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Opening Day Is Jamaica Day At Commonwealth Games

While the two reigning gold medallists eased into the third round of the Squash singles events at the 2018 Commonwealth Games in Gold Coast, Australia, the opening day of action belonged to Jamaica after the Caribbean country’s only two male players caused major upsets to reach the last 16.

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UK-born Lewis Walters, ranked 260 in the world, raised his country’s spirits in the first round when he beat Peter Creed, the 15th seed from Wales ranked over 200 places higher, 7-11, 11-7, 11-6, 11-9 in 48 minutes.

Just a few hours later, the 30-year-old Games debutant continued his unscheduled run by seeing off Malta’s Daniel Zammit-Lewis 11-7, 11-9, 11-4 to claim his slot in the last 16 round.

Walters was then able to join his team-mates watching the epic second round battle between his Doubles partner Christopher Binnie and India’s bronze-medal hope Saurav Ghosal. The No.3 seed from Kolkata, who this month celebrated a career-high world No.13 ranking, took the opening two games and looked to be coasting to his anticipated place in the next round.

GS003716But world No.65 Binnie, who had already played a 1st round match in the afternoon session, kept his focus and drew level. In a topsy-turvy decider, favourite Ghosal moved forward to match-ball at 10-8. But, undaunted – and cheered on by a significant weight of Jamaican support from the crowd – Binnie battled through to claim his shock 5-11, 7-11, 11-8, 11-9, 12-10 triumph in 74 minutes.

“I felt pretty confident going into the match and even though I went down two love I kept on pushing,” said a delighted Binnie afterwards. “We had all the Jamaican contingent here tonight – a big crowd tonight and that was great.”

On the decider, the eight-time Caribbean champion explained: “I was just trying to play one point at a time and keep calm. I think I controlled my emotions pretty well. He made a couple of errors at eight-all and put a couple of balls in the middle where thankfully I didn’t hit the tin. He had a couple of match balls and I was lucky to pounce on a couple of good ones at the end. I’m just happy to get through

“It’s the biggest day of my career for sure – even though it’s a short career so far – but it’s only the second round so I have to put some perspective on it. But I have to enjoy this – he’s top 20 in the world and it’s the first top 20 win I’ve ever had. But I’ve been working really hard and hopefully tomorrow I can be close to this again to try and put in another good performance.”

FULL DAY ONE REPORT

Men’s Round Two:
[1] Nick Matthew (ENG) bt Ian Rukunya (UGA) 11-2, 11-6, 11-2 (20m)
[16] Vikram Malhotra (IND) bt Xavier Koenig (MRI) 11-4, 11-3, 11-0 (16m)
[12] Nafiizwan Adnan (MAS) bt Evan Williams (NZL) 7-11, 11-5, 11-8, 11-6 (50m)
[6] Ryan Cuskelly (AUS) bt Othneil Bailey (SVG) 11-2, 11-4, 11-3 (18m)
[7] Cameron Pilley (AUS) bt Ernest Jombla (SLE) 11-7, 11-3, 11-2 (18m)
Lewis Walters (JAM) bt Daniel Zammit-Lewis (MLT) 11-7, 11-9, 11-4 (33m)
[10] Campbell Grayson (NZL) bt Kevin Moran (SCO) 11-9, 11-0, 11-9 (31m)
[4] James Willstrop (ENG) bt Farhan Zaman (PAK) 11-5, 11-1, 11-7 (27m)
Christopher Binnie (JAM) bt [3] Saurav Ghosal (IND) 5-11, 7-11, 11-8, 11-9, 12-10 (74m)
[11] Joel Makin (WAL) bt Micah Franklin (BER) 11-6, 11-3, 11-3 (29m)
Rex Hedrick (AUS) bt Sunil Seth (GUY) 11-4, 11-2, 11-3 (32m)
[8] Alan Clyne (SCO) bt Tayyab Aslam (PAK) 11-6, 11-7, 9-11, 11-7 (60m)
[5] Daryl Selby (ENG) bt Michael Kawooya (UGA) 11-4, 11-5, 11-7 (21m)
[9] Greg Lobban (SCO) bt Ravindu Laksiri (SRI) 11-8, 11-8, 11-6 (24m)
Ivan Yuen (MAS) bt [14] Harinder Pal Sandhu (IND) 11-8, 11-6, 11-1 (33m)
[2] Paul Coll (NZL) bt Kelvin Ndhlovu (ZAM) 11-5, 11-7, 11-2 (26m)

Women’s Round Two:
[1] Laura Massaro (ENG) bt Amanda Haywood (BAR) 11-6, 11-5, 11-5 (15m)
[11] Amanda Landers-Murphy (NZL) bt Mihiliya Methsarani (SRI) 12-10, 11-9, 11-4 (23m)
Aifa Azman (MAS) bt [14] Lisa Aitken (SCO) w/o
[6] Tesni Evans (WAL) bt Taylor Fernandes (GUY) 11-5, 11-7, 11-3 (17m)
[7] Donna Urquhart (AUS) bt Faiza Zafar (PAK) 11-1, 11-2, 11-4 (16m)
[16] Christine Nunn (AUS) bt Dianne Kellas (MLT) 11-3, 11-3, 11-2 (16m)
[13] Nikki Todd (CAN) bt Khaaliqa Nimji (KEN) 11-4, 11-8, 11-7 (17m)
[4] Sarah-Jane Perry (ENG) bt Alison Mua (FIJ) 11-1, 11-3, 11-6 (13m)
[3] Nicol David (MAS) bt Colette Sultana (MLT) 11-1, 11-4, 11-2 (23m)
[10] Samantha Cornett (CAN) bt Mary Fung-A-Fat (GUY) 11-5, 11-2, 11-4 (18m)
[9] Dipika Pallikal Karthik (IND) bt Charlotte Knaggs (TRI) 11-6, 11-5, 11-5 (19m)
[5] Alison Waters (ENG) bt Meagan Best (BAR) 11-5, 11-1, 11-8 (22m)
[8] Joshna Chinappa (IND) bt Lynette Vai (PNG) 11-3, 11-7, 11-2 (16m)
[15] Tamika Saxby (AUS) bt Eilidh Bridgeman (CAY) 11-4, 11-2, 11-1 (16m)
[12] Sivasangari Subramaniam (MAS) bt Alison Thomson (SCO) 11-7, 11-13, 11-8, 11-8 (39m)
[2] Joelle King (NZL) bt Deon Saffery (WAL) 11-3, 11-4, 11-2 (22m)

FULL DAY ONE REPORT

 

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