All Top Seeds Through at the Irish Open

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Quarter Final Results for the Cannon Kirk Homes Irish Open 2011:
[3] Jaclyn Hawkes (NZL)
bt. [7] Dominique Lloyd-Walter (ENG) 14/12, 11/13, 11/4, 11/3 (50 mins)
[4] Nour El Tayeb (EGY) bt. [Q] Tenille Swartz (RSA) 11/7, 11/6, 11/9 (23 mins)
[1] Madeline Perry (IRE) bt. [8] Manuela Manetta (ITA) 11/7, 11/5, 11/6 (37 mins)
[2] Vanessa Atkinson (NED) bt. [6] Aisling Blake (IRL) 11/9, 11/6, 8/11, 11/7 (40 mins)

*Squash Stars Ambassadors

First match of the day was the first ladies quarter final between No 3 seed Jaclyn Hawkes from New Zealand and No 7 seed Dominique Lloyd-Walter from England, two very experienced players. Dominique started off very well taking a 6/2 lead, Jaclyn pulled back a few points but Dominique still led 8/7, went to 9/9, Jaclyn got the first game ball at 10/9, Dom levelled to go to extra points, 11/11, 12/12, then Jaclyn finished off to take the game 14/12. The second started very closely contested with both players taking a couple of points each in turn until Dominique led 6/5. Jaclyn then strung four points together to lead 9/6, Dominique took two then Jaclyn got game ball at 10/8. Dominique levelled up again at 10/10 and 11/11, but this time she held firm to take the game 13/11. Jaclyn got back into the game quickly at the start of the third, taking a huge 6/0 lead, then with Dominique seeming to tire, possibly after yesterday’s hard five-setter, but taking the odd points, Jaclyn finished the game off at 11/4. The fourth was level at 2/2 then with Dom tiring again Jaclyn found another gear, allowing Dom only one more point on the way to winning the game 11/3 and the match 3 – 0.

The next women’s match brought together the only remaining qualifier Tenille Swartz of South Africa and the No 4 seed, the 18 year old Egyptian Nour El Tayeb, who has just gone into the top twenty in the rankings. Tenille played exceptionally well against a player ranked 27 places above her, showing great skills and movement around the court but Nour showed the Irish crowd just why she has shot up the rankings winning three straight games 11/7, 11/6, 11/9 in a lovely exhibition of squash.

Next up for the women was the player quite a few locals had come to watch, Ireland’s favourite player and the clear tournament favourite Madeline Perry, against feisty Italian lady Manuela Manetta the No 8 seed. Madeline started off in great form taking a 7/1 early lead, Manuela did manage to take a few points in between, including saving one game ball at 10/6, but Madeline took the game 11/7. With Manuela battling hard and running hard she still could not contain Madeline as she scored in several short bursts of points to win the second game 11/5 and the third 11/6.

Aisling's Ma & Pa

Final women’s match up was No 2 seed and former World Champion Vanessa Atkinson from Holland against the host club’s leading player Aisling Blake, the No 6 seed, who had plenty of local support including her lovely parents, who are always a pleasure to meet. Aisling took an early 3/1 lead in the first, Vanessa then moved into a 5/3 lead, points moved in ones and twos up to 9/9 but then Vanessa served out to take the first 11/9. Vanessa started much better in the second and took a 7/3 lead, with both players showing great athleticism and skilful shot making Aisling could not quite make up the difference and Vanessa took the game 11/6. A turn round in the third with Aisling taking a 5/1 and then 7/3 lead, with the crowd cheering every point, Vanessa then pulled level at 7/7, but could not keep up the charge and to the delight of the locals Aisling took the third game 11/8. In the fourth Vanessa led 3/1, then 5/4, but then despite Aisling fighting for every ball Vanessa moved into a 9/4 lead, Aisling pulled back two points but despite saving one match ball at 10/6 against, Vanessa finished off the game at 11/7, winning the match 3 games to 1.


Top seed and title defender, Madeline Perry of Ireland.

Vanessa Atkinson, former world champion and tournament's second seed.

In the Semi-Finals tomorrow!

17:00 [1] Madeline Perry (IRL) v [3] Jaclyn Hawkes (NZL)
19:00 [4] Nour El Tayeb (EGY) v [2] Vanessa Atkinson (NED)

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