01-05 Feb, Winnipeg, Canada, $10k
Cornett is first home winner
Sam Cornett joins an elite list of players to have won
the Winnipeg Winter Club Open title including Emma Beddoes,
Dipika Pallikal, Joshana Chinappa and Emily Whitlock.
Cornett and Zeina Mickawy were playing well in the final and
there wasn’t much between the two of them. Mickawy as we saw all
week came out aggressive and had Cornett retrieving and twisting
and turning a fair bit in the opening game. Cornett was able to
withstand the pressure and squeak out a very important opening
game in extra points 12-10.
second game continued in much the same manner. Cornett did some
excellent retrieving with some great counter drops. She was a
little more aggressive today in the final throwing in a number
of momentum stopping nicks off some loose serves from Mickaway.
As was the case the previous day in the semi final, Cornett
looked to fade or have a slight slip in concentration in the
third before regrouping and coming out strong in the fourth. She
was able to race off to a 3-4 point lead early in the fourth
which she was able to maintain and take come this year's title.
We had another great year at our tournament in Winnipeg and are
already looking forward to things next year.
Cornett takes the title
Winnipeg Winter Club Open
01-05 Feb, Winnipeg, Canada, $10k
 Sarah Cardwell (Aus)
11-9, 11-5, 11-5
Giselle Delgado (Chi)
 Sarah Cardwell
11-7, 11-3, 11-3
 Reyna Pacheco
 Sarah Cardwell
11-2, 11-6, 11-2
12-10, 11-7, 3-11, 11-7
 Sam Cornett
 Reyna Pacheco (Usa)
11-8, 16-14, 11-9
[Q] Alix Younger (Can)
 Laura Pomportes (Fra)
11-5, 11-2, 11-6
[Q] Anika Alexander (Can)
 Laura Pomportes
11-9, 5-11, 11-2, 11-7
 Tamika Saxby (Aus)
11-6, 11-3, 11-8
Zeina Mickawy (Egy)
[Q] Nichole Mailey (Can)
11-5, 11-1, 11-3
 Danielle Letourneau (Can)
 Danielle Letourneau
11-9, 8-11, 11-4,
 Nikki Todd
 Danielle Letourneau
11-4, 11-7, 4-11,
 Sam Cornett
[wc] Hannah Blatt (Can)
11-5, 11-4, 11-5
 Nikki Todd (Can)
Diana Garcia (Mex)
11-5, 11-5, 11-9
 Sam Cornett (Can)
 Sam Cornett
11-7, 11-9, 11-2
 Nada Abbas
[Q] Nadine Kotb (Egy)
11-7, 11-6, 11-8
 Nada Abbas (Egy)
Nadine Kotb (Egy) bye
Nichole Mailey (Can) 3-0 Jordyn Lambert (Can)
11-8, 11-7, 11-4 (18m)
Anika Alexander (Can) 3-0 Mia Kirbyson (Can)
13-11, 7-11, 11-8, 11-8
Alix Younger (Can) bye
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and Cornett through to final
The two best players over the course of the week have advanced
to the finals at the 8th annual Winnipeg Winter Club Women’s
Mickawy of Egypt continued her hot play as she rolled past
the first seed, Sarah Cardwell, comfortably and in to her second
final in as many weeks.
Mickawy came out attacking like usual and seemed to have
Cardwell out of sorts, off balance and defensive from the start
and throughout. Cardwell put up a fight but was on the receiving
end of too many of the rallies having to work too hard to win
In the second semi final it was a highly anticipated all
Canadian match up for the second night in a row. Three time
national champion Sam Cornett continued her strong steady
play this week as she took down a feisty Danielle Letourneau
in four games.
took control early on keeping Letourneau behind her and really
minimizing any opportunities for Letourneau to attack. Despite
winning the second game a couple long rallies near the end of
the second seemed give Letourneau some momentum which she
carried in to the third.
She was able to start cutting off more and more shots of
Cornett’s putting her nice touch game to work. She won the third
comfortably and was neck and neck with Cornett in the fourth
until a monster rally at 5-4 which was won by Cornett taking her
to 6-4 seemed to give her the much needed final push.
She looked comfortable and controlled from that point on as she
made it a happy 26th birthday for herself by advancing to
Mickawy run continues as home finalist
Sarah Cardwell 3-0 Reyna Pacheco
After a back and forth opening game where both players
showed some great retrieving ability Sarah Cardwell took a close
one 11-7. After the first Cardwell was in control. She kept the
Amercian frustrated with her retrieving which lead to a few too
many unforced errors as the top seed took it in three and rolled
in to the semi finals in her first trip to Winnipeg.
Zeina Mickawy 3-1 Laura Pomportes
An extremely long rally started this match off with lots of low
hard hitting with a hot lively ball. Mickawy was attacking
attacking at every opportunity while Pomportes was trying to
stay steady and consistent. A strange play near the end of the
first game as Pomportes stopped the ball thinking it had hit
Mickawy. The crowd and Mickawy thought otherwise but with the
ref unsure a let was decided. Mickawy managed to finish off the
first game with a tin from Pomportes.
Pomportes regained her composure in the second and raced out to
a large lead that she was able to maintain taking is 11-5.
Mickawy’s retrieving in the third game was the difference. Right
when it looked like she may be tiring the young Egyptian bore
down and wouldn’t be denied as she took command of the game and
match taking the third 11-2 and the fourth 11-7. The Egyptian
hitting numerous cross court service nicks to kill momentum from
Pomportes through the match which excited the crowd.
Danielle Letourneau 3-2 Nikki Todd
The third match of the night was an all Canadian battle. Nikki
and Danielle’s smiles came off once the match started. The first
game was back and forth throughout with good patience from both.
Towards the end of the game Danielle came up with a couple
delicate short shots to win it 11-9. Nikki maintained a lead
throughout the second game and Danielle couldn’t ever catch up.
Nikki came out in the third focused, while Danielle looked like
her concentration had slipped. But she quickly turned that
around with some nice winners. Danielle upped the pace and the
pressure with volleys and took it 11-4. In the fourth game,
Nikki lost some momentum with serves going out, but she worked
hard to get to a 6-2 lead. From there Danielle started to find
tin and Nikki took it 11-5.
The decider saw both players digging deep. A run of tins from
Nikki built a big lead for Danielle, and a cross court nick put
her to 10-6. Danielle finished it off on her first opportunity
to win the game 11-5 and the match 3-2.
Sam Cornett 3-0 Nada Abbas
The last match of the night was Canada vs Egypt for the last
remaining spot in the semi finals. Sam had the reach advantage
in this one. She also played a steadier game. Nada was trying to
be aggressive but was popping out loose shots.
All three games saw a good mix of pace and disciplined,
controlled squash from Sam. The Canadian won the first game in a
nail biter going to extra points. After that, Nada looked
frustrated in the second and third.
Sam was the picture of calmness, and that seemed to make all the
difference in this match. She takes the match in 3 with Nada
giving the third game to her with many errors.
02-Feb, Round One:
Mickawy joins seven seeds in Winnipeg
All eight first round matches
finished with three-nil results, the only upset coming as Zeina
Mickawy beat third seed Tamika Saxby.
Selected reports ...
Sarah Cardwell 3-1 Gisele Delgado
This was a fantastically athletic match between two great
athletes. From early on in the match it was obvious we were
going to be in for some exciting squash. Three rallies in
Cardwell showed off her court speed as Delgado had her twisting
and turning and running all over the court before finally taking
the rally and getting the crowd in to a frenzy early. There was
great pace throughout the first game with lots of shots being
cut off. Cardwell led 10-6 in the first before Delgado brought
it back to 10-9. Another long hard paced rally finished off the
first game in favour of Cardwell 11-9. While the scores in the
next games were 11-5, 11-5 the games felt much closer than that.
Cardwell was able to ultimately push a little deeper and keep
the errors a little fewer than Delgado throughout. The match was
a great start to the tournament for the crowd here in Winnipeg.
Reyna Pacheco 3-0 Alix Younge(CAN)
This match was a competitive one throughout. The hometown local
number 1 Alix Younger put up a strong fight. Despite the home
crowd behind her it was the American Pacheco that was able to
keep her errors a little fewer than Younger and catch the home
town girl on a few change of direction boasts. Pacheco will now
move on to play the top seed Sarah Cardwell.
Ziena Mckawy 3-0 Tamika Saxby
This was a rematch of last weeks semi final in Cincinnati with
unfortunately for the #3 seed here in Winnipeg it was a fairly
similar result. McKawy came out aggressive both in her hitting
and her movement. She raced out to a two game lead and had Saxby
a little frustrated. However Saxby came out in the third more
focused with a game plan to slow things down it appeared. Mckawy
though continued her strong play and won the match in three to
move on and face Laura Pomportes of France.
Laura Pomportes 3-0 Anika Alexander
Write Up by: Anika Alexander
Tonight I played Laura Pomportes in the first round of the main
draw in the women's Profesional squash event. I went into the
first game saying to myself to just focus on finding my length
and to not play offensively. Unfortunately, I got too excited
and forgot about my whole game plan. I started the game with
hitting the ball too hard and going for winners too early. First
game score was 11-5.
Going into the second game I knew I really needed to slow down
the pace and stop hitting so many tins. The game started pretty
well but I couldn't keep up at her fitness level. I then lost
Third game I found myself finally hitting length and fewer
errors. I felt that our rallies were longer and better. I feel I
did okay but certainly wished I had focused more in the first
two games on the basics.
I really enjoyed playing Laura, she's a clean player. I found
that her game style was fairly simple. But definitely someone to
watch out for, she's quick, strong and consistent.
Nikki Todd 3-0 Hannah Blatt
Write up by: Hannah Blatt
I felt I kept the ball deep and tight to the wall and stayed
patient until I found an opportunity to move it short. The first
game the points were very close and back and forth. I was
determined to retrieve every shot resulting in Nikki making a
few unforced errors. At 6-5 Nikki seemed to settle in and take a
bit more control of the game by raising the ball and controlling
The second and third game I changed my game plan and tried to
hit with more pace because she was lifting the ball and the
rallies were slow. So I took the ball earlier and tried to speed
up the rally to change the pace. I decided to be more aggressive
and play more of a shooter than a retriever. Nikki played very
well, she was patient, waiting for her opportunities and made
fewer errors. I just needed to keep the rallies going, possibly
hit more length and rally more down the wall to tire her out and
then add in a short shot. I wasn't expecting to win because the
odds were in her favour, considering the fact that she has been
training and in the professional circuit the past couple years
while I am still a junior squash player and in school. Next
time, My goal is to get at least one game and exhaust her:)
Sam Cornett 3-0 Diana Garcia
These two have played a few times before so they both knew what
to expect going in. There was a lot of hard hitting with both
players trying to control the pace up and down the left wall.
Cornett was able to stay in front for majority of the time but
Garcia played some offensive boasts and tight length to test her
opponent. Despite her best efforts Garcia found herself behind
Cornett more often not and the Canadian took the first two 5 and
The third game was neck and neck up until the final epic point
of the match which seemed to have both players going corner to
corner numerous times before cornett was able to a hit a
finishing into the forehand corner taking it 11-9 and the match
in three street. She will move to take on the #2 seed Nada