Thursday, February 29, 2024

Selby aims to banish semi-final heartache

Tournament of Champions: Selby seeks injury redemption after two year wait
By MICHAEL CATLING – Squash Mad Reporter

World number 10 Daryl Selby returns to the scene of one of the biggest disappointments of his career next week, when he competes at the prestigious Tournament of Champions in New York.

Selby, who was absent from the $115,000 event last year, bowed out of the semi-final stage to then world number one James Willstrop in 2012 after injury cruelly restricted the Essex player’s movement in one of his biggest matches on the PSA Tour.

But with the 31-year-old now fully fit and eager to get his 2014 campaign off to a flying start, the England number four is targeting a measure of redemption two years on.

“I made the semi-final there a few years ago and unfortunately picked up an injury in the quarters, which meant that my semi-final match (which should have been a highlight) ended up being a massive disappointment,” the Edinburgh Open 2013 champion told England Squash & Racketball. 

“So it would be nice to have another chance at it. I am playing a qualifier first up but the qualifying is very strong this year so I expect a tough match whoever I play.”

Selby, who is now seeded eighth at the Tournament of Champions folllowing Ramy Ashour’s withdrawal earlier this week, suffered a disappointing end to 2013 after recording successive first-round exits at the Hong Kong Open and the Alwatan & Asnan International in Kuwait.

But while Selby admits his body struggled to cope with his hectic scheduling, the Essex-based player is targetting a revival of fortunes in 2014.

“Kuwait was somewhere I had hoped to do well, but I came up against a guy on top of his game on his home court.”

“It might have been one tournament too many, but I don’t regret going at all, as the opportunity was too good. I just couldn’t take it. I still didn’t play as I wanted to in the first half of the season so I’ve been working on a few things to try and rectify that for the second half,” the former British National champion added.”

Source: England Squash & Racketball; Picture by Michael Catling

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