Liz Addison reports
The pace is hotting up in the 2016 World Masters Squash Championships hosted at 3 venues – Wanderers, Parkview, Country Club – as the draws advance to the quarterfinals and semi finals.
At the Wanderers, where the younger age groups are being played, the top seeds Mike Tootill (45-49), Rodney Durbach (40-44) both South Africans, and Egyptian Mohammed Abbas (35-39) advanced easily through to the fourth round.
In the 45 section Riaan du Toit of Gauteng defeated the 3/4 seed Christian Borgvall in 5 tough games while the second seeded Nick Taylor (Eng) and the other 3/4seed, Craig Wapnick, moved through.
Second seed in the 40 group Adrian Hansen saved 2 game balls at 8-10 in the fourth game while leading by 2 games to one against Free State’s Calvin Deutschmann, clinching the match at 12-10 to take his allotted place in the last 16. Unseeded Jason Phillips of Northerns caused a minor upset accounting for 5/8 seed Gary Plumstead in 4 games.
There were no surprises in the 35 section as Abbas, second seeded Gary Wheadon and 3/4 seed Rowan Smith registered comfortable wins over Munro Montanus, Adam Hickman and Phil Louw respectively.
The women’s 35 section sees two South Africans, Jacqui Ryder, seeded 3/4 and Liezel Claxton , a 5/8 seed in the semi finals and thus contenders for medal while the women’s 40 line up is an All South African affair.
Western Province’s Karen Schultz, seeded 5/8, caused a major upset by outplaying top seeded Karen Meakins (Barbados) 6-11 11-8 11-9 11-9. Schultz’s provincial team mate Catherine Atkinson added to the upsets beating 3/4 seed Janet Byrnes (EP) also in 4 games to set up a clash with second seeded Samantha Herbert (KZN). 3/4seed Anlen Murray completes the semi final line up.
Tomorrow’s matches start at 9h00 at the three venues, with the finals on Friday at Parkview for the 50 to 80 plus age groups and at Wanderers for the 35 to 49 groups . All matches will be on the all glass court.