Springfield Solutions British Squash Grand Prix Quarter-Final Results

Third seed Gaultier became the first player to reach the semi-finals, but he had to overcome a strong challenge from Germany’s unseeded Simon Rosner to do so. Rosner, the World No.18, stayed with Gaultier every inch of the way in the first two games, failing to capitalise on a game ball in the first as Gaultier took it 12-10, then taking the second 12-10 on his second game ball.

The Frenchman dominated the third, and although Rosner was back on competitive terms in the fourth, Gaultier pulled clear at the end of the game to take it 11-7.

“After winning the first, I was up 4-0 and just relaxed too much,” admitted Gaultier. “It’s only in the third and fourth I started to vary my shots to the four corners, I was able to speed up the pace. But he didn’t make it simple for me, that’s for sure!!!”

“In the third, my game just wasn’t there, but I got it back for the fourth,” said Rosner. “I’m proud I’m able to compete with Greg and make it a hard fight for him, he is one of the players I’ve been looking up to since I was 12, and I hope that I can sneak a win one day.”

The second quarter-final between English left-handers Peter Barker and Adrian Grant produced a 20 minute opening game, which Barker eventually took 11-8. The fourth seed then proceeded to take complete control to close-out an 11-8 11-1 11-3 victory.

“I had to be solid and focused, because I wasn’t either of those things yesterday,” said Barker. “I’m not sure Adrian was at the top of his form or even 100% tonight, but he is still dangerous and can hit shots from anywhere, so I really had to stay focused.”

World No.1 James Willstrop has never lost to Dutchman Laurens Jan Anjema over a dozen encounters, but it was the Dutchman who made the better start in their quarter-final, taking a highly competitive first game 11/8.

The top seed struck back though, taking control of the next three to win 8-11 11-5 11-3 11-5 to confirm a semi-final meeting with one of his closest rivals Gregory Gaultier.

“I had to cover a lot of ground today, LJ is very strong physically,” said Willstrop. “It’s a good result for me to beat him 3/1, happy with that, he really got me sharp for tomorrow.”

The final quarter-final match proved to be almost a carbon copy of Willstrop’s win, as Alister Walker played superbly to take the opening game against second seed Nick Matthew 11-8 and then take an 8-5 lead. But like other seeded players before him, the world champion weathered the storm, came back to claim the second game 11-8 before dominating the next two games to record a satisfying 8-11 11-8 11-4 11-3 victory.

“Ali sure makes you work hard, but it’s funny how quickly things turn round, I was facing going 2-0 down and maybe going home, and the next thing I know I’m 7-1 up in the third,” said a relieved Matthew.

“He was immaculate for the first two games and the best compliment I can give him is that I had to change my game. James spoke earlier about the game of chess, that’s exactly how it felt for me tonight.”

PSA International 70 Springfield Solutions British Grand Prix
National Squash Centre, Manchester, England

[1] James Willstrop (ENG) 3-1 Laurens Jan Anjema (NED) 8/11, 11/5, 11/3, 11/5 (66m)
[3] Gregory Gaultier (FRA) 3-1 Simon Rosner (GER) 12/10, 10/12, 11/5, 11/7 (68m)
[4] Peter Barker (ENG) 3-0 Adrian Grant (ENG) 11/8, 11/1, 11/3 (43m)
[2] Nick Matthew (ENG) 3-1 Alister Walker (BOT) 9/11, 11/8, 11/4, 11/3 (58m)

Semi-Final Line-up:
[1] James Willstrop (ENG) v [3] Gregory Gaultier (FRA)
[2] Nick Matthew (ENG) v [4] Peter Barker (ENG)

The Springfield Solutions British Grand Prix Squash Championship is being staged at the National Squash Centre in Manchester from 21-24 September.

Tickets for the Springfield Solutions British Grand Prix - Manchester 2012 can now be booked online at www.isportgroup.com/ticketing or by telephone on 0844 8797 949.

Official Website: www.britishsquashgrandprix.com

For further information email sales@isportgroup.com or visit: www.squashsite.co.uk/bgp

Issued by info@isportgroup.com on behalf of the Springfield Solutions British Grand Prix – Manchester 2012

The semi-finals of the Springfield Solutions British Grand Prix being staged at the National Squash Centre in Manchester will be contested by the championship’s top four seeds with World Champion Nick Matthew due to face compatriot Peter Barker and World No.1 James Willstrop to play Gregory Gaultier of France.