Friday, January 27, 2023

Sobhy and Blatchford enjoy USA double over England

Top seed Camille Serme in action
Top seed Camille Serme in action

Top seeds power into quarter-finals


Top seed Camille Serme of France swept past Malaysia’s Delia Arnold in straight games to lead the top four seeds into the quarter-finals of the $50 PSA Cleveland Classic.

Team USA enjoyed a winning double over rivals from England, with Amanda Sobhy and Amelia Blatchford recording 3-2 victories over Victoria Lust and Jenny Duncalf.

3-0 Serme (11-8; 11-2; 11-4)
Game#1 Slow start for the number 1 seed Serme. Serme surges to a 3-1 lead, two quick errors including a serve out allow the Malaysian Arnold on to the score board. Game stays close with both players playing very loose down the middle. Game is tied at 6-6, Serme manages to pull away winning 11-8.
Game#2 Delia doesn’t get a chance to get settled in the game. Serme attacks early taking a 7-2 lead. Pressure from volleys in the midcourt and variation in pace doesn’t allow Arnold to settle. Game Serme 11-2.
Game#3 A rattled Arnold looks to steady her game with long points down the backhand. Serme forces the pace yet again with more shot variation that keeps Arnold off her preferred backhand. Confident as ever, Serme closes the match 11-4.
3-2 Perry (8-11; 12-10; 3-11; 11-3; 11-7)
Game#1 Evans game plan works early in the game, keeping the ball low and wide making it hard for Perry to use her height and power advantage. Perry relying too much on power, needed more variation to usurp the T from Evans. Evans wins 11-8.
Game#2 Evans uses high lobs very well to keep Perry in the back court then attacking the front with pace. Works well… Evans takes a 6-3 lead. Evans becomes too predictable and Perry guards the back court which forces Evans to bring the ball in shorter. Perry is able to pick the shorter ball and steal the game 12-10.
Game#3 Perry is caught off her game in the 3rd. Evans plays at a high tempo using quick boasts to twist and turn Perry. Perry can’t stop making errors, two tins in a row end the game. 11 – 3, Evans.
Game#4 Both players sufficiently tired and moving less efficiently. Evans struggles to get Perry off the T and pays the price. Perry volleys like a demon pushing Evans all over the court. Powerful ground stokes force Evans to play the ball on the move from weak positions resulting in too many errors. 11 – 3, Perry.
Game#5 Game ends 11 – 7 to Perry. Wouldn’t have thought at the start of the game. Evans stole the 1st 4 points. Perry stays close behind playing the left wall well without much variation. Evans is comfortable with this and takes a 6-4 lead. Evans takes a more offensive approach while Perry sticks to the same left wall game plan. It works! Evan’s high tempo game ends in too many errors. Perry closes the game out 11-7.
Match Perry.

3-2 Sobhy (9-11; 11-4; 11-13; 12-10; 11-4)
Game#1 Explosive start by the Britt, Lust. Forces 3 errors early in the game. Sohby makes up for the errors with 3 straight winners. Three strokes in succession gave Lust some confidence to seal the game 11-9.
Game#2 Both players start and stick the left wall, looking for openings. Sohby wins the length game taking a 9-4 lead. The American closes the game 11-4.
Game#3 Quick left wall boast catches Lust off balance, 1-0 Sohby. Very fast paced game, both players not getting the ball to the back wall. Lots of errors from Lust and Sohby, 6-6. Lust plucks the ball off the ceiling and buries it in the nick, 9-8. Sohby returns with a nick of her own, 11-11. Nick Lust, 12-11. Lust finishes the game 13-11.
Game#4 Sohby making errors up front from Lust’s drops. Lust takes a 4-0 lead. Sohby switches gears and slows the game down. Change in pace frustrates Lust who throws away 3 quick points, game tied 5-5. Game tied at 8-8, 10-10. Volley nick from Sohby takes her to 11-10 and finishes off with a solid back court drive. 12- 10, Sohby.
Game#5 Shoby takes an early lead from the 4th point. Never looks back, closes the game in fashion with a forehand nick to win the match.
Olivia Blatchford (USA) vs Jenny Duncalf (ENG)
3-2 Blatchford (5-11, 7-11, 11-5, 11-9, 11-6)
Game#1 Dancalf takes control very early on, dominating the whole game with combination of great winners from the front of the court and sneaky boasts that the American couldn’t pick up. 11-5, Duncalf.
Game#2 Rare errors from Dunclaf see her go down 2-0. Game is drawn at 4-4. Blatchford struggling to get a read on the Englishman’s game. 11-7, Dunclaf.
Game#3 Tables turned. Blatchford comes out firing herself into a 5-1 lead. Dancalf slows the game down to pick winning targets but that just allows the rapid American too much time. Blatchford takes a commanding 9-5 lead, closing the game 11-5.
Game#4 Blatchford takes an early 4-0 lead and extends it to 6-3. Dancalf lunges for a ball and pulls her inner thigh muscle. The Englishman struggles to move for the rest of the game, does well to take it to 8-8 but succumbs to fit American 11-9.
Game#5 Blatchford knows her opponent is injured and adopts a very fast paced game moving her opponent mercilessly around the court. Duncalf battles stay in the game getting 6 points. That’s all she got. Blatchford wins 11-6.

DAY ONE: First round Alison Waters vs Samantha Teran
Game #1 Both hard hitters. All breaks going Waters way along with good tactics leads to 7-0 lead. 11-3 Waters
Game #2 Teran a fighter. 3-3. But Waters too good 9-3. Late flurry by Teran to no avail. 11-7 Waters
Game #3 Teran changes tactics with some success 4-3. Waters stays patient 10-5, 11-6. Waters takes match 3-0
Joshna Chinappa vs Georgina Stoker
Game #1 Stoker goes 4-0 before Chinappa joins the party. Stoker closes the game in fashion. 11 -3, Stoker.
Game #2 Chinappa comes out firing in the 2nd game. Pressure and high tempo from the midcourt forces errors out of Stooker who crumbles under the pressure. 11 – 4, Chinappa.
Game #3 Both players playing at very high tempo forcing mistakes on each other. Chinappa copes better at high tempo and Stoker slows it down, to break the Indians rhythm. Chinappa is too strong, closes out 11-8.
Game #4 Stoker working hard to stay close 4-5. Chinappa forges ahead 8-4. Stoker still has a lot of fight left! 9-8, 9-9, miss and a stroke leads to game 11-9 and match to Chinappa 3-1
Annie Au vs Rachael Grinham
Game #1 Errors by Rachael early leads to 4-1 Annie lead. Annie lobbing a lot and changing pace. Rachael back to 3-4 but 3 nice shots leads to Annie up 7-3. Mostly short rallies to Annies liking she takes first game 11-6.
Game #2 Flashes of the old form at times by Rachael but not enough 5-2, 10-5, 11-6 game to Annie
Game #3 More of the same. Very entertaining squash. 4-1, 5-1 Rachael ahead. But Annie wearing her out 5-5 then 10-6 and takes the game 11-7 and the match 3-0.

Low Wee Wern vs Dipika Pallikal
Game #1 Pallikal out fast. 3-0, 9-1, 11-2 game to her.
Game #2 Pallikal missing early 3-0 then 6-1 to Wern. Pallikal rights the ship. 7-6 she forges ahead. Points exchanged until Pallikal separates 10-8, 11-9 she takes the game.
Game #3 Pallikal focused 5-0. Wern goes on a streak to go up 8-6. Good tactics by Wern twisting and turning Pallikal until finding an opening. 9-7 then 11-8 Wern takes the game
Game #4 3-0 Pallikal then once again loses focus 3-3 as Wern retrieving everything. 8-4 Pallikal after some nice shot making. She goes up 9-6 but good points by Wern pull her back to 9-9. However after a Wern miss, Palllikal closes it out 11-9. Match to her 3-1. 

$50,000 Women’s Tub O’ Towels Cleveland Classic 2016, Cleveland Racquet Club, Cleveland, Ohio, USA

[1] Camille Serme (FRA) v [6] Joshna Chinappa (IND)
[3] Annie Au (HKG) v [5] Sarah-Jane Perry (ENG)
[4] Amanda Sobhy (USA) v Dipika Pallikal (IND)
[2] Alison Waters (ENG) v [Q] Olivia Blatchford (USA)

1st round:
[1] Camille Serme (FRA) bt Delia Arnold (MAS) 11-8, 11-2, 11-4
[6] Joshna Chinappa (IND) bt [Q] Georgina Stoker (ENG) 3-11, 11-4, 11-8, 11-9
[5] Sarah-Jane Perry (ENG) bt [Q] Tesni Evans (WAL) 8-11, 12-10, 3-11, 11-3, 11-7
[3] Annie Au (HKG) bt Rachael Grinham (AUS) 11-6, 11-6, 11-7
[4] Amanda Sobhy (USA) bt Victoria Lust (ENG) 9-11, 11-4, 11-13, 12-10, 11-4
Dipika Pallikal (IND) bt [7] Low Wee Wern (MAS) 11-2, 11-9, 8-11, 11-9
[Q] Olivia Blatchford (USA) bt [8] Jenny Duncalf (ENG) 5-11, 7-11, 11-5, 11-9, 11-6
[2] Alison Waters (ENG) bt [Q] Samantha Teran (MEX) 11-3, 11-7, 11-6

Qualifying finals:
Samantha Teran (MEX) bt Heba El Torky (EGY) 11-3, 5-11, 12-14, 11-9, 11-7
Tesni Evans (WAL) bt Amanda Landers-Murphy (NZL) 11-2, 11-9, 11-9
Georgina Stoker (ENG) bt Salma Hany Ibrahim (EGY) 3-11, 5-11, 13-11, 11-9, 11-8
Olivia Blatchford (USA) bt Donna Urquhart (AUS) 13-11, 11-8, 5-11, 8-11, 11-7

1st qualifying round:
Heba El Torky (EGY) bye
Samantha Teran (MEX) bye
Amanda Landers-Murphy (NZL) bt Reyna Pacheco (USA) 11-2, 11-4, 11-3
Tesni Evans (WAL) bye
Salma Hany Ibrahim (EGY) bye
Georgina Stoker (ENG) bt Thaisa Serafini (BRA) 11-3, 15-13, 5-11, 11-9
Olivia Blatchford (USA) bt Colette Sultana (MLT) 11-0, 11-4, 11-2
Donna Urquhart (AUS) bye 


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