Day FIVE

•  Men's World Team Championships 2011 • 21-27 Aug • Paderborn, Germany •  

 

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TODAY  in Paderborn, Thu 25th, Day FIVE
Steve and Fram in Germany ...

Draws & Results

Quarter-Finals:

 [2] Egypt 3-0 [8] USA
 
 
Karim Darwish 3-0 Julian Illingworth         11/4, 11/4, 11/2 (31m)
   Mohamed El Shorbagy 3-0 Chris Gordon   11/9, 11/8, 11/4 (35m)
   Hisham Ashour 2-1 Todd Harrity               8/11, 11/1, 11/7 (30m)


[3] France 3-0 [5] Malaysia

  Gregory Gaultier 3-0 Azlan Iskandar       11/4, 11/6, 11/4 (55m)
  Thierry Lincou 3-0 Ong Beng Hee           12/10, 11/2, 11/7 (47m)
  Mathieu Castagnet 2-0 Nafiizwan Adnan            11/8, 11/2 (18m)


[4] Australia 2-0 [6] India
   David Palmer 3-1 Saurav Ghosal     7/11, 11/8, 11/4, 11/6 (51m)
   Cameron Pilley 3-0 Siddarth Suchde         11/9, 11/8, 11/4 (50m)
   Stewart Boswell v HarinderPal Sandhu      xxx

[1] England 2-1 [9] Italy
    Nick Matthew 3-0 Stephane Galifi          11/8, 11/8, 11/5 (44m)
    James Willstrop 3-0 Davide Bianchetti    11/7, 11/4, 11/4 (23m)
    Daryl Selby 1-2 Amr Swelim              10/12, 11/3, 10/12 (35m)

Playoffs:                              Full Scores

9/16:      
Mexico 1-2 Hong Kong   Netherlands 2-0 Denmark
                South Africa 1-2 Finland      Canada 1-2 Germany

17/24:    
Pakistan 1-2 Ireland      New Zealand 1-2 Switzerland
                Spain 2-0 Scotland          Kuwait 2-1 Argentina

Spanish Matadors avoid another goring by Scottish Claymores
    
25/32:
     Hungary 3-0 Bermuda     Austria 3-0 Ukraine
                Colombia 2-0 Namibia       Sweden 1-2 Korea

Tremendous wins in the playoffs for Ireland, who beat 9th seeds Pakistan with Arthur Gaskin and Derek Ryan winning in straight games at the top of the order, and Germany, who finished off the day with a thrilling win over 7th seeds Canada.


En Bref #5
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Photos & Videos

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Egypt 3-0 USA

A comfortable start for the defending champions as Karim Darwish beats Julian Illingworth in straight games.



Mohamed El Shorbagy was made to work harder, but Chris Gordon couldn't capitalise on a first-game lead, and the Egyptian narrowly took the first two games before easing through in the third.

Karim showed out the play today, he obviously didn’t take Julian lightly, and gave him all the respect possible. Julian played well, but Karim played a brilliant game, and every question that Julian was asking, Karim had an answer for, in particular he played some stunning forehand drop shots and volley drop shots.

Chris Gordon played at a really high standard, the best I’ve seen him play, he put Mohamed under some good pressure, the game was close, to 9 in the first, to 7 in the second, and after that he got tired.

We are extremely pleased, we came here with Gilly injured, he played one game against Switzerland. So being one man down and still getting to the quarters, we couldn’t be happier.

France 3-0 Malaysia

OUTSTANDING GREG

The number one French confirms that he’s in a devastating form today. Azlan didn’t put a foot wrong, but Greg was just “on fire”!

A stunning start, 6/0, then 9/1, with Greg’s length, weight on the ball, accuracy at the back, and timing of the ball close to perfection, 11/4 to Greg.

Azlan regrouped very well in the second, the rallies were as long and gruelling that they were in the first, and the score was pretty close, 3/3, 4/4. But again, with a calm that I haven’t seen coming from Greg for very long time, the Frenchman just seemed to walk on the court, always at the right place at the right time, despite the Malaysian’s drives clinching to the side wall, and the counterattacks superbly feathery at the front. 8/4, then 9/5, and finally 11/6, Greg was two love up.

At the start of the 3rd, I could see that Greg has a slight drop of energy, he went for a bit too short, and Azlan, who was still don’t absolutely nothing wrong, was able to put more and more pressure on the French. 3/3. 4/4.

But if at some point in his career, that drop of energy could have shaken Greg’s concentration a bit, and maybe led him to lose that game, none of that today. And probably by then, the enormous work Azlan had to produce in the first 2 games was heavy on his legs, especially after his hard match against Steve Coppinger the day before. 11/4 to Greg, France 1, Malaysia 1.

Since I arrived here, I’m playing super squash! I didn’t lose my concentration once during a match.

Yesterday, Azlan played a hard five games, and it must have been playing on his mind, but although I won in three, to win against Olli, I had to battle 100% of my game, especially on a traditional court.

In Australia I was not comfortable with my game, whereas now, here, I have the legs, the mental, and the racquet. I’m really in good shape, I move well, I don’t have any aches or pain, I’m really fresh.

If I can keep the same momentum, I think I can come back playing even better than I did before, and I look forward to playing against the two players I have in front of me…

There is a great atmosphere in the team, we are really determined, and so far, so good, everybody is happy.

LOBBING THE MATCH AWAY

One thing needs to be said, Thierry and Beng Hee are very close friends, the respect those two have for each other made both their life pretty difficult I’m sure.

At no point, Thierry took for granted that France would be in the semis tomorrow, and that was obvious at the start, when the Frenchman served us with one of his typical “great start”, Beng Hee up 5/1.

Mind you, yes, Thierry was holding his arm a bit, but by Jove, Bengy was playing stunning and accurate squash, twisting and turning his opponent, not letting him settling in the match at all.

Having such a deficit would probably discouraged a few players, but Thierry has always dwelt on being down score wise, and today was not exception. His length got better, his long volley drop shots got closer to the tin, and he started to move better, faster, while Beng Hee was still playing some stunning counterdrops and beautiful crosscourt lobs.

On a lovely return of serve, the Malaysian set up his first game ball, 10/8. Thierry, now perfectly focused and on the war path, did his usual comeback, taking the game 12/10, and destroying Beng Hee’s confidence in the process.

The second was all about Thierry being confident, and Beng Hee probably thinking that he should have taken the first, and that he shouldn’t be down, you know the drill. The game went pretty fast.

In the third, Bengy was back mentally, and still extremely fresh physically, ready to fight, but by that time, the Frenchman was flying, relaxed, he was firing volley drop shots, and lobbing away his mate who kept on running and running.

Forced to attack from the wrong position, Bengy tinned far too many balls for his self confidence, and Thierry got match ball at 10/4. The Malaysian saved three, offering us some beautiful squash rallies in the process, but on a harsh no let, Thierry took the game and match, 11/7.

At the start of the match I couldn’t make up my mind, I didn’t know if I was to hit hard, or to let him take the initiative, but once I got him behind me, it was easier.

There we are in the semis, once again, for the fifth time in a row, which proves that France is still on the map, up there with the best teams in the world, which is very important for us, and very gratifying.

I’m very happy, because I haven’t played many matches since I came back, I’m not comfortable on there, so today, my tactical approach was good, and I’m happy with my performance. My racquet skills were fine, I could feel my opponent.

I was able to vary the pace, and to play the shot I wanted when I wanted. For me, this match is a good step forward.

I gave all my energy for the team, and so did Greg. He was impressive today. On this tournament, he is showing an excellent team spirit, he’s shown his will and determination, and he was impressive against Azlan, showing us the way…

I played pretty well in the first game, but I needed the first game to get a bit of confidence, you know what it is against Thierry, once he relaxes, he is very hard to beat, and once he had the first game under his belt, he played better and better.

Greg gave France an excellent start I thought. Team matches are so difficult you know, you are watching your team mate, you feel for him, then he loses, and you have to go on and play against Thierry…

Thierry played really well, his lob in particular was exceptional today, it was not a normal one, that floats away, it’s one that really dies at the back, I’ve been learning from him for years on that one, it was a great weapon for him today… Yes, he played an excellent game.

The French View                              Andre Delhoste reports

Greg vs ISKANDAR

Greg starts the first game with a rare intensity, and takes a 6/0 lead. The next rally will be a real test, as ISKANDAR makes 4 perfect attacks which should have all been winners. Only Greg seems to have legs of dynamite today, and pick them all up, but he will finally clip the tin after an excruciating rally. The stage is set, it will be very hard to score a point against Greg today. Greg flies away on the scoreboard to lead 9/2 and ends the game with a superb forehand volley kill which ends in the nick.

The second game is tight until 4/4, as Greg tinned 3 times. Then Greg moves a bit more forward onto the T and steps the pace up a bit more. ISKANDAR is looking to intercept Greg on the volley, but Greg’s crosscourts are very accurate and powerful, which provide almost all possible interception. Greg will again end up the game with a forehand volley drop.

The third game starts with the same intensity. As in the second, at 4/4, Greg increases the pace. His shots are just a bit more powerful and precise as ISKANDAR’s. Greg will take a few points lead, and will not falter, as he finishes the last 3 rallies with holds on the front left hand corner which will wrongfoot his opponent, to give France it’s first point against Malaysia.

Thierry vs BENG HEE

Thierry starts the match shyly, hitting the tin 5 times in the first 6 rallies. He will have to put a lot of efforts to come back in that game. He manages that, varying beautifully the paces. Thierry’s crosscourts are so precise, BENG HEE has to turn on almost every one of them and ends up playing them from the back of the court. Led 8/10 Thierry saves 2 game balls to win the first game 12/10.

Thierry plays an almost perfect second game, both technically as tactically. He works his opponent beautifully along both side walls untill he gets a loose ball on the backhand which he drops perfectly. The ones BENG HEE can counterdrop, Thierry follows with a perfect crosscourt lob that his opponent has to use the back wall a lot of times to bring the ball back. Thierry will win the second game 11/2.

The third game is tighter than the second, but thierry has the tactical momentum, and he decides the pace of most rallies. BENG HEE starts to show signs of physical and mental exhaustion, as he clips the tin 4 times almost in a row. Thierry wins the game 11/7 and gives France its second point to put France in the semi finals for the 5 times in a row.

Mathieu vs ADNAN

As yesterday, Mathieu will only come onto he court today to keep in the rythm of the competition. He will play his leg in a best of 3 games as stimulated in the championship’s rules in case the match between two nations is already won after the first 2 matches.

Mathieu seems to have no difficulty against the n°46 in the world, ADNAN understandably doesn’t have a heart to put in the batlle. Mathieu is in control of the game, and uses the second game to go for winners, most of which will end up winners.

France will go in the semi finals against Egypt tomorrow with an astounding spirit and still a full tank of physical energy and mental stamina.
 

England 2-1 Italy

Like they always say, it might look easy on paper but on court it's a different matter.

And for two games Nick Matthew and Stephane Galifi gave yet another capacity crowd a high quality, well contested match. 

The crowd didn't like it when, late in the first game, the Italian was denied a let, but to warm applause Matthew agreed with his opponent and the crowd and requested a let be played.

His generosity went no further though, as he closed out the first two games and moved clear early in the third to put England ahead.

Davide Bianchetti, making just his second appearance so far, similarly extended James Willstrop in their first game, but the Englishman didn't allow his opponent to get close in the next two as the top seeds secured their place in the semi-finals.

At virtually the same moment at the other end of the venue, Stewart Boswell added to David Palmer's win to despatch India and set up another Australia v England clash tomorrow.



After two Yorkshire wins for England, there was no Yorkshireman in the Italian lineup today, with Marcus Berrett taking a well-earned break after his heroics of the last two days,

So Amr Swelim took on Daryl Selby in an entertaining dead rubber, which went the way of the Italian 12/10 in the third (after Selby, on match ball himself, lost the ball out of court after hitting it back at himself to concede a stroke, and proceeded to lose the next three points with the new one!).
 

Australia 2-0 India

“KEEP ON RUNNING”….

That was the song we could hear between the 2nd and 3rd game… Rather appropriate, I would say. As in my opinion, Saurav, bless him, didn’t play for India, he bleeping ran for it today!!!!

It took a little while to David to adapt to Saurav speed, moves and shots, especially after playing LJ the day before, not exactly the same style…

Once the Australian sussed out his Indian’s opponent tactic, he started to volley every freaking ball that he could put his racquet on! To the point I thought he had like a dollar every time he would hit a volley…. Excellent!

I loved Saurav’s comment “I couldn’t keep with him physically”. You bet he couldn’t!!!!

David was doing three steps to get to the ball, and Saurav about 35!!!! Not to mention that from the middle of the second game, more than once, the Indian was kind enough to put everything at the front for David not to have to move too far. Nice of you Saurav…

Joke apart, Saurav played out of his skin, and David was a bit the Wall of China, very hard to pass through. And it was a bit of an exhibition at the end, which I thoroughly enjoyed.

Yesterday, against LJ, I sat back too much, and I didn’t volley enough. LJ played well, I couldn’t get him off the T, and I wasn’t looking for the ball enough. And I thought, hold on, that’s the way I used to play.

So today, I decided to use my height, and I always play much better when I volley a lot. It was a tough game, I thought we both played really well, he is so quick to the front.

In the first game, I was not patient enough, but once I extended the rallies a bit more, I took control of the game.

I’m happy to win for Australia, it takes the pressure off the boys

David Palmer

He is so good at volleying that’s why he is twice world champion and won everything under the sun, he steps up the court so well, and really, it’s difficult to get pass him, especially if you can’t find your length, like I did today.

I had my game plan set, but there are only subtle things you can do against those guys, and physically, I couldn’t keep up with him physically, I could follow a game and a half, then drop off again, and on again, then off… I need to be a bit more consistent…

FAST AND FURIOUS

Those two are rather tall, they luuuuuuve their volleying, they both try to pierce the front wall with shots, and they don’t know how to spell the words lobs or slowing down the pace…

The result: two players playing more or less the same game, but Cam slightly better than his opponent today. Three games very very close indeed, not a walk in the park for the Australian.

India defended their honour very proudly today, I really enjoyed those two matches, the spirit in which they played.

As for the Australians, they had a job to do, they did it.

Tomorrow, they won’t have any pressure. And that’s when they are the most dangerous…

Yes, we are both tall, we like to counter-play, hard hitting, and we like to volley. The last two times we played were very scrappy, all over the place.

Today, I thought I was cool, calm and collected compared to our previous encountered.

Today, I think I took advantage of his loose shots more than he took advantage of mine.



Saurav gave his best against the top player that is David Palmer, who gives you very little opportunities. Saurav always gives his 100%, he run a lot, and I’m very pleased with the way he played. Saurav is top 10 material, still a bit of work to do, but soon….

Sid was not at his best today, he can play so much better than that, in particular on his forehand drop shots. But he also gave his 100%, as always. Cameron played a very good game truly.

We lost against a better team, and we wish them the best of luck in the semis.



In the first match, Saurav played a superb game of squash, putting David under a lot of pressure. After that, David was really strong and Saurav run out of ideas. And it was good to get that victory under our belt.

Cameron did a very solid match I thought, our boys played really well, and found themselves again among the top four. Two years ago, they shown what they could do, so, we are looking forward to playing on the glass court at last tomorrow!

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