Wednesday, September 27, 2023

Gina Kennedy hits top Gear as she powers to her 10th title of 2021 in just 20 minutes

Emyr Evans falls to Sebastian Bonmalais in Scottish Open men’s final
By STEVE CUBBINS, Squash Mad Correspondent

Georgina Kennedy and Sebastian Bonmalais are the 22021 Springfield Scottish Squash Open champions after they completed straight games victories over Grace Gear and Emyr Evans in today’s finals at Inverness Tennis and Squash Club in the Scottish Highlands.

Fourth seed Kennedy claimed the title with a dominant performance in the all-English women’s final, seizing the initiative immediately as she stormed to an 11-0 scoreline in the first game.

Gear, the eighth seed, had dug out some gritty victories on the way to the biggest final of her career, including a win over No.3 seed Marie Stephan in the quarter-finals.

But Kennedy’s pace, court coverage and relentless attacking proved too much – as it has for so many opponents in her impressive run of form since returning from her college studies in the US.

Gear got more into the match in the next two games, but it wasn’t enough as Kent star Kennedy completed the victory 11-0, 11-3, 11-3 to claim her tenth title of 2021.

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Kennedy said: “It feels really good. I’ve been excited for this tournament for a while.

“I’ve heard such great things about Inverness and this club, and this is probably the best Challenger event I’ve played since tournaments started back up. I’m really happy to win this event, and I’d love to come back if it’s on next year!”

She added: “I’m really happy with my tournament, especially today. Grace has had such a good tournament, knocking out all the seeds. She’s so dangerous that if you give her any sort of chance she can put the ball away as well as anyone. I really had to focus on my targets and not let up. Really happy to get off in three.”

The men’s final also finished in straight games, but Wales’ Emyr Evans, the fifth seed, came close to snatching the first but it was top seeded Sebastien Bonmalais who squeezed through in extra points, 12-10.

The Frenchman was always ahead in the next two games, Evans hitting a few too many unforced errors for his own liking, but also suffering from some tremendous retrieving from Bonmalais.

Bonmalais took the second and third 11-5, 11-7 to collect his third PSA title of the year.

He said: “I’m very happy and relieved. Winning a tournament is always difficult. Last time I played Emyr I lost, so to win in three today is very pleasing.

“It’s my sixth title now and I’m very happy. It’s a really nice club and I’ve really enjoyed the city. Everyone is cool and I love it!”

Scottish Squash and Springfield have a vision for the development of their flagship event, stay tuned for the next installment …

Springfield Scottish Squash Open 2021, Inverness Tennis & Squash Club, Scotland (September 22-26).

Women’s Final:
[4] Georgina Kennedy (Eng) beat [8] Grace Gear (Eng) 3-0: 11-0, 11-3, 11-3 (20m)

[4] Georgina Kennedy (ENG) bt [6] Georgia Adderley (SCO) 11-8, 11-5, 11-7 (48m)
[8] Grace Gear (ENG) bt [9/16] Torrie Malik (ENG) 11-2, 12-14, 11-6, 13-11 (36m)

[6] Georgia Adderley (SCO) bt [1] Julianne Courtice (ENG) 14-12, 11-6, 4-11, 11-7 (49m)
[4] Georgina Kennedy (ENG) bt [5] Alison Thomson (SCO) 11-5, 11-2, 11-5 (28m)
[8] Grace Gear (ENG) bt [3] Marie Stephan (FRA) 7-11, 11-7, 11-3, 10-12, 11-5 (49m)
[9/16] Torrie Malik (ENG) bt [7] Alicia Mead (ENG) 11-9, 9-11, 11-7, 9-11, 11-8 (46m)

Men’s Final:
[1] Sebastien Bonmalais (Fra) beat [5] Emyr Evans (Wal) 3-0: 12-10, 11-5, 11-7 (48m)

[1] Sébastien Bonmalais (FRA) bt [9/16] Nick Wall (ENG) 8-11, 11-6, 11-6, 11-3 (51m)
[5] Emyr Evans (WAL) bt [9/16] Curtis Malik (ENG) 11-9, 11-6, 11-4 (41m)

[1] Sébastien Bonmalais (FRA) bt [8] Viktor Byrtus (CZE) 11-9, 11-4, 7-11, 11-8 (40m)
[9/16] Nick Wall (ENG) bt [7] Abhay Singh (IND) 11-3, 3-11, 4-11, 11-7, 12-10 (55m)
[5] Emyr Evans (WAL) bt [4] Jakub Solnicky (CZE) 11-4, 10-12, 11-5, 11-5 (52m)
[9/16] Curtis Malik (ENG) bt [2] Rui Soares (POR) 11-8, 8-11, 8-11, 11-6, 11-9 (77m)

Full results on Squash Info
Tournament website here

Pictures by Steve Cubbins courtesy of Scottish Squash


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