Thursday, November 30, 2023

Commonwealth Games Countdown: Minnows from Mauritius meet reigning champions in first round

Nick Matthew and Nicol David favourites for gold in Glasgow
By HOWARD HARDING – Squash Mad Correspondent

Commonwealth Games champions Nicol David and Nick Matthew
Commonwealth Games champions Nicol David and Nick Matthew

A pair of players from the Indian Ocean island of Mauritius will provide the first challenge to gold medallists Nick Matthew and Nicol David in the draws for the 2014 Commonwealth Games Squash singles events next week in Glasgow, which are revealed today by the World Squash Federation.

Englishman Matthew, the reigning and three-time World Champion from Sheffield who struck gold in the Men’s Singles and Men’s Doubles in the 2010 Games in Delhi, will begin his title defence against Xavier Koenig, a 29-year-old Mauritian making his Games debut.

Nicol David, the women’s world No1 since August 2006 who is celebrating a record-equalling fifth successive appearance in the Games since 1998, lines up against Vanessa Florens, a 34-year-old from Mauritius who also competed in the 2006 Games in Melbourne.

Mauritius, with a population of just over 1 million, boasts only a handful of squash courts and neither Koenig nor Florens – the only two Mauritians competing in the squash events in Glasgow – have ever been world-ranked.

glasgowsquashTop seed Matthew, ranked two in the world and aged 33, is expected to meet Guernsey’s world No23 Chris Simpson, the No7 seed, in the quarter-finals before a predicted clash with England team-mate Peter Barker, the third seed and bronze medallist in 2010, in the semi-finals.

Second seed James Willstrop is Matthew’s anticipated opponent in a repeat of the 2010 all-English final. Willstrop, also a Yorkshireman, from Harrogate, begins his third Commonwealth Games campaign against Bermuda’s Nicholas Kyme, a 33-year-old Games veteran since 2002.

The 30-year-old Willstrop, a former world No.1 currently ranked six in the world, is drawn to meet Botswana Games debutant Alister Walker in the quarter-finals before a semi-final battle with former Pontefract club-mate Saurav Ghosal, the No4 seed from India.

In the women’s event, 30-year-old David, from Penang, is expected to renew her career-long rivalry with England’s No8 seed Jenny Duncalf in the quarter-finals in what would be a repeat of the Delhi final. Third-seeded New Zealander Joelle King, a double medallist in Delhi, is predicted to be David’s semi-final opponent.

The climax is expected to be a repeat of the last two British Open finals between David and Laura Massaro, the World Champion from England who is the event’s No2 seed. Massaro first meets Lynette Vai, a Games debutante from Papua New Guinea playing the biggest match of her life three days after her 16th birthday.

Awaiting Massaro in the quarter-finals should be Malaysian Low Wee Wern, the fifth seed, with fourth-seeded England team-mate Alison Waters her likely opponent in the semis.

Pools have also been set in the Men’s, Women’s and Mixed Doubles events – for details, see below.

Glasgow 2014 squash action takes place at the Scotstoun Sports Campus – with Singles from 24-28 July, followed by Doubles from 29 July to 3 August.

Men’s Singles: Round 64 draw

Willstrop and Ghosal
Willstrop and Ghosal

[1] Nick Matthew (ENG) v Xavier Koenig (MRI)
Christopher Binnie (JAM) v Ntholeng Lechesa (LES)
[9] Alan Clyne (SCO) v Kevin Hannaway (SVG)
Harinder Pal Sandhu (IND) v Michael Craig (NIR)
[7] Chris Simpson (GGY) v Julian Jervis (CAY)
Colin Ramasra (TTO) v Ravindu Laksiri (SRI)
[11] Ryan Cuskelly (AUS) v Kenneth Maina (KEN)
Shawn Delierre (CAN) v Moreaina Wei (PNG)
[3] Peter Barker (ENG) v Manda Chilambwe (ZAM)
Mahesh Mangaonkar (IND) v Hardeep Reel (KEN)
[10] Mohd Nafiizwan Adnan (MAS) v Robert Maycock (BER)
Peter Creed (WAL) v Ian Rukunya (UGA)
[5] Cameron Pilley (AUS) v Kale Wilson (TTO)
Sunil Seth (GUY) v Daniel Zammit-Lewis (MLT)
[16] Greg Lobban (SCO) v Bruce Burrowes (JAM)
Nick Taylor (JEY) v Winner of Mark Tewkesbury (GIB) v Othneil Bailey (SVG)
Micah Franklin (BER) v Winner of Michael Kawooya (UGA) v Schubert Maketu (PNG)
[12] Campbell Grayson (NZL) v Winner of Daniel Murphy (CAY) v Hartaj Bains (KEN)
Joe Chapman (IVB) v James Fayia (SLE)
[8] Ong Beng Hee (MAS) v Kelvin Ndhlovu (ZAM)
Joel Makin (WAL) v Alexander Arjoon (GUY)
[14] Steven Finitsis (AUS) v Mwinga Lengwe (ZAM)
Paul Coll (NZL) v Issa Kamara (SLE)
[4] Saurav Ghosal (IND) v Jules Snagg (SVG)
Bradley Hindle (MLT) v Scott Fitzgerald (WAL)
[15] Ivan Yuen (MAS) v Ridvan Prosper (SEY)
Cameron Stafford (CAY) v Christian Navas (GIB)
[6] Alister Walker (BOT) v Dilshan Gunawardena (SRI)
Kevin Moran (SCO) v Scott Gautier (JEY)
[13] Martin Knight (NZL) v Gihan Suwaris (SRI)
Anthony Brindle (GIB) v Madako Junior Suari (PNG)
[2] James Willstrop (ENG) v Nicholas Kyme (BER)

Women’s Singles: Round 32 draw

Laura Massaro and Low Wee Wern
Laura Massaro and Low Wee Wern

[1] Nicol David (MAS) v Vanessa Florens (MRI)
[16] Megan Craig (NZL) v Safina Madhani (KEN)
[8] Jenny Duncalf (ENG) v Amanda Landers-Murphy (NZL)
[14] Samantha Cornett (CAN) v Sarah Cardwell (AUS)
[3] Joelle King (NZL) v Winner of Sarah Taylor (JEY) v Violet Luchendo (KEN)
[12] Joshana Chinappa (IND) v Winner of Deon Saffery (WAL) v Kimberley Borg-Cauchi (MLT)
[7] Madeline Perry (NIR) v Winner of Dorothy Boyce (PNG) v Sharon Chimfwembe (ZAM)
[10] Kasey Brown (AUS) v Winner of Eva Alphonse (SEY) v Nadindhi Udangawa (SRI)
[15] Delia Arnold (MAS) v Winner of Khaaliqa Nimji (KEN) v Anaka Alankamony (IND)
[6] Dipika Pallikal (IND) v Winner of Charlotte Knaggs (TTO) v Naduni Gunawardane (SRI)
[9] Rachael Grinham (AUS) v Winner of Mihiliya Methsarani (SRI) v Colette Sultana (MLT)
[4] Alison Waters (ENG) v Eli Webb (PNG)
[13] Tesni Evans (WAL) v Kerrie Sample (TTO)
[5] Low Wee Wern (MAS) v Eilidh Bridgeman (CAY)
[11] Nicolette Fernandes (GUY) v Namweene Muchaile (ZAM)
[2] Laura Massaro (ENG) v Lynette Vai (PNG)


Men’s Doubles:
POOL 1: [1] Adrian Grant & Nick Matthew (ENG), [16] Alexander Arjoon & Sunil Seth (GUY), Bradley Hindle & Daniel Zammit-Lewis (MLT), Kerry Walsh & Moreaina Wei (PNG)
POOL 2: [2] David Palmer & Cameron Pilley (AUS), [15] Christopher Binnie & Bruce Burrowes (JAM), Scott Gautier & Nick Taylor (JEY)
POOL 3: [3} Daryl Selby & James Willstrop (ENG), [14] Mwinga Lengwe & Kelvin Ndhlovu (ZAM), Anthony Brindle & Christian Navas (GIB), Othneil Bailey & Jason Doyle (SVG)
POOL 4: [4] Alan Clyne & Harry Leitch (SCO), [13] Scott Fitzgerald & David Haley (WAL), Colin Ramasra & Kale Wilson (TTO)
POOL 5: [5] Campbell Grayson & Martin Knight (NZL), [12] Micah Franklin & Nicholas Kyme (BER), James Fayia & Issa Kamara (SLE)
POOL 6: [6] Zac Alexander & Ryan Cuskelly (AUS), [11] Lance Beddoes & Paul Coll (NZL), Dilshan Gunawardena & Gihan Suwaris (SRI), Mitchell Graham & Duncan Gray (NFK)
POOL 7: [7] Saurav Ghosal & Harinder Pal Sandhu (IND), [10] Peter Creed & David Evans (WAL), Malton Blair & Julian Jervis (CAY), Paul Kadoma & Michael Kawooya (UGA)
POOL 8: [8] Stuart Crawford & Greg Lobban (SCO), [9] Ong Beng Hee & Ivan Yuen (MAS), James Bentick & Kevin Hannaway (SVG), Schubert Maketu & Madako Junior Suari (PNG)

Women’s Doubles:
POOL 1: [1] Jenny Duncalf & Laura Massaro (ENG), [8] Tesni Evans & Deon Saffery (WAL), Lynette Vai & Eli Webb (PNG), Charlotte Knaggs & Kerrie Sample (TTO)
POOL 2: [1] Kasey Brown & Rachael Grinham (AUS), [7] Lisa Camilleri & Donna Urquhart (AUS), Delia Arnold & Vanessa Raj (MAS), Kimberley Borg-Cauchi & Colette Sultana (MLT)
POOL 3: [3] Emma Beddoes & Alison Waters (ENG), [6] Joelle King & Amanda Landers-Murphy (NZL), Alex Clark & Frania Gillen-Buchert (SCO), Dorothy Boyce & Sheila Morove (PNG)
POOL 4: [4] Nicol David & Low Wee Wern (MAS), [5] Joshana Chinappa & Dipika Pallikal (IND), Megan Craig & Kylie Lindsay (NZL), Mihiliya Methsarani & Nadindhi Udangawa (SRI)

Mixed Doubles:
POOL 1: [1] Kasey Brown & Cameron Pilley (AUS); [16] Rachel Arnold & Valentino Bon Jovi Bong (MAS), Nicolette Fernandes & Alexander Arjoon (GUY)
POOL 2: [2] Joelle King & Martin Knight (NZL); [15] Alex Clark & Kevin Moran (SCO), Sarah Taylor & Nick Taylor (JEY)
POOL 3: [3] Rachael Grinham & David Palmer (AUS), [14] Madeline Perry & Michael Craig (NIR), Marlene West & Cameron Stafford (CAY), Sharon Chimfwembe & Manda Chilambwe (ZAM)
POOL 4: [4] Alison Waters & Peter Barker (ENG), [13] Tesni Evans & Peter Creed (WAL), Charlotte Knaggs & Colin Ramasra (TTO), Colette Sultana & Daniel Zammit-Lewis (MLT)
POOL 5: [5] Dipika Pallikal & Saurav Ghosal (IND), [12] Samantha Cornett & Shawn Delierre (CAN), Naduni Gunawardane & Ravindu Laksiri (SRI)
POOL 6: [6] Sarah Kippax & Daryl Selby (ENG), [11] Deon Saffery & David Evans (WAL), Kerrie Sample & Kale Wilson (TTO), Vanessa Florens & Xavier Koenig (MRI)
POOL 7: [7] Amanda Landers-Murphy & Paul Coll (NZL), [10] Joshana Chinappa & Harinder Pal Sandhu (IND), Eli Webb & Schubert Maketu (PNG)
POOL 8: [8] Delia Arnold & Mohd Nafiizwan Adnan (MAS), [9] Frania Gillen-Buchert & Alan Clyne (SCO), Eilidh Bridgeman & Daniel Murphy (CAY), Lynette Vai & Madako Junior Suari (PNG)/span>

Pictures from Squash Mad archive


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