Friday, December 1, 2023

Home hopes fade as Schnell loses to Koukal in Calgary

Andrew Schnell lost to Jan Koukal
Home favourite Andrew Schnell lost to Jan Koukal at the Bankers Hall Club Pro Am in Canada

Koukal conquers Calgary hero Schnell to book semi-final clash with top seed Au

CZECH star Jan Koukal disappointed the local crowd at the Bankers Hall Club Pro Am in Calgary when he defeated hometown hero Andrew Schnell in the quarter-finals of the PSA World Tour Challenger 10 event celebrating its 11th year at the Bankers Hall Club in the Alberta city in Canada.

“Koukal has been pretty much a regular at this event from the early years, while Schnell is from the host city and was hoping to continue a three-year streak of sorts that has seen himself and brother Graeme oust Koukal the last two years of this tournament,” said tournament host Bob Ballinger, the club’s Head Squash Professional.

“But the so called Family Streak is over as Koukal played a flawless match in this straight games victory over the local star in an entertaining three game match.”

The 11-7, 11-6, 11-7 win takes the number seven seed from Prague, the runner-up in 2010, into a semi-final clash with Leo Au, the top seed from Hong Kong. Defending champion Au, ranked 41 in the world, defeated fifth-seeded Australian Rex Hedrick 11-6, 6-11, 11-6, 13-11 in 73 minutes.

Germany’s Raphael Kandra took one step closer to his second successive appearance in the final after beating event debutante Alejandro Garbi Caro. But the Spaniard led 2-1 before fourth seed Kandra regained control to win 11-4, 8-11, 9-11, 11-6, 11-4 in 76 minutes.

Kandra now faces second seed Martin Knight after the 30-year-old New Zealander beat Taiwan qualifier James Huang 11-5, 11-5, 11-5.

Semi-final Draw:

[1] Leo Au (HKG) v [7] Jan Koukal (CZE)
[2] Martin Knight (NZL) v [4] Raphael Kandra (GER)

Quarter-final Results:

[1] Leo Au (HKG) 3-1 [5] Rex Hedrick (AUS) 11-6, 6-11, 11-6, 13-11 (73m)
[7] Jan Koukal (CZE) 3-0 Andrew Schnell (CAN) 11-7, 11-6, 11-7 (47m)
[4] Raphael Kandra (GER) 3-2 Alejandro Garbi Caro (ESP) 11-4, 8-11, 9-11, 11-6, 11-4 (76m)
[2] Martin Knight (NZL) 3-0 [Q] James Huang (TPE) 11-5, 11-5, 11-5 (46m)

First Round Results:

[1] Leo Au (HKG) 3-0 [Q] Michael Harris (ENG) 11-6, 11-9, 11-5 (38m)
[5] Rex Hedrick (AUS) 3-2 [Q] Reiko Peter (SUI) 9-11, 11-5, 6-11, 11-9, 11-6 (80m)
[7] Jan Koukal (CZE) 3-0 [WC] David Letourneau (CAN) 11-1, 19-17, 12-10 (42m)
Andrew Schnell (CAN) 3-0 [3] Charles Sharpes (ENG) 11-9, 12-10, 11-9 (57m)
[4] Raphael Kandra (GER) 3-0 Alex Ingham (ENG) 16-14, 11-4, 11-3 (38m)
Alejandro Garbi Caro (ESP) 3-1 [6] Ben Coleman (ENG) 11-4, 11-6, 8-11, 11-6 (70m)
[Q] James Huang (TPE) 3-2 [8] Dane Sharp (CAN) 11-7, 5-11, 11-4, 7-11, 11-7 (66m)
[2] Martin Knight (NZL) 3-0 [Q] Graeme Schnell (CAN) 11-4, 11-4, 11-9 (54m)


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