SQUASH: Giles retains county title
SWINDON’S Adam Giles retained his Wiltshire Squash County Championship crown with a fantastic performance at the South Marston Hotel and Country Club.
Giles, who went into the tournament as the number one seed following last year’s success, beat second seed James Ryan in the final after battling his way through a tough field including the county’s best players.
Swindon’s Nigel Rowe was seeded third for the event but eventually fell to Ryan in the semi-finals.
The first round of the tournament produced some superb matches with the highlight being Tom Oatley’s victory over Pat Carty in a dramatic fourth game as all the seeds made it through to round two.
The standard of squash increased as the field diminished, highlighted by John Pierce’s victory over Justin Cox in a match full of hard fought rallies.
Rowe took out the competition’s youngest player, 14-year-old Calli Smith, while Giles breezed through as Ryan had to fight to beat Dave Ridgeway 3-1.
The quarter-finals produced yet more superb squash as Rowe beat out John Cortaux 3-2 in a mammoth encounter and Giles, Nick McGrath and Ryan all advanced.
The semis were played on Sunday morning and Giles picked up where he left off the previous day as he comfortably beat McGrath to make the final, but Ryan was again forced to battle to beat Rowe 3-1 to set up a battle of the two top seeds in the final.
Following a two-hour wait, the two players took to the court for a game packed with long, energy-sapping rallies, as Giles took the opening game 11-9. The second came 11-8 but Giles was beginning to tire as he fought back to have three game points in the third, but Giles came through to take the title and win the match 3-0.
The players who excited the main draw entered the two Plate competitions which also produced some good games. Justin Cox beat Gary Preston 3-2 in a tough fifth set, before defeating Oatley in the semi to set up a final with Dave Ridgway. Cox took the final 3-0 in an unexpected result.
In the other Plate final, Carty beat his fellow Marlborough player Russ Borthwick to take victory.