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Austrian Open 2013
07-10 Mar, Salzburg $5k
Aqeel beats top seeds
to take home title

The Austrian Open finally can celebrate a home winner! Local favorite Aqeel Rehman won his second PSA tournament, his first on home soil and even at his home club after a thrilling final against top seed Chris Ryder from England.

Aqeel had a great run in the tournament, dispatching second seed Clinton Leeuw in the quarterfinal, and then beat Lucas Serme in the semis to reach his first final in this tournament.

But his opponent Chris Ryder seemed to be in good shape himself, after only dropping a single game on his way to the final.

But the Austrian underdog was pushed by a big crowd and was able to push himself for another great performance.

Aqeel had the better start and took the first game 11/6. Then Chris stepped up more and played a better quality. With this he put too much pressure on Aqeel. With this Chris equalized to 1-1.

The third game was the turning point of the match. Upt to 6-6 it was very even, but then Chris took a 9-6 lead and it looked as the mor mature player is going to take a lead now. But again the crowd pushed their favorite even more and Aqeel could turn the game to his favor and won it 11/9.

The fourth game was one sided to Aqeel and after racing to a 8-3 lead it very much looked as there could be a home winner at this tournament. The Salzburg born 27-year old had the same plans and didnt let his opponent get any closer and finished the game 11/5.

This was a unbelievable win and tournament for the Austrian Champion and for the crowd as well.

Aqeel: I want to thank everybody who made this possible, my coach David Pearson who is putting a lot of effort in my game, Ong Beng Hee who always has some good avice left too. Also my family and the guys here in Salzburg who have been supporting me for so long and helped running this tournament. I am happy to give something back to them.

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Austrian Open 2013
06-10 Mar, Salzburg $5k
Round One
07 Mar
08 Mar
09 Mar
10 Mar
[1] Chris Ryder (Eng)
 11/6, 11/9, 11/0 39 min
Reiko Peter (Sui)
[1] Chris Ryder
11/6, 11/5, 10/12, 11/2 (73m)
Arthur Gaskin
[1] Chris Ryder

 11/8, 11/4, 11/4 (50m)

[Q] Joel Hinds

[1] Chris Ryder

11/6, 4/11, 11/9, 11/5

Aqeel Rehman

Arthur Gaskin (Irl)
9/11, 11/1, 11/6, 11/4
Jakob Dirnberger (Aut)
Declan James (Eng)
 11/4, 11/6, 11/5 42 min
[Q] Joel Hinds (Eng)
[Q] Joel Hinds
11/5, 11/4, 11/7
[Q] Benjamin Fischer
[3] Kashif Shuja (Nzl)
12/10, 9/11, 11/13, 11/6, 11/9
[Q] Benjamin Fischer (Sui)
Alejandro Garbi (Esp)
 11/2, 11/9, 10/12, 11/6
[4] Ben Coleman (Eng)
[4] Ben Coleman
9/11, 11/3, 11/9, 11/5 (90m)
Lucas Serme
Lucas Serme

12/14, 13/11, 11/8, 3/11, 11/4 (80m)

Aqeel Rehman

Lucas Serme (Fra)
9/11, 11/5, 11/6, 11/5
[Q] Tim Weber (Ger)
Aqeel Rehman (Aut)
9/11, 11/3 ,11/7, 11/7 49 min
[Q] Martin Mosnik (Slo)
Aqeel Rehman
11/2, 11/8, 2/11, 12/10
[2] Clinton Leeuw
 Johan Bouquet (Fra)
11/7, 11/9, 11/7
[2] Clinton Leeuw (Rsa)

07-Mar, Qualifying Finals:

Benjamin Fischer (Sui) bt Steve London                  3/0
Joel Hinds (Eng) bt Andreas Freudensprung (Aut)     3/0
Martin Mosnik (Slo) bt Reuben Phillips (Eng)            3/1
Tim Weber (Ger) bt Sebastiaan Weenink (Ned)        3/2

07-Mar, Qualifying Round One:
Steve London (Eng) - bye
 Benjamin Fischer (Sui) bt Lukas Gnauer (Aut)                 11/8, 11/0, 11/6 (21m)

Andreas Freudensprung (Aut) bt Remo Handl (Sui) 7/11, 13/11, 11/8, 11/2 (50m)
Joel Hinds (Eng) bt Armin Schmelz (Ger)                        11/8, 11/6, 12/10

Martin Mosnik (Slo) bt Thomas Messerer (Aut)                 11/9, 11/8, 11/5 (23m)
 Reuben Phillips (Eng) bt Michael Gäde (Ger)                  11/3, 11/4, 14/12

Alexander Harml (Aut) bt Sebastiaan Weenink (Ned)        11/6, 11/3, 11/6
Tim Weber (Ger) - Florent Pontiere (Fr)                           11/8, 11/9, 11/6

2012 Event  |  2011 Event  |  2010 Event  |  2009 Event

Upsets in Salzburg Quarters
The quarter final of the Austrian Open brought two upsets. Lucas Serme beat number four seed Ben Coleman 3/1, while organiser and Austrian Champion Aqeel Rehman beat the number two seed Clinton Leeuw also 3/1. This means there is only one seeded player left, after Chris Ryder stayed on top the the Irish number one Arthur Gaskin.

A guaranteed Qualifier in the semis was expected, as Joel Hinds and Benjamin Fischer met in the quarters. Joel celebrated a clear win in straight games.

This means the crowd can still celebrate their local favorite Aqeel, when he will meet the young Frenchman Lucas Serme. Both had a very tough match earlier on.

The other semifinal will be an all-english affair between top seed Chris Ryder and Joel Hinds.

The semis start at 19h local time

Round One in Salzburg

Aqeel Rehman reports

The first day of the Austrian Open in Salzburg started with a major upset as Swiss Qualifier Benjamin Fischer beat number 3 seed Kashif Shuja from New Zealand 3/2. The Kiwi cam back from one game down to take the lead with 2/1. However Benjamin fought back and won the fifth game 11/9

Another qualifier was able to proceed. In an all-english battle, Joel Hinds found the better end against Declan James and won 3/0.

One of the longest matches of the evening was Ben Coleman agains Alejandro Garbi. A lot of Let-request streched the game as well. Finally Ben went through to the quarters after a 3/1 win.

Local Wildcard entry Jakob Dirnberger seemed to be able to cause an upset as well. After a great start, the Salzburg born Jakob took the first game against Irish number one Arthur Gaskin. He was able to turn the match to end denied the crowd and won 3/1.

Therefore organiser and local star Aqeel Rehman was able to heal the wounds a bit. After a slow start against Slovenian Champion Martin Mosnik, the six-time Austrian Champion Aqeel stepped up and made the crowd happy with a 3/1 win.

He now faces the South African number two seed Clinton Leeuw, who seems to be in great shape after a 3/0 win against Johan Bouquet from France. Also the top seed Chris Ryder eased pass Reiko Peter.

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Austrian Open 2013
Preview from Aqeel Rehman

For the ninth time in a row, world ranking points will be to earn in the Tenniscourt Süd in Salzburg, Austria. Formerly called ‘Salzburg Open’ it will be the the fourth year of the Austrian Open in this venue.

Many Thanks go to our sponsors Mc Donald’s Hallein, Elektro Ausweger, Wilson, Generali, Sport Union Salzburg, Salzburg Sports Council and Restaurant Bella Vita as well as to all our host families providing accommodation for the players.

The Austrian Open this year feature a strong field of seven top 100 players with former world number 33 Chris Ryder from England being top seed. Second seed Clinton Leeuw from South Africa, current number 86 will be his toughest opponent on paper. Though the Austrian Champion and current world number 92 Aqeel Rehman will try to cause upsets in his home club too.

The local supporters will see a second Salzburg born player in the main draw. Jakob Dirnberger has received the wildcard for this event and can count on the home crowd behind his back.

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