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Squash: Kobayashi bags Japan hat-trick; Leo Au wins men’s

Top seed Misaki Kobayashi in action against second seed Siyoli Waters in Monday's Pro Squash in Japan final. Photos: c/o WSA.

Top seed Misaki Kobayashi takes on second seed Siyoli Waters in Monday’s Pro Squash in Japan final. Photos: c/o WSA.

November 4, 2014: Japan No. 1 Misaki Kobayashi claimed her third straight Pro Squash in Japan title by beating South African Siyoli Waters 3-1 (11-1, 8-11, 11-8, 11-9) in Monday’s final in Tokyo.

 

The highest-ranked Japanese player of all-time, 24-year-old Kobayashi reached the final of the WSA Tour 10 event at Spa Shirokane without dropping a game. Ranked World No. 36, the top seed dispatched Hong Kong’s sixth seed Vanessa Chu in the semi-finals, while Waters also saw off Hong Kong opposition in the other semi by beating third seed Liu Tsz-ling in four games.

 

In the final, the Tokyo-born Kobayashi raced away to take the opening game for the loss of just a single point. However, second seed Waters – who overtook Kobayashi to move to World No. 33 in November’s rankings – regrouped in the second to draw level.

 

But spurred on by local support, Kobayashi survived the next two games to triumph in 38 minutes for her third WSA title in Japan and seventh of her career.

 

Kobayashi (right) with promoter Miyuki Adachi.

Kobayashi (right) with promoter Miyuki Adachi.

“I’m really happy to win this title again in my country,” said Kobayashi. “I don’t play many local tournaments so my family don’t really get to watch my matches, so I just wanted to play well and I’m glad that I came through.”

 

Top seed Leo Au of Hong Kong won the men’s title by defeating Jamie Haycocks 3-0 (11-3, 11-9, 11-5).

 

Au dropped just two games on his way to the final, having to come back from 2-0 down against Hong Kong teammate Tsz Fung Yip in the quarter-final.

 

Haycocks, 30, didn’t lose a single game until running into the Hong Kong No. 2, who claimed his sixth PSA title and first since January’s Bankers Hall Club Pro Am. Au also beat Haycocks in this year’s Canary Wharf Squash Classic.

 

Taiwan No. 1 James Huang, 29, enjoyed a big win earlier in the tournament when the World No. 111 beat third seed Matthew Karwalski of Australia 3-1 to reach the semis, where he lost to Haycocks.

 

Pro Squash In Japan, Tokyo, Japan

 

Women’s Final

[1] Misaki Kobayashi (JPN) bt [2] Siyoli Waters (RSA) 11-1, 8-11, 11-8, 11-9 (38m)

 

Semi-finals

[1] Misaki Kobayashi (JPN) bt [6] Vanessa Chu (HKG) 11-6, 11-7, 11-3 (23m)

[2] Siyoli Waters (RSA) bt [3] Liu Tsz-Ling (HKG) 11-5, 12-10, 4-11, 11-9 (31m)

 

Quarter-finals

[1] Misaki Kobayashi (JPN) bt [7] Lee Ka Yi (HKG) 11-2, 11-5, 11-3 (19m)

[6] Vanessa Chu (HKG) bt [4] Sina Wall (GER) 11-9, 12-10, 11-5 (26m)

[3] Liu Tsz-Ling (HKG) bt [5] Belen Etchechoury (ARG) 11-2, 11-8, 11-1 (18m)

[2] Siyoli Waters (RSA) bt [8] Satomi Watanabe (JPN) 12-14, 14-12, 11-9, 11-6 (37m)

 

First round:

[7] Lee Ka Yi (HKG) bt Mayu Yamazaki (JPN) 11-4, 11-9, 11-6 (19m)

[6] Vanessa Chu (HKG) bt Chinatsu Matsui (JPN) 5-11, 12-10, 11-9, 11-9 (39m)

[8] Satomi Watanabe (JPN) bt Risa Sugimoto (JPN) w/o

 

Men’s final

[1] Leo Au (HKG) bt [2] Jaymie Haycocks (ENG) 3-0: 11-3, 11-9, 11-5 (38m)

 

Semi-finals

[1] Leo Au (HKG) bt [6] Tom Ford (ENG) 3-0; 15-13, 11-7, 11-6 (59m)

[2] Jaymie Haycocks (ENG) bt [7] James Huang (TPE) 3-0: 11-7, 11-7, 11-7 (43m)

 

Quarter-finals

[1] Leo Au (HKG) bt [5] Tsz Fung Yip (HKG) 3-2: 10-12, 6-11, 13-11, 11-9, 11-7 (83m)

[6] Tom Ford (ENG) bt [4] Aqeel Rehman (AUT) 3-0: 11-6, 13-11, 11-5 (36m)

[7] James Huang (TPE) bt [3] Matthew Karwalski (AUS) 3-1: 11-8, 4-11, 11-8, 14-12 (59m)

[2] Jaymie Haycocks (ENG) bt [8] Elvinn Keo (MAS) 3-0: 12-10, 11-6, 11-7 (37m)

 

First round

[1] Leo Au (HKG) bt [Q] Angus Gillams (ENG) 3-0:  11-5, 11-4, 11-6 (28m)

[5] Tsz Fung Yip (HKG) bt [Q] Alex Noakes (ENG) 3-0: 11-5, 11-4, 11-7 (28m)

[6] Tom Ford (ENG) bt [WC] Taiki Kaido (JPN) 3-0: 11-9, 11-9, 11-7 (28m)

[4] Aqeel Rehman (AUT) bt Chi Him Wong (HKG) 3-0: 11-8, 11-9, 14-12 (35m)

[3] Matthew Karwalski (AUS) bt [Q] Shimizu Takanori (JPN) 3-0: 11-3, 11-3, 11-8 (24m)

[7] James Huang (TPE) bt Cheuk Yan Tang (HKG) 3-1: 11-8, 11-7, 7-11, 11-3 (49m)

[8] Elvinn Keo (MAS) bt [Q] Shinnosuke Tsukue (JPN) 3-1: 11-7, 9-11, 11-5, 11-8 (35m)

[2] Jaymie Haycocks (ENG) bt Adam Murrills (ENG) 3-0: 11-6, 11-9, 11-9 (42m)

 

Sources: WSA (www.wsaworldtour.com), PSA (www.psaworldtour.com); Editing by SportAsia

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