Friday, July 12, 2024

Joel Makin and James Willstrop tipped to clash in AJ Bell Nationals final

Joel Makin in action against Adrian Waller

Reigning champion Willstrop 22 not out 
By DONNA HELMER – Squash Mad Correspondent

Top seed Joel Makin and defending champion James Willstrop are seeded to meet in the final of the AJ Bell British National Championships in Nottingham from 13-16th February after the men’s draw was released yesterday.

Welsh No.1 Makin and former World No.1 Willstrop met just two weeks ago at the Tournament of Champions in New York, where Makin prevailed in a match lasting over an hour.

Three-time champion Willstrop, 36, will be appearing in his 22nd consecutive championships, while this year marks the third time 25-year-old Makin will compete.

In the top half of the draw, Makin is seeded to face World No.19 Adrian Waller in the semis. Should that transpire, Makin is set for a stern test with Waller prevailing in three of their previous four encounters, most recently at the WSF Men’s World Team Championships in December.

James Willstrop and Daryl Selby met in last year’s final

World No.18 Willstrop, seeded two, is predicted to face 3/4 seed Daryl Selby in the semi-finals in what would be a repeat of last year’s final in which Willstrop triumphed.

Scottish No.1 Greg Lobban is seeded to meet Selby in the quarters, but faces a tough first round against rising Englishman George Parker. Meanwhile, fellow Scot Alan Clyne, an eight-time Scottish National champion, is scheduled to face Makin in the quarter-finals.

Qualifying will see 34 players compete for the four qualifier spots on February 11-12 at Nottingham Squash Rackets Club.

AJ Bell British National Championships 2020, Nottingham February 13-16.

Men’s First Round:
[1] Joel Makin (Wal) v Qualifier
[5/8] Alan Clyne (Sco) v Qualifier
[5/8] Tom Richards (Eng) v Richie Fallows (Eng)
[3/4] Adrian Waller (Eng) v Nathan Lake (Eng)
[3/4] Daryl Selby (Eng) v Qualifier
[5/8] Greg Lobban (Sco) v George Parker (Eng)
[5/8] Declan James (Eng) v Patrick Rooney (Eng)
[2] James Willstrop (Eng) v Qualifier

To view the draw, visit the official website at Follow live action from the tournament from 13-16th February via (requires free England Squash website account).

Pictures courtesy of England Squash 


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