Monday, May 20, 2024

ESF: Declan and Emily’s European double in Porto

Declan and Emily on the podium in Porto

RESULTS: European Junior U19 Championships, Oporto, Portugal

Men’s final:
[1] Declan James (ENG) bt [3/4] Tom Ford (ENG) 11-8, 13-11, 11-6

Women’s final:
[1] Emily Whitlock (ENG) bt [2] Julia Lecoq (FRA) 11-1, 12-10, 11-3

James & Whitlock Make It An English European Double

England celebrated a European Junior U19 Squash Championships double for the second year in a row after favourites Declan James and Emily Whitlock won the titles in the leading European Squash Federation Junior Circuit event in Oporto, Portugal.

Whitlock successfully defended the women’s title she won last year – not only becoming the third English player to achieve the double in the championships’ 23-year history, but doing so without dropping a single game over the two years!

The Cheshire-born 18-year-old beat France’s Julia Lecoq, the No2 seed from Paris, 11-1, 12-10, 11-3.

The win marks Whitlock’s second cause for celebration in the week after recording a career-high world No32 ranking in the April WSA list.

An all-England clash brought the men’s event to a climax after Tom Ford, a 3/4 seed from Cheltenham, secured his unexpected place in the final after the earlier exit of second seed Oliver Holland.

But top seed Declan James was too strong for his younger compatriot, winning 11-8, 13-11, 11-6.

“Emotional moment to win the european juniors today,” said the 18-year-old from Nottingham later on Twitter. “Really happy with my performance, played well when it mattered.

“Huge amount of respect to @tomford93 we played in great spirits with a lot of respect for each other, the way the game should be played.”

After a rest day, James, Ford and Whitlock will join their England team-mates Victoria Temple Murray and Oliver Holland in a bid to defend their title in the European Junior U19 Team Championship.


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