It’s a Commonwealth Games special in the finals of the New Zealand squash champs with the top seeds in the draws to decide the titles
World No.4 Joelle King is aiming for her seventh national title when she plays Gold Coast team mate and second seed Amanda Landers-Murphy, who is looking for her first win.
King accounted for Auckland fourth seed Abbie Palmer in her semifinal in straight games while Landers-Murphy had a tougher task taking 38 minutes to defeat third seed Emma Millar from Waikato 11-6, 11-8 12-14 11-9.
King and Landers-Murphy recently played in the first round of the British Open last month, with the top seed winning on that occasion in straight games.
The men’s final will see top seed and world No.10 Paul Coll who hails from Greymouth take on second seed and world No.108 Evan Williams. Coll had the obvious success of finishing with a silver medal in singles and bronze in mixed at the Commonwealth Games while Williams reached the second round of singles and the second round of doubles (with Lance Beddoes).
At the nationals Coll took on Auckland junior Gabe Yam who is part of the New Zealand junior team travelling to India for the world champs next month. As expected it was Coll winning in straight games, however in the third game things didn’t quite go to plan.
Coll was up nine points to three before Yam came back as the top seed hit a couple of uncharacteristic errors and Yam won seven points in a row to equal the scores. But two unforced Yam errors then gave the match to Coll for a scoreline of 11-4, 11-3, 11-9 in 27 minutes.
Cool is now gunning for his fourth title in a row, while Williams is in into his second final. The Wellingtonian had to fight to overcome Beddoes in his semi with the match going to four games.
The women’s final is from 3.20pm at Henderson Squash Club followed by the men’s final scheduled an hour after.
(1) Joelle King (Waikato) bt Juee Bhide (Belmont Park) 11-1, 11-7, 11-3,
(4) Abbie Palmer (Auckland) bt Ellie Epke (Auckland) 11-8, 13-15, 11-6, 11-13, 11-5,
(3) Emma Millar (Waikato) bt Anika Jackson (Waikato) 11-3, 11-5, 11-8.
(2) Amanda Landers-Murphy (Rotorua) bt Priscilla Wildsmith (Remuera) 11-9, 11-4, 11-7,
King bt Palmer 11-7, 11-4, 11-7
Landers-Murphy bt Mllar 11-6, 11-8 12-14 11-9
(1) Paul Coll (Canterbury) bt Lwambe Chileshe (Waikato), 11-3, 11-5, 11-5,
Gabe Yam (Belmont Park) bt (4) Luke Jones (Palmerston North) 9-11, 12-10, 11-8, 11-5.
(3) Lance Beddoes (Henderson) bt Scott Galloway (Mitchell Park, Lower Hutt) 11-8, 11-4, 11-6,
(2) Evan Williams (Wellington) bt Matthew Lucente (Belmont Park) 11-9, 11-2, 11-2.
Coll bt Yam 11-4, 11-3, 11-9,
Williams bt Beddoes 11-6, 11-2, 5-11, 11-6.