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Duffield & Surrey H&RC Remain Unbeaten - But Redditch Give Chase

6 Feb 2008

Benz-Bavarian Duffield and PCL Whitehall Security Surrey H&RC extended their unbeaten records in this season's Premier League (PSL) in contrasting styles - but newcomers Energie Fitness Redditch staged a late challenge to the Group A leadership with a 5/0 away win over Nottingham in Tuesday's 7th round ties in the prestigious England Squash league sponsored by Towergate tlc.

Redditch, one of the few teams unaffected by player commitments to the PSA Tour, got off to a strong start against a significantly under-strength Nottingham squad - with New Zealander Jaclyn Hawkes and team-mate Jaymie Haycocks claiming straight games wins to put the visitors into the driving seat.

However, Nottingham stalwart Simon Parke denied the Worcestershire club an overall 15-0 whitewash win when he fought back from a game down against Redditch number one Renan Lavigne to lead 2/1. But French international Lavigne, a former Nottingham team-mate of Parke's, eventually came out on top - winning 9-6, 7-9, 5-9, 9-3, 9-2 to give Redditch maximum points for the night, and propel the club to third place in the Group A table.

Defending champions Duffield romped to their 22nd successive tie without defeat with a 4/1 home win over Esporta Oxford. But the visitors' Madeline Perry, the Irish international making her league comeback after sustaining a serious head injury in a fall last October, gave a polished performance to beat Duffield's Laura Hill 9-7, 9-7, 9-6.

But it was one-way traffic for the hosts thereafter as Shaun le Roux, Nick Taylor and Alex Stait went on to clinch another victory for the title-holders. Andrew Whipp delighted the home crowd in the final match of the evening when he twice stemmed comebacks by Scott Handley before beating the Oxford number one 9-5, 8-10, 10-8, 7-9, 9-2.

Meanwhile University Sport Birmingham maintained their grip on second place in Group A - and reduced the gap behind Duffield by a single point - when they beat a weakened Pontefract squad 4/1 at home. The Yorkshire club's Lauren Siddall put in a brave performance against the hosts' Laura Lengthorn-Massaro, but the world No12 from Preston recorded a 9-6, 11-9, 9-3 win to begin Birmingham's winning evening. Only Neil Cordell saved Pontefract's blushes with a 7-9, 9-1, 9-2, 9-4 win over Jonathan Tate - the teenager's second victory against the Birmingham team manager this season.

PCL Whitehall Security Surrey H&RC maintained their leadership of the Group B table - but the Croydon club were given their toughest test of the season by visitors Luxfords St George's Hill before sneaking a 3/2 win after the top string decider. The home team were facing defeat after Adrian Waller and Ben Ford lost out to Joe Lee and Mark Krajcsak, respectively, following Vicky Botwright's opening match win against Luxfords' Rachael Willmott.

However, Croydon's Italian international Davide Bianchetti pulled off a sensational 12-10, 10-8, 9-7 win over Daryl Selby - the 25-year-old from Essex fresh from his surprise Edinburgh Open title win at the weekend. It was then left to the Surrey club's Egyptian wizard Wael El Hindi to work his magic against Alister Walker - and the new world No9 duly obliged by beating the St George's Hill number one 9-3, 9-3, 9-5.

Despite being give a perfect start by England international Alison Waters, UniSport Guildford were unable to provide strong enough opposition to visitors Probuild Bristol to improve on their fifth-placed position in Group B. Waters, the women's title winner in Edinburgh, despatched Bristol's Sarah-Jane Perry 9-6, 9-7, 9-7 - but it was Bristol success thereafter as Lewys Hurst, Peter Marshall and team captain Hadrian Stiff all picked up comfortable wins.

In the top string clash, long-time Guildford contributor Stephen Meads was unable to match the Tour sharpness of Adrian Grant. The left-hander from London, who already boasts a PSA Tour title this year, at the Comfort Inn Open in Vancouver, brushed Meads aside - winning 10-8, 9-5, 9-3.

7th round results, Tuesday 5 February 2008

Group A:
Nottingham 0 Energie Fitness Redditch 5
Simon Parke lost to Renan Lavigne 6-9, 9-7, 9-5, 3-9, 2-9
Eddie Charlton lost to Jonathan Kemp 2-9, 3-9, 9-11
Lewis Walters lost to David Barnett 5-9, 7-9, 8-10
Mark Fuller lost to Jaymie Haycocks 5-9, 6-9, 7-9
Emma Beddoes lost to Jaclyn Hawkes 2-9, 3-9, 4-9

Benz-Bavarian Duffield 4 Esporta Oxford 1
Andrew Whipp bt Scott Handley 9-5, 8-10, 10-8, 7-9, 9-2
Alex Stait bt Kristen Johnson 9-7, 9-4, 9-6
Nick Taylor bt Thomas Phipps 9-6, 9-3, 11-9
Shaun le Roux bt Dominic Hamilton 9-3, 9-7, 9-3
Laura Hill lost to Madeline Perry 7-9, 7-9, 6-9

University Sport Birmingham 4 Pontefract 1
Joey Barrington bt Ryan Thompson 9-1, 9-7, 9-4
Stephen Coppinger bt Colin Ramasra 9-4, 9-2, 9-6
Jonathan Tate lost to Neil Cordell 9-7, 1-9, 2-9, 4-9
Alistair Mutch bt Sam Wileman 10-12, 9-4, 9-2, 9-3
Laura Lengthorn-Massaro bt Lauren Siddall 9-6, 11-9, 9-3

Group B:
UniSport Guildford 1 Probuild Bristol 4
Stephen Meads lost to Adrian Grant 8-10, 5-9, 3-9
Phil Rushworth lost to Hadrian Stiff 5-9, 8-10, 5-9
Alex Ingham lost to Peter Marshall 2-9, 2-9, 11-13
Mick Biggs lost to Lewys Hurst 7-9, 10-8, 6-9, 4-9
Alison Waters bt Sarah-Jane Perry 9-6, 9-7, 9-7

PCL Whitehall Security Surrey H&RC 3 Luxfords St George's Hill 2
Wael El Hindi bt Alister Walker 9-3, 9-3, 9-5
Davide Bianchetti bt Daryl Selby 12-10, 10-8, 9-7
Ben Ford lost to Mark Krajcsak 6-9, 10-8, 7-9, 2-9
Adrian Waller lost to Joe Lee 7-9, 7-9, 5-9
Vicky Botwright bt Rachel Willmott 9-4, 9-3, 11-9