Daily reports and updates from the ECC Squash
Fri 5th, Day THREE, semi-finals
Mulhouse foil the Finns, Newlands make the final
surprises in the first semi-final as top seeds Mulhouse
beat surprise semi-finalists Espoo 3-0, the Finnish girls having
a great time but not threatening to do more than take a few
points in each game against their illustrious opponents.
In the second women's semi 3-0 wins for Vicky Bell and Taylor
Flavell put Newlands into the final at the expense of
Men's: It's Worms and Paderborn
will be an all-German final again tomorrow, after top seeds
Worms and Paderborn won through to the Euro Clubs
Both matches were poised at one-all after the top string
matches, but Worms took the third and fourth strings 3-0 to deny
Mulhouse, while Paderborn's 3-0 win at number three was enough
to see them through as the fourth string match was cut short.
Worms 3-1 Mulhouse
Nick Matthew 3-0 Mathieu Castagnet 11-7, 12-10,
Greg Marche 0-3 Thierry Lincou
8-11, 6-11, 6-11 (47m)
Tim Weber 3-0 Joan Lezaud
11-6, 11-9, 11-3 (47m)
Carsten Schoor 3-0 Simon Parke
11-9, 11-6, 1-4 (39m)
Chris Simpson 3-1 Adrian Grant 8-11,
11-8, 11-8, 11-8 (69m)
Olli Tuominen 2-3 Jon Kemp 14-16, 11-6, 9-11, 11-6, 3-11
Raphael Kandra 3-0 Richie Fallows
11-9,11-6, 11-7 (47m)
Tim Garner 1-3 Scott Handley
11-4, 10-12, 3-11 rtd (28m)
Mulhouse 3-0 Espoo
Newlands 3-0 Pontefract
Worms 3-1 Mulhouse
Paderborn 2-2 Colets
Harfsfjord 1-3 Kahuna
Fitzwilliam 3-1 Helsinki
Middlegate 0-4 Vaduz
Newlands 2-2 N'gham
N'ham 2-1 Fitzwilliam
Malaka 2-1 Meersquash
Harfrsfjord 0-4 F'william
Helsinki 3-1 Kahuna
Full match scores
ALL ABOUT WHO IS WHO IN NOTTINGHAM
Laura Massaro 3-0 Emilia Korhonen
11/3, 11/2, 11/2 (15m)
There were a few more people
than usual watching women squash. I guess it was the Finish
Shoes that were making the buzzzzzzzz. Well, girls, when you
have it, flaunt it. I did when I had it, and trust me, it passes
point of the game, Emilia managed a nice backhand low drive
winner, that got a huge cheers from the Espoo supporters (first
time I see a gorgeous lady in leopard skin tight dress, black
tight, high hills at midday watching squash, and “it’s perfectly
alright” stress Tournament Organiser..). I thought, “Laura is
not going to like that cheers that much”.
And she didn’t….
In 15m, the match was sor’ed, Emilia who did her utmost best
could only manage to grab 7 points out of the World Champion.
when I hear that loud cheer at 1/0, I thought, well, that’s ok
if I had been 7/0 up, and then she scores the point. But at 0/0?
That’s a sound I don’t want to hear too often I thought…. [told
you didn’t I, Fram]
Back in time to the CWG then? Where to start! Well, in an ideal
world, I would have liked the building to be focusing on the
But it was important for England Squash that we focus on singles
and doubles both. From their point of view, quite rightly, it
was the medals count that mattered, single et double alike.
So every week, we would have a double squad.
But I guess we are lucky in England, that our players are that
strong we can expect medals in both categories, whereas if you
take Scotland, they were more focused on the Doubles, whereas
Malaysia and Nicol were putting more emphasis on the Singles.
So I guess that it went as expected medal wise. I got close, but
that was not quite enough.
Now after, for both Malaysia/HK, it was a bit too soon, I didn’t
have time to recover with the event and the media attention with
the Games being back at home.
Although, in insight, although I thought my result were poor, as
flat as I felt, I realised afterwards that it was not as poor as
I thought it was, looking at the great results Nour had over the
following next two weeks!
Now, I’m looking forward to a month at home (well, I already had
a week, then three weeks at the end of this one!). And then off
was not too stressed to start the match, and I tried to enjoy
the squash, concentrating on my length and accuracy. Now we’ll
be watching the other semi afterwards, as the final will be more
intense for sure.
As for the start of the season, June was pretty exhausting, so
many tournaments in a row, so I was truly happy with a nice
rest, then hard summer training, 5, 6 weeks.
First tournament was Hong Kong, the good thing was I managed to
qualify, bad thing was that I drew Camille (1 chance out of 8!),
with Delia drawing Nicol! I lost 3/1, but overall, rather
positive, I thought I didn’t play too badly.
Now we don’t have the official selection for the World Teams in
Canada, but I am hoping that I’ll be on it, and the preparation
for it would be my main focus for the rest of the season. I
n the coming weeks, there is a 25k in Alexandria, and for the
October ones, the closing dates are not up yet, so I’m not sure
what events I’ll choose…
Laura Pomportes 3-0 Nea Falck 11/3,
11/4, 11/2 (14m)
An even shorter match for the
second leg of this semi, 14m, but more points lost – 9…
Lauren Briggs 3-0 Riikka Inkeri
Piekäinen 11/3, 11/3, 11/5
I could only manage to glance at
the last game, but that was a much closer match than the
previous ones, and I truly enjoyed the competiveness of Riikka,
the Finish captain, 33, and mother of two! Lauren was never
going to lose the match, but she was able to get a good run in
particular on the backhand, and a very pleasant match indeed.
based in Helsinki, where I run my own watch making company. But
Espoo is THE squash centre of Finish squash. Out of the 12 teams
that run in the National Team competition, 6 are from Espoo.
This year is our best ever result! We normally trade between 8
to 12, so reaching the semis is a huge achievement for us.
Especially as this is our B team – we don’t have our 3 top
players – the other two are only juniors, 16 and 17, and I’m 33!
know, the fact I am a mother of two means that I have very
little time for myself. So when I manage to get 1 hour for
myself, trust me, I give everything and 200% to my training.
That explains that I have a lot of energy when I get on the
I started playing squash at 11 with my Godfather, Girkki
Jaakkola. Actually, he made ALL of us start squash. And without
him, there wouldn’t be squash in Espoo, actually no squash in
Finland. We owe him everything, and the semi is our way to thank
him for what he’s done for us.
Vicky Bell 3-0
Katie Smith 11/5, 11/8, 11/5
A good effort from Katie Smith
who nearly got a game after coming back in the second from 8/1,
but hit the wall at 3/3 in the 3rd.
Vicky, former WSA player, still possesses her lovely volleying
skills, feathery and all….
Katie managed to save a match ball at 4/10, but it wasn’t to be
was actually 8/1 in the 2nd, but I became a bit desperate to
close it down, and went too short. Still, I’m happy I managed to
recover and take the game.
I live in Carlisle, at the border. Glasgow, the club I’m playing
for, is about 1h30m from my house, and I go and play there on
Tuesdays and Wednesdays.
I am 24 now, I used to be full time for about 4 years, but then
I had a torn ligament in my wrist, and they told me that there
was nothing that could be done about it. So, that was the end
for me, and I had to go and find a job in the real world – I’m a
benefit assessor, when people require help from the Government,
they come to us and we see how we can help.
I still so enjoy my squash, but I can’t play more than twice a
week, it’s too painful otherwise….”
Taylor Flavell 3-0
Andrea Santamaria 11/7, 11/7, 11/4
started playing squash a bit late, I was 18 (I am now 47), as a
hobby in Spain.
Then I moved to Barcelona, and happened to join the Cam Melich
club, which was a superb club with 20 courts, and very “elite
squash” orientated, with the support of a great Spanish
Federation at the time.
So I started playing more seriously, did a few competitions, and
actually did a lot of ECC events – I started in 2001! I have to
confess I found the love of my life thanks to squash and ECC!
It’s all Lauren Siddal’s fault…
She introduced me to her dad, Gary, and the rest is history. I
moved to Ponte 5 years ago, and this year, with the top girls
dropping out of the teams, I got the chance to come and play, to
see how it’s really done.
It’s such a great event, great atmosphere, and most of it if
done for fun (apart from a few teams that are here to win). We
all are having a great time…
Thierry Lincou 3-0
Grégoire Marche 11/8, 11/5, 11/6
If The Acrobat was not at his
best today, Thierry was. Mentally strong and physically sound,
the ‘Guv went into Greg’s head, and with a tight immaculate
squash, was able to frustrate the young Frenchman.
took an excellent start, 5/2, Little Greg fought back, 6/7, but
Thierry after some plunging from Greg at 7/5, Thierry seem to
find a way to put excellent pressure on his young opponent. 10/6
game ball, and 11/8 to set up the tone.
In the second one, it’s Little Greg that was dominating the
start of the game, 5/3, but after another throwing himself on
the floor to catch Thierry’s superb drop shot at the end of a
long rally, it’s the Old Timer that took the advantage – a
little discussion to make sure that he would mess with Greg
mind, sort of reminding him who’s “Le Patron”, the boss. And it
5/5, 7/7, 8/8. It’s all happening; And Thierry’s experience in
crucial moments that speaks, 11/8 on a last tin….
In the 3rd, the former world number 1 just screwed the nail a
bit deeper, 6/1, with Greg getting more and more frustrated.
The young man got back in the game, fought very hard, and we
could see that it would be a good idea for Thierry to win that
one, cause the legs and the breath were getting heavier and
heavier! Feeling the danger, Thierry gives it a big last push.
And it’s 10/6 for the Guv, and match on the first match ball….
As Little Greg stated, “the Perfect Match”.
always a big disappointment to lose. I was expecting Mathieu to
struggle against Nick, but I know how furious he was not to
manage to sneak in a game. He fought tooth and nail, but Nick
was just too good today.
Thierry did an exceptional match today. He I think had at heart
his revenge from the League Team match they did a few weeks ago,
where Thierry got beaten 3/0. He probably wanted to prove to
himself he could still do it.
It’s always difficult to build a team for those events, between
the rules, the points, the PSA matches, it’s very complicated.
And all credit to Worms, even weakened by the last minute
absence of Marcus Berret, they produce an excellent match.
I truly was hoping that we would get a victory out of Joan, his
defeat stays a bit of a disappointment, especially as he let it
go at the end. And the 3rd place is going to be even more
difficult, the teams on the other side being even stronger! It
would take an exploit from Mathieu and Thierry…
final. Our 4th in a row. Or is it 5th?
I don’t know, I’ll have to check that.
But I know we won it twice, and we hope we can do it a third
time! The Triple!
We are a funny team you know. We are so relaxed, and I told the
guys, you know, we had so much bad luck, let’s see what
happened, we might as well win it, who knows…
But yes, we want the Triple….
Tuominen 2-3 Jon Kemp
14-16, 11-6, 9-11, 11-6, 3-11
FAST AND FURIOUS
Good thing about those two, you do know it’s not going to be a
long encounter. It’s attack, attack, attack, tin tin tin, attack
attack attack, tin tin, tin!
Stunning speed from the two “Old Guys” Olli, 35, Kempy 33. A
speed that you can only dream about really!
Kemp was down 6/7 in the 3rd, wins it 11/9, then takes a little
rest in the 4th while Olli is finding superb attacks and sending
Kempy to visit the court a few times, 11/6 in the 4th
But what an amazing 5th for Kempy! Superb accurate squash
attacking and finding his front court target so precisely that
Olli just cannot do anything. Match ball at 10/2, and match
the whole difference when you are playing for yourself, or
playing for other people. The Team. That’s what you fight for.
When I was down in the 3rd, I thought, no, I’m not letting them
down. And I started holding and flicking everything. Once I
found my game plan, I just had to stick to it and focus on what
A massive push in the 5th, got a nice lead…. And you know, it’s
the first time ever I play him.
I just kept the
best for last [this is probably Kempy’s last Club game as he is
off to Qatar on Monday! Read the story on
Simpson 3-1 Adrian Grant
8-11, 11-8, 11-8, 11-8 (69m)
a horrible start! Did you see the start? It was a horrible
start, scrappy, physical, bad tempered. I got annoyed with
everything, myself, the racquet, the court, the ball, the ref,
the lunch I had, the lunch I had yesterday, EVERYTHING.
But Simon had a good chat with me at the end of the first, and
after that, I was as calm as a yogi man! Which is funny because
normally, he winds me up!!!
We have only 1 place difference on the ranking, I’m 25 he is 24.
And no, the “he’s got the experience, and I’ve got the legs
cause I’m younger doesn’t work, Fram. Have you seen his legs????
CWG, what an experience. I can think of four things, four
amazing experiences/high. One, the Flag Bearing for Guernsey,
then the chat with Prince William, then squash wise, I was
playing against Ryan, and didn’t even want to watch the glass
court not to put pressure on myself, so in the morning, went for
the practice at 11h30 with James Willstrop, walked in the arena.
One thousand people were there, cheering the practice. One
Thousand People!!!!! And then the fourth one, playing Nick
Matthew, and probably playing the best match I ever played.
After that, I took a short break, but I felt that I lost a bit
of momentum, plus there was so much building up to the Games,
that I really had the CWG blues…. But now, I’m back and ready to
play a hard season, and especially to play as well as I did in
the Games, as often as possible….
3-0 Richie Fallows
11-9,11-6, 11-7 (47m)
Yes, we knew that
it was one of the most important games!
I had played him once last year, he was an up and coming junior,
a bit all over the place, over pushing himself, and it was
pretty comfortable. But this year, I knew he had a few nice PSA
wins, and I was expected a much closer game. Which it was.
We had a few discussions with the ref in the first game, he gets
a bit fiery sometimes doesn’t he! I just didn’t know how to show
the ref I could get to the ball! He’s got such long legs, and
such a long reach, sometimes I really couldn’t show the ref I
could reach the ball!
The first game was very close, but I tried and kept it tight,
and especially to keep in front of him, to avoid a lot of
troubles for myself. Once I got the first game, I felt I was
more controlling, and dominated the rallies better.
1-3 Scott Handley
11-4, 10-12, 3-11 rtd (28m)
is typically a Team Champs match for me. Those two boys, well, I
would like to read their memory card in the brain to count how
many hours of squash, how many travelling with the boys,
billeting, little hotels in the middle of nowhere, and a lot of
sweat, injuries and aches between them two….
Yes, I could have watch Rafa v Richie; probably a higher quality
game on paper. But it was not you know? When you have two
gentlemen that love the game, no, that are passionate about the
game, it replaces the younger legs.
Tim took the first game comfy 11/4, was up in the second 8/2,
Scott making sooo many errors – “what’s that” he scolded
himself. The 20 Colets man eventually took the game 12/10, then
the third 11/3.
the ref asked the two players “do you want to continue?” as Rafa
‘s victory had done it for the Paderborn camp, Scott went, yes,
I want to, while Tim went, no, I don’t want to.
“I’m 44, and I have a decider rubber to play tomorrow! And I’m
first on! So, no, I don’t want to keep on playin”