Top seed Frost triumphs in Prague
The final between two top seeds Kristian Frost and Miko Äijänen was not as close as yesterday´s semifinal matches but still 50 minutes of high quality squash. Kristian used his experience very well to get the control of the rallies at the beginnning. He got to a good lead and won the first fairly comfortably. T
The second looked the same up to 6/0 but then Miko decided he did not want to go down easily. He started to volley more and managed to get in front of Kristian for most of the rallies and slowly started to get closer. He managed to get to 6/7 but Kristian played the big points at the end very well and won 11/7. The third was again dominated by Kristian who won 11/2 and could start to celebrate his 16th PSA title.
Kristian Frost: I think I played really well today. I probably made only one mistake in the whole match. Last time we played it was a really hard and long match and I lost 2/3. So I am happy to win in three this time. He is a good young player with a good future ahead of him.
Miko Äijänen: All credit to Kristian who was just too solid today. He didn´t give me anything today. Usually when we play against each other I am the one who is controlling the game but not today. He was just more accurate and more clinical with his shots.
Top seeds win tough semis in Prague
Tomas Forter reports, photos by Irena Vanišová
The first semifinal was full of long and physically hard rallies. Kristian was in the lead for most of the first but Miles came back strong towards the end and won it. Second was close all the way and this time it was Kristian who won at the end. In the third Kristian got to 8/2 quickly and looked totally in control.
He probably relaxed a bit too much and Miles used it well. He managed to get closer, saved three gameballs from 6/10 and was unlucky to hit a loose shot towards the middle which gave stroke to Kristian for 2/1 lead.
Big push in the third cost Miles a lot of energy and Kristian soon got to a good lead in the fourth which he managed to win 11/5. 67 minutes of good quality squash.
Kristian Frost: Miles played a good game. I am glad I won. It was a good and fair game. I am looking forward to play whoever wins the second semifinal.
Miles Jenkins: Tough match to lose but overall happy with my performance. Kristian was very solid today and didn´t give me anything. Overall a good tournament and look forward to coming back again.
The second semifinal was a bit different than the first. Both players attacked to the front much more often than in the first match and we saw some perfect shots but also some cheap mistakes. Balasz made more mistakes in the first so Miko got 1/0 lead. In the second Balasz´s shots went in and he levelled the score.
He kept the momentum in the third, was in the lead for most of it but could not use his chances at 10/7. Miko saved all three gameballs and won the game on his first chance at 11/10 when he got a stroke after Balasz hit the ball towards himself. In the fourth Miko got upset with some of the ref´s calls and Balasz again levelled the score.
The fifth was a big battle. 1/1, 2/2 3/3, 4/4, Miko 7/4, Balasz comes back to 7/7, Miko 8/7 with a tight backhand drop, 9/7 after a marathon rally with fantastic retrieving from both, both happy to get the court wiped, 10/7 matchball with a tight forehand drop, cheap mistake from Miko, 8/10 matchball and finaly cross court drop from Miko out of reach for Balasz and we will have two top seeds in the final tomorrow. 76 minutes of brutal battle on the hot court.
Miko Äijänen: Tough match. I think I was just a little bit better today. I felt I was a bit under pressure but then he made some crucial mistakes which gave me the chance to win today. Tomorrow a match against Kristian Frost again. It is going to be brutal but I am ready for it.
Balasz Farkas: Hard games. I think the same as Miko. I tried to put him under pressure but I made too many mistakes at the end of the games and it was enough for him to win a match. I fight until I can but today was not enough. Next time I hope we will play another brutal match but I want to go out of the court like a winner.
Quarters: Locals bow out in Prague quarters
Tomas Forter reports, photos by Irena Vanišová
The first match was dominated by the top seed Kristian Frost. He simply gave Viktor Byrtus no time to control the rallies. His length was much better and Viktor did not have the patience to stay in the rallies long enough on a very hot and bouncy court.
Kristian Frost: Great match. I tried my best and hopefully I can win tomorrow as well.
Viktor Byrtus: I couldn´t get into my game. He played really well. He made only one mistake in the whole match. I wish him good luck in the rest of the tournament.
Second match was also won comfortably by the seeded player. Miles Jenkins´ length was better and tighter than the one of Ondřej Vorlíček. Miles was able to create his opportunities to go short much better and used them very well. Ondřej definitely felt his two marathon matches from previous two days but he can be very happy with his performance in the tournament as this was his first ever PSA quarterfinal.
Miles Jenkins: Happy with that performance. I stuck to my game plan throughout hitting good targets and keep it pretty straight. Looking forward to the semi final tomorrow.
Ondřej Vorlíček: I could not handle tempo of my opponent from the start. Miles was playing really well from the front, making no mistakes and made it really difficult for me to stay in rallies. In the last game I felt those two comebacks from previous games. I am not happy with the result of this match but I think that overall the tournament was pretty successful for me.
Third quarterfinal between last home hope Jakub Solnicky and Hungarian 3rd seed Balasz Farkas was probably the best match of the tournament so far. It was played in an excellent spirit with hardly any decisions from the referee needed. Jakub played an excellent first game. He was putting Balasz under a lot of pressure and was able to finish off the rallies in the front really well.
In the second and third he lost his concentration for a while and it was all Balasz needed. He was able to score points quickly and get a good lead. Jakub was coming back in both games but the lead was too big and Balasz got to 2/1. Jakub led for the most of the fourth but Balasz came back to get to 9/8 lead. Jakub was looking tired but he played excellent three points to win the game and force the decider. Balasz was well aware Jakub was getting tired and was just pushing him all the time and Jakub started to make mistakes which gave Balasz too big a lead again.
Balasz Farkas: I really enjoyed my game against Jakub. He is a really good player and person.
I thought before the game that if I want to win iIneed to play my best and leave everything on a court. He played very well today and I tried to do my best but I made too many mistakes in the games. So we were running for almost one hour and played a really good match but this time I was a little bit better and thats why I could win 3:2 against him. I hope tomorrow in the semi final I will play a better squash and I can move to the final.
Jakub Solnický: I played Balasz probably for the fifth time this season so I knew it would be a very tough match. In the first game I played exactly what I wanted. I was dictating the tempo but the game cost me a lot of energy. I started the second badly and I was always behind after that. In the fifth I was tired from the heavy schedule I had over the last few weeks. Although I lost I really enjoyed the match in front of a good home crowd and now it is time to relax and rest before the summer training.
Last match between no. 2 seed Miko Äijänen and no. 8 seed Owain Taylor was also a very close match. Very different to the previous one. High pace and a lot of hard hitting from both players and also more colisions and decisions from the referee.
Owain won the first but Miko got a good start in the second and was always a little bit ahead from there. He got to 2/1 lead after two close games and although Owain was still fighting Miko managed to keep the lead for the whole game and closed the match in four.
Miko Äijänen: Difficult match because I didn´t get the best start. After first I started to get the ball past him bit more and started to get the control. In the fourth I felt he got a bit too tired.
Owain Taylor: I played Miko a couple of weeks ago and I won a tough 3/2. So I knew it would be tough this time. I though I played really well in the first game and controlled it but did not have the energy to do that for the next three. Thank you for a good tournament. I will come back next time again.
Czech trio advance as Vorlicek comeback gatecrashes the quarters
Three Czech players will play in three quarterfinals tomorrow. Both European junior champion Viktor Byrtus and his training partner and teammate Jakub Solnicky confirmed their positions of seeded players and both won in four games.
Ondrej Vorlicek caused second consecutive upset and second day in a row he managed to turn his match from 0/2 down. No. 4 seed Roee Avraham dominated the first two games against but then it looked like he wanted to change things that were working really well and let Ondrej back into the match.
He proved he is a great fighter again and managed to beat Roee 11/8 in the fifth in the longest match of the tournament so far 68 minutes. He beat his yesterday´s match by 5 min.
All the other matches went to the seedings and most of the seeded players were able to win quite comfortably so they should all be fresh for tomorrow´s quarterfinals.
Upsets in Round One
Four out of eight matches ended with an upsets tonight in Prague, reports Tomas Forter
Czech fans especially liked the way Ondřej Vorlíček turned his match against Swiss Cedric Kuchen from 0/2 down. Second Czech who progressed into tomorrow’s 2nd round is David Zeman who beat another Czech Vojtěch Ryba.
Other upsets were Israel’s Ido Burstein beating Zeeshan Khan from Sweden 3/0, Julian Tomlinson from England beat Chua Man Chin from Singapore 3/0 and Amadeo Costa from Switzerland beat Rohan Mandil from France also 3/0.
They will be joined tomorrow by seeds Vladislav Titov who beat Czech junior Petr Nohel 3/1, England’s Nick Mulvey who beat Czech Benjamin Bergel 3/0 and Joseph White from Australia who beat Spaniard Nilo Vidal 3/0.Previous events