En Bref #1
Cuskelly (Aus) bt Joey Barrington (Eng)
11/5, 11/7, 11/5 (48m)
winning much at the moment, am I…
First time ever I played him, can’t even
remember practicing with him…
He played well, he’s got an aggressive type
of squash, typically Australian, excellent
attacker. He’s got a lot of confidence at
the moment, with Zac Alexander and Rodney
Martin, they are working very hard….
He is coming into a good time in his career,
he is a decent lad….
win, but still it was pretty tough.
I tried to be aggressive from the start, and
keep attacking, favouring my short game, to
make sure we wouldn’t get into long rallies
that he dwells on, and not giving him a
chance to get in the match.
I’m pretty happy with the way I felt on
there, and glad to see that the hard work we
are doing with my coach Rodney Martin is
starting to pay off.
Looking forward to the next round, and
hoping that I’ll keep going in this
(Esp) bt Julian Illingworth (Usa)
9/11, 11/3 (59m)
heard that Julian had been injured, but I
tried and did my best to put it out of my
head. He is a very technical player, he is
top 30, so you know what to expect.
In the first two games, I was in control, I
was consistent, and made only one error
during those 2 games. But in the third, he
played better, I relaxed a bit, played a few
loose shots and gave him the control of the
middle, plus a few tins… Lost that one 11/9.
In the 4th, I made sure I remembered the way
I played in the first 2 games, I was more
patient, and also lengthen the rallies, to
make him do more work.. And it worked, but I
really had to play out of my skin to win
I felt pretty good on there, it’s the first
tournament in a couple of tournaments where
I feel fine physically, nice to play real
squash instead of ghosting shots and do
I knew he won last week, and that he was
obviously playing well, so I knew it was
never going to be easy.
Can’t wait to go to HK, I’m first qualifier,
so I’m hoping that one of those guys will
have enough after this tournament and let me
Mosaad (Egy) bt
[Q] Omar Abdel Meguid (Egy)
14/12, 12/10, 9/11, 11/9 (59m)
both of us tried to play a good game of
squash. It was not perfect, but it was not
It was the first time ever we were playing
on the PSA circuit. Last time we played was
for the British Junior Open U17, and I was a
very close 3/2. Today was no different.
Yesterday, he finished late, and I thought
he might be tired, and I made the error of
wanting to close the rallies too quickly,
volleyed too much and made far too many
His short game was really good today, and he
really contained me a lot. I did struggle a
bit in the 2nd and 4th, but I’m happy with
the fact that in the 1st, 2nd and 4th, I was
down and mentally was strong enough to come
back every time….
Coppinger (Rsa) bt Chris Simpson (Eng)
11/1, 12/10, 11/8 (46m)
length was pretty good I thought, and more
importantly, I was consistent throughout the
Last time we played, it was the same, in the
first game, 11/1, and he went on to win the
match 3/1! He really switched on after the
So today, when he got up in the second, I
really didn’t want a repeat of the last
match… We always have tough matches, today I
just had a better day…
Pilley (Aus) bt
[Q] Raphael Kandra (Ger) 11/2, 11/3, 11/8 (32m)
felt pretty good today, I played two finals
of the Dutch open on that court, and lost
only 1 match on 9, so, I know the court, I
know the bounces, I’m home on that court!
Plus, I lived two years in Holland, and
getting that vocal support is really a great
feeling, it’s a bit home away from home…
We got a few quick balls, I tried and
changed it, but it was as bad as the
previous one, so we kept it, but I think I
got used to it much quicker than he did.
It was my first time playing Rafa, but I
picked up a few things from the warm up,
technical things, and I think that in the
first two games, he got frustrated not to
score many points. But all credit to him, he
kept digging in and digging in the third
game, just couldn’t shake him off!!!!
Palmer (Aus) bt Alan Clyne (Sco)
11/6, 6/11, 4/11, 11/8 (90m)
TOUGH DAY FOR THE
Already I told you that I was a bit wary
about this tournament, so many matches, and
so little time to give the respect they
deserve to each and every one of them.
then, when my two Old Mates decide to go for
90m match for David, up 2/0 up finally
winning 11/8 in the 5th after being down
2/4, or Thierry leading 2/1 to finally
clinch the last two rallies on strokes 15/13
in the 5th in 98m, that DOESN’T HELP people.
In other word, lost the plot completely for
the other matches, schedule went out of the
window, drowning completely….
David, well, was controlling the match, and
poor Alan didn’t stay too long on the T for
the first two games, being made to do an
awful lot of work on there, and it really
looked like a simple 3/0.
But that was not knowing the determination
and grit of the Scot who in the 3rd, dug in,
slow down the pace and made the rallies
longer, and longer and longer. David made a
few impatience errors, and Alan took the
lead, 8/5 then 9/6, greatly helped by three
more unforced errors from the Marine. The
Scot is back right in.
The 4th is just all about Alan who plays
perfect squash from the start,
counterattacking ever short ball, making the
Australian legs feel very heavy indeed, and
making him look very tired indeed.
to be honest, my money was on the Scott in
the 5th. He was playing the match of his
life and raised his game even more in that
decider. The Australian was dead, running of
fumes, taking more and more times to recover
between points. Each rally won or lost got a
reaction from them, celebrating with a
closed fist, or shouting in despair and
I didn’t think that David had anymore left
in the tank, I know him, he was really
really struggling on there, but as his wife
Mel said, with a bit of emotion, “He is a
fighter”. That he was. And he finally took
it. What a match.
What to say? That Mr Alan Clyne proved today
that no, he is not only a long distance
runner, that he can attack, counter attack,
push, build rallies, and threaten the top 10
guys. And that Mr David Palmer lives to see
It was always going to
be tough, we played last week in Qatar on
the glass court, it was always going to be
to my advantage, while here, it’s warm, on a
bouncy traditional court, it was always to
be to his advantage…
the start, I struggled to see the ball on
the backhand wall [Glass], and when you
don’t know where the ball is going to, your
natural instinct is to stand at the back of
the court more than you would normally do,
and it caused me some troubles because he
counter attacked very well today.
I thought I started well, was in control,
but in the middle of the 3rd, he stepped his
game up, and I didn’t quite respond, we had
some very hard rallies, and he managed to
take that one. In the fourth, I just had to
clear my head to prepare for the 5th.
I knew that in the 5th, if I could stay
reasonably close at the end, I had the shots
and the experience to close it out. It’s
always been my strength in my career, when
it was getting close, to find the pace and
the shots to finish the match off… So I knew
I could do it again. And I’m glad that I
finally forced a few mistakes out of him….
Nice to have a day off tomorrow, I’ll be
fine physically, I needed a match to get
going. But playing Ryan won’t be easy,
should be an interesting match, he is
playing well, and he’s got nothing to lose…
Lincou (Fra) bt [Q] Shawn Delierre (Can)
13/11, 4/11, 11/3,
4/11, 15/13 (98m)
Thierry versus Shawn.
the first game, I had the feeling this match
had the sign 5 setter written all over it.
Why? Because Thierry was not that sharp at
the front, although he was not moving too
bad, while Shawn was – like Alan – playing
out of his skin, finding some superb length
Lincou style that glued to the wall,
preventing the Frenchman to adjust his short
And although Thierry took the first game, I
knew that the battle was only commencing…
The second, the Frenchman just didn’t come
out of the changing rooms. Completely fooled
by the radical change of tactic from the
clever Canadian, who went from slow pace up
and down the wall clinging to the wall to
attacking like a lunatic, varying the angle,
pace and choice of shots. It was a Delierre
festival on there…
Thierry adapt, and it was Shawn now not to
come on court, the Frenchman closing it down
in 6m, 11/3. And about the same in reverse
in the 4th, 11 minutes, 11/4 for Shawn.
Needless to say that betting on the winner
was a bit of Mystery Meg challenge, although
the vision became clearer when our Canadian,
now playing sublime squash was flying 5/0,
The rallies became longer and longer, more
and more physical, as circulation on the
left side of the court became more and more
virile, not to say rugby like! The crowd
supporting the Frenchman, was very loud and
booing the refs at some points, or clapping
their decisions, it was a bit of a mad house
of there to be honest…
Lincou, playing with the nerves of his
support camp, came back to 7/7. Then we
moved to 8/8. 9/9. Match ball Lincou, 10/9,
saved on a stroke. 10/10. Match ball Shawn
after a gigantic rally where he threw
himself on the floor in vain. 11/11. Another
match ball for the Canadian, 12/11, saved
with a drive that die on the backwall, no
Match ball Lincou 13/12. No let. 13/13.
Stroke. Third match ball for the French,
14/13.Three let decisions for Shawn and
another stroke. Game, set and match, 15/13
Never in doubt.
pretty happy with the way I played today, I
played soft when I had to, I played hard
when it was needed, I kept on switching from
one to the other.
It’s weird, some games, there was no battle
at all, just win easy, and the first and the
last one, just fight till the end, pushing,
leaving everything on there….
In the last game, I think I got some no lets
that were really harsh, and losing the match
on two decisions, also, pretty tough that it
had to come down to that to win or lose a
match, but I guess I could have lost before
I think I raised my game today, I certainly
played well, even if so many times during
the match I saw myself going home..
really saw myself going home today….
For about three days, I have a little niggle
on the left hamstring, nothing enough to
prevent me from playing, but enough to make
me struggle a bit mentally and hold my
movement a bit.
Conditions today were pretty difficult, a
hot court, a flying ball, some trouble to
see the ball on the backhand side wall, and
a tricky match against a player that has
nothing to lose and plays his game superbly,
plenty of little crosscourts, and little
boast that we old men really hate. He just
played great squash on there.
And against those players, if you lack a bit
of intensity – like I did today – they make
you visit the four corners…. End result, a
permanent discomfort on there …
Matthew (Eng) bt [Q] Stephane Galifi
11/1, 11/3 (35m)
felt really threatened in the first game
I only got to practice on court this morning
as the qualifiers were playing on it for the
two past days. So I did struggle a bit on
the backhand, and it spoiled my tempo a
Plus, a few little elements like, being the
first match of the world open, then, last
time I was in a tournament, didn’t go that
well, and it’s better to have a good memory
when you get on court, plus title holder,
and to be honest, when I found myself 8/5
down in the first, I thought, “that’s NOT
good!!!! Especially as we had two near
After Qatar, I worked on my movement
intensity, which means to higher the pace, I
move faster instead of just hitting faster.
And that’s what I did.
He had the advantage of having played
already on those courts, that was an
advantage to start with, but when it got to
the end of the match, he had the
disadvantage to have had two hard matches
the two previous days, and the hard work I
put paid dividends in the end…
Now I’m used to the court, it will get
better next time I go on court…
Good start, and after that, the “Nick
Machine”… He never dropped the pace and I
really suffered on there today….
But really happy with my tournament, and
especially to come back here in Rotterdam, I
played for their team and there was a real
home feel for me this week…
(Egy) bt Tom Richards (Eng)
11/9, 8/11, 11/1, 11/5 (53m)
from the second game where he played so
well, and I lost a bit of patience and
concentration, I’m happy with my unforced
errors count, which I kept very low.
It’s nice to take my revenge from the US
Open where he beat me three weeks ago. I had
a very long game with Robbie Temple, won 3/2
and finished at 9pm, and was first one on
court, so it was a bit tough physically.
Today, I was much fresher…
I really like this court, the drives stick
to the wall, and it suits my game to a T…
So much went wrong….
I just said to Peter [Genever, his coach]
that I didn’t do myself any justice today.
The quality was not good enough, he was
dictating everything, which is very
disappointing in such an important event as
the World Open.