R2 : Women’s Opening Matches

The first players through to the last 16 are England’s Lucy Turmel and Jasmine Hutton, Canada’s Danielle Letourneau and Scotland’s Lisa Aitken

Lisa Aitken (Sco) 3-0 Hana Ramadan (Egy)    11-8, 11-6, 11-3 (30m)
Jasmine Hutton (Eng) 3-1 Liu Tsz Ling (Hkg)   12-10, 9-11, 11-3, 13-11 (33m)
Lucy Turmel (Eng) 3-0 Cindy Merlo (Sui)    11-4, 11-3, 11-4 (21m)
[9/16] Danielle Letourneau (Can) 3-0 Alexandra Fuller (Rsa) 11-6, 11-5, 11-2 (23m)

English duo advance to last sixteen

Again the two English hopes playing at the same time with both of them having a good outcome. Still, pretty simple for Lucy, Cindy had a hard match yesterday, dug in deep and maybe was a bit heavy legged.

As for compatriot Jaz, a completely different kettle of fish! A superb battle, with both players very involved and a match ball lost by the Hong Kong fighter in a major split… Superb match to start another long day.

For the two other matches, Hana won’t be happy with her performance. Maybe tired from her encounter yesterday with friend Zeina Mickawy, she didn’t seem comfortable with her movement and her shots selection was not as good as it normally is. Lisa was just too comfortable today on there to be threatened.

As for Danielle, she was finally relaxed and calm on there and it shows. Alex did her best, run a heck of a lot, but the Canadian, far too much in control.

Lucy : Yes, happy with my performance. I played Cindy not too long ago, in Hull, I won 3/0 as well, but I wanted to make it even more convincing and I think I managed to do that with my performance today.

In the British I made too many unforced errors, and gave her too many points. So today, I was a bit more stingy, I think I only hit a couple of errors in the whole match. So I kept the ball out of the tin, kept the rallies going, and then it worked in my favour

I haven’t played neither SJ nor Farida, they are contrasting styles, hopefully they’ll have a contrasting match, and it will be an interesting one tomorrow.

Danielle : Recently I have put so much pressure on myself, I have been really tense so today, I was able to just relax and play not worrying about anything else.

Well, part of it is that I made this move (to Egypt) and I know I have improved. And I guess I want to show it. I know it’s there. But of course in tournaments, you have some tough matches. It’s not a question to prove it to other people, but to myself. That the work I’ve done is paying off. But then you just get too tense.

So today I just tried to relax.

At the moment, I would describe my game as “good length”, and if I have a chance to volley, I will definitely take it, but my game is changing and evolving, I’m always trying to change things. I feel that my identity as a player has evolved a lot. A year ago, it was a bit of a lob and drop game, then it went to just power, and now it’s about finding a good mix of all this.

Lisa : I had a very clear plan in my mind of what I wanted to do in terms of I watched her game back yesterday, and I saw a couple of areas where I wanted to make sure I targeted. I think I did that well. I got the reward with either a stroke or an opportunity.

There were little moments where I went off the plan. Then it was a bit more difficult. But I was pleased with the way I was able to regroup and go back to the plan.

She is a very dangerous player and if I give her a little inch, she’ll take it. As well as mentally I approached yesterday, finally being able to bring out yesterday as a personality in the 5th, I wanted to make sure that I would start like that from 0/0 today.

This is my first time in round 3 and my first time playing at the Pyramids tomorrow, so regardless of who I play, I want to cherish the moment and take it all in.

I remember the first time ever I saw squash at the Pyramids, Peter Nicol was playing Barada. And Peter’s dad, Pat, was my coach, a great guy, he kind of picked me out of a crowd and took me to most of my junior events, so Peter was someone I talked to a lot. And I remember that someone from not too far away from my house, was playing at the Pyramids. And I remember thinking: I want that.

Jazz : It was like yesterday, it was really hard. At no point in the match I felt secure, I never felt oh you are in control now, you have a good lead. I never felt that at all. It was always tough. I was happy with the way I came through in the 4th, it took a little mental toughness to keep pushing on. And I knew that if I kept making it hard for her, maybe force a little more errors…

And I think when it came to the backend of the game, I made her push a little harder, and there were a few times where I forced errors out of the serve, or she would be a bad second shot.

No unfortunately, not playing at the Pyramids, Lucy and I are on the backcourts again tomorrow… Nevertheless, it’s an amazing location, and hopefully one day I’ll get the chance to play there.