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07/06/2010
KENT OPEN
 

FLying Scot Clyne Claims Kent Title

Kent Open

June 1-6, 2010 at The Mote Squash Club, Maidstone

1st Round
Thurs June 3
Quarter Finals
Friday June 4
Semi Finals
Sat June 6
Final
Sun June 6
[1] Alan Clyne (Sco)
4-11, 11-8, 11-2, 12-10 (53m)
Joel Hinds (Eng)
Alan Clyne
11-3, 11-6, 11-6 (35m)
Ivan Yuen
Alan Clyne
6-11, 11-13, 11-1, 11-8, 12-10 (69 m)
Piedro Schweertman
Alan Clyne
11-8, 11-3, 11-8 (35 m)
Jonny Harford
[5] Ivan Yuen (Mas)
11-3, 12-10, 11-4 (28m)
Karim AGA Samy (Egy)
[4] Joe Lee (Eng)
6-11, 11-6,11-5, 11-8 (44m)
Neil Hitchens (Eng)
Joe Lee
11-9, 11-6, 11-5 (43m)
Piedro Schweertman
[6] Piedro Schweertman (Ned)
11-9, 8-11, 11-5, 14-12 (46m)
[Q] Wael Farag (Egy)
[Q] Tom Pashley (Eng)
11-5, 7-11, 11-8, 11-3 (49m)
[8] Ben Ford (Eng)
Ben Ford
11-8, 11-8, 11-8 (41m)
John Rooney
John Rooney
w/o
Jonny Harford
Steven London (Eng)
11-4, 11-6, 11-6 (28m)
[3] John Rooney (Irl)
[Q] Chris Truswell (Eng)
8-11, 11-2, 10-12, 11-8, 11-7 (54m)
Harinderpal Sandhu (Ind)
Chris Truswell
11-5, 11-6, 12-10 (41m)
Jonny Harford
[Q] Jonny Harford (Eng)
11-9, 7-11, 11-4, 11-8 (65m)
[2] Muhd Asyraf Azan (Mas)

2 Jun, Qualifying Finals:

Jonny Harford (Eng) bt Arthur Gaskin (Ireland) 6-11, 11-6, 11-2, 11-0 (47m)

Wael Farag (Egypt) bt Phil Nightingale (Eng) 11-8, 11-9, 11-5 (28m)
Chris Truswell (Eng) bt Issa Kamara (Sierra Leone) 11-2, 11-4, 11-3 (19m)

Tom Pashley (Eng) bt Mark Fuller (Eng) 11-4, 7-11, 8-11, 11-4, 12-10 (54m)

 1 Jun, Qualifying Round One:
Jonny Harford (Eng) bt Bart Ravelli (Neth) 11-9, 11-0, 11-3 (31m)
Arthur Gaskin (Irl) bt Neil Baker (Eng) 11-1, 11-6, 11-8 (23m)
Phil Nightingale (Eng) bt Alexei Severinov (Rus) 11-1, 11-7, 11-5 (24m)
Wael Farag (Egypt) beat Jonny Powell (Eng) 11-2, 11-7, 15-13 (22m)
Issa Kamara (Sierra Leone) bt James Evans (Eng) 11-8, 9-11, 11-8, 11-8 (36m)
Chris Truswell (Eng) bt Ryan Thompson (Nam) 11-13, 11-8, 11-8, 11-5 (55m)
Tom Pashley (Eng) bt Ben Coleman (Eng) 11-4, 11-4, 11-9 (38m)
Mark Fuller (Eng) bt Neil Cordell (Eng) 11-9, 11-9, 11-4 (29m)
 

FLying Scot Clyne Claims Kent Title

By Alan Thatcher

Kent Open final: (1) Alan Clyne (Scotland) beat (Q) Jonathan Harford

(England) 11-8, 11-3, 11-8 (35 minutes).

 

Top seed Alan Clyne powered home to the $10,000 Kent Open title with a straight-games victory over surprise finalist Jonny Harford.
 

Clyne won 11-8, 11-3, 11-8 in 35 minutes, finishing strongly in the first and third games and totally dominating the second to win the inaugural PSA One Star tournament held at The Mote Squash Club in Maidstone, England.
 

The 23-year-old world No.62 from Edinburgh was in control throughout most of the match, using his incredible speed and court coverage to counter any attacking moves from the tall Englishman who had enjoyed a walkover into the final following the withdrawal through illness of No.3 seed John Rooney.
 

Clyne dominated the front half of the court and whenever Harford played anything loose or short, the Scotsman pounced on the ball and won a succession of points with his trademark killer drop shots.
 

Clyne's composure at the business end of games was obvious. From 6-6 in the first game he tightened up to win four points in a row and although Harford countered with two stunning winners, Clyne had no trouble in seeing out the game.
 

In hot, humid conditions, both players were literally dripping with sweat as the second game started and Harford was unable to withstand the ferocious barrage of front-court winners flowing from the Scotsman's racket.

 

The game was over in five minutes and the crowd were willing Harford to prolong the match.
 

He responded solidly and fought hard in the third game, but he was unable to build on his 8-5 lead as Clyne regained control to win six points in a row to claim the title.

A delighted Clyne said: "I was very pleased with the way I played all week. The courts here at The Mote are excellent and everyone at the club made us very welcome. It's always great to see new tournaments added to the calendar and  I am sure all the players will look forward to coming back next year."
 

Runner-up Harford was pleased to claim some valuable points to help his climb back up the PSA rankings following a hip operation. He said: "Alan played a fantastic game and I couldn't get near him today.He was absolutely awesome at the front of the court.

 

"I would like to thank The Mote Squash Club and the Kent SRA for giving me a local spot in qualifying. It has really helped me to get back into the game. I can only endorse what Alan said about the hospitality at this club and the players are all grateful for the way they have been looked after. It's been a great tournament."
 

CLyne Fightback Cliches Place In Final

By Alan Thatcher
 

Top seed Alan Clyne fought back from two games down to beat Dutchman Piedro Schweertman in the semi-finals of the Kent Open.
 

The Scottish No.1 won 6-11, 11-13, 11-1, 11-8, 12-10 in 69 minutes of high quality squash that delighted a packed gallery at The Mote Squash Club in Kent.
 

The entertainment value served up by both players more than made up for the earlier disappointment of the sudden withdrawal of No.3 seed John Rooney, who went down with food poisoning overnight after a Chinese meal with his family and friends in London.

That presented qualifier Jonny Harford with a walkover into the final and the prospect of picking up some valuable ranking points as he bids to climb back up the PSA world ladder after several months out with a hip injury.
 

Clyne will obviously be favourite to become the first winner of this new $10,000 PSA One Star tournament but Harford was delighted to watch Clyne and Schweertman make such a massive physical investment in the semi-final.
 

The No.6 seed from Amsterdam lost in straight games to Clyne when they met in the recent final of the West of Ireland open. This time he began strongly to take the first game and hit back from 8-4 down to win the second 13-11 on a tiebreak.
 

However, that phenomenal effort clearly took its toll as he tired in the second game. It looked like Clyne might achieve a rare 11-0 whitewash until the Dutchman scrambled a point on game ball. 
 

If Schweertman was taking a tactical rest it clearly had the desired effect as he opened up an 8-5 lead in the fourth game. He then showed commendable sportsmanship as he called his own shot down just three points away from victory.
 

Clyne responded in magnificent style, reeling off six points in a row to make the scores level at two games all.
 

The fifth game was a classic mixture of skill and attrition as both players fought to a standstill. Clyne won the first three points but Schweertman drew level and then moved ahead at 6-5. Clyne then won four points in a row but Schweertman turned the tables to reach match ball at 10-9.
 

Both players attacked throughout and a succession of devastating winners were matched by some spectacular retrieving.
 

Staring defeat in the face, Clyne once again showed his phenomenal powers of recovery to force a tiebreak and win the next two points to clinch victory.
 

The final will provide a massive contrast in styles, with the tall, hard-hitting Harford seeking to overpower one of the fastest and best retrivers in the game who posesses a killer drop shot.
 

Top Seed Clyne Powers Home In Kent

Top seed Alan Clyne was too fast and too accurate for young Malaysian Ivan Yuen, completing a clean sweep of straight-game results in the quarter-finals of the Kent Open, a new $10,000 One Star event on the PSA World Tour taking place at The Mote Squash Club in Maidstone, Kent.
 

Clyne won 11-3, 11-6, 11-6 in 35 minutes to confirm his status as the tournament favourite. From 3-1 down in the opening game he dominated throughout, never allowing his opponent to put more than two points together as he controlled the scoreboard.

Clyne has one of the best counter-drops in the game and showed that as he nullified the Malaysian's touch play at the front of the court.
 

He now takes on tough Dutchman Piedro Schweertman, who produced a performance of power and  precision to overcome England's No.4 seed Joe Lee.
 

Lee lost a tight first game and will be kicking himself for blowing a

6-2 lead in the second.
 

Schweertman maintained his ice-cool composure to dominate the third game but he will need to repeat that form to trouble Clyne, who beat him in straight games in the recent final of the West of Ireland Open in Galway.
 

Jonny Harford outplayed his Birmingham housemate Chris Truswell to reach the semi-finals. In the battle of two qualifiers, Harford was always the more consistent player, mixing accurate drops with tight, deep drives to clinch a deserved victory which gives him bragging rights in the Birmingham suburb of Edgbaston.
 

Harford, who beat No.2 seed Muhamed Asyraf Azan in the first round, meets John Rooney in the semi-finals after the Irish No.3 seed beat Kent veteran Ben Ford.

 

Ford, the Kent captain and county coach, began strongly and opened up an

8-3 lead before Rooney began to work his way into the match, amazingly winning eight points in  row to take the opening game 11-8.

 

Ford won the first two points of the second game but again Rooney countered strongly to lead 7-2. This time it was Ford's turn to fight back and a run of five points brought him level at 7-7. Again the score see-sawed and Rooney bagged the next three points to reach game ball. He clinched the game 11-8 and Ford was facing a tough challnge getting back into the match.

 

The third game was level pegging until 7-7 when Rooney won four of the neext five points to clinch his place in the last four.

 

Seeds Tumble As Housemates Clean Up In Kent Open

Birmingham housemates Jonathan Harford and Chris Truswell, both qualifiers, will meet each other in the quarter-finals of the Kent Open after knocking out two of the top seeds in this new $10,000 PSA World Tour squash event at the Mote Squash Club in Maidstone in the English county of Kent.

Harford produced a storming performance to remove Malaysia's No2 seed Muhd Asyraf Azan, ranked more than 160 places higher, while Truswell finished strongly to oust No7 seed Harinder Pal Sandhu, from India, in a thrilling five-game encounter.

The pair both emerged from the qualifying competition to delight the packed galleries with their stunning victories at The Mote Club.

Formerly ranked 59 in the world, Harford has seen his PSA ranking slump to 236 following a long injury lay-off. But the 26-year-old was clearly back on top form as he outplayed world No64 Azan 11-9, 7-11, 11-4, 11-8 in 65 minutes.

Truswell, the 25-year-old world No 137, was in a similarly inspired mood to achieve a notable victory against Sandhu, who is ranked 47 places above him in the world list. Truswell hit back from 2/1 down to win 8-11, 11-2, 10-12, 11-8, 11-7 in 54 minutes.

Ironically, a third housemate, British Under-23 champion Joel Hinds, failed to make it a hat-trick as he fell to top seed Alan Clyne. Hinds fell away after a promising start as Scotland's world No62 clinched a fourth game tie-break to win 4-11, 11-8, 11-2, 12-10 in 53 minutes.

Favourite Clyne will face fifth-seeded Malaysian Ivan Yuen in what is sure to be a high-speed encounter. Yuen had too much guile and control as he nullified the hard-hitting Egyptian Karim AGA Samy, winning 11-3, 12-10, 11-4 in 28 minutes.

Another Egyptian to exit was the hugely-talented qualifier Wael Farag, who mounted fierce resistance before falling to sixth seed Piedro Schweertman. The Dutchman combined ferocious power with sublime touch to triumph 11-9, 8-11, 11-5, 14-12 in 46 minutes.

Schweertman now meets 20-year-old rising England star Joe Lee, the No4 seed from Surrey who beat fellow Englishman Neil Hitchens in four games.

Ben Ford, the 34-year-old Kent county captain, enjoyed massive vocal support from his home crowd as he beat Sussex qualifier Tom Pashley in four games. Ford now meets 30-year-old No3 seed John Rooney, who ended the hopes of Kent wild card Steven London with a straight-games victory in 28 minutes.

Pash And Grab Tiebreak Wins It For Tom

By Alan Thatcher

 

Tom Pashley fought back from match ball down to win a dramatic fifth-game tiebreak in the qualifying finals against fellow Englishman Mark Fuller to clinch his place in the first round of the Kent Open, a new $10,000 One Star event on the PSA World Tour taking place at The Mote Squash Club in Maidstone.

 

Pashley, a 22-year-old left hander based in Halifax, clinched victory 12-10 after 54 minutes of high quality squash and was rewarded with a place in the main draw against Kent veteran Ben Ford, the No.8 seed.

 

Pashley won the opening game in emphatic style but the determined Fuller hit back to win the next two games to threaten a shock victory. However, Pashley regained control to win the fourth and take the match into a fifth-game decider. The score was neck and neck until 6-6, at which point Fuller got his nose in front and held match ball at 10-9. But he was unable to finish the job off and Pashley came back to win the final three points.

 

Pashley's victory was the longest of the qualifying finals, while Yorkshire neighbour Chris Truswell, who is based in Leeds, achieved the quickest victory of the night, overcoming  Issa Kamara of Sierra Leone in just 19 minutes. He will be looking forward to a high-speed contest against India's No.7 seed Harinderpal Sandhu.

 

Talented Egyptian Wael Farag was happy to play a waiting game as he nullified the threat of tall Surrey player Phil Nightingale, winning in straight games to line up a first round clash with Dutch No.2 Piedro Schweertman.

 

England's Jonny Harford continued his return to form after a prolonged absence through injury by beating Ireland's Arthur Gaskin in a match of astonishing contrasts. Gaskin led the opening game 6-0 before Harford registered his first point, but gradually the tide turned. Although Gaskin won that game 11-6, Harford gradually took control to win the next three games 11-6, 11-2, 11-0 to book a place in the first round against Malaysia's No.2 seed Muhamed Asyraf Azan.

 

Junior James Shines In PSA Debut 

 

James Evans, at 14 years and six months one of the youngest players ever to appear in a PSA World Tour event, came close to recording a shock victory in the qualifying round of the Kent Open.

 

Playing at his home club, The Mote Squash Club in Maidstone, Evans showed flashes of attacking genius as he made Issa Kamara fight all the way to book a place in the qualifying finals of this new One Star event on the PSA calendar.

 

Kamara, the 31-year-old from Sierra Leone, was relieved to win 11-8, 9-11, 11-8, 11-8 in four close games and paid tribute to his young opponent.

 

He said: “I played James in Kent back in January and was happy to win

3-1 that day as well. He has come on so much since then and I was surprised at how much his attacking game has developed. He was hitting nicks from all over the court.”

 

Evans, who recently made a winning debut for the England Under-15 squad, trains at The Mote with some bloke whose name escapes me at the moment.

The youngster was delighted to play in a major world-ranking event and

said: “It was a great experience to play in my first PSA tournament and I was very happy with how I played. I didn’t make too many mistakes. I was away at an outward bound camp all last week with my school and because of a hamstring injury I haven’t picked up a racket for two weeks so I know I can do a little bit better than that.”

 

Kamara, who is now based in Turkey, faces England’s Chris Truswell in today’s qualifying finals. The Leeds-based Truswell took 55 minutes to beat Namibia’s Ryan Thompson in the longest match of the evening, his 11-13, 11-8, 11-8, 11-5 victory lasting 55 minutes.

 

Top qualifying seed Tom Pashley, another Yorkshire-based player from Halifax, beat 19-year-old Ben Coleman from Essex in straight games to clinch a qualifying final berth against Mark Fuller. The 25-year-old from Nottingham beat the higher-ranked Neil Cordell from York in just 25 minutes.

 

There were quick wins for Egypt’s Wael Farag and Ireland’s Arthur Gaskin against Kent players Jonny Powell and Neil Baker. Farag meets Phil Nightingale, who overpowered Russian No.1 Sergey Severinov, and Gaskin faces Jonny Harford, who squeezed home 11-9 in the first game against Holland’s Bart Ravelli before powering through the next two games for the loss of just three points.
 

Scottish Star Clyne Is Top Seed 

 

FLYING Scot Alan Clyne is the top seed for the forthcoming Kent Open at The Mote Squash Club.

 

Clyne is one of the fastest and fittest players on the PSA Tour and heads up a truly international field in this new One Star world-ranking tournament, which runs from June 1-6.

 

The 23-year-old from Edinburgh was a semi-finalist in The Mote Open invitation event last year, showing his enormous potential in a narrow defeat to Australia’s Aaron Frankcomb in a marathon two-hour battle.

 

Clyne faces a tough battle in the first round against England’s Joel Hinds, the recent winner of the British Under-23 Championship.

 

Kent county captain Ben Ford, from Bexley, is seeded eight and plays a qualifier in the first round on June 3.

 

Wild card Steven London, from Beckenham, faces a baptism of fire in his first PSA tournament against Irish No.1 John Rooney, the No.3 seed.

 

After Clyne, the leading seeds include Muhammad Azan (Malaysia), Joe Lee (England), Ivan Yuen (Malaysia), Piedro Schweertman (Holland) and Harinder Pal Sandhu (India).

 

Leading Mote players Jonny Powell and James Evans, plus Rodmersham’s Neil Baker, will be keen to make an impression during the qualifying competition which takes place on June 1-2.

 

Admission is free all week at The Mote and the tournament follows the Kent Squash Festival, which has been running for several weeks and has introduced squash and racketball to students at more than 20 schools all over the county.

 

The Festival and the Kent Open have been funded by England Squash and Racketball, with additional sponsorship from Harrow Rackets and a number of private donations.

 

Tournament Director Alan Thatcher said: “We are delighted to have attracted such a high-quality field and our ambition is to make the Kent Open a major annual event on the world squash calendar.

 

“The courts at The Mote are in superb condition after a major refurbishment and we look forward to seeing a packed gallery for six days of superb entertainment.”

 

Ahead of the main draw final on June 6, the successful Kent junior squad will be playing a Challenge Match against the SE Region.

 

The finals weekend will also include doubles, racketball, coaching clinics and a Radar Gun Challenge to see if any players can get near to the current world record of 172mph set by Scotland’s John White.

 

Further details on the Kent SRA website: www.kent-squash.co.uk