It’s still tight at the top as Duffield survive again and Exeter break their duck
The second half of the PSL season started with reverse fixtures from the opening round last October. It was tight at the top of both Divisions with Leicester, Duffield and Birmingham separated by just two points in Division A, while in Division B there was a four-way tussle for playoff places with St George’s, Bristol, Chichester and Surrey all within five points of each other – and tonight’s results mean that both divisions remain, tight at the top …
University of Birmingham Lions roared to the top of the table – on ties difference – with a resounding 5-0 win over Pontefract, although Jaymie Haycocks had to come from two games down against Saurav Ghosal to clinch maximum points for the home side.
Everards Leicester continued their impressive run in their second season in the league, going 3-0 up away to Coolhurst London. Simon Rosner beat Daryl Selby at the top string to put the home side on the board, but Leicester favourite George Parker rounded off the 4-1 win to put Leicester level with Birmingham on 94 points.
The late withdrawal of number one Chris Simpson was bad news for reigning champions Benz Bavarian Duffield as they travelled to neighbours Air-IT Nottingham for a match that looked finely balanced before that withdrawal. The tie wend the distance in front of a sellout home crowd, but it was Declan James – formerly a Nottingham player – who produced yet another narrow win for Duffield as he beat Alan Clyne 3-1 in the decider to put Duffield on 91 points.
In Division B leaders 9 Telecom St George’s Hill maintained their top placing with a 4-1 home win over UWE/Elite Squash Bristol, for whom British Junior Open champion Youssef Soliman made a winning debut.
Team Chichester piled the pressure on though with and emphatic 5-0 away win at ClubNet Winchester, all five matches finishing 3-0, as they moved to 91 points, just 2 behind St George’s.
Six-time champions Virgin Active Surrey travelled to Exeter Diamonds with the home side yet to record a win this season. David Evans and Amelia Henley got Exeter off to a great start but Charles Sharpes and Omar Abdel Meguid levelled the match for Surrey. In the decider the home crowd urged Olii Tuominen on to a 3-1 win over Peter Barker.
Surrey earned enough points to move to 81, two ahead of Bristol, but both will be looking for good results in the next round on 16th Feb to prevent the gap to the top two growing.
Coolhurst London 1-4 Everards Leicester (5-18)
Simon Rosner 3-1 Daryl Selby 11-6, 11-4, 6-11, 11-9
Mahesh Mangaonkar 1-3 Nafiizwan Adnan 11-7, 6-11, 4-11, 9-11
Adam Auckland 1-3 George Parker
Joe Green 0-3 Angus Gillams 6-11, 9-11, 6-11
Judith Allgrove 0-3 Coline Aumard 1-11, 2-11, 4-11
Air-IT Nottingham 2-3 Benz Bavarian Duffield (9-16)
Alan Clyne 1-3 Declan James 10-12, 5-11, 11-9, 6-11
Eddie Charlton 3-2 Richie Fallows 12-10, 5-11, 10-12, 11-7, 11-8
Chris Fuller 1-3 Adam Murrills 6-11, 11-9, 9-11, 2-11
Mark Fuller 3-0 Julian Tomlinson 11-8, 11-9, 11-7
Hana Ramadan 1-3 Laura Massaro 8-11, 10-12, 11-9, 10-12
University of Birmingham Lions 5-0 Pontefract (20-5)
Jaymie Haycocks 3-2 Saurav Ghosal 5-11, 7-11, 11-6, 11-8, 11-8
Chris Ryder 3-2 Eain Yow Ng 9-11, 11-4, 11-4, 7-11, 11-7
Joel Makin 3-0 Patrick Rooney 11-9, 11-8, 11-6
Miles Jenkins 3-1 Sam Wileman 11-6, 11-2, 10-12, 11-9
Sarah-Jane Perry 3-0Katie Smith 11-1, 11-2, 11-3
ClubNet Winchester 0-5 Team Chichester (0-20)
Zahed Mohamed 0-3 Adrian Waller 5-11, 9-11, 8-11
Robert Downer 0-3 Paul Coll 4-11, 10-12, 4-11
Scott Handley 0-3 Robbie Temple 9-11, 9-11, 12-14
Adam Corcoran 0-3 Nathan Lake 11-13, 0-11, 2-11
Sachika Ingale 0-3 Lauren Briggs 7-11, 6-11, 4-11
9 Telecom St George’s Hill 4-1 UWE/Elite Squash Bristol (17-5)
Borja Golan 3-0 Marwan Elshorbagy 11-9, 11-9, 11-6
Tom Richards 3-0 Tom Ford 11-7, 11-4, 11-4
Joe Lee 3-2 Josh Masters 7-11, 11-6, 10-12, 11-8, 11-2
Phil Nightingale 0-3 Youssef Soliman 4-11, 4-11, 4-11
Yathreb Adel 3-0 Ellie Epke 11-9, 11-8, 11-9
Exeter Diamonds 3-2 Virgin Active Surrey (17-9)
Olli Tuominen 3-1 Peter Barker 11-5. 11-8, 7-11, 12-10 (46m)
Tim Vail 1-3 Omar Abdel Meguid 11-5, 5-11, 5-11, 8-11 (33m)
James Snell 2-3 Charles Sharpes 3-11, 13-11, 11-7, 5-11, 4-11 (51m)
David Evans 3-2 Piedro Schweertman 11-4, 12-10, 10-12, 5-11, 11-6 (56m)
Amelia Henley 3-0 Alison Thomson 11-8, 11-2, 11-3 (25m)
It’s tight at the top of Division A with Leicester, Duffield and Birmingham separated by just two points.
Leaders Leicester travel to Coolhurst looking for a repeat of their opening day 5-0 win, and although the London outfit look stronger this time around Crystal Ball still predicts a Leicester win. Champions Duffield travel to Nottingham, where a repeat of the first-half 3-2 result looks likely. It’s already a sellout as the home side look to revitalise their playoff hopes, but it’s hard to go against Duffield’s team spirit. Birmingham welcome the visit of Pontefract, who are without the services of James Willstrop so a home win looks on the cards.
Crystal Ball: Leicester 4-1, Duffield 3-2, Birmingham 4-1.
In Division B there’s a four-way tussle for playoff places and while nothing will be decided yet, tonight’s matches could see some gaps opening up.
St George’s play host to Bristol in a top of the table clash that looks to be just as close as the opening day meeting which saw St George’s sneak home 3-2. Surrey and Chichester will be looking to close the gap on – or overhaul – the top two as they travel to strugglers Exeter and Winchester – and both look set to win, as they did in the first half.
Crystal Ball: St George’s 3-2, Chichester 5-0, Surrey 4-1