Sunday, April 14, 2024

Masters: Fourth time lucky for Ben Ford

Ben Ford gets in front
Ben Ford gets in front

Kent’s Silver Fox wins marathon final


Sixteen National Masters Champions were decided in Manchester at the National Squash Centre.

It was fourth time lucky for Ben Ford (Kent) who had to come from 2-1 down against Darren Lewis (Leicestershire) to claim his maiden Men’s O35s title. Ford had featured in three of the last four O35 National Champs finals. It was a repeat of the 2015 final but this time Ford hit back to win 11-6, 10-12, 9-11, 11-7, 11-9 in 76 minutes.

Nick Taylor won his third Men’s Oover-40s National title, defeating fellow Lancastrian Danny Massaro in four games. It is his seventh National title, adding to his four Over-35s titles.

Lee Scot (Yorks) captured his first Men’s O45s title as he defeated Nick Brown (Cambs) in straight games. Scott had defeated 3/4 David Youngs (Norfolk) in the semi final having earlier dumped out the top seed, Yawar Abbas.

After finishing as a runner up in 2006 and 2011, Peter Gunter (Midd) finally claimed a National title in the Men’s O50s, defeating Marc Aldridge (Surrey) in four games.

Mark Woodliffe (Glouc) claimed a third National title, adding the Men’s O55s to his two MO50s titles, defeating Dermot Hurford in straight games. Hurford has been denied at the final hurdle in consecutive years.

Mark Cowley (Middx) added the Men’s O60s title to his O50s and O55s titles. After finishing runner up in 2015, Cowley proved too much for Duleep Adhihetty (Middx) as he claimed the title in straight games.

In the surprise Men’s O65s final, Peter Smith (Bucks) continued his incredible tournament by toppling Jim Dougal (Scotland) in straight games. Smith had earlier upset the seedings by beating the 3/4 and 1 seed.

It was a repeat of the 2015 Men’s O75s final as the two Yorkshiremen, Adrian Wright and Mike Clemson squared off again. It was a different outcome this year, however, as Wright defeated Clemson in straight games to capture his third 070s British National title.

The Men’s O75s was a repeat of the 2011 Men’s O70s final. This time, however, Pat Kirton (Surrey) prevailed against Andrew Beeston (Merseyside) in four games to claim his fourth Men’s O75s title. It was Kirton’s 16th National masters title.

DSC_4864In the Women’s O35s, Lauren Briggs continued her incredible year, adding the National title to the British Open and European Masters titles she won. Briggs proved too much for Hannah Wright-Davies, finishing the match in straight games to claim her second O35s National title.

Laura Mylotte (Cheshire) claimed her fifth National title, adding the Women’s O40s crown to her four O35s titles. Mylotte needed just three games to defeat Rachel Pullan (Notts) and claim the victory.

Isabelle Tweedle (Surrey) doubled her National title tally with a straight games victory over Claire Roscoe (Cheshire) in the Women’s O45s. She added to the O40s title she won in 2013.

In the surprise of the day, Rose Bamber upset proceedings by defeating three-times Women’s O50s champion Mandy Akin in straight games to claim her maiden National title.

Jill Campion (Middx) added a second Women’s O55s National title to her collection, defeating two time champion, Julie Field (Yorks) in straight games. Campion rounded off an incredibly successful year as she captured the British Open O55 and European Masters O55 titles, too.

Pauline Douglas (Scotland) won her second Women’s O60s title, defeating Jane Law in straight games. Douglas adds this to the British Open Women’s O60s title she claimed in 2015.

Bett Dryhurst (Worcs) added to the British O55s National title she won in 2007 by winning the Women’s O65s title. It was a close run thing though as Dryhurst needed all five games to defeat Ann Manley (Avon), the 2015 British Open WO65s winner.


Pictures by STEVE CUBBINS ( courtesy of England Squash 


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