Senior Nationals Round Up and Results

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Senior Squash National Championships 2014

The 20th to the 24th of August saw the North Shore Squash club hosting the NZ National individual and teams for 2014. With the change if format to the individuals running from Wednesday midday to Friday night entry numbers were down on previous years but this did not stop the top players in New Zealand coming to compete for the title of Champion Man and Champion Women for 2014. There were players from Canterbury to Northland and all places in between. With both Open divisions been 32 draws many players played 5 matches over 3 days with the finals been played on Friday night and the gallery was packed to capacity. This year the finals and other matches were also live streamed giving those that did not get a seat in the gallery the chance to watch it in the lounge of the club but also the comfort of their homes. The live streaming also included the teams event which was run over the weekend. The seeding’s proved to be spot on with both the women’s and men’s number 1 and 2 coming up against each other in the finals. With some of the women due to fly out to China later that night the women’s finals was scheduled for 5.30pm. Joelle King was matched up against Megan Craig. Joelle took the first 11/9 and was up in the second before rupturing her Achilles. Reports on her progress is that she is to have surgery. With this event Megan Craig holds the title of NZ Women champion for 2014. The men’s final was scheduled for 7.30pm and Martin Knight our local player came up against Campbell Grayson for the Men’s final. Martin took the first 2 games 11/5and 11/6 before Campbell staged a comeback to win the third 12/10. Campbell was up in the fourth before Martin came back and tied it all up at 10 all. This looked like it was going to go to a 5 setter but Martin dug deep and secured the next 2 points to become the 2014 Men’s champion The finals match between the men took 101 minutes to decide the winner . There were many hours of squash played and many tired and sore bodies but for many of the players there was to be no rest with the inter-district teams event starting at 9am on the Saturday and there were to be 2 games scheduled for that day with the finals on the Sunday. There were 7 districts represented in the men’s division with Wellington seeded number 1 for the men and Auckland seeded number 1 for the women. After 2 games during the day the finals were set to go at 12pm on the Sunday ( a chance for everyone to have a slight recovery period from the days of squash before) Auckland men were to play the Wellington men and the number 3 seeded women from Central were to come up against the Auckland ladies. Central had defeated the number 2 seeds Canterbury to get to the finals. Wellington triumphed over the Auckland men taking 3 of the 4 matches. The Central ladies also beat the Auckland ladies also winning 3 of the 4 matches. The last time the Central district had held the trophy for the inter-district women’s title was 42 years ago. At only 13 and the youngest girl to achieve the feat of A grade at that age this will be tournament that Kaitlyn Watts from Palmerston North will remember for the rest of her life.

Results:

Men’s Open
Winner: Martin Knight (Auckland – North Shore) Runner Up: Campbell Grayson (Auckland – Herne Bay)3rd Paul Coll (Canterbury) 4th Kashif Shuja (Central – Palmerston North) Classic Plate: Lance Beddoes (Auckland – Henderson) Special Plate: Sam Atkins (Wellington- Thornton) Plate: Jamie Skiffington (Wellington – Thornton) Consolation Plate: Aaron Kopittkle (Auckland – Henderson)
Men’s Division One
Winner: Joseph Lyons (Bay of Plenty – Tauranga) Runner Up: Jason van der Walt ( Central – Palmerston North) Classic Plate: Rafa Yam (Auckland -Belmont Park) Special Plate: Montell Whatarangi (Waikato – Te Rapa) Plate: Brandon Keenan (Central – Palmerston North) Consolation Plate: Gabe Yam (Auckland – Belmont Park)
Men’s Division Two
Winner: Dean Williams (Waikato – Cambridge) Runner Up: Sam Towes (Auckland – Remuera) Classic Plate: Lawrence Skurr (Canterbury – Christchurch) Special Plate: Marks Jansen van Vuuren (Auckland – North Shore) Plate: David Smithson (Auckland – North Shore) Consolation Plate: Elijah Thomas (Auckland – Eden Epsom)
Men’s Division Two
Winner: Ishaan Bhide (Auckland – Eden Epsom) Runner Up: Ben Manuatu (Auckland – Manurewa)

Women’s Open
Winner: Megan Craig (Canterbury – Malborough) Runner Up: Joelle King (Waikato – Cambridge) 3rd: Amanda Landers-Murphy (Bay of Plenty – Waikite) 4th: Kylie Lindsay (Waikato – Matamata) Classic Plate: Danielle Fourie (Central – Palmerston North) Special Plate: Eliza Sim ( Otago – University) Plate: Kaitlyn Watts (Central – Palmerston North) Consolation Plate: Juee Bhide (Auckland – Eden Epsom)
Women’s Division One
Winner: Nikki Kennedy (Waikato – Thames) Runner Up: Rebecca Clifford (Central – Palmerston North) Classic Plate: Lauren Clarke (Bay of Plenty – Tauranga) Special Plate: Ellen Verry ( Wellington – Tawa) Plate: (Miranda Harrison – Northland – Whangarei) Consolation Plate: Tracey Hartley (Auckland – Belmont Park)
Women’s Division 2
Winner: Laura Richardson (Waikato- Hamilton) Runner Up: Amara Afghan (Auckland – North Shore)

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