ē CLIC Sargent ē PSA Squash Classic 2015 ē 19-24 Oct, St George's Hill ē






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  TODAY                                                         daily reports from St George's

Fri 23-Oct, Day FIVE, Semis:

[1] Daryl Selby
(Eng) 3-0 [4] Lucas Serme (Fra)
               12-10, 14-12, 11-8 (62m)

[2] Chris Simpson
(Eng) 3-0 [3] Tom Richards (Eng) 
              12-10, 11-4, 11-7 (48m)

Selby & Simpson through to final

Top seed Daryl Selby was the player through to the final at St George's, but he was made to work hard for it by young Frenchman Lucas Serme.

There was nothing to choose between then in the first two games, but both times it was the Englishman who took the crucial points at the end. The third was close too, and only at the end did Selby manage to get his nose in front.

"The crowd was good tonight, the atmosphere was great," said Selby. "Iím really delighted to have a chance to win my first PSA title in three years."

Second seed Chris Simpson also edged the first game, against familiar adversary and home favourite Tom Richards, but then proceeded to dominate the rest of the match - quickly recovering from a rapid 0-5 start in the third - to claim his place in the final.

ďI think itís the first time we had a 3-0 since we were 12!Ē said Simpson."

Photo & Video Galleries

[1] Daryl Selby (Eng) 3-0 [4] Lucas Serme (Fra) 12-10, 14-12, 11-8 (62m)


Daryl stated he could have easily lost the first two games. True. It was extremely close, but strangely enough, the English was in control somehow I felt.

Lucas is still young, 23, and WR43, while Daryl is 32, having lost his 9 WR after a few recurring back injuries that forced him to drop to 18 Ė not to mention that he seemed to draw Nick Matthew or Ramy at every first round!

It was not going to be an easy match for Daryl, as he had to battle pretty hard against George yesterday, and against Ben in the first round, 2h of squash against 70m for Lucas.

And thatís when experience comes in. Like Chris in the second semi, Daryl literally squeezed the errors out of Lucas (6 in the first game, in particular) as he played an accurate and varied squash tonight, probably even more varied than the day before.

Itís not that Lucas did anything wrong really. But Daryl had more intention, more intensity, more purpose in his shots. Lucas found some lovely angles, and put Daryl through the mill at times, but I felt that his backhand was not as accurate and heavy as it should have been to get Daryl out of his comfort zone for long enough.

First game, Lucas surprises Daryl with some feathery boasts, 4/2, 6/3, but soon Daryl is back controlling the shots, 6/6. 7/7. Again Lucas takes a 2 point lead, 9/7, but Daryl gets to game ball with one hand, 10/9, to take the 19m game 12/10.

The second is about the same, with Lucas ahead in the first part of the game, 5/3, but Daryl closing on his young opponent, 6/6, 7/7. Daryl moves ahead, 9/7, Lucas wonít have it, 9/9, again game ball for Daryl, 10/9, who will then save one game ball at 11/10, clinching the 24m second game, 14/12!

ďAll that hard work, and nothing to show forĒ stated quite rightly Tom Richardís mum as the two players exited the courtÖ Yop. Rather heartbreaking for the young Frenchman.

But all credit to him, he came back firing from all guns, letting his arm go finally, going for his shots much more freely at the start of the last game, to lead 4/1, 5/2! Daryl, having felt the danger, gave it an enormous push to claw back to 5/5, 6/6, 7/7.

Lucas will stay in contact with Daryl till the end, fighting with guts and determination, 8/9, but a tin and a backhand dropshot glued to the wall sealed the Frenchmanís fate, 11/8 DarylÖ.

To be noted, I counted 10 decisions for the whole match. I could be wrong though, but I wonít be far off. How pleasant. A superb match, played between two warriors but fair and respectful.

Thanks guys.

A bit of mixed feelings, emotions at the moment. Iím happy with the fact my back hold today, as Iím coming back from injury, I can feel Iím getting my marks back, and Iím improving all the time. So thatís positive

But I feel that when it came to crucial times, I made silly errors, like playing on me, or dropping the racquet!!! Itís like I put too much pressure on myself it feels.

I think there was space for me to win thisÖ Disappointed. Still, I truly enjoyed it and had a great time!

Lucas Serme

Itís fantastic to have PSL, and the opportunity for us players to play those matches. Itís a fantastic league, and we sure give it our 100%. But you probably saw tonight that there is even more intensity when you are trying to win PSA matches, and win PSA points.

Lucas was playing very well for the first two games, I had a very hard match yesterday, he played very well in the first two rounds, so I knew it was going to be tough, and I could have easily lost the first two games. They were the closest ones, and thatís where he played his best squash, although I thought Iíd played well too.

It was as tough as I expected, Lucas moves exceptionally well, and varies his shots beautifully, you never know what he is going to play, and I was weary of that. He specially seems to like the flick crosscourt like Tarek does!

Our match was nearly without any decisions. And Iím not criticising the players in the previous rounds that played scrappy matches, people do not realise how difficult it is to earn a living as a squash player, and you want desperately to win match, to get up the rankings. You want it so much. So we are all trying to improve our moment, we are all trying to progress, and provide a free flowing squash for the spectators, and that takes a lot of hard work, like tonight, to make sure there are no stoppage. Maybe the fact the matches are steamed on PSASquashTV forces us even more to make more efforts.

The third, I used my experience, at 5/2 down, he could have easily make a bigger gap, so I made sure I attacked, as it was the first time I had a bit of energy drop, and I really didnít want to lose that game, as he was fresher than I was! It was a bit difficult to kill the ball, it was quite lively tonight.

The crowd was good tonight, the atmosphere was great! Iím really delighted to have a chance to win my first PSA title in three years. I lost in a few finals during that time, so, a win would be nice.

Daryl Selby

[2] Chris Simpson (Eng) 3-0 [3] Tom Richards (Eng) 12-10, 11-4, 11-7 (48m)

TOM TINNED A FEWÖ.           H2H

Well, actually, quite a few, as Tom found the tin 7 times in the 1st, 5 times in the 2nd , and same in the 3rd! That sort of give your opponent a slight advantage, especially when he makes only 1 in the 1st, and 2 in the 3rd.

Tom admitted at the end that he was tired, that his first round match against Henrik took a lot out of him Ė probably more mentally than physically! And there is a little matter of the man he was playing against, the ďhardtobeatĒ Chris Simpson!

Chris played superbly tonight, and of course, Tom will be disappointed to lose, especially in three, after winning their last two encounters, but to be fair, if he made that many errors, itís because he had to go for too much, from too far away, at the wrong time: Chris just didnít let him have any openingsÖ

In the first game, at 6/6, Chris didnít have to score a point. Tom, his junior time friend, had offered him 6 unforced errors bless him. To be fair, Tom then cut the errors, and from 10/7 down, forced a tie-break, only to finish the game quite logically, you guessed, on a tin, 12/10 Chris!

The second, we were pretty close at up 2/2, but those two played a stupendous really, with Chris attacking and attacking again, and Tom visiting the four corners, time and time again. Another very long one at 4/3, won again by Chris.

Those two hurt Tom both mentally and physically. Tom would only score another point and lost the second 11/4.

The third looked like we were going like the last time those two played in April this year, in the Andorra Open, where Tom lost the first two games to take the match 11/2 in the 5th in 76m, when Tom zoomed at 5/0!

But 5 tins and a few nice winners from Chris later, HardToBeat Chris had scored 7 points in a row, to finally take the game and match, 11/7.

I think itís the first time since we were 12 that we played a 3/0 match! [actually, itís Qualifying 2007 Canary Wharf, Chris won]

As much as I would like to be a shot player, Iím not, we all would like to be shot players, but my game is to make hard for people to attack me, or force them to attack from the wrong place.

I felt the first game was hot and bouncy, that it was not going anywhere, and that we were just hitting the ball for the sake of it. But I think itís because the ball was very lively. The game started in the second, where the ball died down a lot.

There was in that 2nd game a memorable rally [2/3] where I forced him to hit three backwall boasts, and I played the ball just where I could see he could hit it, and I made him work extremely hard. And that, in my opinion, made the match, it won the match for me.

I still didnít feel as confident as I would have like or have been with my attacking shots, but I donít think I did many unforced errors, [3 the whole match], and as long as I can stay error free, that will make me hard to beat.

Chris Simpson

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