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23/10/2006
LEINSTER OPEN
 

Harford Nets Debut Tour Title At Leinster Open

Tournament
Leinster Squash Open,
Dublin, Ireland

Quarter-finals:
[1] Mohd Ali Anwar Reda (EGY) bt [Q] Jason Barry (RSA) 11-5, 11-8, 11-7
[4] Jonathan Harford (ENG) bt John Rooney (IRL) 11-3, 11-6, 11-10 (3-1)
[Q] Derek Ryan (IRL) bt [Q] Stuart Crawford (SCO) 11-3, 6-11, 4-11, 11-9, 11-7 (85m)
[2] Luca Mastrostefano (ITA) bt Yann Perrin (FRA) 11-8, 3-11, 11-6, 11-5

Semi-finals:
[4] Jonathan Harford (ENG) bt [1] Mohd Ali Anwar Reda (EGY) 11-7, 11-8, 11-6
[2] Luca Mastrostefano (ITA) bt [Q] Derek Ryan (IRL) 11-6, 10-11 (0-2), 11-4, 11-3

Final:
[4] Jonathan Harford (ENG) bt [2] Luca Mastrostefano (ITA) 11-10 (4-2), 11-7, 4-11, 11-1

Harford Nets Debut Tour Title At Leinster Open

England's Jonathan Harford produced a masterful performance at the inaugural Leinster Squash Open in Ireland when he took out the event's top two seeds to claim the title his first on the PSA Tour - at the Fitzwilliam Club in Dublin.

Harford, the fourth seed from Gloucestershire, made his breakthrough in the event's semi-finals when he despatched top-seeded Egyptian Mohd Ali Anwar Reda 11-7, 11-8, 11-6.

The first game of the final against Italy's second seed Luca Mastrostefano was a thriller, with a number of pulsating rallies and precision play from both players leading to a tie-break which the Englishman eventually took 14-12.

Harford always looked in control in the second, and played precision shots to outsmart his opponent before taking the game. However the Italian fought back in the third, capitalising on some unforced errors to win the game and reduce the deficit.

From then on, Harford was always in control, and began to play exhibition stuff, hitting fine nicks with brilliant technique. In the end it was 11-10 (4-2), 11-7, 4-11, 11-1 to the 23-year-old and third time lucky for Harford, after winning his first title in his third PSA final.

An earlier notable and popular success was achieved by local hero Derek Ryan, the eight-times Irish champion now living back in the city of his birth after qualifying as a physiotherapist.

The 36-year-old, playing in his first PSA Tour event for more than two years, battled through the qualifiers before taking out the Czech Republic No1 and third seed Jan Koukal in the first round.

The 2005 British O35 champion made it to the semi-finals before finally bowing out in four games to Mastrostefano.