Squash champs successful

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The Oamaru Squash and Badminton Club hosted the South Island Junior Squash Championships for a consecutive year from Saturday through to Monday.

Organiser Andrea Naylor said she was very satisfied with how the tournament ran and was pleased that all participants and their accompanying families enjoyed their time at the event.

The tournament hosted 94 entrants, coming from Whangarei to Invercargill, with games beginning at 9am on Saturday and finishing off with a prize-giving ceremony on Monday afternoon.

Abbie Palmer was number one seed in both the under-17 girls’ and under-19 girls’ sections, winning the two titles convincingly over Katie Fairweather and Sophie O’ Connell respectively.

Palmer travelled from Waipu, playing out of the North Shore Squash Club and represented New Zealand at the World Junior Squash Champs in 2011 in Boston. She was also a member of the NZ World Junior Girls’ Squad last year and has won under-11, under-13 and under-15 national titles.

The number one boys’ seed, Jackson Beresford, an A2 graded player from the Christchurch Club won the under-19 boys’ event in a hard-fought final against Joseph Williams.

Wellington’s Joe Smythe (D2 Grade) took out the boys’ under-11 grade and third place in the boys’ under-13 section while Martha Toghill was the best of the under-11 girls’ and Anna O’Connell and Glen Templeton took the top prizes of the under-13 category.

Twelve players from the Excelsior Club played in the tournament and four from the Oamaru Club.

The high achievers of the local contingent were Bree Louden, who picked up third in the girls’ under-13 group and Connor Bolitho, who notched fourth in the boys’ under-13 section.

By JAMES FORD

PHOTO: BRAYDEN LINDSAY – Ruby Turnbull (left), of Christchurch, lost out to Whangarei’s Zoe Dykzeul in the under-15 girls’ section  final. Temwa Chileshe won the under-15 boys’ competition.