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15/09/2008
CHARLESTON CHALLENGE
 

Clyne Clinches Charleston Title

Merrill Lynch Pegasus Partners Charleston Squash Challenge, Charleston, USA

 

1st round:

[1] Jonathan Harford (ENG) bt Fernando Lopez (MEX) 11-5, 11-2, 11-7 (30m)

[8] Michal Reid (CAN) bt Joe Millman (ENG) 11-9, 11-5, 11-1 (32m)

Matthew Serediak (CAN) bt [4] Patrick Chifunda (ZAM) 9-11, 12-10, 11-9, 11-9 (46m)

[Q] TG Raubenheimer (RSA) bt [6] Joshua Greenfield (NZL) 11-2, 8-11, 12-10, 11-4 (47m)

[5] Alan Clyne (SCO) bt [Q] Jacques Swanepoel (RSA) 11-5, 11-6, 12-10 (25m)

[3] Gilly Lane (USA) bt [Q] Lekgotla Mosope (BOT) 11-5, 11-5, 6-11, 11-7 (36m)

[Q] Erik Tepos Valtierra (MEX) bt [7] Keith Pritchard (CAN) 5-11, 10-12, 11-4, 11-8, 11-5 (55m)

[2] Robin Clarke (CAN) bt Tyler Hamilton (CAN) 11-5, 11-6, 11-7 (27m)

    Quarter-finals:

[1] Jonathan Harford (ENG) bt [8] Michal Reid (CAN) 11-5, 11-2, 11-7 (38m)

[Q] TG Raubenheimer (RSA) bt Matthew Serediak (CAN) 11-4, 8-11, 11-7, 11-7 (49m)

[5] Alan Clyne (SCO) bt [3] Gilly Lane (USA) 11-7, 8-11, 11-6, 11-9 (59m)

[2] Robin Clarke (CAN) bt [Q] Erik Tepos Valtierra (MEX) 11-9, 11-3, 11-3 (32m)

    Semi-finals:

[1] Jonathan Harford (ENG) bt [Q] TG Raubenheimer (RSA) 11-5, 13-11, 11-5 (39m)

[5] Alan Clyne (SCO) bt [2] Robin Clarke (CAN) 11-3, 11-5, 11-4 (27m)

    Final:

[5] Alan Clyne (SCO) bt [1] Jonathan Harford (ENG) 11-9, 8-11, 3-11, 11-6, 11-3 (79m)

 

Clyne Clinches Charleston Title

Scotland's Alan Clyne clinched his maiden PSA Tour squash title in sensational style in the US state of South Carolina - first upsetting the third seed, then the second, and then the favourite to win the Merrill Lynch Pegasus Partners Charleston Squash Challenge in Charleston.

The 22-year-old from Edinburgh was competing in his first Tour event of the year after reaching the quarter-finals of the World University Championship in Egypt last month.

Seeded five, Clyne despatched third seed Gilly Lane, from the USA, in the quarters before taking out second-seeded Canadian Robin Clarke in the semis.

In the final - his first in only his fourth appearance on the Tour - Clyne faced English favourite Jonathan Harford.

The match was a genuine see-saw of emotions and control of the game.  Clyne, ranked 142 in the world, won the first in a gritty 20-minute battle as the two players searched for chinks in each other’s armour.

Harford, 25 from Leeds and ranked 80 places higher, won the second and - now wearing the name of his country across his back in large letters - took the third for just three points.

However Clyne reappeared after the two-minute break donning a navy blue shirt with the word ‘Scotland’ emblazoned across his back in white - and the change into his national colours seemed to rejuvenate the underdog.

Clyne took the fourth in a game of almost 30 minutes.  In the fifth the Scot was rampant, as Harford - despite brave resistance early and late in the game - was unable to find an answer to the ubiquitous Scot.

"It was a rip-roaring, roller-coaster of a five-game final, that included amazing squash, heart stopping gets and ferocious attacks and an extraordinarily sporting contest that, despite a very hot court, included few lets and an integrity which was exemplary," exclaimed tournament organiser Richard Millman after Clyne's 11-9, 8-11, 3-11, 11-6, 11-3 victory in 79 minutes.

"I have been watching, teaching and playing this game for more than 30 years and I can rarely, if ever, remember seeing a finer contest," added Millman.