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Slaight Music Granite Open 2016
23-28 Oct, Toronto, Canada, $16k



28-Oct, Final:

Millie takes the title
Jess DiMauro reports

WHAT A NIGHT! The squash lounge is still buzzing as I type this write up. People cannot believe the terrific week of squash that we have witnessed. And what a final, to finish things off!

Millie Tomlinson and Sam Cornett were both competing in their 13th tour final, but for both, it was their biggest tour final to date. We knew it was going to be tight, and they did not let us down.

The first game was super long. Both girls trying to figure each other out. They played great rallies and went back and forth throughout, Millie getting to 9-7 up before Sam pulled it close to 9-9, only to have Millie win the next two points to take game 1.

The second game was more of the same. Millie perhaps a little less tentative than Sam, and that was the difference. This game could also have gone either way, but Millie came out on top to win 13-11 in the second.

The third looked like it may be the same situation, but at 5-5, Sam started to volley like crazy, and Millie, with a couple uncharacteristic unforced errors, let Sam pull away to win 11-5.

The fourth game was amazing getting to 7-7. And then, out of nowhere, Millie hit two, off her feet, cross court volley nicks to pull ahead and take the wind out of Sam's sails!

Millie won the fourth 11-7 to win the match 3-1.

 

Granite Open 2016
23-28 Oct, Toronto, Canada, $16k
Round One
25 Oct 
Quarters
26 Oct
Semis
27 Oct
Final
28 Oct
[1] Nicolette Fernandes (Guy)
11-7, 11-5, 11-8 (41m)
Nada Abbas (Egy)
Nada Abbas

11-9, 11-7, 11-9 (36m)

[7] Nikki Todd
Nada Abbas

1-5, 11-4, 8-11, 8-11, 11-0

[4] Millie Tomlinson

11th PSA title for Millie

[4] Millie Tomlinson

 

11-9, 13-11, 5-11, 11-7

 

[wc] Sam Cornett

 

[7] Nikki Todd (Can)
11-6, 14-12, 11-5 (34m)
[Q] Haley Menzdez (Usa)
[6] Nouran El Torky (Egy)
11-3, 11-8, 9-11, 11-7 (35m)
[Q] Elena Wagermans (Ned)
[6] Nouran El Torky

11-9, 11-7, 11-4 (38m)

[4] Millie Tomlinson
[4] Millie Tomlinson (Eng)
7-11, 11-8, 11-8, 11-6 (53m)
[Q] Emilia Soini (Fin)
[Q] Anna Kimberley (Eng)
13-11, 11-4, 11-7 (33m)
[3] Samantha Teran (Mex)
[3] Samantha Teran

11-9, 9-11, 6-11, 11-7, 11-3 (71m)

[5] Hollie Naughton
[3] Samantha Teran

8-11, 11-8, 11-4, 11-4

[wc] Sam Cornett

Danielle Letourneau (Can)
10-12, 11-9, 11-6, 11-9 (45m)
[5] Hollie Naughton (Can)
Maria Toor Pakay (Pak)
11-7, 11-4, 11-8 (21m)
[8] Chloe Mesic (Fra)
Maria Toor Pakay

11-5, 11-7, 12-10 (27m)

[wc] Sam Cornett
[wc] Sam Cornett (Can)
2-11, 8-11, 11-7, 11-2, 11-7 (50m)
[2] Fiona Moverley (Eng)
Qualifying:

Finals:
Anna Kimberly 3-2 Alison Thomson     11-8, 10-12, 6-11, 11-5, 11-6
Elena Wagenmans 3-0 Marie Stephan                   11-9, 11-9, 11-7
Haley Mendez 3-0Giselle Delgado                         11-9, 11-9, 11-6
Emilia Soini 3-0 Diana Garcia                              11-5, 11-7, 11-9

Round One:
Haley Mendez 3-0 Janet Vidhi                   11-4, 11-5, 11-4
Marie Stephan 3-0 Micaala Seth               11-8, 11-4, 11-9
Anna Kimberly 3-0 Seanna Keating             11-4, 1-3, 11-3
Emilia Soini 3-0 Linda Manziaris                11-3, 11-1, 11-1
Elena Wagenmans 3-0 Erica McGillicuddy   11-1, 11-1, 11-0
Giselle Delgado 3-0 Molly Chadwick            11-2, 11-3, 11-3

 TAGS :   2015 Event | Search

27-Oct, Semis:
Millie ends Abbas run as Cornett makes the final

Well, well, well! Our Granite Pro, Sam Cornett has made her first Granite Open Final!!!!

Tomorrow night is going to be a great match vs Millie Tomlinson who came through an exciting five game battle!

Thanks to everyone who came out to watch....It was so nice to see so many people appreciating such great squash :)

Granite Open - Semi Finals
Jess reports



Hit with the Juniors!

The night started out with 4 awesome pros offering their time to come and hit with our top juniors from 5:15 to 6:15. The kids rotated through every court and got time with each pro. At the end of the session, each of the pros spoke highly of our juniors and gave some great tips that they can take away to practice. Thank you so much to Hollie, Chloe, Janet and Nouran. This is something the kids will always remember.


Millie Tomlinson vs Nada Abbas

In the first game, Nada kept attacking and Millie defended everything, until Nada went too fine and made some errors. The start of the second game looked like Nada may be willing to hang in there for the long haul and lay off her attacking ways. But soon, her patience wore out and Nada started to make unforced errors letting Millie pull away and finish comfortably. In the third, Millie looked comfortable until Nada finally was willing to be patient with her and cut out her errors. This led Nada to third and fourth game wins, forcing an anticipated fifth. Millie stepped up the pace and Nada ran out of steam to produce an astonishing 11-0 fifth game. Great maturity and focus by Millie. Congrats!
Match to Tomlinson 3-2 (11-5, 11-4, 8-11, 8-11, 11-0)

“Really happy that I managed to come out strong in that last game. There's nothing worse than going 2-0 up and then losing. Thank you so much to Beth, Hannah and Molly for coming to support me and hosting me this week. I'm looking forward to playing Sam tomorrow - hopefully Sam's home crowd won't be too harsh to me :) ” -Millie Tomlinson

Samantha Cornett vs Samantha Teran

What can I say about the new Sam Cornett?!?!?!? After a year off with injury, Sam has come storming back onto the PSA scene. Tonight she played with lots of confidence, assertiveness, and good choices about attacking. Poor Sam Teran, a crowd favourite, had to work hard after a tough mental and physical battle last night. It was so nice to watch the two Sams play. Both such great athletes and lovely women.

Match to Cornett 3-1 (8-11, 11-8, 11-4, 11-4)

"It's such a pleasure playing Samantha. I knew, going in, that it was going to be a long one. I stuck to my game plan really well in the end and played very assertive and confident squash. I hope to carry that through to my match with Millie tomorrow.” -Sam Cornett

Watch LIVE

26-Oct, Quarters:
Cornett and Abbas continue to upset ...

Jess, Sam and Ally report



Millie Tomlinson vs Nouran El Torky

Nouran stormed to a 6-1 lead, but similar to yesterday, Millie fought back to take the first game. After a call to Egypt between games, Nouran pulled ahead again, only to have Millie creep back in and stay ahead through the second game and to finish the match. Best coach Alison was on the scene to help her teammate out.

Match to Tomlinson 3-0 (11-9, 11-7, 11-4) 38 mins

“Really pleased with my performance tonight. I’ve had some battles with Nouran in the past, so I was pleased to get through in 3. I just tried to stay focused all the way through, and keep her in the back corners. I’m excited for tomorrow and hoping for another good match :) ” -Millie Tomlinson

Maria Toorpakai Wazir vs Samantha Cornett

Sam continued her assertive ways as she muscled confidently through the first game. Maria, with her great hands and fast deception, kept both the second and third games close, but Sam pulled away in each with terrific retrieving and tight counter drops. Throw in some timely volley drops and match to Sam.

Match to Cornett 3-0 (11-5, 11-7, 12-10) 27 mins

“I am glad to have stayed steady through that match, Maria is tough to play and can slot the ball in short so I had to stay on my toes the whole match. I’m happy with that, now onto the next one!” -Sam Cornett


Nikki Todd vs Nada Abbas

Wow. Two great athletes. Unreal counter drops and terrific pick ups were rampant in this match. There were great attacks, solid volleys, and good length from both. The crowd loved every second of it… me too!

Match to Abbas 3-0 (11-9, 11-7, 11-9) 36 mins

“I’m really happy to win this one in 3 and I’m looking forward to play Millie tomorrow. I think that it will be a great one and I’m looking forward to it.” -Nada Abbas

Samantha Teran vs Hollie Naughton

A fiery and physical battle with a hint of sass! Great tenacious squash from both players. The first three games were closely contested. The fourth game was absolutely fierce hitting from both as the finish line drew closer. Teran and Naughton were firing in great boasts. Naughton put in a beauty rally at 9-7 down, but Teran still pulled ahead to take that game with a back wall nick! Teran pulled way ahead in the 5th, 9-1, despite huge effort from Naughton. A squeeze from Teran gave her game ball. There was a blood break here, which could have turned the tides, but Teran ended up taking the match on the first opportunity.

Match to Teran 3-2 (11-9, 9-11, 6-11, 11-7, 11-3) 71 mins

“I’m just happy to be in the semis and to win in 5. Hollie is a very tough player and is improving a lot. Happy with playing Sam tomorrow.” -Samantha Teran

Sponsor Doubles!

Our night started with the annual Pro Am sponsor doubles event, where 4 great pros offered their time. Nicolette, Ally, Giselle, and Diana were put to the doubles test! There was a bit of controversy with ex pro Steph Edmison playing as an Am. She is, after all, a sponsor!

The finals came down to Gary Slaight and Nicolette vs Steph Edmison and Diana, and all we know is that the scoresheet says "Steph Cheated!!" One of the less experienced players is quoted to have said “I felt scared” [out there on the doubles court].

Watch LIVE

25-Oct, Round One:
Top two seeds beaten as both Granite pros progress

Sam Cornett, and Jessica DiMauro report

WHAT A NIGHT!!!!!
Both our Granite Pros made it through to the quarter finals!!!! Check out the details below :)



Samantha Teran vs Anna Kimberly

Anna started the match off strong to take a 6-2 lead. But then Sam figured it out and settled in nicely to win a tight 13-11 first game. Sam took a confident second game but Anna had one last fight in the third making it a great battle but a 3-0 win to Sam.

Match to Teran 3-0 (13-11, 11-4, 11-7) 33 mins

“It was a very nice match to play. I have never played Anna before, she is a very nice and smart player. In the beginning it was a very close game and her shots were tight and good shots. I just kept playing and at the end she made some mistakes. In the second and third I started hitting the ball better and she got a bit tired, especially after her long match yesterday. I am happy to be in the second round of one of my favourite tournaments. Happy to be back in Toronto :) Ready for tomorrow.” -Samantha Teran


Nouran El Torky vs Elena Wagenmans

Nouran stormed out to a 6-0 lead and didn’t look back, winning the first game 11-3. The second game was much more of a fight with Elena taking an early lead but Nouran digging in to close out the second 11-8. The third game saw Elena take a 9-2 lead. Nouran came all the way back to 9-9 before Elena hit a cross court nick winner off the return of serve and then a racquet error by Nouran gave the third to Elena. Nouran started the fourth with renewed focus. Even though Elena battled the whole way with some terrific forehand volleys and great court coverage, Nouran stayed ahead the entire time.

Match to El Torky 3-1 (11-3, 11-8, 9-11, 11-7) 35 mins

“I think the first I was playing with the right tactics and after I took the first couple points 5, 6, 7, she started throwing the game. She tried in the second, she played really well for her age the rest of the match. The third I was down 9-3 then I came back til 9-8, she hit the nick at 10-8. I managed to get to 10-9 then I made a stupid mistake so 2-1 up. Then I tried to get my focus back with drive and counter drops in front of me and not to open the court that much. Thanks to Nada for coaching me today. Looking forward to my match tomorrow. Special thanks to the sponsors for putting up this tournament again and for the McGillicuddy family for hosting me for the second year. Thanks to my family, coaches back home, and to my sponsor Louran Dental Care.” -Nouran El Torky


Millie Tomlinson vs Emilia Soini

Emilia went up 1 game to love. Millie, having just arrived Monday night, took a while to warm up but started to pick up Emilia’s drops from the back court and won the second game. The third game went back and forth but Millie stayed patient and consistent to the the 2-1 lead. Emilia got a little frustrated in the fourth, allowing Millie to keep a comfortable lead throughout the game towards her 3-1 win.

Match to Tomlinson 3-1 (7-11, 11-8, 11-8, 11-6) 53 mins

“Really happy I stuck in there and came out with the win today. Emilia put me under a lot of pressure with her short game. I’m looking forward to tomorrow.” -Millie Tomlinson

Nicolette Fernandes vs Nada Abbas

A high paced match from the start. Both girls making great gets, taking good space through the middle and finishing rallies nicely. Second game, Nada attacked relentlessly but Nicolette picked up everything. Still, Nada’s clean straight backhand length and drops carried her to a 2-0 lead. It was more of the same in the third, with great attack, unreal athleticism and fascinating squash.

Match to Abbas 3-0 (11-7, 11-5, 11-8) 41 mins

“Happy to win in 3 against a very experienced and tough opponent. I think I was a bit nervous in the first game but after winning I gained more confidence and started playing better. Tomorrow I’ll be playing the winner of Haley Mendez and Nikki Todd, I’ve never played either but for sure I’ll give it my 100%.” -Nada Abbas

Fiona Moverley vs Sam Cornett

Fiona came out playing terrific, and Sam, perhaps with the stress of the home crowd, Sam looked a little like a deer in headlights. Halfway through the second Sam settled in. Fiona hit some great volley drops generating cheers from her two English fans who came all the way from her hometown. But Sam bore down, as the crowd cheered her along to a great, assertive win.

Match to Cornett 3-2 (2-11, 8-11, 11-7, 11-2, 11-7) 50 mins

“I’m so pumped and really pleased to play so well in front of my friends and family. Can’t wait for the chance to play again tomorrow. I didn’t think it was going to happen after those first two, since Fiona has experience in those positions and was teaching me a lesson. But I cut loose and played way more assertively and it worked!” -Sam Cornett

Hollie Naughton vs Danielle Letourneau

It seems every time we turn around, we are watching another great match between Danielle and Hollie. The two Canadian team members have gone back and forth in recent matches and this match was going to be no different. A 45 min 3-1 match was filled with volleys, intensity and lots of great athleticism.

Match to Naughton 3-1 (10-12, 11-9, 11-6, 11-9) 45 mins

“Happy to win, always a tough mental battle with Danielle. She hit some great volley drops, really made me have to adapt. Relieved to come out on top and excited to be in the next round.” -Hollie Naughton

Nikki Todd vs Haley Mendez

Nikki showed her speed in the first game, picking up all of Haley’s great volley drops to win the first. Haley took a quick 7-2 lead in the second but as Nikki is known to do, she closed the gap to 7-6. The girls went back and forth to a 14-12, two love lead for Nikki. Nikki was amazing in the third and her last shot summed it up when she stuck an inch perfect backhand volley drop to finish the match.

Match to Todd 3-0 (11-6, 14-12, 11-5) 34 mins

“Pumped to be through in 3. I thought it was going to be a long one when I was down 10-6 in the second, but dug in and pulled out a win. Nice, fair match. Looking forward to tomorrow’s match.” -Nikki Todd

“AMAZING. You don’t know how she does it!” -Ella Dulmage, Granite junior

Chloe Mesic vs Maria Toorpakai Wazir

Last match of the evening! Very short rallies dominated this match. Maria’s short game was too strong for the French player, with lots of hard drives and kills. The underdog comes through a solid 3-0. Tough evening for the seeded players tonight!

Match to Toorpakai Wazir 3-0 (11-7, 11-4, 11-8) 21 mins

"I was confident and I played well. I wasn't really sure how my body would respond, but it all worked out well." -Maria Toorpakai Wazir
 

Watch LIVE

24-Oct, Qualifying Finals:

Sam Cornett, Nikki Todd and Jessica DiMauro report


Marie Stephan vs Elena Wagenmans

Wagenmans was too strong in this match and Stephan hit too many errors. Stephan may have been affected by her opponent changing their match to an earlier time in order to catch a flight! Mental games…

Match to Wagenmans 3-0 (11-9, 11-9, 11-7)

“I feel happy with the way I played today; I didn’t have any pressure so I played much more relaxed. It was a tough match, and even more so since we were both staying at the same billet.” -Elena Wagenmans

Haley Mendez vs Giselle Delgado

Mendez built a strong lead in the first to get to game ball, and Delgado battled back to 9-10. A great get but a drop back on herself gave the game to Mendez on a stroke. The next two games saw great rallies but too many cross courts from Delgado gave Mendez opportunities.

Match to Mendez 3-0 (11-9, 11-9, 11-6)

“Giselle and I just played last month at the Pan Am Championships and had a tough battle, so I’m thrilled to get off in 3. Very happy to have qualified and am looking forward to tomorrow night!” -Haley Mendez

Alison Thomson vs Anna Kimberly

A 13 minute 40 second long and conservative first game with lots of length gave Kimberley a 1-0 lead. She started the second off aggressively with 3 great drops and some attacking play which gave her a 6-1 lead. Thomson clawed her way back to 8-8 and finally got her first lead at 9-8. With a stroke to finish off the game 12-10 Thomson ties the match at 1-1.

Third game Thomson picked up everything Kimberly thought she put away, and then with some unfortunate unforced errors Ali was able to take the game 11-6. The fourth game was a see saw battle, with Kimberly using counter attacks off the boast to tie the match up 2-2. 5th started out back and forth again but Kimberly uses a great BH kill to set up her first match ball.

Thomson fights back in a huge scrambling rally only to finish off in a let. And then another huge rally, both girls picking up every ball, but Kimberly finishes it off 11-6.

Match to Kimberly 3-2 (11-8, 10-12, 6-11, 11-5, 11-6 )

“Wow what a humdinger! I know that it’s always going to be a tough one with Ally because she is a great retriever, but at the same time I know it’s always going to fun. I’m very happy to have won and looking forward to my next match in the main draw.” -Anna Kimberly

Emilia Soini vs Diana Garcia

It was a 9pm start for these two players but nonetheless they started fast and furious out of the gates. Soini didn’t hold back with confident attack. She was relentless, even going for a crosscourt nick on game ball. In the third game, Garcia was ready to battle and stayed close to Soini throughout. A stroke on match ball and Soini is through to the main draw.

Match to Soini 3-0 (11-5, 11-7, 11-9)

“I was very nervous nervous throughout the match because this is all very new to me! I am happy to win in 3 and get through to the main draw, this is my biggest main draw yet!” -Emilia Soini
 

Watch LIVE

23-Oct, Qualifying Round One:

Sam Cornett reports on Qualifying Round One



Haley Mendez 3-0 Janet Vidhi  11-4, 11-5, 11-4

Both Mendez and Vidhi had a nervous start to the match, but Mendez eventually settled in. She showed her experience to stay on top of Vidhi. Vidhi threw in some great boasts. Mendez countered well, played smart length and good straight drops to negate Vidhi’s attack.

“Just happy to be back on court competing again! It’s my first time in Toronto, so happy to be here - hopefully I’ll be here all week.” -Haley Mendez

Marie Stephan 3-0 Micaala Seth  11-8, 11-4, 11-9

Stephan and Seth were both volleying well through the match. Stephan took the first two before Seth could battle back at her in the third, pushing ahead 7-2. Stephan battled back to 8-8 and steadied to win 11-9 in a close hard fought third game.

“Glad to be through to the next round in 3. First match is always a little tough, getting adjusted to the court and finding my length. Happy to be back on tour after a couple months off.” -Marie Stephan

Anna Kimberly 3-0 Seanna Keating 11-4, 1-3, 11-3

Kimberly took the first game quickly, moving Keating front to back. The second had great rallies, despite the scoreline. Kimberly kept building the pressure throughout each rally until Keating couldn’t get to the next shot. The Englishwoman’s short game was too strong for our local player. Perhaps the three tournaments Seanna was playing this weekend got to her in the end!! Kimberly finished the third looking strong.

“Seanna is a tricky player and I had to watch out for her boast. This made me a bit edgy in the first game, but after that I relaxed and was able to play more freely. Happy to get the win in 3 and looking forward to my next match!” -Anna Kimberly

Emilia Soini 3-0 Linda Manziaris  11-3, 11-1, 11-1

Soini used lots of great height throughout the match. She controlled the T and and moved quickly around the court to keep Manziaris under pressure. Linda kept fighting even at 10-1 down - great experience for her.

“I was trying to get used to the court mostly. I haven’t played Linda before and I have only just started touring so I’m trying to find me own game and good rhythm.” -Emilia Soini

Elena Wagenmans 3-0 Erica McGillicuddy 11-1, 11-1, 11-0

Wagenmans is very tall and strong. She commands the T and volleys well. McGillicuddy scrambled well and got lots of balls back. She fought so hard, and it’s great for her to get to compete at that level. Erica had a big weekend playing at the Junior Gold tournament so we were impressed with her effort out there!

“I’m pretty happy with the way I played today; I got a feel for the court and I volleyed really well so it was good preparation for my next match.” - Elena Wagenmans

Giselle Delgado 3-0 Molly Chadwick 11-2, 11-3, 11-3

Delgado was too strong and picked up more balls than Chadwick was used to. The Chilean player put Molly under too much pressure with her dying length and tight drops. Molly put in an impressive effort, since she also played the Junior Gold tournament this weekend.

“I’m thrilled to have won my first match. Molly has a bright future ahead and I wish her all the best. I got a little bit more used to the court and I’m looking forward to my match versus Haley tomorrow!” -Giselle Delgado

Quotes from the kids

“It’s a fun tournament! When the pros come it’s really inspiring for the juniors to watch. For Molly, Erica and I it’s amazing to play pros who are way better than you and great to see how the game is played at that level.” -Linda Manziaris

“It’s a very humbling experience. My opponent was very good at volleying and keeping me behind her. It was good for me to see where I can get to one day.” -Erica McGillicuddy

“The Granite Open is a great experience for all the juniors to watch the women play and learn from their style. It’s a great opportunity for us to play in the tournament. In my match I felt I hit good straight kills and was good at keeping the rallies going. Thanks to Jess for giving us the chance to play!” -Molly Chadwick

 

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