/6, 13/11 (32m)
Harinder Pal Sandhu (Ind) 3-2  Andrew Wagih (Egy) 3/11,8/11,11/3,11/2,16/14 (72m)

22-Apr, Qualifying Round One:
Jonathan Kemp (Eng) 3-0 Benjamin Fischer (Sui)                 11/8, 11/5, 11/8 (43m)
Mazen Hesham (Egy) 3-1 Lukas Burkhart (Sui)            11/1, 11/4, 6/11, 11/6 (30m)
Eddie Charlton (Eng) 3-1 Julien Balbo (Fra)                  11/4, 8/11, 11/3, 11/5 (65m)
Kristian Frost (Den) 3-0 Jonas Daehler (Sui)                       11/8, 12/10, 11/7 (28m)
Jan Koukal (Cze) 3-2 Reiko Peter (Sui)               12/10, 3/11, 4/11, 11/8, 11/9 (66m)
Muhd Asyraf Azan (Mas) 3-1 Patrick Miescher (Sui) 11/9,9/11,13/11,0/11,11/5 (55m)
Harinder Pal Sandhu (Ind) 3-0 Yannick Lindemann (Sui)        11/8, 11/2, 11/5 (23m)
Andrew Wagih (Egy) 3-0 Greg Lobban (Sco)                        12/10, 11/6, 11/8 (29m)


Daryl Selby (Eng) 3-1 [3] LJ Anjema  (Ned)
          6/11, 11/5, 11/5, 11/2 (68m)

[4] Alister Walker (Bot) 3-1 [1] Borja Golan (Esp)
         11/7, 11/8, 9/11, 14/12 (124m)

Double upsets in Zurich semis
Mark Meyer reports

In the first semi-final LJ Anjema started strong and played a really solid first game. He was always ahead from the start and closed it out 11-6. Defending champion Daryl Selby started well in the second game to lead 5-1. LJ pulled a few points back but Daryl stepped up the court and found some good winners to take the second game 11-5

This time it was LJ who started better and led 5-2 with some good winners mixed with tight length and then some really hard rallies in the middle of the game which Daryl came out on top of and took 9 points in a row against a tiring LJ.

The fourth game was not that close, Daryl was on top the whole way through and closed out the match 11-2.

Alister Walker started really well and looked in control of the first game aganst Borja Golan, the rallies were long and both players covering the court unbelievably well. Ali hit some fine winners and took the first game 11-7-

Ali raced out to a 7-3 lead in the second game and the middle part of the game was long and very tight and hotly contested rallies, but again Ali took the second 11-8.

Borja being 2/0 knew he had to find another level and he managed to play some good counter attacking squash with some good holds and flicks to win a very close game 11-9.

The fourth game was pure drama, both players getting gradually more tired and the let count increasing. The crowd were treated to an unbelievable game of squash that really could have gone either way.

The last part of the match was a great advert for squash in two players fighting for everything and Ali was overjoyed to sneak the fourth 14-12 and the match in a 124 minutes.

Draw & Results

Quarters in brief :

Alister Walker and LJ Anjema fulfilled their seedings as they beat Eddie Charlton and Greg Marche in tough-but-still-three-nil matches,

Defending champion Daryl Selby came from two games down, 1-6 in the fourth and 0-8 in the fifth to beat local favourite Nicolas Mueller.

Top seed Borja Golan rounded out the semi-final lineup with a 3-1 win over lucky loser Andrew Wagih.

Mark Meyer reports

Anjema 3-0 Marche

The first match of the evening showed the tall Dutchman against the incredible speedy Frenchman Greg Marche.

The number three seed LJ Anjema always tried to keep his opponent behind him, knowing if he didn’t, the Frenchman would take his chance and go for the nick. LJ’s experience seemed to always make the difference, as it came to the crucial points of each set.

The players stayed close in score up to the middle of the set (in the first) or even to the last points (second and third set), then the Dutchman took control and pressed to the end, using his precision and athletism he is well known for.

Walker 3-0 Charlton

The second match of the quarters saw 4-seeded Alistair Walker facing Eddie Charlton. It was already the fourth match for Eddie during this tournament, as the Englishman had to go all the long way through the qualification.

Getting to the Quarter final of such an event is for sure a success and it must have given him a lot of confidence and he showed that boost clearly during the first game, which he lost only 9-11. Alistair showed everything we know him for. Quick, sharp and very precise.

It was those little things which made the difference today. When Eddie hit a good shot in the front, Alistair was there and had a perfect answer. In the end Alistair took it home in three, but Eddie will have a good memories about Zurich.

Selby 3-2 Müller

Was that the closest and toughest match of the whole tournament? Yes, it was!

It saw a lot emotion, too, as both players had their home crowd (Nici obviously being the highest Swiss in the ranking ever and Daryl, as GC is his Swiss home club). The crowd went just crazy with excitement. Both athletes did their utmost and Nici was really asking for his first win against Daryl. He won the first two games 11-9 and 11-6, when Daryl gave a first sign of life by winning the third 11-3. And then the game went crazy.

Daryl turned a 1-6 defeat to a 9-6 lead, finishing the game 11-9 to his favor. Nici took it easy and started with 8-0 run into the fifth. And Daryl came back again, making 8 points in a row and finishing the match with another 11-9 game.

The match had everything you can ask for in Squash sport.

Golan 3-1 Wagih

If Borja thought, that it is going to be an easy one, he was definitely wrong. Looking at the ranking, it’s a clear statement: Number 9 vs. Number 51, while Andrew went all the way through the qualifying.

But the young chap from Egypt took his chance. After Borja took easy wins in the first two games, Andrew came back in the third after long rallies with amazing shots taking it home 14-12. But Borja came back quickly and finished the game in four.

Draw & Results

Draw & Results


Round One:
Mueller advances in Zurich

Round One of the Grasshopper Cup in Zurich saw three of the top four seeds progress to the quarter-finals safely enough, but second seed Tom Richards was forced to withdraw at 9-all in his first game against local favourite Nicolas Mueller.

Mueller, who won his sixth Swiss National title at the weekend, now faces another Englishman, defending champion Daryl Selby.

Mark Meyer reports

Grégoire Marche 3-1 Adrian Grant

Grégoire – using his incredible speed around the court - was able to clinch a quick lead in the first set (8/2) and then was able to defend his position against a fierce comeback of Adrian (11/6). The experienced Englishman quickly took control in the second set and forced some errors out of the young French player, winning by 11/5.

Grégoire found his length again in the third set, while Adrian got irritated by some refereeing decisions, which then seemed to distract him just a bit to much in his own game (11/2). He soon got back into his game and lead by 7/3 in the fourth, everybody getting ready for a deciding fifth set, but Grégoire stuck in the game, clawed himself back point by point, still counting on his great fitness and court speed. In the end it was the Frenchman who claimed his next big scalp on his way up the rankings (11/9).

LJ Anjema 3-1 Jon Kemp

The number 3 seed Anjema started well in to the game, keeping the pace up and hitting nicks from the back and front of the court. Kemp fought himself back in the second set and Anjema later said, that at that point he didn’t feel the favourite any more (11/6, 5/11).

The super fit Dutchman kept pushing on and was able to bring the third set home with 11/7. Kemps resistance seemed to falter a bit and it was Anjema who then took the fourth set with 11/5, in over all 43 minutes.

Alister Walker 3-0 Harinderpal Sandhu

Walker began very focused and controlled the game from the T-position Sandhu –with yesterdays long and spectacular match still in his system – gradually got back his length at the end of the first set. The second set turned out to be very close but in the end it was Sandhu who made an unforced error and gave the set to Walker.

In the third set Sandhu put Walker under a lot of pressure with his hard hitting drives and counter drops and even was even leading in the middle of the game. But in the end it was Walker again who squeezed some errors out of his opponent and finally closed the match in 37 minutes (11/8, 11/8, 11/8)

Daryl Selby 3-0 Muhd Asyraf Azan

Selby was already on temperature when he went on court not making any prisoners in the first game taking it 11/0. Azan seemd not ready for the game the Englishman setup. Even so in the second game Azan couldn’t find a way to bring Selby in trouble losing it 4/11.

In the second the young Malaysian showed times and times his class and soft hands volleying more often and upping the pace. Selby seemed to be impressed in first manner but managed to sneak the game away 11/9 winning 3:0 in around half an hour.

Eddie Charlton 3-1 Kristian Frost

It doesn’t happen often on the PSA Tour that two players play each other in a rematch within two days. But it happens. Frost played Charlton in the Qualifying Finals and lost 3:2 in 93 minutes. Very disappointed Frost came off your only to be the drawn as the lucky loser for the open spot Castagnet has left with his withdrawal. But this was not enough.

The first Qualifier Charlton was drawn for the match against Frost. Things happened sometimes. What was the longest and toughest battle the day before began from the new and proved to be any less intense than before 24 hours. Charlton again won the first two sets.

Andrew Wagih 3-1 Andre Haschker

The underdog Haschker who came into the maindraw with a wildcard versus the upcoming and much higher ranked player Wagih [who was a lucky loser] turned out to be a very entertaining affair.

A clash of complete contrast of styles. Haschker worked the ball in classic style into the back trying to establish his game while Wagih got for nicks from all over the place and taking the balls very early giving Haschker no time to settle. So it was Wagih taking the lead 11/6 in the first but Haschker managed to sneaked away the second game 9/11.

The hard movements and the upped pace from the Egyptian seemed to take its toll when Haschker must let go the third and fifth game 11/5, 11/6.

Nicolas Müller 3-0 Tom Richards

Everybody at the Grasshopper Club knew this match was going to be a very close encounter between the number 2 seed and the local hero and so the game started. High paced and with great touch the players traded points up to 9 all.

Then Richards slipped on a drop of sweat on the court floor, while rushing to pick up a ball in the back left corner. It was clear for all spectators that Richards, who was gasping in pain would not be able to continue playing. After a 3 minute injury break the young Englishman had to resign and let Nici Müller through to the quarter final. We wish him fast recovery!

Borja Golan 3-0 Ryan Cuskelly

The final match of the day proved to be a very intense encounter between two hard hitting athletes, who kept the tempo high at all times. It was Golan who picked the right shot at the end of the rallies in the first set, to take the game home with 11/5.

Cuskelly stuck with his higher ranked opponent in the second set, leveling at 9 all, but in the end it was the very experienced Spaniard who pushed home with 11/9, after a not let decision on behalf of Cuskelly. In the third the young Australian showed his potential, controlling the T position and the world number 9 with precise shots to the front and back of the court (11/5).

This big push seemed to have cost Cuskelly a lot of engery and in the fourth set Golan kept the pressure at all time up, giving his opponent no time to recover and taking the game with 11/4 and the match in four sets.
Qualifying complete in Zurich
Mark Meyer reports

Top seed in the qualifying draw Jon Kemp showed a very impressive performance against the young and gifted Egyptian Mazen Hesham, claiming his place in the GC Cup main draw.

Kemp pressured his opponent constantly, giving him no time to get back to the T and finished the rallies with incredible touch. The Englishman kept the speed up at all times, never let go and so Hesham wasn’t able to get into the match and settle at his own pace. After 22 min the scoreboard showed 11/6, 11/2, 11/3 and Kemp now moves through to the maindraw.

The encounter between Eddie Charlton and Kristian Frost turned out to be an extremely tough five game battle between two classical style squash players.

Scores were close, Charlton taking the first 11/5, the second just with 11/9. But Frost came back convincingly in Game 4 and 5 with 11/4 and 11/5 and leveled the games at 2 all. At the time and all through the last game there were a lot of let decisions, the players getting a bit tired after over 90 minutes of high paced squash.

At 10 all in the fifth Frost got an unlucky no let decision against him and Charlton then snatched the last points to win the match in one hour and 45 minutes of intense and emotional.

Muhd Asyraf Azan established a quick lead in the first two sets, not allowing Jan Koukal to settle in his game. Koukal tried to fight back, but Azan was more precise than the Czech and was able to defend the lead until the end (11/6, 11/6).

It was in the third game where Koukal didn’t let his opponent get away and even had game balls, but Azan turned it around in the end winning 13/11.

Andrew Wagih as no. 2 seeded made clear that he wants to save his maindraw ticket quickly. With outrageous shots he made his way through the first game against Indian Harinder Pal Sandhu.

Both players are well known for their incredible speed and flexibility. The rallies were spectalous and made the crowd cheer in disbelieve more than one time (11/3). The story continued in the next set, Wagih just pressing home with a slim margin and the spectators left with their mouths open (11/8).

Third set it was Sandhu showing his determination and strong will to change the outcome of the match, Wagih stepping back a bit at the same time (11/3). In the fourth the Indian kept his incredible pace up, retrieved every ball Wagih threw at him and the Egyptian could only just prevent a whitewash (11/2). The fifth set had to decide: Wagih found his way back in the game and it turned out to be an incredible close decision.

Point for point was traded, from 9 all up to 14 all, then finally it was Sandhu who snatched the final point with a lovely trickle boast (16/14).

The luck of the draw:

Having edged past Kristian Frost 12/10 in the fifth in 96 minutes, Eddie Charlton gets to play a Lucky Loser in the main draw after the withdraw of Mathieu Castagnet.

You guessed it, the lucky loser is Kristian Frost!

See if you last into triple figures this time, lads ...

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