Kiwi world No.8 Paul Coll became the first male New Zealander since Ross Norman in 1991 to reach the quarter-finals of the Squash World Championships after he came through a gruelling 82-minute third round matchup with England’s Daryl Selby.
The pair were meeting for the third time on the PSA World Tour with Coll winning their two previous encounters. However veteran Selby, appearing at his 11th World Championships took the opener 11-8 after working Coll around the court well.
The exhausting rallies continued into the second game and both players battled to keep the ball alive with Coll finding a couple of vital points to pull away and take the second game 11-5.
The Kiwis firepower forced Selby to move around the court and force errors, which caused a loss of momentum from the 35-year-old from Harlow, which allowed Coll to claim the third game 11-7.
Despite Selby being strong in the middle of the court it was Coll’s fitness which again showed through to clinch the fourth game 11-7 and win the match.
“I was very happy to close that out in four games because it was such a high quality game and there weren’t many mistakes between us,” said the 25-year-old Coll. “The team I have around me are great and they help send me in the right direction. I’ve been very lucky for the people that have come into my career. I’ve put in the hard work and always try my best in training, so I’m looking forward to resting tomorrow and then playing in Thursday’s quarter-final.”
It doesn’t get any easier for Coll as he now takes on the world No.1 and top seed Gregory Gaultier of France.
The pair played last month in Hong Kong with the Frenchman winning in a long five game contest.
Meanwhile Kiwi women’s ninth seed Joelle King plays her second round match against seventh seed Sarah-Jane Perry of England tonight.