10:40 pm
24 May 2024

Koukal Makes It 33 In Madeira

26 Jul 2015

Czech No.1 Jan Koukal notched up the 33rd PSA World Tour title of his career after winning the Madeira International Open in Caniço, Portugal.

The second seed overcame rising star George Parker 6-11, 11-9, 11-8, 11-6 to inflict a third successive final defeat on the English teenager in as many months.

Koukal now ties with illustrious Tour colleagues and former world number ones Amr Shabana (Egypt) and Nick Matthew (England) on 33 title wins, in joint third place in the list of current Tour title winners behind Mike Corren (50) and Ramy Ashour (36).

Victory at the second edition of the PSA M5 event at Onda Revital Club also secured back-to-back titles for the 32-year-old from Prague, following his success at the Château-Arnoux Open earlier this month.

"It was my first time playing in Madeira so it feels extra special to win here," said a delighted Koukal. "It was a really tough match, especially after playing my semi final against Lyell [Fuller] earlier in the day.

"George started really well and put me under a lot of pressure. He actually surprised me with the way he was playing so it took me a couple of games to adapt and change my strategy. I didn't feel very sharp in the first game but I started moving a lot better in the second and I managed to control the rest of the match."

Parker, meanwhile, was left to rue an error-strewn display in which he accrued eight unforced errors in the third game alone.

The third seed from Leicester - positioned 35 places above Koukal in the PSA World Rankings - appeared in cruise control in the opening exchanges and punished a number of loose shots from Koukal to take the first game in quick-fire fashion.

The duo traded blows in the second game but with the scores tied at nine-apiece, Parker tinned a routine drop shot to hand Koukal the advantage. The former world No.39, who needed five games to defeat Parker's fellow countryman Lyell Fuller in the last four, duly converted his first game ball with a clinging backhand drive to level the arrears.

Commenting on his 19-year-old opponent, Koukal added: "I know George is desperate to win his first title but he is still young and will have plenty of chances in the future. He deserves big congratulations for reaching the final because he caused a huge upset beating the top seed [Alejandro Garbi Caro] in the semi final."