Artemis champions crowned
 Lauren Briggs (Eng)
bt  Orla Noom (Ned)
11/9, 11/8 (32m)
[3/4] Shaun Le Roux (Rsa) bt  Andy Whipp (Eng)
7/11, 11/7 (47m)
bags Artemis title
Top seed Lauren Briggs claimed victory in the Artemis
Edinburgh Open with a straight-games win over second seed
Orla Noom in the final of the WSA $5k event at Edinburgh
he earlier matches this weekend, Briggs came out firing on all
cylinders from the word go, attacking strongly and keeping the
pace high. Noom struggled to come to terms with it, subsiding
11/3 in pretty quick time.
The Dutchwoman found her footing from the start of the second
though, slowing the pace effectively and finding some winners of
her own. Briggs still led though, but never by much and when
Noom levelled at 9-all with a backhand volley drop we had a real
contest. It was Briggs who took the next two point though, both
with winners driven deep, for a two-game advantage.
An early 3/0 lead for Orla in the third didn't last long as the
top seed took seven points in a row to move within sight of the
title. Another fightback from Orla made it 9/7, but a dropshot
from Lauren with Orla stranded at the back brought up match
A lob that dies at the back saved one, but a trademark drive
deep into the back corner consigned Orla to a second successive
runners-up spot, and the title was heading down to London.
went on with the intention of taking the game to her and put as
much pace into it as possible. I got a good start, volleying
when I could and putting her under a lot of pressures.
"In the second and third she got used to it, and slowed the pace
a lot. You always have to be alert against her, she can turn her
intensity on at any time and hit some good winners out of the
blue, then her confidence really grows.
"It's good to be back playing tournaments again, even better
that after four matches my body is still in one piece! I'm off
to Winnipeg tomorrow, it will be even colder than here !!"
didn't let me in at all in the beginning, so I tried to relax
and slow it down as much as I could. I got into it but I wasn't
moving as well a I would have liked, and in the end she was just
too steady and too fast today.
"I guess I'll have to come back next year to see if I can make
it third time lucky!"
Le Roux denies Mister Whippy
Bidding to win the Artemis Edinburgh title for the first time,
Andy Whipp probably started his third final here the favourite
over Shaun Le Roux, appearing in his first, and even when the
South African international took the first, many probably
thought it was just one of Whipp's customary slow starts.
is, Le Roux not only matched his opponent in the hard hitting
game, as you would expect, but also in the slower-paced,
mixed-up periods too, which you - or at least I - wouldn't.
From 3-all Le Roux steadily pulled away, taking the first 11,/6,
and continued to dominate in the second, taking it 11/3 and
looking well in control.
He carried that momentum into the third too,, [pulling clear
from 3-all to lead 7-4, still getting the better of most aspects
of the game, but now Whipp, grunting and groaning as he put in a
big effort, took seven points in a row to pull one back 11/7.
Had the tide turned? Not really. The fourth was competitive, but
again from 5-all it was Le Roux who built the advantage, going
ahead 9/5 and urging himself on loudly.
truth, Shaun had been a little 'intense' for much of the match,
engaging the officials in sporadic discussion, earning himself
rebukes and warnings, and when Andy hit a lucky winner for 9/6
he bounced his racket off the floor earning himself a conduct
stroke for 9/7.
That could have been a turning point, but rather than lose it -
as, to be fair, Shaun has been known to do - he buckled down,
took the next two points and with it the title.
the first two I played the best game against him I possibly
could, I tried to nullify his high pace and play as straight as
I could, it worked very well, almost perfect.
"He came out quicker in the third, but in the fourth I just told
myself to get back to what I was doing and thankfully I managed
to take it first time.
"It's been a good weekend, the club, the supporters and of
course the sponsors look after us well, and it's nice to get my
name on that trophy with some of the other big names who have