Daryl Selby handed a walkover as Lee stays overnight in hospital
By ALEX WAN – Squash Mad Asian Bureau Editor
The physical demands of top-class squash were clearly illustrated today as Max Lee was forced to withdraw from tonight’s final of the Macau Open. Hong Kong’s world No.17 was taken to hospital suffering from severe cramps and dehydration after his semi-final victory over top seed Marwan Elshorbagy.
He was detained in hospital overnight, where his condition is now reported to be stable, but he has wisely chosen to concede the final to England’s Daryl Selby, who beat Indian No.1 Saurav Ghosal in the other semi-final.
The Macau Squash Association issued a release this morning confirming that Selby would be awarded a walk-over but would still entertain the fans with an exhibition match against Lee’s Hong Kong team-mate Leo Au before the women’s final featuring New Zealand’s Joelle King and Leo’s sister, Annie Au.
Selby said: “First and foremost I want to wish Max a speedy recovery. I’m sorry for all the organisers who did a great job that there is no final match.
“I felt good for the final so it’s a weird feeling to find out you are champion whilst still lying in bed! Not the ideal way, but I’ll take it. It’s the biggest title of my career and I put a lot of hard work in over the summer for this.”
The Macau Squash Association release said:
Last night, we witnessed a heroic performance from Max Lee, who played through the entire fifth game with cramps on his legs. It was a gladiatorial performance from the world number 17 from Hong Kong, who defied all odds to walk out the winner.
However, the match took its toll and Max came out a battered man, suffering from severe dehydration and cramping from the physical contest and the hot conditions in the court. He was rushed to the hospital to seek treatment and he is now in a stable condition.
It is unfortunate that Max Lee is unable to recover in time to be match for tonight’s final against England’s Daryl Selby and will concede a walkover.
We wish Max a speedy recovery and by default, congratulations to the 2016 Macau Squash Open champion Daryl Selby.
An exhibition match between our champion Daryl Selby and Max’s compatriot, Leo Au will be played at 7.30 p.m. local time right before the women’s final.
Pictures courtesy of Macau Squash Association