Ahead of the thrilling Commonwealth Games singles finals, the first doubles matches of the tournament got underway, with nine mixed doubles pairings taking to court.
Defending champions Cameron Pilley and Donna Lobban began their title defence with a comfortable victory over Papua New Guinea’s Amity Alarcos and Feonor Siaguru, with the experienced duo taking the first game 11- 6 and the second 11-4.
Afterwards, Pilley said: “We felt pretty good. It was fairly smooth sailing I’d say; we’ve played a lot more doubles than those guys. I’ve actually been out to PNG once as a World Squash Federation ambassador and played squash out there. They love squash, but in terms of doubles they haven’t played much. In a lot of the positional play and strategy, I’d say there’s a bit of inexperience there and we’ve played a lot.
“They hit the ball well, they move well, but we just had the experience.
“Donna and I have god a good chemistry on court. We’re cousins and have played all through our junior careers together, so it was almost a natural progression, I guess. We both got to the top of the world and we have a really good understanding of each other and how to keep each other up. It’s important to have that chemistry as a doubles pairing. It’s half the battle, you’ve got to have good players but you really need that good chemistry.”
Elsewhere, the Cayman Islands’ Marlene West & Cameron Stafford shocked Canada’s 9/16 seeds Nicole Bunyan & David Baillargeon, 9/16 seeds Joshna Chinappa & Harinder Pal Sandhu avoided a first round upset when they came from behind to beat Yeheni Kuruppu & Ravindu Laksiri of Sri Lanka, while Welsh 9/16 pairing Emily Whitlock & Peter Creed discussed the tactics of the game with Prince Edward, Earl of Wessex, after they beat Guyana’s Ashley Khalil & Jason-Ray Khalil.
Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games: Mixed Doubles – Round One Results
 Dipika Pallikal Karthik & Saurav Ghosal (IND) bye
[9/16] Emily Whitlock & Peter Creed (WAL) bt Ashley Khalil & Jason-Ray Khalil (GUY) 2-0: 11-3, 11-10
[9/16] Rachael Grinham & Zac Alexander (AUS) bt Jade Pitcairn & Jake Kelly (CAY) 11-1, 11-4
[5/8] Georgina Kennedy & Patrick Rooney (ENG) v Lijana Sultana & Kijan Sultana (MLT)
[5/8] Georgia Adderley & Rory Stewart (SCO) bt Amanda Haywood & Shawn Simpson (BAR) 2-0: 11-3, 11-6[9/16] Hollie Naughton & Nick Sachvie (CAN) v Charlotte Knaggs & Chayse McQuan (TTO)
[9/16] Faiza Zafar & Nasir Iqbal (PAK) bt Chanithma Sinaly & Shamil Wakeel (SRI) 2-0: 11-10, 11-5
Marlene West & Cameron Stafford (CAY) bt [9/16] Nicole Bunyan & David Baillargeon (CAN) 2-0: 11-8, 11-4[3/4] Joelle King & Paul Coll (NZL) bye [3/4] Lisa Aitken & Greg Lobban (SCO) bye
[9/16] Joshna Chinappa & Harinder Pal Sandhu (IND) bt Yeheni Kuruppu & Ravindu Laksiri (SRI) 2-1: 8-11, 11-4, 11-3
[5/8] Donna Lobban & Cameron Pilley (AUS) bt Amity Alarcos & Madako Suari (PNG) 2-0: 11-6, 11-4
[5/8] Tesni Evans & Joel Makin (WAL) v Colette Sultana & Niall Engerer (MLT)
[9/16] Ainaa Amani & Addeen Idrakie (MAS) bt Mary Fung-A-Fat & Shomari Wiltshire (GUY) 2-0: 11-2, 11-10
[9/16] Amna Fayyaz & Tayyab Aslam (PAK) v Meagan Best & Khamal Cumberbatch (BAR)
 Alison Waters & Adrian Waller (ENG) bye