Madeira International : Rooney rules
Rooney rules in Madeira
Patrick Rooney confirmed his number one seed status and defeated Tom Ford, by 3-1, in the final of the International Tournament of Madeira. In an all english battle the higher ranked player put an end to Tom Fords fairy tail return.
After the performance of both players during the week everybody expected a very close final match, but the truth is Patrick Rooney was in control for most of the time. The number one seed started really strong, unsettling Tom´s smooth squash, closing the first game 11-6. As expected, Ford responded in the second, pushing further the T position and putting more pressure on every shot. Rooney made a few unforced errors giving the wild card player four game points at 10-6. Ford needed only one point to tie the final at 1-1.
The third game was the best in the match and probably the best of the tournament. Great shots, unbelievable retrievals, long hard rallies; the works. The players exchanged the lead several times leaving the decision of the set down to the last two points. Ford eventually handed the game after an unforced error playing an easy dropshot, by his standard, and missing a lob which caught him out in a stroke position; 12-10 for Patrick Rooney and 2-1 up in the match.
After this the unseeded Englishman never fully recovered and Rooney seized the advantage early on in the fourth, 3-0. Tom still battled his way to 5-6 but the damage was done and Rooney ran away with the match, closing the fourth game 11-5.
After the final Patrick Rooney was a happy man. “I am really lost for words, feeling very emotional right now. I wanted to come here and do the best I could and I managed to win it. Really happy with how things worked out”.
This is a Tournament that the number one seed knows very well. “I have been here a few times and I really enjoy coming to Madeira. It´s an event that I love. Everything is made real easy for the players by the organization and I hope to come back next year”.
Semis : Rooney and Ford set up all English final
Top seed Patrick Rooney and wildcard Tom Ford won through to man all English final in Madeira.
The International Tournament of Madeira Island will have an all English final. Patrick Rooney, number one seed, will face wild card Tom Ford in a match that promises to shake the beautiful and picturesque atlantic Island. For the unseeded player the dream continues, hopefully giving Ford the motivation he needs to keep pushing up the PSA rankings to a level that reflects his quality.
On the other hand Patrick Rooney will want to honor his number one seed ranking and put an end to Ford´s fairy tale return.
In the first semi-final Patrick Rooney started quick off the blocks, putting a lot of pressure on Rui Soares. The Portuguese player had a very hard 3-2 quarter final win against Danish Kristian Frost and looked stunned by the quick and unrelenting squash of the Englishman. The 11-5 first set score reflects the superiority of the number one seed. It looked like Rooney would steal the match very quickly; big mistake. Soares came back very strong on the second game and showed Rooney what it feels like to be on the worst end of many of the rallies, tying the match after an 11-4 scoreline.
The key that unlocked the door to the final was hidden in the third set with both players giving it their all and producing some marvellous competitive squash. Rooney managed in the end to take this very crucial game and Soares looked down and out, and he was. The fourth was a one way traffic affair and the Englishman closed it out by 11-4. Nevertheless Rui Soares pull out his best result to date in the event .
In the second match of the afternoon, Tom Ford showed everybody present at the Galo Active courts why he once occupied the 60th position in the PSA rankings. The Englishman never gave Aditya Jagtap any easy shots and made life very hard for him. Jagtap managed to hold strong right until the end of the first set, only losing by 11-9. But as the game progressed Tom looked more and more in control making his opponent do a lot of court coverage and when the Indian player forced the issue, Ford picked everything up. The 11-5, 11-3 score in the last two sets provides a good idea about the increasing pressure Ford put his opponent under.
All set for an all English final.
Quarters : Ford joins top three seeds in semis
The quarter finals of the International Tournament of Madeira will be remembered as the most competitive squash ever seen in this stage of the competition to date.
The pearl of the atlantic, as Madeira Island is called, bared witness to some memorable squash delivered by the eight players left in the event.
In the top half of the main draw the number one seed, Patrick Rooney managed to progress fairly unscathed against David Baillargeon. The Canadian player tried to make the match as physical as possible by prolonging the points, but the superior technical quality of the English player emerged victorious at the end. The 3-0 final score leaves no doubt as to who was in control of the match.
On the other hand, on the lower half of the main draw and in what was the best match of the day, Bernat Jaume couldn´t find an answer to Tom Ford‘s best squash, despite a very hard fought match; eventually losing by 3-2. The number two seed started strong and took the first set. The smoothness of the englishman, who used a lot of variations to take the speed out of the spaniards game, took a toll on Bernat Jaume as he progressively started to lose control of the match, with Tom closing the second and third games 11-2, 13-11.
In the fourth set Bernat came back 11-9. The fifth and final game saw Tom Ford recovering from 3-6 down to close the match 11-8, and so the Cinderella story continues for Tom Ford in his return to the PSA Circuit.
The only Portuguese player left in the tournament, Rui Soares, faced a very strong Kristian Frost (Aut), in every sense of the word. The fourth and fifth seeded players, respectively, got locked in a royal battle with almost nothing separating them and the match went down to the wire. The Danish started the best of the two, winning the first two sets 11-2, 11-7.
Soares however, respondend in the third and fourth games, 5-11, 9-11, leaving it all to be decided in the fifth and final set; and what a set it was! Both players left it all on the court and the winner emerged only after a rollercoaster of emotions that lasted 65 minutes and ended 13-11 in favour of the Portuguese player, who will now face Patrick Rooney in the semis.
Aditya Jagtap booked his place in the last four after defeating Austrian Aqeel Rehman by 3-1. The key to the victory was in the second game that the Indian player won 17-15 after losing the first 6-11. Aqeel Rehman never fully recovered from that blow and from that point on the game changed in favour of Aditya Jagtap. The third seeded player will now face Tom Ford.
Round Two : Top seeds show their mettle
Day two of the highly anticipated International Tournament of Madeira brought an even higher level of squash as the top seeded players were all in action, and that is exactly what happened.
Number one seeded player Patrick Rooney was looking to overcome the frustrating early exit in last years tournament and started his bid to lift the trophy this year against spaniard Sergio Garcia Pollan. Starting strong off the blocks, the englishman imposed an unrelenting pace for which the spaniard had no answer, closing the match at 3-0.
Canadian David Baillargeon (number 6 seed) had to pull out all the stops to get the better of Miles Jenkins). The 3-0 result is misleading as the game was very evenly matched, as proven by the 13-11, 12-10, 11-5 score.
After a great first round performance there was a lot of expectation about Tom Ford’s current form. The ex-60 rank player in the world and wild card for this event was up against seven seed Emyr Evans and stamped his authority by winning the match by the larger margin (3-0). Can he make it all the way in his return to competition?
Portuguese players in the event faced different fates. Rui Soares (4th seed) progressed to the third round after beating Harry Falconer by 3-0 and will now face Kristian Frost who defeated Robin Gadola with ease by the same score.
Cláudio Pinto couldn’t cause an upset and lost against the second seeded player of the event, Bernat Jaume. Despite fighting hard for each point the Portuguese had no answer for the stronger game of his opponent, naturally losing by 3-0.
After a hard fought battle against Aqeel Rehman, the German player saw his intentions of progressing to the next round cut short by the in-form Austrian, losing 3-1.
After a slow start the third favorite to win the event, Aditya Jagtap, managed to come through comfortably against Owain Taylor winning 3-0.
Round One : Top ranked players progress almost unharmed …
Day one at the International Tournament Madeira Island 2019 saw the majority of the top ranked players progress unscathed to round two of the competition.
Taking place at one of the most beautiful locations on tour, the players raised to the expectations of the crowd and delivered some exciting squash.
In the biggest upset of the day Wales’ Owain Taylor beat Dutchman Roshan Bharos 3-1. The two hundred and fifth PSA ranked player managed to overcome the one hundred and twenty seventh in 71 minutes, therefore booking his place in round two where he will now face the third seeded player for this tournament, Aditya Jagtap from India.
Wildcard Tom Ford celebrated his return to competition with a solid 3-1 victory over fellow englishman Stuart MacGregor who made life very difficult to the former world #60.