GREAT BRITAIN bt  MALAYSIA 2/0
Joshua Masters bt Mohd Syafiq Kamal 11-5, 11-8, 11-6 (32m)
Lily Taylor bt Aika Azman 11-6, 11-8, 9-11, 11-8 (36m)
Adam Auckland v Addeen Idrakie (match withdrawn)
 HONG KONG CHINA &  FRANCE
5th place play-off:
CZECH REPUBLIC bt SOUTH AFRICA 2/1
David Zeman bt Dewald van Niekerk 11-8, 11-3, 11-3 (25m)
Tereza ElznicovŠ lost to Hayley Ward 6-11, 9-11, 8-11 (19m)
Jakub Solnicky bt John Feliks Kuhn 9-11, 11-6, 7-11, 11-7, 11-4 (49m)
7th place play-off:
AUSTRALIA bt CANADA 2/1
Thomas Calvert bt David Mill 7-11, 11-6, 11-9, 11-5 (39m)
Jessica Osborne lost to Chloe Chemtob 6-11, 6-11, 3-11 (22m)
Nicholas Calvert bt Ravi Seth 11-7, 11-7, 11-8 (36m)
9th place play-off:
NEW ZEALAND bt SWITZERLAND 2/1
Sion Wiggin lost to Robin Gadola 3-11, 3-11, 3-11 (21m)
Eleanor Epke bt Milena Penkov 11-7, 11-5, 11-9 (19m)
Joe Williams bt Remo Handl 11-7, 11-3, 11-4 (29m)
 GREAT BRITAIN bt  HONG KONG CHINA 2/1
Joshua Masters lost to Yip Tsz Fung 8-11, 11-6, 11-8, 8-11, 8-11
Grace Gear bt Ho Ka Wing 11-5, 6-11, 11-4, 12-10
Adam Auckland bt Wong Chi Him 11-6, 12-10, 11-9
 MALAYSIA bt  FRANCE 2/0
Mohd Syafiq Kamal bt Auguste Dussourd 11-8, 11-6, 11-5 (34m)
Aika Azman bt Julia Le Coq 8-11, 13-11, 11-8, 11-9 (39m)
Addeen Idrakie v Edwin Clain (match withdrawn)
The curtain came down on the biggest World University Squash
Championship to date with the completion by the host nation of a maximum
triple gold-medal haul.
Victory for Great Britain over defending champions Malaysia in the Final
of the team event at the University of Birmingham came three days after
the award of the Championshipís individual titles to home players Josh
Masters and Lily Taylor.
And by way of fittingly neat symmetry, the newly-crowned menís and
womenís champions - who are also fellow students at the University of
the West of England - gained the two necessary match-wins to ensure gold
for their team yesterday afternoon.
The Malaysian side, who had also won the event on home ground, in Kuala
Lumpur, two years previously, featured three individual bronze
medallists in its Final team- although Mohd Syafiq Kamal and Aika Azman
had been beaten in their respective menís and womenís Semi-Finals by
Masters and Taylor.
Now, as fate would have it, they were paired against them once more,
and, happily for Team GB, very recent history was to repeat itself.
An aggressive start by the 23-year-old Masters saw him race into an
early 9-2 lead in the opening game - and while Kamal, one year his
junior, closed the gap slightly by gaining a further three points, the
menís champion duly picked up the two he required to draw first blood
after ten minutes had been played.
A second game of quicker pace and tougher rallies was notably more even
- although Masters remained calm and in control, before edging ahead
when it mattered. And the third very much followed the pattern of the
first, with Masters storming in front and rarely having to look back as
he triumphed, as he had done in their weekend meeting, with a
straight-games victory (11-5, 11-8, 11-6) - achieved in just over half
The individual Semi-Final between Taylor and Azman, both 21, had, in
contrast with that of their male compatriots, gone the full five-game
distance at the weekend. But Taylor replicated the relative ease of her
victory in the first game from Saturday by going one-up with only six
minutes on the clock.
The games then became tighter, as Taylor proceeded to double her
advantage by claiming the second, before Azman won the third to halve
the arrears and take to the court with a visible spring in her step for
But it was Taylor, who, following a long rally of quality on
match-point, prevailed to triumph 3-1 (11-6, 11-8, 9-11, 11-8) after 36
minutes - and, with no need for the tieís final match that would have
put Team GBís Semi-Final hero Adam Auckland up against Addeen Idrakie,
the womenís championís work was done for her side. The hosts had struck
gold not twice, but thrice!
A delighted Great Britain coach Josh Taylor said: ďIím immensely proud
of the team this week, there were great performances from everyone. It
was truly a team effort in the team event, having rotated the whole
squad and claimed gold.
ďIt wraps up a great week and the best performance by any nation at this
event, taking GB to the top of the all-time medal table.Ē
Team Malaysia were generous in defeat, commenting: ďWe expected it to be
hard for us, as they (Masters and Taylor) had both won their matches
against us in the individual champs. We just tried to play our best
squash, but they played much better than us today - big credit to them!
ďItís been a great week for us. The University of Birmingham has one of
the best facilities in the world, so itís been really good!Ē
The next FISU 2020 World University Squash Championship will be held in
The sixth and penultimate day of the FISU 2018 World University Squash
Championship saw the remaining nations in contention for the team event
complete the competitionís group stage, followed by a best-of-three
Todayís Final at the University of Birmingham promises to be an
intriguing contest - pitting the first seeds and reigning champions
Malaysia against the hosting United Kingdom, which now has an
opportunity to achieve a clean sweep in the Championship, following the
award of the individual titles on Sunday to home players Joshua Masters
and Lily Taylor.
All of the deciding group fixtures stuck to the seeding script - with
Malaysia pipping Switzerland (seeded 8) by two points to one in Pool A;
Hong Kong (2) and Great Britain (3) winning in straight matches against
Australia (7) and South Africa (6) respectively to top Pools B and C;
and France (4) edging out the Czech Republic (5) by the odd point in
three to qualify from Group D.
So to the afternoon, which threw up an opening Semi Final between the
top-seeded title-holders, Malaysia, and France, as well as an
opportunity for two of the Malaysiansí individual Semi-Finalists - who
had been beaten in the last four of their respective competitions by
Masters and Taylor - to go one better as part of a collective effort.
Menís third seed Mohd Syafiq Kamal took to the court reeling from a
morning defeat against the leading Swiss competitor Robin Gadola, but
made no mistake in a tidy straight-games triumph (11-8, 11-6, 11-5) over
Auguste Dussourd, whose recent involvement in the qualifiers for the
2018 Open International de Squash de Nantes had prevented him from
featuring at Birmingham earlier.
The womenís second-ranked candidate Aika Azman got off to a more
stuttering start against Franceís Julia Le Coq, who raced to a 9-2 lead
in the opening game that she eventually sneaked by a three-point margin
- despite the Malaysianís spirited comeback.
But, as the pace of the contest intensified, Azman held her nerve to
edge close second and third games, before coming from behind during the
fourth to prevail 3-1 (8-11, 13-11, 11-8, 11-9) and - following a mutual
decision not to play the tieís final match - propel the holders through
to the Final.
The Malaysian team said: ď(We are) really happy, of course, to make a
Final again. We are the defending champions from two years ago, so we
are looking to get there one more time by taking it easy - and with no
The second Semi-Final between Team GB and Hong Kong featured in its
entirety pairings that had already come up against each other in the
menís or womenís events. An exact repeat of those matches would have
resulted in a 2-1 overall victory for the lower-seeded British. And
while the teams did, in fact, end up producing that very outcome, their
individual winners and losers differed in two cases out of the three!
Masters and top menís seed Yip Tsz Fung re-enacted their Final from two
days previously - although, on this occasion, the spoils went to Yip
over five typically fast-paced games (11-8, 6-11, 8-11, 11-8, 11-6). And
after Grace Gear levelled matters by winning 3-1 (11-5, 6-11, 11-4,
12-10) against Ho Ka Wing - the opponent that she had successfully
overhauled in the womenís fifth-sixth place play-off - Adam Auckland
upset the recent form-book in Britainís favour, as well as avenging his
Third Round defeat of the previous week, after seeing off Wong Chi Him
in straight games.
This was, for impressive added measure, Aucklandís national debut in a
team event - and, with it having seen him get GB over the line and
through to the Final, one that will live forever in the memory.
He said afterwards: ďI couldnít have asked for a better team, and it was
a really good performance by everyone!Ē
Following the final of the menís and womenís
individual competitions, the focus of the FISU 2018 World University
Squash Championship switched on its fifth day to the initial group
fixtures of the team event.
Thirteen nations in total are competing for the 2018 team title at the
University of Birmingham - with each contest being resolved in favour of
the side that secures the best of three match-victories.
There were no shocks to report from the opening dayís play - although
neither, just yet, are any teams guaranteed progression to the
Semi-Final stage as outright winners within the four groups.
In Pool A, top seeds and reigning champions Malaysia will be intent on
going one better than they did in the individual competitions - which,
remarkably, saw four of their players reach, but fail to win any of the
menís and womenís Semi-Finals.
Two of those last-four losers set the tone for their teamís opener
against Canada (seeded 9), as menís fourth seed Addeen Idrakie and the
womenís sixth-ranked competitor Zoe Foo began with straight-game defeats
of David Mill and Chloe Chemtob respectively, before Sanjay Singh also
saw off Ravi Seth by the same margin to secure an overall victory and a
maximum three points.
Pool B is even tighter going into the final match, as Hong Kong (2) and
Australia (7) sit level on two points apiece, following their respective
victories over New Zealand, and will now take on each other for a place
in the final four.
The clash of the Antipodean countries yesterday morning was an
especially entertaining advertisement for team squash - with all five
matches between Australia and New Zealand being needed over the course
of two and a half hours, before the former eventually prevailed.
In Pool C, newly-crowned menís champion Josh Masters showed himself to
be fresh in every sense from his Sunday afternoon Final exertions, as he
got the United Kingdom (3) off the mark against Austria (11) with a
straight-games triumph over Simon Draxler. Owain Taylor also beat
Michael Haunschmid 3-1, together with a walkover-victory in the first
But this win did no more than emulate the feat of fellow-group members
South Africa (6), who had already set the bar by dispatching the
Austrians in the morning - and against whom the UK must today prevail in
order to advance further.
Finally, the outcome of Pool D - containing one more team than the other
three groups - will come down to a straight fight between the
closely-matched French (4) and Czech Republic (5) sides, after both
enjoyed victories yesterday against the two lowest-ranked teams from
China (12) and Uganda (13).
10th edition of FISU
World University Squash Championship officially opened last
night at University of Birmingham Sport & Fitness
Hosted in the arena of the University of Birmingham Sport &
Fitness club, athletes and officials from 19 nations were
welcomed into the all-glass show court yesterday evening for
the Opening Ceremony of the FISU 2018 World University
The crowd, including athletes, officials, referees,
volunteers and University of Birmingham staff were played in
by the University of Birmingham Brass Quintet who did a
beautiful rendition of the United Kingdom's national
A fantastic line-up of guest speakers took to the stage to
welcome the event back to the UK, 20 years after the
Championship last came to Cardiff in 1998.
Chris Ryder, Championship Director and 2006 World University
Squash Championship winner, started proceedings by welcoming
the athletes to the arena, commenting that 'the competition
is quite literally nothing without you'.
Dr Ed Smith CBE, Pro-Chancellor of the University of
Birmingham, took to the stage to extend a warm welcome to
all of the guests on behalf of the University -
mentioning the 50 volunteers who will be involved in the
event, thanking FISU for putting faith in the University to
host the event, and passionately showcasing the importance
of squash at the University of Birmingham.
Coleen Dufresne, FISU Executive Committee Member, was the
final speaker to address the crowd:
'FISU Championships offer a superb opportunity for a large
number of university students, managers and coaches to
exchange opinions and ideas and of course to achieve your
best performance on the field of play. I encourage you
to reach out to each other over the course of the
tournament, learn about each otherís cultures and make our
world a little closer and friendlier.'
The Championship was then officially opened by British
Universities and Colleges Sport Board member, Ben Moorhead.
The fabulous FISU anthem was played live by the Brass
Quintet, and on behalf of all the student athletes, the
Athlete's Oath was taken by
who will be representing Team GB throughout the
Championship. Marko Podgorsek of Slovenia took the Oath of
Referees on behalf of the event officials.
The Opening Ceremony kick-started the Championship with a
burst of positive energy and excitement for the
opportunities which lay ahead.
Tickets for the
individual and team semi-finals and finals are available to
buy online, book the edge of your seat now and keep an eye
on the results over the next few days to see which athletes
make it through to the final stages.
We can't wait to
see all your pictures, posts and videos during the event -
be sure to tag
Twitter, Facebook and Instagram and use the hashtag
#WUCSquash2018 so we can see all of your posts!