Shaun Le Roux (Rsa)
11/8, 14/12, 11/6 (50m)  Ryan Cuskelly (Aus)
Captures Toronto Cup
disappointing climax to the inaugural Squash Revolution Toronto Cup in
Canada, home hero Shahier Razik was forced to retire injure midway
through the second game to give the title of the PSA World Tour Challenger 15
event to Australia's Ryan Cuskelly.
Top seed Razik
had been hampered by a calf injury before Wednesday's semi-final, but was able
to use his experience and intimate knowledge of the courts at the Toronto
Lawn Tennis Club to manoeuvre his way through.
undoubtedly aware of Razik's impeded movement and made the opening rallies long
and testing," reported event spokesman Mike McCue. "The Canadian competed
well but the Aussie always had a lead and finished the first game with a
comfortable 11-5 margin.
raced out to a commanding lead in the second as Razik's movement became visibly
pained. A three-minute injury break was not enough time to treat the problem,
and although Shahier played three more rallies, the concession handshake was now
It was an
additionally sad conclusion as Razik, the world No30 from Toronto, was the
driving force behind this new PSA World Tour event.
The title is
the eighth of New York-based Cuskelly's career - but his second in a row in
"A big thanks
to Squash Revolution for sponsoring the tournament, Shahier for taking care of
logistics, and the hosting clubs/pros for welcoming the event into their clubs,"
added McCue. "This was a unique event on the PSA Tour, with a total of nine
clubs hosting matches throughout the week.
exposed substantially more fans to the excitement of pro squash than most
events. It was the first time many people have seen such high-level action. A
city with a diverse squash community like Toronto was an appropriate host for
such an event. Hopefully these clubs have been inspired to host events of their
Into Toronto Semis
Ryan Cuskelly raced into the semi-finals of the Squash Revolution Toronto
Cup after despatching Pakistani qualifier Farhan Zaman in the
quickest quarter-final in the inaugural PSA World Tour Challenger 15
squash event in Toronto, Canada.
It was at the
National Squash Academy that Cuskelly, the No2 seed from New South Wales,
beat Zaman - the only qualifier to make the last eight - 11-9, 11-3, 11-1 in 35
endeared himself to the NSA crowd all week with his exciting shot making and
easy going personality, but today most certainly met his match," explained club
spokesman Jamie Nicholls. "Cuskelly, a left hander coming into his prime
on the tour, took the first few rallies to adjust to the lively NSA courts
before starting to show his class with inch perfect dying length, subtle but
effective holds and outstanding movement.
Farhan mounted a spirited comeback with an offensive assault on Cuskelly,
attacking early and often in every rally mixed in with some nice counters,
brought it all the way back to 9-9. However, with a stroke and yet another dying
length into the nick on the left side, Cuskelly weathered the storm 11-9 to go
point on, the Aussie completely dominated this match putting on a clinic of
positional squash with sensational volleying, dying length, and JP-esque hold
and flicks from the front. He cruised to an easy 11-3 2nd game and closed the
match out with a nearly flawless 11-1 third game."
York-based world No34 now faces New Zealander Campbell Grayson for a
place in the final. The world No45 from Auckland became the only unseeded player
to make the last semis after defeating Australian Matthew Karwalski 11-6,
10-12, 11-9, 11-9 in 62 minutes.
interest in the event will now be led single-handedly by top seed Shahier
Razik, the world No30 from Toronto and driving force behind this new PSA
Tour event. In an all-Canadian clash, Razik defeated Calgary-based Andrew
Schnell 11-7, 11-4, 11-6.
"It was a
battle between youth and experience," reported Andrew Thompson from the
Toronto Lawn Tennis Club. "Razik was the heavy favourite going into the
match as the number one seed playing on his home court in front of a partisan
crowd. The match started with both players finding their rhythm with some good
working shots to the front court. The long rallies in the first half of the game
favoured Razik as Schnell grew impatient in the later stages of each game,
finding the tin when he least needed it.
out to an early lead in the second and never looked back, taking the game 11-4
with little sustained resistance from the youngster. The third game was much
closer than the score line would indicate as every rally was long and physical.
In the end, much to the home club crowd's delight, Razik's experience prevailed,
but Schnell showed that he has a bright future in squash."
34-year-old six-time Canadian national champion, now faces third seed Mohd
Nafiizwan Adnan after the Malaysian beat Germany's Raphael Kandra
11-9, 5-11, 12-10, 11-5.
Alexander In Toronto Upset
Campbell Grayson claimed an unexpected place in the quarter-finals of the
Squash Revolution Toronto Cup after ousting fourth-seeded Australian
Zac Alexander in the opening round of the inaugural PSA World Tour
Challenger 15 event in Toronto, Canada.
In fact, only
a single ranking position separates the pair, but the 26-year-old from Auckland
laid claim to a higher ranking than the 45th place he currently holds by beating
world no44 Alexander 11-9, 8-11, 11-3, 11-6 in 61 minutes.
began with some cagey rallies as both players adjusted to the slow court and
ball," said a spokesman for the event. "After two even games, Zac began showing
signs that he is still not back to 100% after a hip injury and Grayson took a
2/1 lead with some comfort.
"Inside of two
minutes into the fourth, the Kiwi was up 6-2; Alexander staged a brief comeback
on the heels of some winners seen more often on a hardball doubles court, but
Grayson still looked the likely winner and closed out the match winning five
consecutive points. The sold out gallery were grateful to have two great
exponents of clean play grace the courts."
qualifier Farhan Zaman also produced a notable upset at the National
Squash Academy by overcoming higher-ranked Mexican Arturo Salazar
15-13, 11-7, 11-8 in just 27 minutes.
been at the NSA all week training and with his infectious smile and easy going
personality was the fan favorite going in," said the Academy's Jamie Nicholls.
"Along with compatriot and training partner Danish Atlas Khan, the
Pakistani duo had been mixing in with our Canadian National team and were seen
sparring earlier in the week with NSA owner and former world champion
Jonathon Power (for the record, JP rarely loses on his home courts and this
week was no exception).
good wins in qualifying Zaman was looking in fine form for his match with
Arturo, who had only arrived the day before looking a bit travel weary. The
first game was back and forth with some sublime winners and head scratching
errors from the Pakistani who was certainly dictating the pace with his quick
movement and hard hitting length mixed in with deft touch.
several game balls with Arturo the steadier of the two but clearly missing the
physical component needed to impose his game on Zaman. A quick stroke and
outstanding winner from Farhan to take the first game 15-13 would prove to be
critical for the match. In both game two and three, Farhan jumped out to early
leads as Salazar continued to look sluggish and then let the Mexican back in the
game with some over exuberant unforced errors before steadying up to complete
the tournament's first upset and advance to the quarter-finals."
the 21-year-old world No79 from Calgary, ensured Canadian presence in the
semi-finals when he upset England's Robbie Temple, ranked 13 places
higher, 11-8, 11-7, 11-9.
now face top seed Shahier Razik, the world No30 from Toronto and driving
force behind this new PSA Tour event. Razik defeated English qualifier Jaymie
Haycocks 11-5, 11-4, 11-6 in 48 minutes.
"With a sold
out crowd at the famous Parkview Bar court, they all anxiously awaited the top
seed Shahier Razik to show us what he could do," reported Craig Schele.
"Jaymie got to see all of the court with Razik digging out great drops from the
front corner and sending lob after lob into either back corner."