daily reports from St George's
Thu 22-Oct, Day FOUR, Quarters:
 Daryl Selby
(Eng) 3-1 [Q] George Parker (Eng)
11-6, 14-12, 11-5 (68m)
 Lucas Serme (Fra) 3-0 Charles
11-6, 11-2 (33m)
 Tom Richards (Eng) 3-2 Jens
3-11, 7-11, 11-7, 11-7, 11-1 (52m)
 Chris Simpson (Eng) 3-2 [Q]
Kristian Frost (Den)
5-11, 11-2, 12-14, 11-4, 11-4 (82m)
Top seeds through to semis at St George's
seed Daryl Selby was the first player to reach the semis
of the inaugural CLIC Sargent PSA Classic as he got the better
of qualifier George Parker in four games that took over an hour
to complete, the teenager putting up a great fight before
Selby's experience told in the end.
the semis he'll play fourth seeded Frenchman Lucas Serme,
who looked very sharp as he breezed past Charles Sharpes in just
over half an hour.
upset looked on the cards as Jens Schoor took a two lead over
third seed Tom Richards, but the St George's man struck
back and completed the comeback in style 11-1 in the fifth.
seed Chris Simpson also needed the full five games to get
past determined Kristian Frost, falling behind twice before
easing through the final two games against a tiring opponent.
Photo & Video Galleries
Selby (Eng) 3-1 [Q] George Parker
(Eng) 12-14, 11-6, 14-12, (68m)
MATCH OF THE TOURNAMENT
you look at the Players info sheet, kindly offered to us by
Squash Stats Bible SquashInfo.com, you will see that Daryl
was the top of the list, while George was the bottom! As in,
George could not have done worse in terms of bad luck, bless
I have mentioned it already, the fact I’ve been extremely
impressed by some of the young English players I’ve seen
this week, and in particular by George, who I discovered on
again, one has to pinch oneself to not forget the boy is
only nineteen. 19 going on 30 if you ask me. Not only
physically, he is a superb young man who could chose a
career as a model instead of a squash pro. But also by his
maturity. I’m told he was a bit of a cheeky chatty bordering
nasty on court. Well, if that’s the case, he has had a
complete change of personality, cause he was a perfect
gentleman this week, with only one racquet flying when he
qualified on Tuesday…
What struck me the most was that when I was analysing his
squash at the start of the match with Daryl, like he should
volley more, take the ball a bit earlier, and go for his
backhand volley drop shots winners more, well, he basically
did just that as the match progressed, as if he relaxed, or
just inspired himself from playing with a top boy, learning
from Daryl as he went along: proof of a “sponge” ability
that is the sign of possible greatness.
counted, and recounted my notes, but I could only find one
decision, 9/9 in the 3rd, a no let to Daryl. I have to
stress that it’s also due to the extreme respect Daryl
imposed on the match, as the Essex Man chose several times
to play the ball – to his detriment sometimes – instead of
asking for lets, allowing a fluid and flowing squash to
develop, a truly and utterly joy to watch.
Whether Ben Coleman yesterday, or George today, it was
obvious that the young English players have not only respect
but total admiration for the former UK National Champion,
and it really produced some very hard fought battles, but in
the fairest of attitude/atmosphere. And that’s the squash I
game was a superb start for Daryl, 4/0, only to see George
score the following 5 points. Daryl again takes the lead,
long rallies mid pace, with a lot of diagonals being run and
a good variation on the front wall from both players, 9/5
Daryl, but again George scores 5 points to get his first
game ball, 10/9. Daryl gets the tiebreak, even a game ball
himself, but Georges clinches the 22m first game on his
third attempt, 14/12.
The second is “quickly” dominated by Daryl, 11/6, but again
in the third, we have a huge battle that will last 23
minutes, again a superb start from Daryl, 5/0, 6/3, 7/4, but
George, who looked extremely tired at the start of that
game, suddenly finds his second wind, 8/8, 9/9, again game
this time, errors start creeping in – he was pretty much
immaculate up to that stage – and he’ll finally bow 14/12.
That’s the game he needed, both physically and mentally.
Daryl dominates the 4th completely, 8/2, to take the game
and match 11/5.
But what a beautiful battle, fair and intense, only one
advice, have a look on the SquashTV replay and like me,
you’ll discover a young player that could definitely be the
new face of English Squash in the coming months/years.
didn’t surprise me, no. I have been watching him improve
over the years, as we play for the same PSL team. His
attitude tonight was perfect, like Ben yesterday, a lot of
respect on the court, and like I say often, when those boys
concentrate on playing squash only, they show how good their
squash can be.
I thought I played well, I let myself down in the 1st game,
I was up 9/5, that’s not good enough, and I could have made
my life easier. Of course we all want a 3/0. But it’s all
credit to him and how well he can play.
may feel his touch at the front let him down a bit today,
but then again, mine was not great either!
I think the court conditions were different from yesterday,
the ball was not dying at the back like it did yesterday, my
length was good, but I couldn’t find that dying length like
I did yesterday.
He is 19, he is one of our best prospects, he can play top
25, he proved it tonight, it’s all a question of believing
in himself, like a few other players, they can challenge the
Egyptians, it’s all a question of belief…
I really enjoyed playing this match, I really did, onwards
now to tomorrow…
Serme (Fra) 3-0 Charles Sharpes
(Eng) 11-2, 11-6, 11-2 (33m)
THE HURRY MATE??
that was a fast affair indeed! 33 minutes, and I feel that
somebody was taking a flight or felt that they would have to
pay for the use of the court, and wanted to stay on there as
little as possible!
Lucas and Charles are the same age, 23, although there is a
bit of a ranking gap, 43 for Lucas (Best was 40) and 61 for
Charles (best was 59).
first game was over in a flash, with Charles just not
touching base really, 4/0, 8/1, 11/2 in a few minutes!
Extremely fast pace, very accurate and attacking squash,
with Charles making 3 errors in the first 4 points, a total
of 4 in the game.
The second, Charles managed to slow down the pace a bit,
lobbing the ball very well. That made a big difference
really, much closer game, 1/1, 2/2, 3/3, 5/5, some great
rallies and good shot variations for the English boy.
again a couple of tins for Charles who was, like Lucas
mentioned, probably tired as he was coming from the
qualifying and a hard match yesterday.
Another game with 4 tins, but to Charles' credit, he kept
trying and running, with an excellent attitude, respect to
both his opponent and the officials. The third, Charles
never showed up, 6/0, 9/1, 11/2.
was tired, I could see how laboured his movement to the
front was at times, when we played before, although I always
won, he would never let go and make me work very hard
So I used it to my advantage. For once, I was not afraid to
go to the front, and that really freed me.
I have been playing against Charles since the juniors, so I
know how well he can play and also that I needed to stay
focused at all times, not getting involved with the ref and
accepting to replay the point.
Richards (Eng) 3-2 Jens Schoor
3-11, 7-11, 11-7, 11-7, 11-1 (52m)
JENS ON FIRE, BUT THEN TOM HAD THE
the first two games, Jens just couldn’t put a foot wrong. He
found some amazing attacking shots, his length was
immaculate, he was moving so well, and flying all over the
court, 11/3 in the first, not an unforced error from either
second again, was dominated by the German, 3/0, 7/2,
although Jens made a few mistakes (5), he still managed to
stay ahead, 8/5, 9/6 to take the game 7/11, Tom haven’t done
an error yet though, but getting frustrated with the
decisions that don’t seem to go the way he would like them
But I guess the extremely fast pace Tom imposed finally paid
dividends, as he was able to step in front of his opponent
finally from the 3rd game on.
close 3rd still, 3/3, 4/4, 6/6, but from that point on, Tom
in control, with Jens maybe deciding to rest a bit for the
The first is the crucial one/turning point. Excellent start
from a rested Jens, 4/1, but Tom is now mentally in charge,
and believing in his game again, maybe feeling the German is
starting to suffer a bit physically, not having as much time
as previously to adjust his shots.
He comes back to 4/4, 6/6, 7/7. And that’s the turning point
really, with Jens who’ll score only one more point for the
rest of the match. Crowd very pleased – Tom plays for PSL
here – and Tom’s mum delighted and relieved …
had a few traffic problem I thought in the middle of the
court in the first two games…
My game plan was to make it tough for him at the beginning,
hoping he would get tired, and I should stop doing that,
because when I do, I just get negative, and only play the
ball to the back, just deep. His backhand really worked well
tonight, he picked me off a few times.
losing the first two games, I didn’t panic, I always thought
I could win, I have come back from 2/0 a few times recently,
and if of course I’d rather be 2/0 up, 11 points is a long
way for a lower ranked player sometimes.
So, like Danny was saying, I just relaxed a bit and played a
bit more positive, change my mentality.
It’s not just a question of attacking at the front, but just
being more positive with my length, with my whole game
really. And that’s when I tend to play my best stuff.
Simpson (Eng) 3-2 [Q] Kristian
5-11, 11-2, 12-14, 11-4, 11-4 (82m)
I must say this event has been rather refreshing. First of
all, because apart from the little hiccup of the first days
with internet, the tournament organisation has been a dream
and quite surreal when you think it’s only a $25k.
mostly because the matches have been extremely open, with
some huge battles, with underdogs really making the “old
guard” suffer to get to the next round.
And Kristian has been one of those.
On his own admission, Chris Simpson was never comfortable
tonight. Kristian put him through the mill, and it’s only in
the 5th, after a hard battle, that we saw the Danish put
knee on the floor and bow to Chris' shot variation.
Chris really, really suffered tonight. First game in
particular, Chris just didn’t see what the heck was hitting
him! Kristian led 8/2 for crying out loud, and if you think
that the Englishman is WR28 while the Dane is 65, you can
realise how that fact was not expected! Chris finally got a
few points, to only lose 11/5, and with the momentum, truly
walked through the second, 11/2.
after speaking to John Williams on the phone, his coach
based in Switzerland, Kristian was back in the groove of his
“new squash”, a more attacking game, powerful squash that
really causes problems to his opponents. The third was close
the whole way, after a 3/0 start from the Danish. 3/3, 4/4.
Chris takes a slight advantage, 2 points, but again, 8/8,
9/9, 10/10, 11/11, 121/12, with Chris having one chance to
take the game while Kristian finally closed it on his third,
fourth is like the 2nd, not much impact from the Dane in
that one, 11/4 Chris, but the 5th started very well for him,
3/0! But that was his swan song, he would only score one
more point after that, having not much energy left in the
legs with all the squash he had played since Monday.
Still, a superb effort, and an bleeping entertaining and
fair game, with very few discussions from Kristian, a
massive, massive, massive improvement for this young player,
who has worked extremely hard to change not only his squash,
but also his behaviour on court. A+ in both categories. Well
done young man.
In the first
game, I didn’t feel the ball very well to start with, but to
be honest, he surprised me. He surprised me a lot. And the
worst of it all was that I knew he changed his game, I saw
him play against Rafa, and I was expecting to play the way
he did. But still, I just couldn’t react fast enough.
didn’t enjoy it at all. I really didn’t. I didn’t have the
control of the ball at all. I’m not sure it’s because it was
one of those days… Yesterday, I felt really well, and in
control, last week too while I was training. But today… It
shows it’s really down to your opponent.
You know, generally, I win the length battle. But today, he
won the length battle in the 1st and in the 3rd. And that
snapped my confidence completely. Not just about the back of
the court game, but for my boasts, my drop shots, I thought,
‘how can you hit a winner if you can’t hit a length’.
fifth, the fact he gets tired, is probably partly because he
had to qualify. I know, I’ve been there hundreds of times
and I’m so glad I worked so hard and that I don’t have to
qualify anymore. Because it may be only 2%, but those 2%
make a big difference.
And it’s also partly because in the 4th and in the 5th, I
controlled my emotions better, and was able to choose better
As for tomorrow against Tom, I would have liked to be a bit
fresher, but then again, he had some pretty heavy matches
too! Every time we play with Tom since we are that high,
it’s always been 3/2, or it feels like it! It’s always very
hard battles, but we know it’s going to be a fair game,
generally a quite enjoyable game, and hopefully that will be
the case tomorrow.