Kirk Irish Open 2014
21-26 Apr, Dublin, $15kx2
3-1  Sarah Kippax (Eng)
11/8, 11/5 (49m)
 Adrian Waller (Eng) 3-2  Alan Clyne (Sco)
11/8, 10/12, 8/11, 11/7,
Gohar and Waller grab Irish titles
Arthur Curran reports
at Fitzwilliam today we witnessed a great show of squash between the
experienced Sarah Kippax of England and 16 year old newcomer Nouran
Gohar from Egypt, and the Egyptian went on to take the title winning
three games to one in superb fashion, her second WSA Tour title
after winning in Prague just before Christmas last year.
men’s final which followed was an absolute battle of attrition
between two experienced and forceful squash players who slugged it
out for five games over 93 minutes before Englishman Adrian Waller
played a great smash into the front wall to take the final game
11/6, thus stopping his opponent, Scotsman Alan Clyne, from winning
two tournaments in succession.
Draws & Results
21-26 Apr, Dublin, $15k
 Tom Richards (Eng)
8/3 rtd (13m)
[Q] Mark Fuller (Eng)
[Q] Mark Fuller
11/9, 8/11, 11/2, 12/10 (66m)
 Arthur Gaskin
 Arthur Gaskin
11/7, 11/5, 11/5 (41m)
 Alan Clyne
 Alan Clyne
11/8, 10/12, 8/11, 11/7, 11/6
 Adrian Waller
 Arthur Gaskin (Irl)
11/8, 11/8, 3/11, 2/11, 11/7 (85m)
[Q] Dougie Kempsell (Sco)
 Greg Lobban (Sco)
11/6, 11/0 rtd
Adil Maqbool (Pak)
 Greg Lobban
11/2, 4/11, 8/11, 11/5, 11/5 (86m)
 Alan Clyne
 Alan Clyne (Sco)
11/9, 12/10, 11/4 (48m)
[Q] Caros Cornes (Esp
[Q] Bryan Byrne (Irl)
11/4, 11/5, 11/9 (40m)
 Ryan Cuskelly (Aus)
 Ryan Cuskelly
6/11, 11/7, 12/10, 12/10 (66m)
 Ryan Cuskelly
4/11, 11/8, 11/8, 11/8 (75m)
 Adrian Waller
Sebastiaan Weenink (Ned)
11/7, 9/11, 11/7, 11/9 (81m)
 Lucas Serme (Fra)
Kevin Moran (Sco)
11/8, 7/11, 11/4, 11/6 (46m)
 Harinderpal Sandhu (Ind)
 Harinderpal Sandhu
11/9, 9/11, 11/5, 11/4 (57m)
 Adrian Waller
Adam Auckland (Eng)
11/9, 11/2, 11/5 (31m)
 Adrian Waller (Eng)
22-Apr, Qualifying Finals:
Dougie Kempsell (Sco) 3-1
Sean Conroy (Irl)
11/7, 8/11, 11/7, 11/9. 51m
Mark Fuller (Eng) 3-0
Steve London (Eng)
11/8, 11/4, 11/7. 45m
Carlos Cornes (Esp) 3-0
Jan vd Herrewegen (Bel)
12/10, 11/4, 11/7. 43m
Brian Byrne (Irl) 3-2
Tom de Mulder (Bel) 11/8, 9/11, 9/11, 11/7,
Qualifying Round One:
Dougie Kempsell (Sco) bye
Sean Conroy (Irl)
3-0- Jakob Dirnberger (Aut) 11/7,
11/4, 11/5. 30m
Mark Fuller (Eng) 3-1
David Wardle (Eng) 15/13, 11/7, 8/11,
Steve London (Eng) 3-0 Conor Sheen (Eng)
11/5, 11/6, 11/9. 59m
Carlos Cornes (Esp) 3-1 Nick Mulvey (Eng) 11/5, 4/11,
12/10, 11/4. 37m
Jan vd Herrewegen (Bel) 3-0 Conor O'Hare (Irl) 12/10,
12/10, 11/6. 35m
Tom de Mulder (Bel) 3-2 Joe Green (Eng) 10/12,
11/8, 12/10, 13/15, 11/8. 73m
Brian Byrne (Irl)
Reuben Phillips (Eng) 11/9,
11/9, 6/11, 1/11, 11/7. 66m
Irish Open 2014
21-27 Apr, Dublin, $15k
 Madeline Perry (Irl)
11/4, 11/4, 11/3. 18m
[Q] Antonelle Falcione (Arg)
 Madeline Perry
12/10, 13/11, 2/11, 7/11, 11/8 (53m)
11/8, 13/11, 11/4 (31m)
 Nouran Gohar
 Nouran Gohar
11/3, 8/11, 11/8, 11/5 (49m)
 Sarah Kippax
Olivia Blatchford (Usa)
11/6, 11/7, 11/6 (22m)
Lisa Camilleri (Aus)
 Yathreb Adel (Egy)
11/6, 11/3, 11/5. 20m
[Q] Birgit Coufal (Aut)
 Yathreb Adel
11/8, 11/6/11/6 (35m)
 Nouran Gohar
 Nouran Gohar (Egy)
11/8, 11/4, 11/4 (29m)
Milou van der Heijden (Ned)
Sarah Cardwell (Aus)
1/8, 11/7, 11/9 (38m)
 Aisling Blake (Irl)
 Aisling Blake
9/11, 9/11, 12/10, 11/9, 11/3 (78m)
 Tesni Evans
 Tesni Evans
11/5, 11/4, 11/5 (51m)
 Sarah Kippax
[Q] Tamika Saxby (Aus)
11/7, 12/10, 11/6 (32m)
 Tesni Evans (Wal)
Deon Saffery (Wal)
11/6, 5/11, 11/7, 5/11, 14/12 (58m)
 Lucie Fialova (Cze)
 Lucie Fialova
3/11, 11/6, 11/2, 11/7 (44m)
 Sarah Kippax
[Q] Carrie Ramsey (Eng)
11/6, 11/6, 11/1 (23m)
 Sarah Kippax (Eng)
22-Apr, Qualifying Finals:
Birgit Coufal (Aut) 3-2
Victoria T-Murray (Eng) 11/9, 11/4, 5/11, 3/11,
Tamika Saxby (Aus) 3-0
Franziska Hennes (Ger)
11/7, 11/9, 11/8. 32m
Carrie Ramsey (Eng) 3-0
Anna Klimundocva (Cze) 11/7,
6/11, 11/7, 11/5. 36m
Antonelle Falcione (Arg) 3-0 Chloe Mesic (Fra)
11/8, 11/2, 11/6. 27m
21-Apr, Qualifying Round One:
Birgit Coufal (Aut) 3-0 Cara Maloney (Irl)
11/2, 11/2, 11/5. 15m
Victoria Temple-Murray (Eng) 3-0 Emily Ison (Eng)
11/3, 11/4, 12/10. 17m
Tamika Saxby (Aus) bye
Franziska Hennes (Ger) 3-0 Fiona Power (Irl)
11/5, 11/5, 11/2. 16m
Anna Klimundocva (Cze) 3-0 Roxanna Keshavarz (Eng)
11/3, 11/6, 11/2. 14m
Carrie Ramsey (Eng) 3-0 Griffin Gillanders (Irl)
11/6, 11/1, 11/2. 14m
Chloe Mesic (Fra) 3-0 Linda Paj (Hun)
11/3, 11/3, 11/6. 24m
Antonelle Falcione (Arg) 3-0 Jody Hannon (Irl)
11/8, 11/5, 11/2. 16m
from Arthur Curran in Dublin
 Alan Clyne (SCO) beat  Arthur Gaskin (IRE)
Alan got through to his 13th PSA Tour final, his second in a row
after winning at Galway last weekend, never stopped running all
over the court no matter what Irish favourite Arthur played at
him, and Arthur is an Irish fighter but so is Alan, and his
superior movement and racket skills, getting some fantastic
retrievals, saw him through to his second final in a week,
beating Arthur 3 – 0.
Can he make it two wins in a row? We will have to wait until
tomorrow to find out.
Adrian Waller (ENG) beat  Ryan Cuskelly (AUS)
As expected this last match seemed to go on forever, with No 2
seed Adrian up against No 3 seed Ryan, with lots of very long
rallies whilst both players hustled for position.
started off at an express rate to hustle his way to take the
first game 11/4 and had the crowd thinking of an upset and see a
repeat of last week’s final in Galway, but that was not to be.
With the tall muscular frame of Adrian, he used that to his
advantage and in all the next three very closely fought games,
with lots more very long rallies, he executed the end of each
game excellently to win all three at 11/8 each, and take his
place in tomorrow’s final.
 Nouran Gohar (EGY) beat Olivia Blatchford (USA)
really pleasant match to watch at the start of the evening, as
young Nouran opened up by taking a 6/1 lead, Olivia caught up at
8/8 at which point she made three errors which gave Nouran the
game at 11/8.
In the second game Nouran again slid into a 6/3 lead then 8/6,
Olivia then got to game ball at 10/9, Nouran levelled and got
game ball at 11/10, Olivia levelled but Nouran took the next two
for the game at 13/11.
appeared to be tiring in the third, possibly after her Herculean
task yesterday, and making several mistakes, Nouran took
advantage to take the third 11/4 and the match 3 games to nil,
to get to her second final in the last few months after winning
in Prague just before Christmas last year.
Match of the Day.
 Sarah Kippax (ENG) beat  Tesni Evans (WAL)
the international flavour of the first ladies semi, this one was
closer to home as we had an all UK match between English woman
Sarah Kippax, ranked #22 in the world and aged 30, against the
battling Welsh warrior that is Tesni Evans of Wales, ranked #30
and aged just 21.
Sarah took an early lead at 3/1 then 6/3 and 8/5 before Tesni
upped her game and got to game ball at 10/8.
the game really hotted up as with two tins from Tesni she gave
the advantage to Sarah as she levelled at 10/10, another tin
gave Sarah the game ball at 11/10, a tin by Sarah levelled it at
11/11, a stroke to Tesni made it 12/11 in her favour and then a
rash shot from Sarah high up on to the front wall gave Tesni the
game at 13/11 – wowww!!.
the second Sarah was finding her range much better than Tesni
and with some graceful and skilful shots she managed to hold off
Tesni’s fighting spirit to take the game 11/5, and similarly the
third 11/4. With Tesni visibly tiring and making many unforced
errors, Sarah played some exquisite little drop shots and had
Tesni doing a lot of running, and Sarah got to match ball at
10/1 – match over??
quite. With two lovely volleys into the right hand corner nick
Tesni saved two match balls, a couple of the rallies being
warmly applauded by the crowd, a tin by Sarah saved her another,
a lovely volley by Tesni warned of a great comeback at 5/10, a
mishit by Sarah gave Tesni another one, but her luck and
fighting spirit eventually finished as the referee awarded a
stroke to Sarah who gratefully took the game 11/6 and the match
3 games to 1.
Both players received a very well deserved tumultuous applause
from the very appreciative Irish crowd at the end. Now Sarah
faces another final after last week winning the Courtcare Open
Another great day’s squash here at Fitzwilliam, and we look
forward to two excellent finals tomorrow, starting at 3.00 pm
and 4.00 pm.
from Arthur Curran in Dublin
 Arthur Gaskin (IRE) beat [Q] Mark Fuller (ENG)
No 1 Irish men’s player Arthur started off well against
qualifier Mark, who got through the first round yesterday
because of the injury withdrawal of the favourite Tom Richards,
and though the score was fairly even in the first Arthur
finished it off at 11/9.
He then lost concentration in the
second as he allowed Mark to take a 6/1 lead, pulled back to
5/6, Mark got to game ball at 10/7 before taking the game 11/8.
Arthur picked up his pace in the third and soared through to win
it 11/2. After Arthur had taken a 6/1 lead in the fourth he
again allowed Mark to pull back to 5/6 before getting to match
ball at 10/7, and again Mark pulled back to level at 10/10, but
Arthur managed to finish off at 12/10 for a good win for the
Match of the Day (1)
 Alan Clyne (SCO) beat  Greg Lobban (SCO)
This was an absolute
battle royal between two Scotsmen who are not only friends but
training partners in Edinburgh working with the Scotland team
coach Roger Flynn, but friendship was left off the court as they
literally played each other into the ground.
The older and more
experienced Alan took the first game quite comfortably 11/2, bt
the younger man Greg came back seriously to take the second
11/4, and in a much tighter game he took the third 11/8. However
the more experienced Alan managed to slow Greg down, and helped
by a few mistakes from Greg, Alan took the next two games 11/5
and 11/6 for what was a fantastic win.
"It's tough playing against someone from your own country,
particularly if you train together, share a room on tour
together. We both know each other's games very well as well, so
it was bound to be a long hard match. Last time we played was at
the Scottish National finals, which I also won in five. I was
down 1:2 but I knew I made him work hard in the previous games
and I was hoping to reap the benefits in the next games, which I
did to some extent, but I was still a little nervous.
"Ireland has treated me well over the last years: I came second
in this tournament before beating Borja in the semis, and I won
in Galway last weekend. Plus it's a short flight, similar
culture, so not too different from home. As for Arthur: I played
him before, last time here at this tournament and it went to
five. Unfortunately for me, he always tends to play really well
in front of a home crowd!"
 Ryan Cuskelly (AUS) beat
Sebastiaan Weenink (NED)
Sebastiaan lay down a marker here by taking the first game 11/6,
but the more experienced Ryan pulled back to take the second
11/7. The next two games were tight, hard fought squash, in both
games Ryan got to match ball at 10/8, Seb levelled at 10/10 but
Ryan took the extra points for both games at 12/10 each.
 Adrian Waller (ENG) beat  Harinder Pal Sindhu (IND)
Finally the last match took to the court well past 11.00 pm here
at Fitzwilliam as the new tournament favourite Adrian took a
very close first game from 6/9 down to win 11/9, then Harinder
took the second also very close game at 11/9. However Adrian
then got into his A game and despite Harinder fighting well
Adrian wrapped up the match by taking the last two games 11/5
Match of the Day (2)
Olivia Blatchford (USA) beat  Madeline Perry (IRE) 1
What an upset for the tournament this turned out to be, as young
American Olivia fought gamely against Irish favourite Madeline
to retrieve a game ball situation in the first two games and go
on to win them in extra points 12/10 and 13/11. Feeling that a
shock was on the cards already, the local crowd got behind
Madeline as she found her game and helped by several unforced
errors from Olivia took the next two games 11/2 and, despite a
late fightback by Olivia, 11/7.
In the final game Madeline took an early lead 6/4, Olivia pulled
back to lead 9/6 then despite Madeline taking a couple more
points to the consternation of the crowd young Olivia finished
the game off at 11/8. This was an absolutely great win for
Olivia, ranked No 57 in the world rankings, to Madeline’s No 8.
There will be celebrations in the Blatchford household in
"I was really happy to win those two games, given I was game
ball down in both. Madeline is very experienced, so even at two
love up I knew I had to stay focused. She stepped up her game
and got the next two, but in the last game I just thought to
myself: challenge yourself and make it happen, don't "steal"
rallies - that doesn't work against Madeline or any player
"I did have a game plan to begin with: I watched Madeline
play Laura Massaro on SquashTV earlier today, and kind of looked
for patterns. Madeline is a great attacker, so I really wanted
to be the first to attack, to prevent her from attacking me!
"Tomorrow I am playing someone who is five years my junior, which
is crazy since I am only 21. She is obviously very good and very
talented, but I'll just do my research and try my best!"
 Nouran Gohar (EGY) beat
 Yathreb Adel (EGY)
Unfortunately not as exciting a match as we could have expected
but never the less it was enjoyable and skilful with both
players playing with good grace, as you would expect from two
close friends who share together at tournaments and share the
same coach back in Cairo. Yathreb was not moving too well, as
she told me afterwards that she has a torn muscle in her thigh,
which was heavily strapped, and Nouran took advantage of his to
go through to the semi final in three straight games.
"Yathreb beat me 3:1 in the British Junior Open a few months
ago, and we also played each other in the play-offs for the
World Championships two weeks ago. Yathreb had to pull out
injured back then though. She is really tough to play and a
phenomenal player. We are both from the same club in Egypt,
though Yathreb is currently studying in England, and being
coached by Jonah Barrington in Millfield.
"I might have to play Madeline or Olivia next - I played Madeline
in Monte Carlo two years ago, I lost 3:1, she is tough to play.
But I like the bouncy court, and I love the country, everyone is
very nice and helpful, so I hope to put up a good match tomorrow
whoever I play against."
Match of the Day (3)
 Tesni Evans (WAL) beat  Aisling Blake (IRE)
Another colossal tussle this turned out to be – I am running out
of adjectives to describe these fantastic squash matches – Irish
No 2 Aisling took the first two games from a fighting Welsh
warrior called Tesni both at 11/9, so very close games.
Irish audience expecting a quick triumph for Ireland, Welsh
Tesni made them stop and think as she stayed very close in the
third, retrieved a match ball in the third and came back to win
So much for the Welsh spirit as Tesni stayed very level during
the fourth but eased out from 9/9 to take the the game 11/9 and
the match into a decider. Whether Aisling had lost her rhythm or
Tesni came on so strong in the fifth but Tesni soared through to
take the game 11/3 and the match 3 games to 2. Another
disappointment for the Irish crowd but what a fantastic win for
 Sarah Kippax (ENG) beat
 Lucie Fialova (CZE)
This was a very good match to watch as two extremely graceful
young women gave a lovely exhibition of squash, Lucie taking the
first game comfortably 11/3, but then Sarah found her top game
and went through to take the next three 11/6, 11/2 and 11/7.
So we come to the end of a very long day of great squash,
seeing some very exciting and long matches, and a couple of
shock results, after midnight, and we go home to look forward to
some more exciting squash to come in the semi finals tomorrow
starting at 5.00 pm.
Round One Reports
from Arthur Curran in Dublin
[Q] Mark Fuller (ENG) beat  Tom Richards (ENG)
First match on was the #1 seed and favourite for the tournament
Tom Richards, but unfortunately we saw very little of him as,
only a few minutes into the match, he pulled up injured with a
recurrence of a pulled calf muscle injury and conceded the match
Match of the day
 Arthur Gaskin (IRL) bt [Q] Dougie Kempsell (SCO)
11/8, 11/8, 3/11, 2/11,
11/7. 85 mins.
The main Irish focus in the men’s tournament was solely on
Irishman Arthur, as he battled against Scotsman Douglas all the
way through five games. Arthur started off solidly enough and
got to game ball in the first at 10/4, but then allowed Doug to
pull back to 8/10 before finishing off the game at 11/8.
In the second Doug led at 5/2, Arthur pulled back to lead 6/5,
even then up to 7/7, Arthur led 9/7 then finished off at 11/8,
with the crowd feeling comfortable of a home win. Unfortunately
that was not to come just yet, as Arthur lost his stride and
Douglas cut out the errors, Douglas sailed into a 7/1 lead, and
Arthur had no real answers as Doug finished off the game 11/3.
Again Douglas was so strong that he went through to take the
fourth 11/2 in just three hands. Arthur had obviously saved a
little energy in the fourth as he now came out to take a 4/0
lead, then a 7/2 lead and although Douglas pulled back to 7/8
Arthur held his nerve and his strength to take the game 11/7 and
the match 3 – 2, to the plaudits of the large Irish audience.
be honest, the first two games went perfectly for me. Even when
he was making a few points in a row I felt that he was doing a
bit more work, and I was largely on top. In the third and fourth
I just got ahead of myself slightly, and then I lost my length,
and with that my focus. He also really hung in there and made
things tough for me, but luckily I found my length again in the
fifth, and got a really good start as well.
"You know, Squash is a funny old game: I thought Sean played
really well against him yesterday and had a good chance of
taking him to five, and today I was close to losing. Obviously
the draw is on your mind as well, with Tom pulling out, but in
the end I am just happy to pull through and get to the quarters.
Last year I got there too, so this year I am obviously hoping to
do one better. Though Mark Fuller is a great player, a real
seasoned professional who will give anyone a tough game.
"As for me: I am back over from the US for Galway, this
tournament, and then to play the European Championships. It's
great to be back, but I am also really enjoying the change of
scenery over in the United States!"
Greg Lobban (SCO) beat Adil Maqbool (PAK)
After that long match the next was unfortunately curtailed as at
the end of the second game, not competed for, Adil conceded the
match to Greg because of injury.
 Alan Clyne (SCO) beat [Q] Carlos Cornes (ESP)
next match up saw #4 seed Alan, winner last weekend in Galway,
come up against the very affable Spaniard Carlos, who has become
very popular here at Fitzwilliam, and we saw two very
competitive games as the first went back and forth on the
scoreboard with Alan taking the end at 11/9.
In the second Carlos took a 6/2 lead then got to game ball at
10/5, but Alan battled through as he often does and in one hand
he levelled then took the extra points to win the game 12/10.
This seemed to take a lot of the heart out of Carlos as after
leading 4/2 in the third he lost momentum and Alan took
advantage to sail through the score to finish the game in one
hand at 11/4.
Ryan Cuskelly (AUS) beat [Q] Bryan Byrne (IRL)
This was another match the Irish were waiting for but
unfortunately it was a step too far for the Galway primary
school teacher Bryan who had fought courageously through the
qualifiers to reach this stage, but especially in the first two
games he was well outplayed by the #3 seed Ryan, going down 11/4
and 11/5, but certainly not disgracing himself.
He took a good early lead in the third, with the crowd roaring
him on, at 5/1, but Ryan started slowly to pull back and got to
match ball at 10/7 and although Bryan saved two match balls he
could not stop Ryan from taking the third game 11/9. A valiant
effort by Bryan but a good win for Ryan.
the end it was a pretty comfortable win - the first two were
good, but he came back well in the third, plus I lost my
concetration a bit. He is very quick and fit and just runs
through walls if he needs to, which did cause a few traffic
issues at times, but it also frustrated me because he just
picked up ball after ball. As for playing a local player: I
don't really mind.
"Obviously he has home support, but he isn't playing full-time
either, though he gave a great account of himself. Tomorrow I
don't mind who I play, I haven't played either before.
"Today was important to get back in to it after playing the
final in Galway on Sunday, and now I feel ready for whoever I am
on court with.
Weenink (NED) beat  Lucas Serme (FRA)
A real battle of attrition was this match as both players took
to the T and volleyed away for some very long rallies, all four
games were very close and combative but Sebastiaan came out on
top 3 games to 1 in 81 long minutes.
 Harinder Pal Sindhu (IND) beat Kevin Moran (SCO)
Another battle royal as both players fought hard for the
advantage and took one game each in the first two, both very
close games. In the next two games Kevin appeared to be tiring
as Harinda took control and took the next two games 11/4 and
Adrian Waller (ENG) beat Adam Auckland (ENG)
Getting late into the night as these two Englishmen took to the
court and although Adam fought bravely to stay in the match
especially in the close first game, Adrian’s ranking and
experience proved too much for Adam.
Women's Round One
Olivia Blatchford (USA) beat  Lisa Camilleri (AUS)
Olivia, at age 21 and ranked #57, turned in a very professional
performance against the No 7 seed Australian Lisa Camillerri
ranked #44, who swept into an early 5/1 lead in the first game
before Olivia got into the game and got to game ball 10/5 in one
hand, Lisa saved one but Olivia took the next point for the game
Olivia then took early control in the second as she moved into a
6/3 lead, but Lisa fought back well to level at 6/6, however
from there Olivia allowed her only one more point to take the
game 11/7. In the third Olivia was taking two points to each one
for Lisa and she pulled through to take the game 11/6 and the
match 3 – 0.
was down 5:1 in the first game - it's a bit of a habit of mine.
I always start poorly! But after that I didn't lose another
point in the first game. What changed? I re-grouped, relaxed a
little and tried to extend the rallies. my coaches always tell
me: it takes one good long rally to change things around, and
that is what happened!
I have known Lisa for a while - she is a fantastic player and
has been around for a while, so I was able to watch some videos
and do some research. My aim was to hit a good length and make
sure that I attack only from good positions, and it worked out.
I am currently based in the US but I have been over in the UK
for a few weeks now, staying with my boyfriend. I also went to
school in England and played this event here six years ago. back
then I initially wasn't let through customs because I was too
young, but then the organisers came and picked me up and saved
Tomorrow I am looking forward to playing the winner of Madeline
and Antonella - I played Antonella only last week but have never
played Madeline. She is the favourite and playing great Squash,
but I'll be looking forward to playing either on center court
Nouran Gohar (EGY) beat Milou v.d. Heijden (NED)
16 year old Egyptian Nouran took an early 3/0 lead in the first
and stayed that gap in front all the way to take the game 11/8
and in the next two games she was far too strong for Milou,
however hard she fought to stay in the match, and Nouran took
the two games comfortably 11/4 each.
 Yathreb Adel (EGY) beat [Q] Birgit Coufal (AUT)
Another young Egyptian, this time 18 year old Yathreb,  seed,
took to the court against qualifier Birgit and once again, just
like her compatriot earlier, she proved far too strong for her
opponent Birgit, and Yathreb took the match in three quick
Tesni Evans (WAL) beat [Q] Tamika Saxby (AUS)
Qualifier Tamika fought bravely throughout this match but Tesni
went ahead on the first game at 11/7, then Tamika, after being
6/2 down in the second, got to game ball at 10/9 but could not
end it as Tesni showed her experience and levelled then took the
extra points to take the game12/10. Again in the third Tamika
would not give in but Tesni used all her guiles to take the game
Madeline Perry (IRL) beat [Q] Antonella Falcione (ARG)
Now we came to the top Irish lady player, the very popular
Madeline, and she showed all her experience as Antonella, who
had played very well throughout qualifying, could find no answer
to Madeline’s great and beautiful squash, and Madeline went on
to win in three games.
 Aisling Blake (IRL) beat Sarah Cardwell (AUS)
up we came to the Irish No 2 Aisling, a member at the
Fitzwilliam Club and a big favourite, and she came through in
three games but had to work harder than Madeline earlier as
Sarah fought ferociously to stay in the match and all three
games were very close.
that was a tough 3:0, that puts it pretty well. Sarah used to
train in Amsterdam so I know her from there (Aisling is based in
Amsterdam), and she has improved a lot since. She has great
coverage and is very quick, so you need to find the corners
Also, the court is a little bouncy, so needed a bit to get used
to that. In the end I made the court back and while she kept
going and going, I was able to finish the rallies off when I
needed to. Tomorrow I am playing Tesni, who is very close to me
ranking-wise. We played each other in Orange County last year
and I lost in five, but tomorrow is a new day.
We are playing on the center court tomorrow in front of a home
crowd, so I am looking forward to the match!
 Lucie Fialova (CZE) beat Deon Saffery (WAL)
we had to have one ladies match go to five games, and this was
it. With Deon just having risen to 47 in the rankings and Lucie
dropping just below her at 49 we indeed expected a very close
well fought match. Lucie took the first one strongly at 11/6,
Deon came back to take the second 11/5 despite Lucie saving two
game balls, Lucie fought back again to take the third 11/7,
despite Deon this time saving three game balls.
In this battle of wills between two very determined young women
Deon again got on top to take the fourth 11/5, and boy did we
see a battle in the final game. Lucie led 7/1, Deon got back to
8/9, Lucie got to match ball at 10/8, Deon levelled and got
match ball herself at 11/10, Lucie again got match ball at
12/11, Deon levelled but could not stop Lucie taking the next
two points for a tremendous win 14/12.
Sarah Kippax (ENG) beat [Q] Carrie Ramsey (ENG)
Next up we had the only two English girls in the main draw and
although scores were very tight in the first two games the
experience of Sarah gave her the games 11/6 each, from then on
Carrie stopped playing and Sarah took the third 11/1.
The end of another great day of squash here at the
Fitzwilliam Club, and we look forward to the quarter finals
tomorrow starting at 2.00 pm.
- Match reports
from Arthur Curran in Dublin
Dougie Kempsell (SCO)
beat Sean Conroy (IRE)
No joy for the Irish here today as young local boy Sean Conroy
went down to Scotsman Douglas, but Sean earned many praises as
he fought valiantly throughout the match, taking the second game
11/8, and after losing the first and the third at 11/7, he saved
three match balls in the fourth but could just not get those
next couple of points to stop the much more experienced Douglas
taking the game 11/9 and the match 3 – 1.
"It was a pretty tough match against Sean, he is very fast
and very fit and had the crowd behind him, which obviously
helped him. He kind of played in swings - meaning he had his ups
and downs, and towards the end of the games he was really
pushing and I was getting quite nervous, particularly after him
winning the second.
"I had seen him play Greg Lobban before, so I knew what to
expect, but I think if he keeps at it he has a good future ahead
for him. For tomorrow I am just hoping to have a good match,
obviously not to play against Alan, but maybe one of the other
top guys. We have the European Team Championships coming up
soon, I am playing three, so some tough matches against stiff
opposition are very welcome!
Mark Fuller (ENG) beat Steven London (ENG)
This match between two English players brought Mark, aged 29
this coming Thursday, but ranked down at #251, against a
slightly younger player in 26 year old Steven, ranked #143.
However Mark played much the better squash, although Steve
played very well but could not stop Mark taking the match in
three staright games.
"Yeah, that was really good, I played really well, lobbed and
boasted all the time, but it was the right game to play against
him today. Credit to Steve for playing well as well. On top of
that: it's the first time for me to qualify for a $15k main
draw, and I also came through a really tough match yesterday -
David played really well there, too."
Carlos Cornes (ESP) beat Jan v.d. Herrewegen (BEL)
Next up we had the rather popular Carlos from Spain, about whom
one spectator said “ He plays very much in the style of his
compatriot Borja Golan”, Borja has always been a great favourite
here in Dublin, and he was up against the Belgian player Jan.
Things were very tight between these two but Carlos got slowly
on top to get to game ball at 10/6, Jan then levelled at 10/10
but Carlos got the extra points to win 12/10.
Carlos had much more of a grip on the match in the second as he
swept through to take the game 11/4. Jan stayed in the game in
the third and the score went to level at 7/7, but Carlos kept
cool and finished the game off in one hand at 11/7 and took the
match 3 games to 0.
"Jan and I are quite good friends, and you know, it's never
easy to play a friend on the tour and this was our first time.
The key here was the first game: I was up gameball ,he came back
and I managed to close it out 12:10 - that was important.
"Right now I am on a good run: I made the quarters in paris,
then in Galway, and now the main draw. For the that I would like
to thank the folks who were supporting me back in Spain,
especially Borja. For tomorrow I will take it easy, relax and
recover until then and just hope that i hit the ball well.
Whatever happens, I am thoroughly enjoying the club and Ireland
itself, a really enjoyable trip so far! For which I would also
like to thank Patrick, my billet!
Match of the Day
Brian Byrne (Irl) 3-2 Tom de Mulder (Bel) 11/8, 9/11, 9/11,
final match of the evening turned out to be both the best match
of the day and the longest, with Irishman Bryan triumphing in
the end to the amazed and ecstatic Irish crowd.
Bryan, a non professional player who is a primary school teacher
with three children of his own from Galway, started very much
second favourite against Belgian Tom, much younger at 20 and
much more experienced ranked at 181 in the world, but from the
start Bryan stamped his mark on the match as he took an early
lead at 4/1, Tom came more into the game then and the score
moved up to 8/8 before Bryan played majestically to take the
first game 11/8.
Bryan took an early lead in the second 5/0, cheered on by a very
vociferous Irish crowd, but Tom came more into the game then to
take the lead at 7/6 and despite Bryan taking the odd point now
and again but fighting very strongly, Tom finished the game off
at 11/9. The third went very much the same way as Bryan leapt
into a 6/1 lead, then after a small comeback by Tom, held the
lead at 9/5 before unfortunately for Bryan, Tom finished off
very strongly again at 11/9 to put himself into a good position
in the match.
was certainly not to be outdone as he ran tremendously all
around the court and cam up with some great retrievals to take a
lead of 5/0 again, Tom fought back to 5/5, Bryan came back to
lead 8/5 and 9/6 before finishing the game at 11/7, and
levelling the match at 2 – 2, much to the delight of the crowd.
The final game became a battle royal with the lead changing
hands many times, Bryan led 3/0, Tom led 5/4, Bryan led 6/5, Tom
led 8/6, Bryan levelled at 8/8, Tom got to match ball at 10/8,
and to the delight of all in the court Bryan saved two match
ball and went on to win the game at 12/10.
A great win for Bryan and a massive result for the Irish
Birgit Coufal (AUT) beat Victoria Temple Murray (ENG)
With Birgit the favourite to go through to the main draw she
started off rather poorly as Victoria took an 8/2 lead in the
first, but the experienced Birgit kept control and in two hands
had won the game 11/6. She then kept up the pressure to take the
second a little mote easily 11/4, but then her concentration
lapsed as Victoria found another level to even the games up at 2
– 2, taking the third and fourth game 11/5 and 11/3.
Birgit took an early lead in the last game 7/4, but Victoria
levelled at 7/7, again at 8/8, Birgit got to match ball at 10/8,
Victoria levelled and got to match ball herself at 11/10, Birgit
got to match ball again at 12/11, Victoria levelled again at
12/12 but Birgit just pulled through to take the next two points
for the game at 14/12 and the match 3 games to 2. A really good
match to start off the day in the women’s tournament.
"I had a good start and was happy to go up 2:0, but then I got
too passive and let her dominate the match. She wonthe next two
games fairly quickly, and in the fifth it was neck and neck, but
I was able to close things out even after giving away two match
"It really helped to have Jakob Dirnberger in my corner - I
normally never have any local support, so that was fantastic.
For tomorrow I don't mind who I play, I am just happy to have
another match. Although I do have to rebook my flight now!
Tamika Saxby (AUS) beat Franziska Hennes (GER)
Young Australian Tamika played really well throughout to
withstand the equally good squash of German girl Franziska, 22
yesterday and ranked some 55 places behind Tamika, but Tamika
managed to stay on top throughout each game to win in three
straight games. I am sure we will see much more of these two
very talented young ladies on the tour in the near future.
"I am really happy to get through qualifying and it's the first
time to qualify for a $15k event. Obviously delighted to get
through in three and I feel I played well and will go in
confident for tomorrow! I know Franziska from juniors before and
we are good friends.
"Also, it's the first time in Ireland for me and I did my best
exploring the city yesterday.
Most importantly: the weather was
great, none of the rain people were telling me about, and I got
a picture with a leprechaun. Mission accomplished! "
Carrie Ramsey (ENG) beat Anna
players of the same age, 22, but Carrie is ranked 54 places
higher than Anna, and that experience showed quite early on as
Carrie took an early lead 8/3 in the first, and although Anna
fought back to 7/8 Carrie eased out to take the game 11/7. Anna,
playing some really great shots and retrieving well, got on top
in the second and went on to win that 11/6.
However Carrie’s experience started to tell then as she eased
through the next two games 11/7 and 11/5 and won the match 3 –
1. Unfortunately Carrie tells me that she is retiring from
competitive squash after the British Open next month to
concentrate on other things, so we wish her well in her
endeavours, and I am sure we will see much more of Anna in the
Antonella Falcione (ARG) beat Chloe Mesic (FRA)
last match saw two very lovely young ladies taking to the court,
as we saw 22 year old French girl Chloe, ranked at 90 in the
world, take on the lady from Argentina, 23 year old Antonella,
ranked at 67. This match lived up to expectations as Antonella
held Chloe to 8/8 in the first but then Antonella served out to
take the game 11/8.
With both players playing some lovely squash in the first, it
was surprising to see Chloe apparently lose her concentration to
allow Antonella to take the game with ease, and despite a little
more fight from Chloe in the third Antonella took that one 11/6
to win the match in three. Unfortunately for Antonella after
that fine win the draw matched her up in the main draw against
tournament and crowd favourite here in Dublin, Madeline Perry.
Well again we come to the end of a perfect day of great squash,
and we can look forward to a long and fantastic day of squash
tomorrow as we start on the main draw.
Qualifying Round One
- Match reports
from Arthur Curran in Dublin
Sean Conroy (IRE) beat  Jakob Dirnberger (AUT)
boy Sean started off with the shock of the tournament against a
much older and more experienced player in Jakob, and he raced
into an 8/3 lead then despite Jakob pulling back to 7/8 Sean
finished the game off in fine style at 11/7.
Jakob started well with a small 4/2 lead, Sean took hold of the
game and finished in one hand at 11/4. Again Sean whipped into a
great lead and got to match ball at 10/2, Jakob managed to save
three match balls before Sean finished off the game at 11/2 for
a fantastic win.
Mark Fuller (ENG) beat  David Wardle (ENG)
These two team mates and training partners at the Park Club in
Nottingham, England started off very cautiously against each
other and kept the scores very level all the way through the
first game and taking it to extra points before Mark eased in
front to take the game 15/13.
Mark came out the stronger in the second and got to game ball
first at 10/5 then despite David saving two game balls he could
not stop Mark finishing the game off at 11/7. David slowly got
on top in the third as he eased from 6/6 to 9/6 then, after Mark
got back to 8/9, David finished the game at 11/8.
After David had pulled back from 2/5 to 5/5 Mark then eased
through in one hand to take the game 11/5 and the match 3 – 1.
 Steven London (ENG) beat Connor Sheen (ENG)
This match of the two Englishmen was a huge struggle in parts
with both men playing some really good squash but Steve always
appeared to have the upper hand in the first two games as he
took them 11/5 and 11/6. Connor fought very hard in the third
and led 9/8 near the end but Steve managed to hold out and take
the game 11/9 and the match 3 – 1.
Carlos Cornes (ESP) beat Nick Mulvey (ENG)
quickly got on top from the start and took the first game 11/5,
despite Nick saving two game balls. Carlos took an early lead
3/0 in the second but Nick found his game and swept to 8/3, then
took the game 11/4.
Scores were very much up and down in the third with both players
fighting for an advantage, as Carlos led 4/2, Nick then led 6/4,
Carlos took the lead 9/6, Nick got to game ball at 10/9 but then
Carlos, playing some very energetic squash, levelled and took
the game 12/10. Nick must have used a lot of energy in that
third, as in the fourth game Carlos tok command and won the game
11/4 and the match 3 – 1.
Jan Van Den Herreweggen (BEL) beat Conor O’Hare (IRE)
was so much a “nearly” victory for young Irishman Conor O’Hare
as he fought valiantly against the older and more experienced
Jan and got to game ball first in both the first two games but
then allowed Jan back in to pinch both games in extra points at
12/10 each. He then seemed to lose all his impetus as Jan took
the third game 11/6.
Tom de Mulder (BEL) beat Joe Green (ENG)
Wow, what a fabulous match this one turned out to be, even if at
times it was rough and scruffy, with both players guilty of
arguing against the referee’s decisions, and it turned out to be
the longest of the day at 73 minutes. Tom got to game ball first
in the first game but Joe fought back well to take the game
Again Tom got to game ball at 10/6 this time and despite Joe
saving two game balls Tom took the game 11/8. Very even right
through the third as both players fought hard for the advantage,
Tom got to game ball first at 10/9, Joe levelled but Tom took
the extra points for the game at 12/10.
Very even again in the fourth as both men struggled hard to get
the advantage, Joe got to game ball first but Tom equalised and
got to match ball at 12/11 and 13/12 but Joe held strong and
took the game 15/13. Unfortunately for Joe, Tom came out the
stronger in the final game and got through eventually at 11/8.
Bryan Byrne (IRE) beat Reuben Phillips (ENG)
Possibly because it was an Irish victory the crowd felt this was
the match of the day, and local entrant Bryan Byrne deserved his
win in the end for his endurance in what was a great match
against Reuben. In both the first two games the score stayed
very level right through until Bryan just eased in front to take
them both 11/9.
Bryan seemed to be tiring in the third as Reuben took advantage
and took the game 11/6, and even ore so in the fourth which
Reuben took comfortably 11/1. However Bryan came back very
strongly in the last and led slightly all the way and finished
the game at 11/7 for a fine victory 3 games to 2.
Women's Qualifying Round One
Unfortunately there was no luck for the Irish in the ladies
section as all four local entrants went down in their first
matches, even though youngsters Fiona Power and Griffin
Gillanders literally stepped off the plane at Dublin Airport,
arriving back from Finland after helping the Irish Team to sixth
place in the European U 19’s Team Championship, and came
straight to the club to play their games. And a special mention
to club member Jody Hannon for stepping in at the last minute as
a local entrant at the age of 35, and putting up a really good
show against a very experienced Argentinian.
Birgit Coufal (AUT) beat Ciara Moloney (IRE)
on court for the ladies was young local girl Ciara Moloney, who
was up against a very experienced Austrian player Birgit Coufal.
Unfortunately for Ciara, Birgit had brought her best game with
her and she took the first two games both 11/2, and although
Ciara tried much harder in the third could not stop Birgit from
taking that one 11/5.
Victoria Temple Murray (ENG) beat Emily Ison (ENG)
top player during her junior years who has moved into senior
tournaments very smoothly is Victoria Temple Murray from
England, although still young has lots of experience, and she
was up against Emily Ison from England, who tells me this is her
first tournament since stopping playing tournaments at junior
level, at 23 now having a go on the professional tour.
The difference in experience showed quite clearly in the first
two games, which Victoria took fairly comfortably 11/3 and 11/4,
although Emily was playing some great squash, which in fact got
her to game ball first at 10/9 in the third, but unfortunately
could not finish off as Tory managed the extra points to take
the game 12/10.
Hennes (GER) beat Fiona Power (IRL)
With Fiona literally coming straight from the airport to the
club, her tiredness showed as Franziska powered through the
match to take it comfortably in three.
Chloe Mesic (FRA) beat Linda Paj (HUN)
This was Linda’s first tournament match as at the age of 24 she
has decided to have a try at the women’s tour since giving up
the game after a good career as a junior.
The difference in experience again was clear to see as Chloe
went through in three straight games, although Linda gave a very
good effort of herself with some fine squash, and hopefully we
will see more of her on the tour.
Anna Klimundova (CZE) beat Roxanna Keshavarz (ENG)
being Roxana’s first competitive match in the seniors, her lack
of experience showed quite clearly as Anna took this one
comfortably in three games.
Carrie Ramsey (ENG) beat Griffin Gillanders (IRE)
Again with Griffin coming straight from the airport Carrie used
all her experience to overcome the opposition again quite
comfortably to win in three.
Antonella Falcione (ARG) beat Jody Hannon (IRL)
Last match up for the women was again very much one sided as the
experienced Argentinean Antonella took the match in three
straight games but local club player Jody, who stepped in at the
last minute, made a very great effort, especially in the first
game saving two game balls, but her lack of match fitness showed
then as Antonella took the next two in her stride.
A great afternoon and evening of squash now comes to a
close as we pack up here and look forward to tomorrow’s final
qualifiers, four men and four women, with play starting at 2.00
pm for any local squash fans who would like to come and watch,
admission is free.
2013 Event |
ALL IRELAND FINAL on the CARDS?
Ireland’s top two women squash players, Madeline Perry and
Aisling Blake, ranked 8 and 29 in the world are seeded 1 and 4
respectively and could meet in the final of the Cannon Kirk Irish
Squash Open taking place in the Fitzwilliam Lawn Tennis Club from
Madeline, the reigning title holder, and winner of five previous
Irish Open titles, at 37, continues to hold a world top 10 ranking.
Aisling has reached 22 in the world and has climbed back from injury
to regain a spot in the top 30. In the 2012 National Championships,
Aisling recorded her first win over Madeline in the final. To
contest the final, Blake will first have to get past second seed
Sarah Kippax of England.
One to watch is third seed, 20 year old Emily Whitlock of England,
with a world ranking of 26 who already holds 4 titles at senior
level. Her semi-final opponent is likely to be the number one seed,
Two of Ireland’s top juniors, Griiffin Gillanders ( Leinster), and
Fiona Power ( Connaught) ranked 5 and 6 on the National senior team
have places in the qualifiers draw for the last four places in the
main draw. David Ryan, currently on a squash scholarship to Harvard,
ranked 11 in the world under 19s gets a place in the qualifiers’
draw, alongside Brian Byrne, Conor O’ Hare and Sean Conroy.
The men’s draw is headed up by
Tom Richards and Adrian Waller,
world 27 and 26. Ireland’s Arthur Gaskin ( world 88) holder of the
national title for the second time in 2013 gets a wild card entry
and meets seventh seed, Harinder Pal Sandhu of India in the first
The draw has attracted players from 12 countries. Qualifiers rounds
take place on Monday and Tuesday 21st and 22nd April at 2.00pm.
The main draw begins on Wednesday 23rd April at 2.00pm in
Fitzwilliam Lawn Tennis Club. Entry to all rounds is free.