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Rodriguez Stops Avila In Cartagena Final

Grupo Maximo Cartagena Open 2012
04-09 Sep, Colombia, $15k
Round One
06 Sep
07 Sep
08 Sep
09 Sep
[1] Steve Coppinger (Rsa)
11-3, 11-8, 11-7 (44m)
Eric Galvez (Mex)
Steve Coppinger
12-10, 8-11, 11-7, 11-3 (75m)
Alfredo Avila
Alfredo Avila
8-11, 11-6, 11-13, 13-11, 1-0 ret. (104m)
Arturo Salazar
Alfredo Avila
11-8, 11-2, 11-2 (37m)
Miguel Angel Rodriguez

David Letourneau (Can)
11-7, 11-3, 11-4 (34m)
[Q] Alfredo Avila (Mex)
Dane Sharp (Can)
12-10, 12-10, 11-9 (55m)
[Q] Gonzalo Miranda (Arg)
Dane Sharp
7-11, 11-3, 11-3,
Arturo Salazar
[3] Shahier Razik (Can)
11-9, 11-8, 5-11, 11-8 (48m)
Arturo Salazar (Mex)
[4] Cesar Salazar (Mex)
11-9, 11-6, 11-4 (48m)
[Q] Eric Tepos (Mex)
Cesar Salazar
9-11, 11-5, 11-7,

Chris Gordon
Cesar Salazar
11-7 ret.
Miguel Angel Rodriguez
Chris Gordon (Usa)
11-3, 11-6, 11-4 (18m)
[WC] Omar Garcia (Col)
Andrew Wagih (Egy)
11-5, 11-8, 11-9 (43m)
[Q] Johan Bouquet (Fra)
Andrew Wagih
12-10, 11-7, 11-9 (55m)
Miguel Angel Rodriguez
Peter Creed (Wal)
11-6, 11-5, 11-4 (26m)
[2] Miguel Angel Rodriguez (Col)

Rodriguez Stops Avila In Cartagena Final

Colombian squash star Miguel Angel Rodriguez brought Alfredo Avila's giant-killing run in the Grupo Maximo Cartagena Open to an end when he beat the Mexican qualifier in straight games in the final of the inaugural PSA World Tour Challenger 15 event at Cumplejo de Raquetas in Colombia's coastal city of Cartagena.

Avila, a 21-year-old from Mexico City ranked outside the world top 100, had reached the biggest PSA Tour final of his career after a succession of upsets - none more notable than his four-game victory over top-seeded South African Stephen Coppinger.

"The first game of the final was super exciting with tremendous rallies," said tournament promoter Maxim P Weithers. "But not just long, lots of variety, change of angles, pace and direction. Incredible gets from both players lasted 17 minutes.

"By the second game, we could see a sudden drop in energy from Avila as he was punished 11-2 in only six minutes. And, with the final game only taking a mere five minutes, it was obvious Avila had felt the effect of the week in the tropical paradise of Cartagena de Indies."

Colombian number one Rodriguez's 11-8, 11-2, 11-2 in 37 minutes marks his second Tour title in his third successive final on home soil in two weeks. But the triumph also notches up the 20th Tour title of his career.

"I am very pleased, satisfied for my results in the Colombian tour," said the 26-year-old local hero later. "I had an amazing three weeks - not only squash but great experience and activities with the players who decided to come over and enjoy our friendly and happy country. All the matches I played were a challenge for me during the weeks and now I am looking forward to the upcoming events!

"The Cartagena Open, the last one on the tour, provided great hospitality for us, considering that the city is one of the busiest cities in Colombia. Sun, beach and squash are the perfect complements!

"I am happy to win the first PSA event in Cartagena and thank all the organizers and specially Maxim Weithers for putting all his effort to bring us this beautiful tournament."

Weithers also expressed his thanks: "As the main sponsor and promoter we also wish to express our thanks to the PSA office and staff for assembling such a great group of professionals - each one very happy to be here.

"Also, as it's our first PSA event, we look forward to the event growing in leaps and bounds for next year. For a city like Cartagena, it's so important to let people know how beautiful it really is and what a special romantic and exciting place it can be.

"Thanks for helping us put Cartagena, Colombia, on the World Squash map!"

Qualifier Avila Makes Cartagena Climax

Mexican qualifier Alfredo Avila reached the biggest PSA World Tour final of his career at the Grupo Maximo Cartagena Open in Colombia after surviving a five-game marathon against higher-ranked compatriot Arturo Salazar in the inaugural PSA Challenger 15 squash event at Cumplejo de Raquetas in the coastal city of Cartagena.

The 21-year-old from Mexico City had already produced the shock of the tournament by ousting top-seeded South African Stephen Coppinger in the previous round.

And in the semi-finals, Avila twice came from behind to level the match against Salazar before the world No66 from San Luis Potosi was forced to retire injured after just a single point in the decider.

The 8-11, 11-6, 11-13, 13-11, 1-0 (ret.) win after 104 minutes takes Avila into the fifth PSA World Tour final of his life, and his second this year.

There was a Salazar retirement in the other semi where Arturo's twin brother Cesar Salazar, the No4 seed, was forced to concede the match after just a single game to local hero Miguel Angel Rodriguez, the second seed from Bogota, as the result of a knee injury.

Colombian number one Rodriguez is celebrating his third Tour final on home soil in two weeks - and the 28th of his illustrious career.

Mexicans Make Waves In Cartagena

Mexicans claimed three of the semi-final slots in the Grupo Maximo Cartagena Open after qualifier Alfredo Avila produced the biggest upset of the tournament when he toppled top seed Stephen Coppinger in the quarter-finals of the inaugural PSA World Tour Challenger 15 squash event at Cumplejo de Raquetas in the coastal city of Cartagena in Colombia.

In his second Tour meeting with world No24 Coppinger in ten days, Avila survived a first game tie-break, then recovered from losing the second game to beat the South African number one for the first time 12-10, 8-11, 11-7, 11-3 in 75 minutes.

The 21-year-old from Mexico City, ranked 119 in the world, now goes on to face fellow countryman Arturo Salazar. After despatching third seed Shahier Razik in the opening round, Salazar continued his winning run against Canadians by beating Toronto's Dane Sharp 7-11, 11-3, 11-3, 11-6.

There was further Colombian success for the Salazar family when Arturo's twin brother Cesar Salazar also reserved a place in the last four after a 9-11, 11-5, 11-7, 11-7 victory over US number two Christopher Gordon.

Fourth seed Salazar now takes on sole Colombian Miguel Angel Rodriguez, the No2 seed from Bogota who defeated Egypt's Andrew Wagih Shoukry 12-10, 11-7, 11-9 in 55 minutes.

Salazars Strike In Cartagena Open

Mexico's Salazar twins both claimed places in the quarter-finals of the Grupo Maximo Cartagena Open after unseeded Arturo Salazar pulled off a major shock by upsetting third-seeded Canadian Shahier Razik in the opening round of the inaugural PSA World Tour Challenger 15 squash event at Cumplejo de Raquetas in the coastal city of Cartagena in Colombia.

It was the pair's fifth Tour meeting since January 2008 - and 24-year-old Salazar, ranked 66 in the world, celebrated his first ever win over Razik by beating the world No27 11-9, 11-8, 5-11, 11-8 in 48 minutes.

Whilst the lower-ranked of the pair early in their careers, Cesar Salazar recently overtook his twin brother Arturo in the PSA world rankings - and arrived in Cartagena as the event's fourth seed. The San Luis Potosi squash star faced qualifier Erik Tepos Valtierra - but dismissed his fellow countryman 11-9, 11-6, 11-4, also in 48 minutes.

Arturo goes on to meet another Canadian Dane Sharp. The 27-year-old from Toronto survived a tight game against Gonzalo Miranda, eventually beating the qualifier from Argentina 12-10, 12-10, 11-9 in 55 minutes.

"It was a closely contested match from beginning to end - which could have gone either way," said tournament promoter Maxim P Weithers. "Miranda actually had game balls in both the first and second games, but was unable to convert. Sharp seemed to be able to keep his composure a lot better in the critical points and found the mental edge in the latter part of each game."

Cesar takes on North American hope Christopher Gordon, the US number two who beat local player Omar Garcia 11-3, 11-6, 11-4.

"What an experience for local wildcard Omar from Cartagena to play with the USA top player Chris Gordon," added Weithers. "The crowd favourite had his opportunities and I am sure was a learning experience for him."