Grant & Anjema To Contest Wolverhampton Final
5 Oct 08
England's Adrian Grant and Dutchman Laurens Jan Anjema will contest the final of the 2008 Wolverhampton Open after prevailing in contrasting semi-finals of the $30,000 PSA Tour event - the UK's biggest club-based squash championship - in its third year at Wolverhampton Lawn Tennis & Squash Club in Wolverhampton, England.
In an epic 73-minute encounter against fellow countryman Alister Walker, top seed Grant showed no signs of fatigue - despite progressing to the penultimate round via an arduous 92-minute quarter-final against compatriot Jonathan Kemp less than twenty-four hours earlier.
Although Walker, the eighth seed from Leeds, sought to seize the initiative with more adventurous attacking squash, Grant eventually overcame his opponent's challenge with greater consistency, aligned with smooth and efficient movement and often breathtaking retrieval.
"Today was very hard and I had to dig really deep to win," said London-born left-hander Grant after his 11-9, 9-11, 11-6, 11-3 victory.
"Alister has improved a lot this year and I'm pleased to have progressed to the final and looking forward to giving it a good go tomorrow," added the Yorkshire-based world No13, now in his 20th PSA Tour final.
The 27-year-old Englishman will face second seed Laurens Jan Anjema, who was in devastating form in a clinical 37-minute 11-1, 11-3, 11-3 victory over surprise opponent Aamir Atlas Khan, the Pakistan teenager who shocked Australia's third seed Cameron Pilley - last year's runner-up - in the opening round.
"I played out of my skin tonight," said Anjema, the three-time Dutch champion who is now celebrating his 19th Tour final appearance, and his third this year. "Playing on traditional courts is very different to playing at the bigger events on the all-glass court, but often playing in front of a smaller but knowledgeable crowd like today creates more atmosphere.
"I hope I can come back tomorrow and give the supporters something to shout about."